As soon as I started walking up the walkway to my mom’s door, I knew I wanted to take a nap. It was that nap I didn’t know I’d been craving since I got out of bed this morning. I didn’t feel like a zombie, I wasn’t dragging. But my mind felt like a snooze alarm. It kept going on to process, remind and contemplate.
I was exhausted in a way that could only be described as mommy fatigue. Before my mom sold her house and moved 10 minutes away from me, I would escape to my childhood room and spend the weekend, being 10 again. An hour and a half drive or 2 trains away, was just far enough for me to call myself off duty from my household and family. But, 10 minutes away felt like I was just dashing over for a cup of sugar.
I occasionally spend the night, usually based on planned activities and logistics. Today, was supposed to be just a Saturday afternoon, “whatcha doing?” visit. She’d been out and about, shopping and errands. I’d only accomplished vacuuming the back porch and a shower.
I sat at her kitchen table, the same table from my childhood. Somehow, even in her condo, Jesus seemed to surround that table with the same warmth and peace. Somehow, a lifetime of conversations and a parade of memories came along with mom and the table. Sitting there with food or no food nourished my soul.
I didn’t have to be strong there, I didn’t have to be upbeat or sweep her off her feet with activity. Conversation was light, my shoulders were down and a nap was in order. I knew she would love nothing more for me to be so comfortable. Her loft master bedroom suite was the picture perfect AirB&B reserved only for family. This afternoon, I crash-landed on the bed. Like borrowing a Zipcar — I didn’t need a night, I just needed to catch some Zs for a few hours.
I didn’t think I would sleep, I had my cell in my hand with incoming texts of a stream of choppy catch up chats with friends and family. When I finally put the phone down, I didn’t think I was sleep; I heard my mom busy busy, coming and going. Pots, doors, keys, cabinets. She knew I was there, but yet she was alone. I didn’t know I was sleep until a text suddenly cut through broke the silence in my mind. It was two and a half hours later. found my mom in the kitchen making chicken salad.
I looked around my mom’s home, there abounding affirmations of comfort and love. All were a reflection of her and how she makes me feel. While I napped — her movement, her energy and all that surrounded me filled me.
Like a Tupperware container of chicken salad or a cup of sugar, I was taking a dose of mom with me. It makes me a better person, a better mother, a better wife.