Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen

FOR MY MOM

In memoir, Uncategorized on October 2, 2015 at 9:05 pm

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I just don’t know how to start writing about my mom. I love her so much. She was 97 years old and strong. She had a strong gird. When she had to go to the bathroom, she would tell me, “I am no baby.” That is my mom. My mom was extremely generous, she would share her small pension every month with me. She was a giver.

She had two husbands, both of them abused her and beat her. I told her, “let me get the police,” and she said to me, “everything is ok, I’ll be alright.” My mom was an adventurer, she would go anywhere by herself. She would talk to strangers in restaurants. My mom was a likable person and I was blessed with the support of my sister and brother. My mom got shingles in her late 90’s – it was hard on me. It was hard on me, I would not give her the pain medication because it would make her sleep. I would give her a hot towel to relieve her pain. The more I was with her, the more I realized how important love was. I would bathe her every week, wash her lovely feet every day, and kiss her loving toenail. My mom and I worked together in a cafeteria. Her job was to make salad, while I was a pot washer.

I would take her every two months to see her foot doctor (to trim her toenail). Her foot doctor told me, “you are a good son, but as she gets older, it will get harder.” I realized that a few years later. I got her a wheelchair and she said “Is that for you?” That is my mom. My mom was a single parent, raised me, my two brothers, and sister (with my help). I would tell her “she did it,” and she would respond, “with the help of God.” I never put her in a nursing home, I was responsible for being in charge of my mother. I would play checkers with her and always allow her to beat me. She was so comfortable sitting in a chair the whole day, she would never complain.

I would talk with her for hours about the good old days, when she was young. I was so blessed that she had no dementia. She had a wonderful spirit and loved music. During World War 2, my mom worked as a bus girl at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. She met the actor Clark Gable there. He wanted her to come to Hollywood with him; my mom said no because she was too close to her own mother. I remember on my mom’s birthday, I took her and my brother to see a Broadway show. On mother’s day, I told her every day is mother’s day for me (with many kisses). Mom was a real New Yorker. She would go by herself to all the department stores in the city. She retired from work at 62 years old. She worked at a Coach factory on 34th street. I would visit her after work, and go for dinner on Fridays. We would also go to the St. Francis church on 31st street.

It’s very depressing for me now that my mother is no longer here. I miss all those intimate years with my mom. I miss it. I would say to myself, “oh Lord, please help me.”

I recall the last couple of weeks when I could not bathe her, change her pants, or do anything until my brother came home from work. There were times I would act like a clown and dance to make her smile. I know that the love for her doesn’t end because her spirit is with me all the time. I remember when my brother and I brought her to the hospital (where she spent three days). She was crying and told me to please take her home. I stayed with her the whole night at the hospital until the next day (when we went home). I remember praying to myself, “please help me God, I don’t want anything to happen to my mother.”

-Charles Borges

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