Sometimes coffee is just coffee, but coffee delivered to a perfectly-appointed hotel room is a decadent indulgence that Erma always enjoyed on her girls’ getaways. So, this sunny Sunday morning, before Sylvia heads back home to weather another storm in life- just a little teacup tempest not full-blown furor-she’s treating herself to a deep, dark, steaming roast. In bed. It’s the jump start she needs.
For those of you acquainted with Sylvia and The Best Cup of Coffee Sylvia Ever Had, the coffee is steaming not steamy at this hour. But hey, the day is young. Enjoy, friends.
Making coffee has become the great compromise of the decade. It’s the only thing “real” men do that doesn’t seem to threaten their masculinity. To women, it’s on the same domestic entry level as putting the spring back into the toilet-tissue holder or taking a chicken out of the freezer to thaw.
— Erma Bombeck
Sylvia: Erma, nothing lasts forever, right?
Erma: Oh, there’s something that lasts longer than forever, Sylvia. Look into the eyes of a child- your child-that love, that hope, that sweetness, that lasts long past forever, my friend.
I was often judged- and not always favorably- when I invited my parents to live with us in California after Mom’s diagnosis. Occasionally some would wonder aloud what effect having a terminally ill person in my home would have on an impressionable and growing young boy. Those who knew our relationships- the closeness that was much more than mother and daughter and the unconditional connection of love between grandmother and grandson- were extremely supportive. And perhaps if we had disclosed what we knew was happening with my father, others would have been more understanding and less critical, but that element was not mine to share at the time. The reality is though that none of what others think or thought at the time has any value. The value of how my mother chose to live her remaining years and the final outcome of our decision to help her with her battle, however and wherever she wanted, is seen here.
The boy who sat on Nana’s bed after he came home from school and shared his day with her (and likely shared more secrets than I’ll ever know) became this young man. He lives freely as his own person; he welcomes the world’s differences and the adventures that come along with them; he engages those around him with his bright eyes, contagious smile and compassionate heart. I am blessed, and God knows, that I learn far more from him than from any other about letting go and living. He has bad days and pushes through. He has self-made predicaments and doesn’t let them defeat him. I am so proud to be his mother and I sure hope that we are friends. I still have much to teach him, but deep down I know what my mother probably knew all along– our children are OUR greatest teachers.
Through him and my mother, I know infinity.
“Only in the eyes of love you can find infinity.”~Sorin Cerin, Wisdom Collection: The Book of Wisdom
photo credit: csamuel&afortin
(The above post is an excerpt from the author’s upcoming book.)