Most of us think we have time.
We never know when it’s the last card with the two little xx.
My mother and I corresponded by mail for thirty years because I was 3000 miles away. We talked by phone often, but her cards were special when they arrived. She would send cartoons she had found, I remember one card with two dogs trying to walk a tightrope, saying to each other “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” She would punctuate everything with “HA!”, a smiley face, and xx. This was her signature. I loved those cards and always looked forward to receiving them.
When she went to nursing care, the cards were even more precious. She would tell me about her day, a song that someone sang to her at the music hour in the afternoon. She would tell me she won 25 cents again at Bingo. And, always at the bottom of the card: “I love you xx”.
When she passed away suddenly, I searched for her last letter. Frantic, I couldn’t remember where I put it and I’m still not sure what she said. In the last few months of her life, her brain and memories popped through dementia scramble that configured her chatty letters with a different twist of imagination. She continued to write, but sometimes I couldn’t understand what she was trying to say.
I haven’t been able to find that last card. I’m not sure when it arrived. I’m not sure where it is.
I thought of how each moment must be cherished. If I had cherished the moment I received each of mom’s cards and placed each into a beautiful silver bowl. I’d have it now.
I have several of her cards, but the last card? NO. I say to myself, ” I know it’s here somewhere, waiting for the exact moment.” Mom will wait for a moment when I need to see her HA!, smiley face and xx and it will appear.
We live life today and never know when a card or smile or “I love you xx,” will be the last we receive. We always think there’s time.
Being mindful today.
Cherishing each moment.