As many of my readers know, my mom had a recent medical scare. A mammogram had revealed an abnormality, but an ultrasound ruled out a malignancy.
As I said in a previous post, “benign” is becoming my favorite word.
I thank everyone in cyberspace for their support and prayers. The collective support of this fabulous online community buoyed me up when I was down.
While I am beyond relieved at the good news, I don’t kid myself. Breast cancer is wily and insidious. No one is exempt from this disease, which has left me looking over my shoulder a bit too much for my liking.
While I was holding my breath to see what would unfold regarding my mother’s health, I had lots of time to think about cancer, survivorship, and my terror.
Mostly I thought of how important my mom is to me and how grateful and lucky I am to still have her in my life.
During my teen years, my mom and I cemented our friendship. We frequently had “ladies’ nights out” and shopping days. We would talk freely about our lives. One day, commuting to a local shopping center, a classmate on the same bus came up to me to chat. A few days later at school, the classmate asked me, “Why didn’t you introduce me to your sister?” When I told my mom, we had a great laugh, and she was understandably flattered.
When I was newly separated from my husband, she was in Chicago helping me get settled into my apartment. We shopped for furniture, and the sight of us hauling a brand new coffee table into the building (thank goodness elevators were on the premises!) must have been comical. She also happened to be visiting me when my divorce was finalized. During my separation and divorce, she kept me too busy to wallow in self-pity.
When her new granddaughter, just-arrived from China, sobbed in fear of my parents, my mother tried to soothe her. Back in the day of Ari acclimating to me, followed by acclimating to those close to me, Ari was a champion crier. Per my mom’s advice, we put the baby in her umbrella stroller and walked her around my parents’ neighborhood and even in the house. And those tears didn’t stop my parents from taking Ari to a photographer so our family could have its first family portrait of the new addition. Ari even managed a huge smile for the camera.
Nowadays, my daughter adores her grandparents. My mom and dad spend ample time with Ari, who was a featured “performer” at a “talent show” in my parents’ home. Ari draped a towel over her one night, and my mom gave Ari her spotlight by shining a flashlight on the part of the floor where Ari was standing.
Ari has not forgotten.
My mom and I speak at least once a week, and I love the sound of her voice. I’m hoping I can continue to hear her voice for many, many years to come.
Please feel free to comment on your relationship with a parent/parents.
If applicable, how has cancer affected your relationship(s) with a parent or as a parent?
Tags: cancer, mother-daughter relationship, motherhood