Back in June my Mother turned 75. My Mom is an amazing woman. Not only did she take care of my grandmother for the last fifteen years of her life, but took care of my Dad during his losing battle with lymphoma. She is the head caregiver for our entire family…whether you want it or not. When the weather turned icy before Christmas last year and my oldest daughter realized she would not be able to make it home, it was my Mother who drove to Allen to spend the holiday with Courtney and family, so that they wouldn’t be alone at Christmas, and so that family would be there if the baby, who was due any day, decided to make an appearance. Did I, Courtney’s mother, do that? No, I did not. It was my Mother who did. She is sooooo much sweeter than me that I don’t even try to live up to her example. Pretty much everyone will verify that.
From the time that I was born, when she was 50 (work with me here), my Mom has always wanted to visit Colonial Williamsburg. Joe and I decided that turning 75 was kind of a big deal and it deserved a grand gesture. A trip to Virginia seemed like the perfect gift. I should probably mention that my Mom doesn’t travel. The last time she was on an airplane was 1994. I kid you not.
I hadn’t been back in Midland a nanosecond after her birthday party in June when I began receiving texts. Mom: “What size suitcase should I buy?” Me: “One that will hold everything you want to take. You do realize we aren’t leaving for another four months?” Mom: “What kind of clothes are you going to take?” Me: “I don’t know. I’ll let you know approximately 3 months 3 1/2 weeks from now.” Mom: “What can I carry on the plane?” Me: “Well, you’ll have to leave your grenade launcher and switchblade at home. They’ve banned those in the TWENTY YEARS since you’ve flown.” Mom: “You know you’re a smartass, right?”
Somewhere in middle of all the planning, I convinced my friend Julia that she should go with us. I argued that it would give my Mother the whole “girl trip” experience, plus she had already been there a couple of times and could keep us out of trouble. Also, she could be the peacekeeper if I make one snarky comment too many and Mom wants to backhand me. And let’s get real. That’s totally gonna happen. Really, it was an act of mercy, maybe even lifesaving…mine.
We leave in the morning. I hope this trip lives up to the dream that Mother has carried around all these years, but then I remember that I’m the one taking her. It doesn’t look good. Oh well, it’s bound to be an adventure.