Today my husband and I drove up to Oroville to spend some time with my mom. She hasn't been eating or sleeping very well and has been fixated on taking care of everything that needs to be done. Perhaps not surprisingly then, when we arrived, she was tired and extremely cranky. She eventually relaxed, though, and we had a nice visit. She shared with us some of her memories of her early years with my dad and also of the years when they lived in Idaho later on, when my husband and I were first married. We had two young children of our own and not much money, so travel was difficult for us, and we didn't see very much of them for several years except twice when they traveled down this way for vacation. I'm glad she has such wonderful memories to hold in her heart.
I thought I'd share a couple photos of my parents. The first one above was taken around 1947, which would have been a year or so before they married. My dad had served in the Army during WWII, and when he returned, they started dating and eventually got married. I came along in 1956. They had been married for eight years and were unable to have children, so I was adopted. Just as they were looking into adopting a second child, my mom finally became pregnant, and my brother was born in 1960.
The photo below was taken around their 50th wedding anniversary. It wasn't too long afterward that my dad's health started to decline. I know the coming days, weeks, and months will be difficult for my mom, and she will have many decisions to make. I'm continually grateful that there are so many kind and helpful neighbors in her retirement community, since we don't live close enough to see her on a daily or even weekly basis, but we will call her often and see her whenever we can. Ideally, I would like her to move closer to me, but that's one of those tough decisions she will need to make for herself. In the meantime, I hope to bring her to our house for a weekend in a few weeks--it's been quite a few years since she was able to travel due to my dad's health problems. I know she will always miss my dad, but I hope that she will realize her own life can and will go on, and that she's surrounded by people who love and care for her.