Every decent person who knows my mother loves her.
30 years ago her second husband had just died and left her penniless and desperate. At the time I was early in my career, and we had not been in one another’s lives much for a few years.
The day after she buried her husband her phone rang - it was me, driving east with my small family from Colorado to take a new job in Central Florida. My wife and I told her to pack her bags, she was going south with us.
Over the next 30 years she overcame alcohol and tobacco addiction, and raised three grandsons from birth to adulthood - and filled their lives with love.
She’s almost 80 now, and sleeping soundly in the next room. We had a nice pre-Mother’s Day yesterday, and I’ll be spoiling her more tomorrow.
The great lesson her life teaches is that one can be at one’s lowest, most desperate and depressing hour, and be just a phone call away from a joyous new life. Her life also demonstrates that few situations are hopeless, and horrible addictions can be overcome by even the weakest among us.
I still look to her wisdom for advance on most things. She remains a valuable and contributing member of our family.