My elderly mom needed a change of scenery last Sunday. The walls of her independent living complex were closing in plus it was a beautiful October day that I wanted to share with her. On my weekend To Do list was a trip to the NC State Farmer’s Market to buy some crisp NC apples and to window shop for pumpkins and harvest gold mums.
I asked Mom if she wanted to ride with me to the market and to my pleasant surprise she readily agreed. So often now I see my future in her daily routine, Sadly, as we age, our outings are limited to medical appointments and the occasional grocery store trip. I hate that for Mom, but to be very honest and candid, it’s challenging to take her on errands. She walks with a walker now. As an imperfect human, I’ll confess that wrestling her walker in and out of the trunk of my car is one of my least favorite activities. I’m at my absolute worst as I hoist the walker, the basket, the junk in my trunk (ha!) all in pursuit of completing a messy jigsaw puzzle. While wrestling and grumbling I’m worrying about her in the front seat – car door open, is she too hot, too cold, is trying to get out to help me.
But I digress. The plans were made; the trip was planned. Mom was going to the Farmer’s Market for the first time in years. We thought she’d do a “drive by”, staying in the car while I made a mad dash for my purchases. Plans are made to be changed though, and a decent parking place was the winning entry. Mom and I slowly made our way from stall to stall, admiring apples, pumpkins, fresh herbs and flowers. We were in good company at our slow pace with shoppers, strollers, wandering toddlers and young couples. A Farm Bureau bench beckoned to us and became Mom’s resting place while I moved the car.
One more transfer to the car and one more dance with the walker and we were on our way back to Mom’s apartment. Our conversation on the ride home was lovely and to be cherished; memories of trips to the Market when I was a child and outings with my dad after he retired were shared. Memories beget memories and I’m humble and grateful for a sunny Sunday when Mom and I stopped to smell the flowers (and the basil).