More and more often today, parenting represents a new kind of role, one unprecedented in human history. The average adult today may expect to spend more years caring for the needs of an aged parent than for any one child. This incredible reversal of parent-child roles represents perhaps the most traumatic experience each of us will face in life.
I never thought mother would grow old. To me, Mother stood for living and laughter. Vibrance and enthusiasm. A five-foot-one-inch retired schoolteacher with shiny brown hair and hazel eyes that sparkled with life.
She had flaws. Sometimes she was stubborn and shortsighted. Sometimes cranky or passively resistant. Yet she flourished on friends and parties, travel and new experiences--an ordinary woman who loved her church and her God. She was too busy to grow old and wrinkled.
I remember well the day in England when I noticed the first threat of her aging. We were on the last day of a three-week, ten-country whirlwind European tour. I couldn't budge--I had hit milage exhaustion. But my then seventy-two-year-old mother hovered over me fully dressed, a list of the day's activities already mapped out........
This portion is taken from Mom in my Heart by Joe L. Wheeler