It’s eight o’clock in the morning. I have had my one anise cookie and continue to sip on a good cup of coffee. Preparing for a (church board) dinner meeting, which will culminate with the celebration of the fourth night of Chanukah, it would appear that every pot/knife/bowl and kitchen tool is set before me as if I am going into battle. I guess you would say that I am. However, my enemies include tomatoes, onions, garlic, basil and thyme. Time. It’s just the thing I don’t have much of this particular moment.
I begin to slice and dice, roast, boil and simmer.
When the phone rings, I see I cannot ignore the call from my elderly mother. You see, she is in a constant battle between her capable and sharp mind and her uncooperative and feeble body.
How quickly I assess where I am in the execution of a perfect plan. Like many of you, primarily women, I am adept in the multi-tasking maneuvering tactics. But, the sound of a broken voice, and the ability to detect tears being suppressed, freezes this moment in time.
A simple task, calling the volunteer driver who will take mother to her much needed hair appointment, is an impossibility. There is no one there to decipher the numbers her weak eyes cannot make out. She lives in a place of fear and holds on tightly to the words, “I can’t help you, I am too sick myself” which are spoken all too often by a nearby sister.
In that ten minutes out of my morning, I bring reassurance and a calmness to a very lonely woman, who by choice, fights for her independence over the uncertainly that is her time.