Meaning is not something you stumble across, like the answer to a riddle or the prize in a treasure hunt.Meaning is something you build into your life. You build it out of your own past, out of your affections and loyalties, out of the experience of humankind as it is passed on to you, out of your own talent and understanding, out of the things you believe in, out of the things and people you love, out of the values for which you are willing to sacrifice something.The ingredients are there. You are the only one who can put them together into that pattern that will be your life. Let it be a life that has dignity and meaning for you. If it does, then the particular balance of success or failure is of less account.”– John Gardner
My name is Tom Laughon, and as the title of my blog suggest, I am the proud owner, son and caregiver of a 91 year old mom whose name is Helen!
I guess you could say my mom taught me the values, mindsets and skill sets to get where I am, and now I am using all I have learned and am continuing to learn to show my gratitude and love for her at this stage in her life.
I honestly can’t even get my arms around 91. Mom was born on Christmas Day, 1920. It conjures up all sorts of things in my brain, but is so far, far away in time, that it is hard for me to truly understand or relate to.
I must admit, until now, I haven’t had a real interest or need to understand those times. It’s challenging enough for me to understand whatever time I am in at any given moment to back track.
I said I am the proud owner of mom, because I have trusteeship of her and her domain, a legal word that comes loaded with lots of challenges, opportunities and accountabilities. It is not for the faint of heart and nothing fully prepares you for the responsibilities it brings your way.
Trusteeship triggers the same reaction I had when mom said I needed to eat my broccoli when I was a kid. Every time I tried to slide it off my plate, Mom, ever vigilant, would say it would be good for me in the long run. Now I love it! I can’t tell you the number of ways I have tried to slide trusteeship off my plate … but hey, mom says …
I keep reminding myself that my mom has invested her mind, heart and soul in me … stood by me through thick and thin … good times and bad. So, though it is daunting, I consider it an honor to give back at least a small portion of what she has given me.
Since my father, Fred, passed away in 2002 and my younger sister, Nel, in April of this year (from Early Onset Alzheimer’s), mom and I are the last two standing from our core family.
As I stand by her, I am learning more and more about her each day. And, my blog will be our journey that I will share with you: who mom was, is and always will be.
And in the process, I will share who I am and who I am becoming as a result of where we, mom and me, each find ourselves in this moment in time … together.
Oh, and have I told you how much I love my 91 year old mom and how much I am looking forward to this journey?
Stay tuned and you will be told over and over again!
Thanks for joining mom and me and being a part of our journey!