Thursday, December 13, 2012

Thankful for the Kids I Raised

Today, hours before Thanksgiving Day, I’m thankful for so many wonderful things in my life.  To name a few—my wonderful husband, Frank, of 38 years, my beautiful daughter, Leah, fantastic son, Stephen, two gorgeous grandsons, Luke and Zealand, my loving sisters, Kathy and Sharon.  Family, of course, is foremost, even though I have many other things to be thankful for.  But if you don’t have a family you can depend upon, especially in times of need, not the greatest of career success, the best of all the material riches in the world, can ever make up for it. 
I am so lucky to have the kids I do—Leah and Stephen not only appreciate me, they would move mountains to help me in my time of need.  That, I am 100% certain of.  Not every mother is that lucky.
That point was driven home this week when I took a friend in for her doctor’s appointment after she had hip replacement surgery.  Last year I’d done the same thing for her after her first surgery.  At that time, I hadn’t realized she has a daughter who lives in the area. But that fact came to my attention a few months later, and I remember wondering then why the daughter wasn’t taking her in for her appointments.  It just seemed weird to me. 
So, when I received a phone call from my friend last week, asking if I’d take her in for her appointment this week—the week of Thanksgiving when I have a million things to do, I couldn’t help but wonder again.  Why was the daughter MIA? 
But it wasn’t my place to ask. 
But me being me, I asked.  My friend told me, rather of matter-of-factly, that her daughter couldn’t take time off from work to take her to the doctor.  But then she added dryly that she seems to have no trouble taking off for things she wants to do, though.  Well, I was just appalled.  But it got worse.  Apparently, this daughter hadn’t even come to the hospital when her mother was in surgery.  I just can’t fathom that.  I lost my mother when she was only 63.  I can’t imagine ever living close to her and not being there for her when she needed me! At the very least, it’s called obligation, on the other side of the scale, it’s called generosity and love.  What I wouldn’t give to have my mother with me right now, even if I had to run her to the doctor twice a day.  Maybe I’m sounding sanctimonious here, but I think unless your mother was a monster—someone who abused you or, worse, allowed someone else to abuse you, a daughter or son should be there for their aging mother. 
I feel so bad for my friend—and so lucky to have children like Leah and Stephen.  As far as I’m concerned, I won the lottery when it comes to family.  Frank, Leah, Stephen, Luke, Zealand, Kathy and Sharon, God bless you.  He has already blessed me with you. 

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