Saturday, January 12, 2019

Happy Birthday Mom.


 Today my mom turned 80, it seems so unreal to be typing that. However days add up to weeks and then years, suddenly here we are. We had a small gathering after supper with the people in the home, I brought cake, she likes sweets now and really enjoyed her birthday cake. The nurse asked mom if she was surprised to be turning 80, she said,"oh not really, I feel 80". The nursing home is more like a home and they treat the patients like family. They had a collection of decorations on the wall in the shape of balloons, in each balloon was how much an item cost the year mom was born. A nice house was $6000, a car was $750, rent was $28 a month and a can of soup was about 4 cents. I thought that was an interesting idea.

 I think back from when she was a girl, at 16 she finished high school and headed to the city. She took a course to become a secretary, one of the few jobs women were allowed to have. She loved being in the city and always regretted moving back to the country... but that's the price you pay for falling in love with a farmer and getting married. She was considered old when she got married, 23!

 When I was young she had her pelvis crushed in a farming accident, she spent months in hospital and then a wheelchair, they were afraid she would never walk again, she was determined to walk and eventually did. Many times before and after the accident, when dad was ill, hurt or called away, she held everything together with the farm, kids and work. Like most moms, she had super mom powers, even though she was barely above five feet.

 Her dementia was her main issue as she was still healthy and mobile. That appears to be changing now, this week we realize that her health is starting to slide as well. Even though we don't usually celebrate birthdays, I felt today was a milestone in birthdays and so wanted to make a little fuss over her. She covered her face when I walked out with the cake and we all started singing. I had a good visit, she joked with the staff and other people. Even though she won't remember any of the celebration within seconds of me leaving, I know there won't be too many more birthdays and wanted to do this. A few days ago we didn't know what tomorrow had in store for her, let alone a little birthday party, to be honest I think the birthday celebration was as much for me as it was for her. Happy birthday mom.

30 comments:

Deedles said...

Aww. I just realized the date! My father would've been 83 today. He died two months before his fifty-second birthday. Treasure your mom for as long as she's with you, whether she's "with" you or not. I'm sure I don't have to tell you that, though. Hugs, sweetie. I forgive you and Maddie ahead of time, knowing I'm probably going to be dreaming of really stiff socks marching out of my sons' bedrooms!

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Deedles, I do take note of the moments I am with her. Yesterday I was sitting with her while her doctor was doing a follow-up. For the first time when I looked at mom, I saw an elderly woman. That startled me a little, strange right?

Deedles said...

I don't know what to tell you, Steven. I would think it's like the first time a person starts to see their parents as people instead of just mom and dad. It can be a little startling I suppose. My parents had me when they were twenty and seventeen. Both died in their early fifties so I never saw them as elderly. I think the situation your mother is in can amplify the fact that she is indeed elderly. My mother's sister is eighty-one, going deaf, suffers from ptsd (she had an abusive husband AND worked for the post office!)and has diabetes but she still lives on her own and is more active than I am. I don't remember my point, but I hope the ramble helps. Hugs.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Your Mom sounds like a fine woman, like so many of her generation. I'm glad she enjoyed her birthday celebration. It doesn't matter if she won't remember it tomorrow. She lives in the Now, which is a very zen place to be.

mistress maddie said...

Good god, we could be brothers!!!! My mother is 79 and will be 80 in March. My mother still works four days a week at a rehabilitation hospital as a receptionist. I tell he to quit and enjoy. She, being feisty and snarky like me, tell me to shut the hell up. I hear how is fine, healthy and gets around, and she does. She still looks to be in her 60's. She tell me that working gets her out, keeps her active and alert. Most of her friends and ex co-workers are in poor health or dead. And she is right.


Sounds like you both had a great day and don't count her out yet. Sounds like she still has more enjoyment ahead. Like you I savor all the moments


Now I will offer you another hug and kiss. That make three now ny my count today.

Christina said...

Wishing your mom a very happy belated birthday.
I think that generation are a tough one. My dad is 85 and has a few health issues but goes out on the bus most days.

It's shocking to see how little, things cost 80 years ago but of course wages were a lot less.

Hope you are keeping well.x

Leanna said...

It's sad that when you grow old you are robbed of so many memories. My mother will be 89 next month. She was born and raised in Hawaii. So many memories she told us about where she grew up in the 30's and 40's. So much history. In a way, I have still a little bit of love in my heart for my mother even though she treated me like crap. But that too is starting to wither away as I grow older. Sorry.

Old Lurker said...

It is difficult to understand how your mom is turning 80 when you are only 27. Nonetheless I am glad that both you and she enjoyed the birthday celebrations.

Harry Hamid said...

This is a fantastic and touching post that really got me thinking about my own folks.

My parents are in good health right now, but we never know how long any of us have until that changes, so we should appreciate the days we've got. That sounds simplistic and obiouvs, but it's really not.

anne marie in philly said...

your mom has lead an interesting life. glad you made a fuss over her for #80.

@maddie - tell your mom to keep working; working keeps your brain active. you start dying when you quit working; I watched that happen to my MIL and it wasn't pretty.

Bob Slatten said...

I love that balloon idea.
And your mother has had quite a life. My father is 86 and still out and about and volunteering at the local aquarium. When asked how he feels about getting older, he always says, "It's better than the alternative,"

Sixpence Notthewiser said...

Lovely post. Celebrating birthdays is awesome. Glad she enjoyed it.
What counts is the time we get to spend with the people we love.

XoXo

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to your mom. You are a good son.

Michael said...

My mom just turned 84. She is still very active and doesn't look 84. I am lucky. My brother, sister, and I had an 80th birthday party for her up in Boston. It was a day I'll never forget as we honored my mother. She is like your mother I suspect, strong and always independent. That was a really nice post.

Willym said...

A lovely and loving tribute to your mother. She is blessed to have you and you to have her.

Ur-spo said...

You continue to write marvelous and tender prose.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Deedles lol, I understood the message, don't worry!

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Debra, I just do things as if she will remember because every now and again, it's amazing what she will remember and talk about.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Maddie, maybe we are twins separated at birth, guess which one of us is the evil twin! ;)

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Christina, thank you and yes the prices were a fun thing to read about.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Leanna, that's ok, I know not everyone had a perfect family, we were not either but my sister and I had it really good to be honest.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Old Lurker, exactly! She was very humble and didn't want to be interviewed about having me so late in life!

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Harry Hamid, yes we never know how fast something can change in our lives. The last ten years have really altered my life.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Anne Marie, I want to retire and lie on a beach sipping fruity drinks all day... rubbing sunblock on some hot guy's buns.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Bob, I like that answer, a lot of the older people have a sharp wit.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Sixpence, so true, thank you.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Thank you anonymous for the kind words and birthday wishes.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Michael, I know mom would have been active in things if this didn't happen to her. She always used to say that if something happened to dad, she wanted to volunteer for a hospital or something like that, to keep herself active, sadly that doesn't get to happen.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Willym, thank you, I have always been about team mom ever since I was little.

Sooo-this-is-me said...

Thank you Dr Spo, this is my therapy I think.