Why am I bringing up Thanksgiving today? Last year Thanksgiving fell on my mom’s birthday, one of only two times I ever drink coffee. Yesterday was the other one, the anniversary of her death. Just two cups of coffee a year – and always at McD’s.
I started A Writer’s Window about this time last year. One of my first posts was about sipping coffee in Mom’s memory. Since then I’ve learned a lot about blogging – not nearly as much as I’d like – but Mom was the perfect model for never being too old to learn.
I was in late elementary or junior high when she decided, or maybe she and Dad decided, it was time for her to learn how to drive. Thinking about it now, I can’t imagine being an adult and not knowing how to drive. But Driver’s Ed wasn’t offered when she was in school and in my hometown one can still pretty much walk wherever you need to go.
Every job she had, she had to learn something new and challenging. At a family physician’s it was medical and insurance billing. I still have handwritten notes from a seminar she attended on medical terminology when she became the office manager for a chiropractor.
While employed with the DMV, she was always heading to Columbus or Toledo for training on those new machines – computers. She was willing and eager to go when others preferred not to. I imagine if she were alive today she’d be running circles around me on the computer, and she would have been one of the first with Skype so she could keep in touch with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
This is my favorite picture of Mom and Dad, circa the 1970s
Yes, those are Christmas ornaments hanging from Dad’s ears. When I look at this picture I can still hear her explosive, hearty laugh and remember how easily it came. Her love of life was infectious.
Mom loved her daily cup of dark roast, her cigarette, and her morning devotional at McDonald’s. One of the many memories my kids have of Grandma is going with her, sharing fries, and slurping the little creamers.
Mom passed away fourteen years ago. After her funeral Dad, my sisters and I, and our significant others headed to McDonald’s. We thought it only appropriate to honor her over a cup of coffee.
Twice a year, it still is.