Sunday, May 10, 2009

"I Grow Old" For Mothers Day

Click photo to read.

One of the prominent memories I have of my mother goes back to 1962. It was the Cuban missile crises, which although was taking place thousands of miles away from our Montana home, was still of concern. I only had a slight idea of what was going on, but then again I was only 6. I do remember my mother being very worried and listening to Walter Cronkite, as he spoke of what could happen should mistakes be made. The part of this that is burned into my memory, is me standing in our front yard just behind my mother. A breeze moving through the trees, just enough to make me notice fallen autumn leaves slowly pass over the shadow of my mom . She turned and looked at me as the city did a test of the sirens which would warn of an impending nuclear attack. The fear that it placed in me will not soon be forgotten. As the sirens ripped through the cool fall air I stepped close to my mom and my little shadow was soon consumed by moms. She put her arm around my shoulder and soon much of my fear was brought under control by her touch. It was not until many years later that I started to think about my parents mortality. I distinctly remember that I thought long and hard about it and came to the conclusion that they could not die before me. I simply could not handle the idea. They did pass however and it was painful. My father, in 1998, from a relentless cancer and my mother,in 2003, of the combined effects of diabetes and Alzheimer’s. In both cases they suffered enough, and as painful as it was, it was a relief that they moved on to the next step.
Over the past few years I have reflected a lot on that October day in our front yard. I give thanks to this woman, Celina M. Cole, for casting a tall straight and comforting shadow that will remain with us kids, until it is our time to move on as well.

Randy J. Cole