She was born a caregiver. She’s so smart and can literally do a thousand things at once, and juggle every one down to the detail in her mind. She went to nursing school to learn a trade that would provide an income for her 4 kids and family, but nursing was really her destiny. She did it, and did it well during her whole career. And when she “retired”, she kept on nursing in a private setting until age 86. Seriously, age 86. Who does that? Probably because she loved what she did, it was never really work.
She cared for her family with just as much devotion. At age 21, I was working my first “real” job after college, and the job had taken me to a small town about 2 hours from Chunky, MS, where I was raised. She still lived there. I was an assistant manager for a retail store 2 hours away, and worked at least 6 days per week. I rented a small house near work and I lived alone. Of course, a small town where you don’t know anyone can be very isolating, and sometimes lonely. So, I worked a lot, and eventually, I got sick. Not seriously sick, but a cold or flu or something that a little chicken soup would eventually take care of. That was all the excuse she needed. She packed up her car and headed on down to take care of me. And she did. She nursed me, and chicken souped me, and we sat together in the evenings, each reading a book. After a couple days, I was feeling better enough to make it back to work. She just said, “Well, I’ll just finish out the week here if that’s alright with you, and I’ll go on up to Jackson when I leave.” If you haven’t noticed by now, Jackson was an integral part of our lives. Listen, I was 21 and foolish, but I wasn’t stupid. When the Mimaw shows up and waits on you hand and foot for a couple days, you don’t really want that to end too soon. “You can stay another week after if you want to,” I said. She just smiled.
She did stay an extra week, and we spent the evenings reading, and talking. Who even wants to spend that much time with a headstrong, know-it-all, 21 year old? Especially one who is sick? She did. I am her oldest grand. The one on which she lavished everything. The one who stole her heart. The one who taught her what being a grand was all about. She wants to spend that much time with me.
So caring for her now, when she needs it the most? Doing for her what she can’t do for herself? This is a breeze. Easiest thing in the world. I want to spend time with her. Because I love her, it’s not really work. ❤️