For every decision we make, there are consequences. Some are great outcomes, some less optimal. Moving back to Duluth has certainly weighed heavily on the side of positives. Easy access to the outdoors and the active pursuits we so enjoy. A simpler life in a smaller city with less traffic and smaller distances. The beauty of the Northland. And that big old lake out there. It’s a wonderful place to live.
But I left behind my family. Two of my three children still live in the Twin Cities, and it is now home to my three grandchildren. Gone are the days when I could spontaneously request, “Can I have a Grammy day tomorrow?” and spend time with those precious little ones. Shopping trips with my daughter and Brueggers bagel mornings with my son have to be sandwiched into our visits to the Cities. Truth be told, they all love coming to Duluth, but it’s just not the same as living around the corner.
And so as Mother’s Day approached I found myself quietly wallowing in self-pity. I would be here, and they would be there. Phone calls would be exchanged. I’d get caught up on the latest. But I couldn’t give them a hug.
Even as I headed out for an early morning bike ride, the feeling still nagged. Not even the cold crisp air, the long slant of the rising sun, and the stillness of Lake Superior could rid me of that longing. I missed my kids.
So imagine my surprise, as I emerged from the shower, dressed for church and stepped into the great room – to be met by Karen and Erik! There they were in the flesh, as if I had conjured them up out of sheer yearning. They fulfilled my every desire and my heart overflowed. Had Carl lived within reasonable distance, my trio would have been complete. But two out of three was a perfect score at that moment in time.
The next four and a half hours were filled with the simple joys of life. Lingering over coffee and sitting outside in the sun. Walking down to Brighton Beach to throw rocks in the lake and feel the chill of the breeze off the water. Talking, sharing, visiting. Just being together. The gift of time. It’s the prefect fit. It takes up no space, doesn’t require dusting and yet remains forever as a memory. It was just what I wanted, even without asking for it. Thank you, kids. For making time for Mom.