New Year, New Triumphs!!

I’ve been so busy that I’ve neglected my blog!! So today, I finally write!!! So much has happened! We enjoyed a whirlwind of Holiday Happiness, and Firsts too!! We did everything possible over the holidays with Kendal – Gingerbread making, the Mormon Temple Lights, Zoo Lights, and ICE at the Gaylord… We bought only a few presents, only saw a few people, but had one of the best holiday seasons ever. We were there for Kendal’s first train ride at the Gaylord, and her first Carousel ride at the Zoo and watching her opening all of her presents. The joy on her face almost made me burst!! I think the rest of us almost burst with excitement too!! Our girl turned two, and started Montessori school too!! Time is flying by, but I’m going to enjoy every single moment. I had a milestone birthday too, turning 55 and celebrated for an entire weekend. I took a day off, pampered myself, and ate A LOT!!

But my Mom is the reason I’m writing today!! I had a wonderful time with her too this holiday season. We spent lots of time together Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. I listened to her read from new her favorite book and Christmas present, “For the Living of These Days”, by Paul Roberts Abernathy. It’s a book of his sermons, many of which I helped select for publication.  Even though Mom read the same sermons over and over, the words were comforting to me, and I hope to her as well. We took her to see Christmas Lights at Watkins Park too, and she loved  seeing all of the wonderful animations in the park while riding in the car. I even took a chance and went to see her on my birthday weekend, even though doing so last year didn’t work out so well.
I was a great decision this year and she remembered me on my 55th birthday, though unfortunately not Tim. She remembered my name but not immediately how to spell it. Her caregiver Angelina was a true angel and gave Mom a card for her to sign for me, and she tried her absolute best to spell my name on the card. After we gave her the letters LOR, she was able to fill in the ETTA all by herself!! We cheered as if we had won the lottery!!!
I go into each and every experience with my mom with NO Expectations!! So I really cherished every moment with her, just as I’ve relished every moment with Kendal!! I cheer as loudly for my Mom as I cheer for Kendal whenever she does something awesome, even if it’s the simplest thing. In spite of all the great memories we made over the last six weeks, I didn’t feel compelled to write much about it until today after reading one of Kim’s Facebook posts! It got my attention right away. It was a photo of two women, one seemingly much younger than the other. The I read the words that went with the photo, a letter from a mother to her daughter. Stunning!!! I took hours before I could make a somewhat coherent comment on Facebook! I wonder what my Mom would have said if she had ever written me a letter. I hope that she would say that I’ve done the best job I can to fulfill all her desires and to treat her with the utmost dignity. She deserves that and so much MORE. I love you, my awesome Mom!!
Rather than describe the photo and letter, I share it below!
From the album: Timeline Photos

My dear girl, the day you see I’m getting old, I ask you to please be patient, but most of all, try to understand what I’m going through. If when we talk, I repeat the same thing a thousand times, don’t interrupt to say: “You said the same thing a minute ago”… Just listen, please. Try to remember the times when you were little and I would read the same story night after night until you would fall asleep.When I don’t want to take a bath, don’t be mad and don’t embarrass me. Remember when I had to run after you making excuses and trying to get you to take a shower when you were just a girl?

When you see how ignorant I am when it comes to new technology, give me the time to learn and don’t look at me that way … remember, honey, I patiently taught you how to do many things like eating appropriately, getting dressed, combing your hair and dealing with life’s issues every day… the day you see I’m getting old, I ask you to please be patient, but most of all, try to understand what I’m going through.If I occasionally lose track of what we’re talking about, give me the time to remember, and if I can’t, don’t be nervous, impatient or arrogant. Just know in your heart that the most important thing for me is to be with you.

And when my old, tired legs don’t let me move as quickly as before, give me your hand the same way that I offered mine to you when you first walked. When those days come, don’t feel sad… just be with me, and understand me while I get to the end of my life with love. I’ll cherish and thank you for the gift of time and joy we shared. With a big smile and the huge love I’ve always had for you, I just want to say, I love you … my darling daughter.

Original text in Spanish and photo by Guillermo Peña.
Translation to English by Sergio Cadena


5 thoughts on “New Year, New Triumphs!!

  1. Having no expectations and then receiving so much is truly the greatest thing! I find your blog very inspiring. You are the best Ret, the best daughter, wife, Mom, Grammy! You wear many hats and you wear them well, much better than most. Your Mom absolutely would have said that you have treated her with utmost dignity and that you have done everything in your power to ensure she is safe and happy. What more could a parent ask for? I am so proud of you, you do so much for so many people and ask for nothing to little in return. I read this letter a while ago and it put a lump in my throat. I am sure it is what most parents would hope from their kids as they get on in life, but unfortunately not all will receive that. You are lucky in that you will know with every person in your life, you have no regrets with them. Anyone who is lucky enough to have you in their lives knows that you put forth everything you can in every relationship, regardless of what the relationship is.

    • Kris,

      You just ROCK!!! Thanks for all that you’ve shared!!! With the size of my biological family getting smaller each year, it’s great to have validation for what I’m doing from my “chosen family”. Yes indeed I put everything I have into my relationships!! My Mom is definitely worth all that and more. Just praying that I can keep making the best decisions for her!!

      Love you my sister!!!!

  2. What an awesome statement. You have a lot to be proud of and I’m so glad I’m in the inner circle. All of my Love, Timothy…

    • Don’t know where I’d be without all your help with Mom!!! She flat out loves you and she couldn’t have a better son-in-law than you!! Thank you for every single thing you’ve done!! You ARE the inner circle!! We make a great team!!!

  3. I hate to be the one who says…”yeah, what she said”, because it can come off as insincere, but with all the sincerity and love I have, I say…..”Yeah, what she said”. I couldn’t have said it better myself :-). I’m glad shared that pic and story. I KNEW it would resonate with you. LOVE YOU!!!!!!

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