We went to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with family this week. It was nice to be around the familiar items of my childhood, the same wall hangings, the same throw pillows the same smells and customs and especially the same people. Even though the house my Mom lives in is not the one that conjures up the most memories, she has hung the same pictures I grew up with and has much of the same furniture and so it is familiar to me as the house that I, for many years considered home.
I am the only child to make this pilgrimage on a regular basis to visit the folks. For whatever reasons the other children do not visit two, three, four times a year like we do. And my sister cannot visit at all, at least not for a while.
As my parents age I worry about them. They are not as young as they once were, they do not remember things as sharply as they once did, they let things go that are not so important. This is life and it will happen to each of us if we are so fortunate to be allowed to age with time and grow old and become elderly. It is hard to imagine but one day I will also forget to do things like wash the lunch dishes, answer the phone and pick up the mail. Instead I will choose to eliminate certain things I once considered important because it takes too much energy or because I would rather nap.
I am not from a small family. My mother has 4 children and her husband has 2. But out of 6 children only one returns regularly. As we plan a move across the country to a place that will take me very far from her it burdens my heart to think that no one else will go every three to four to six to nine months to check in and see how everyone is doing. I have to think there are other reasons besides the fact that they live off the beaten track that keep the kids from coming back. And whatever those things are, maybe time does not heal all wounds.
I hope that maybe it just hasn't been enough time. And maybe someone will read this and let bygones be bygones and stop by for a visit. They will be very welcome.