I lied to my Momma Jane. Not a teeny tiny lie either but a big ol’ fat lie. The #1 rule in our house with our children is do not lie. Ever. So when I had to lie to my mom, I hated it. However, it was all for a very good reason…
As most of you know my mom has not been doing well since pretty much the beginning of the year. It’s really been like a health rollercoaster. Up and down and up and down. We spent a week each at two separate hospitals. She was basically diagnosed with a lung infection and congestive heart failure. But this four time Cancer Survivor is just that…a SURVIVOR! That being said, when sickness plagues you like it has her, it can take a toll on you, both physically and emotionally. Plus coming off many many years of taking care of my dad who had major heart issues most of his life…she’s had her share of yuck. Which is one (of many) reasons you’ll always see me posting about trips, vacations and fun experiences so our family can live life as big as we can. Together!
My cousin Kelley who lives in Pennsylvania, where my mom is from, reached out to me a few weeks ago and told me that her mom wanted to come visit. My Aunt Phyllis, my mom’s sister. The woman my mom hasn’t seen in a few years and the one she laughs with the most. Yack, yack, yack, laugh, laugh, laugh is all they do when they’re together. I told Kelley this was such a great idea but that we should surprise my mom and not tell her. There are so few surprises in life, so why not give one to my mom. I thought this would be such a neat way to lift her spirits and give her a really great life moment.
I had to come up with something to tell my mom. Why? Well because I knew two things…1. my mom would want her house to be clean and 2. my mom would want to be showered and look presentable. So I came up with a story. Some might say a lie…I say a story. haha I told my mom that a local magazine was coming to our house to do a story on “multi-generational living”. I had kind of taken the idea from Disney who does so well with promoting multi-generational Disney vacations and you know how our family feels about Disney. (In fact, we are taking Momma Jane for her birthday next month!) My mom has a terrace-level apartment in our house. Separate entry and everything and I told her the magazine wanted to take pictures and interview our family about how this whole multi-generational living thing was working for us. The lie, I mean stage, was set. Mom’s house would be clean and because I told her we were gonna be IN the picture, she would look all cute too!
My Aunt Phyllis arrived in the morning and I went to the airport to pick her up. My husband was at work, my ten year old was at soccer camp and my previous husband was in town visiting, so he was at home with my mom and my three year old. I enlisted his help to video the whole thing and it turned out GREAT! She cried. I cried. She was SO SO surprised and told me after the visit that it was truly one the BEST surprises of her life! Since I love to make my mom happy, this was the best thing she could have said to me.
I wanted to share the video with you because I have watched it like five times and I cry every time. A couple of things. I love how happy my mom looks when I tell her I want to introduce her to the photographer, Phyllis. She told me she smiled because she never hears the name Phyllis anymore and it made her think of her sister. My Aunt Phyllis is a TWENTY year throat cancer survivor so she has to whisper to talk. I love that she says in the video, “I am here to take pictures of your house, I’m with the magazine!” Made me laugh so hard. This was such a wonderful and special moment…thanks for letting me share it with you!
XO Surviving Mommy