Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Strongest Person I Know

My daughter, forty-something, is the strongest person I know.

She is a divorced mother of two who has a very demanding job and often goes to work when she doesn’t feel like it. She starts very early and finishes late. Besides that, she home schools her eldest child, helps the younger one with homework and sees to all the other needs of a twelve year old daughter and a sixteen year old son. She keeps house, does the shopping, laundry and taxis the children to and from their various activities.

Unfortunately, busy people often fall into bad habits that hurt them. For the past several years, being so active and on the go most of the time, she rarely took the time to eat right, but always had a bottle of coke in her hand or sticking out of her large purse. Her dentist said the acid in the coke literally ate the enamel off her teeth. So she is slowly losing them.

I was up at six-thirty yesterday morning getting ready to drive her to the office of an oral surgeon where she would have seven teeth extracted.

It always seems to be raining when I have an early morning appointment, especially one that is not the least bit enjoyable? We drove the 10 miles or so via interstate, windshield wipers going full blast. She was nervous; I was sleepy, having had only about three to four hours sleep. It was not a pleasant morning, by any means.

Even though the waiting room was full, we didn’t have to wait long. There are two doctors and things moved along pretty quickly. Once they took her inside, I pulled my kindle out of my purse and attempted to read Daleen Berry’s book, Sister of Silence. Although it’s a compelling book, reading only made me sleepier, so I finally closed the kindle – and my eyes. At least I can rest them, I thought. But after 45 minutes, I was starting to worry that something had gone wrong. That’s when she opened the door... mouth full of gauze... and motioned for me to bring her purse in so she could pay for the surgery.

It was raining even harder, but sharing my umbrella, we ran for the car and headed toward home, stopping by a pharmacy to get her pain pills and a grocery store for jello, pudding and chicken broth – essentials for after oral surgery. She had printed instructions from the doctor to rest today! Do absolutely nothing, the paper read.

When I dropped her at her house, the gauze in her mouth was already soaked with blood. She always bleeds badly so we expected more of the same. I figured she’d sleep the rest of the day.

Not my daughter!

Almost as soon as I was out of sight, she got in her car and went to work. “It was not an option,” she told me when I scolded her a few hours later. “I had to be there!”

“Do you need anything?” I asked – a little miffed.

“No, I’ll be just fine!” she insisted.

And so... Tuff Daughter worked until six p.m., then went home and prepared to rest – at long last! But a while later, she discovered she did need something after all.

My phone rang about 9 p.m. “Mother,” said this weak sounding voice.

“Yes,” I answered. “Is everything okay?”

“I’m hungry,” she said.

“What about your jello and pudding and broth?”

“I had that, but I need some of your good scrambled eggs with cheese,” she said. I smiled. “I’ll be right there.”

“No, I’ll drive to your house,” she said. 

Funny that a gal who worked four hours just after having seven teeth cut out, wasn’t able to scramble eggs!

I had them almost ready when she arrived. She devoured them, had some milk and even a little peach cobbler. I can’t imagine eating like that under the same conditions.

I feel sure it was not food she needed as much as a little of her mother’s pampering – the kind she got when she was a child. We never forget the special things our mother does for us, do we?

I never got too old to need my mother when I was sick. I’d get on the phone and call her looking for sympathy and it almost always resulted in having a pot of fresh potato soup delivered right to my door. Nothing was quite as healing as Mother’s potato soup and loving attention.

Tuff Girl was back up this morning and off to work by 7:30. When I talked to her later in the day, she said she was doing alright. I’m grateful for her strength. I think she must have inherited it from her father. I admit it. I’m a wimp!

But then... wimps get more pampering.


Janet said...

Seven teeth cut out at the same time. unbelievable! She is strong. I hope she's doing okay. Janet

Jon said...

Wow! What a gal! That would be hard to do. I really hope she does well peggy. Good post. Jon

sam said...

great post peg. I wish your strong daughter the best of luck. sam

Anonymous said...

She must be very strong. I don't think I could do that. I hope she continues to do well.

Pam said...

I hope your tuff daughter is still doing well peg. I wish her and you the best. Hugs~ Pam