Eight days after Mum's arrival in Canada in September 2003, we were back in Ontario from our trip to BC, for the rest of her vacation with us. We had a few days together before Uncle John also flew in from England for a vacation with us, on the last day of September.
The beginning of October found our house full of people. A bushel of apples that I had bought in nearby Collingwood filled the house with a delicious fragrance and awaited peeling and slicing for pies.
The whirlwind trip to BC had been wonderful, and I had loved every minute, but I was tired. There was little time for solitude, as essential to me as breathing almost, and the demands of work and caring for additional people on top of my normally busy life was catching up with me.
I found myself praying for patience, balance and focus, trying to slow down enough to see the precious gifts God gave me in people. I was gripped with a fear that I might miss something because I was always so busy.
One day I was impatient with Mum as she tried to reattach the coffee filter to the coffee pot. I demonstrated how "easy" it was to do it, in a graceless, insensitive way. I don't know if she noticed; she didn't act as though she did, but later on, I asked God's forgiveness for my impatience and unkindness, and thought of how precious it was to have my 76 year old mum with me. I knew that if I lived long enough, there would come a time when my fingers too, would fumble with the things I found easy now.
On Monday, October 13th, Thanksgiving Day, almost 4 weeks after she had arrived, it was time for Mum to go home. The weeks had flown by. I was so grateful for every minute.
I looked back on the time together with no regrets. I wrote in my journal on the evening she left:
There is nothing undone that I wished we could do, no kindness or blessing forgotten. Thank you Lord for the gift of her presence. Thank you for the precious times as family. Everything has been such a blessing and my heart is filled with gratitude. Father, I commit her journey to You. Please watch over every moment of it.
To be continued...