Grandma’s Visit

baked birthday birthday cake blowing
Photo by Markus Spiske temporausch.com on Pexels.com

Last evening, my eighty-nine-year-old mother awoke from her recliner nap and asked, “Where’s Mom?” Though she suffers from dementia, she’d never asked for Grandma.
Until yesterday, she lacked most memory, but didn’t have delusions. Misbeliefs, and to a lesser extent hallucination, happen with Alzheimer’s patients.
But yesterday, she regressed into her experiences. I didn’t want to upset her by saying her mother was dead, so I told her Grandma was coming to our house. Since she thought she was here, she looked confused. It appeared she was dreaming.
“Am I to cook?” She asked. I assured her I had it under control, so she dozed again. Later, she awoke and said, “We mustn’t forget to vacuum.”
I assumed she wanted to prepare for her mother’s arrival. Then she warned, “Don’t forget to wake the children.” Her voice was soft, so I asked her several times to repeat herself. I decided she was experiencing a time of my youth.
Back then, Grandma came to visit on her birthday and stayed a few days. In preparation, Mom grocery shopped, cleaned, and baked. My grandmother’s birthday was two days before my twin brother’s and mine. So, our celebration was one of excitement for the three of us. It must have been unforgettable for my mother, too.
It appeared, Mom’s mind had short-circuited, and it was processing memories from the sixties. She may have remembered children running barefoot through the kitchen, as the roast in the oven and the boiling potatoes in the pot heated the room. Open windows offered welcome May breezes.
Grandma spread the plates and glasses as hungry kids asked if the meal was ready. Mom managed the stove-top delights as skilled as a conductor directing an orchestra. She coordinated everything toward a simultaneous conclusion.
Yesterday evening as my mother dwelled in her dream world, I joined her. I, too, visited the days of my youth. Before spandex, mothers wore house dresses and flour-powdered aprons. Trousers danced on the clotheslines while exchanging dampness for nature’s fragrances. Moms made cakes from scratch and the icing, too. I remembered blackberry cobblers in the summer and apple pies in the fall. On special occasions, Dad took pictures of Mom standing beside her delectable masterpieces.
One day, soon I fear, photographs will be the only thing I have of my mother. The way a grandfather clock tires at the end of its tension, she’s becoming frail and weak.
While teaching the disciples, Christ promised: “In my Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.” John 14:2 NASB.
As a mother creates a feast for her family, Christ is preparing a place for her just reward. It’s a place for all of us.