Woman Shelters Her Sick Mom, but She Brings Huge 'Surprise' with Her – Story of the Day
I took my mother into my home when she broke her hip, but I wasn't counting on 'surprise' she brought.
I suppose mothers and daughters often have strained relationships when they are younger, but most seem to become close in their later years. That wasn't my case at all.
I'd never gotten on with my mother as a girl or as a young woman, and now that she was old and I was middle-aged, our relationship was even more difficult. Then she moved into my house.
My phone rang and one of my mother's neighbors told me she had just been taken to the hospital. Apparently, my mother had slipped on the sidewalk in front of her house and taken a brutal fall.
I immediately got into my car and drove to the hospital to be by her side. When I arrived, the doctors told me that my mother had broken her hip and was scheduled for emergency surgery.
I was allowed in to see her for a few moments. She lay on the bed looking pale and frail, and I was overcome with sadness. "Mom," I said softly, "I'm here..."
She opened her eyes and glared at me. "It's about time!" she said crossly. "I want you to go to the house and feed my cats!"
"I'm more worried about you right now, mom," I said.
"Well, I'm worried about my cats," she said, "so take my key and go to my house. The food is in the cupboard over the sink..."
So after she was out of surgery and the doctors told me she was resting comfortably, I went to her house. The moment I opened the door, I was assaulted by a wave of mowing and purring cats.
So many! Last I'd been to this house, my mother had three cats. I counted the waving tails. SEVEN! She now had seven cats! I walked into the kitchen, found the food, and dished it out.
As I left the house, the annoying tickling at the back of my throat and the itching in my eyes told me I'd be coming down with a major allergy crisis. I fished out my pills and took one. I had always been allergic to cats and their fur.
Two weeks later, the doctors said my mother could go home, but not to her own house, so I suggested that my mother moves into a recovery center. She was against that and insisted she'd be better off alone.
We can't impose our way of life on other people.
I couldn't allow that, so I ended up agreeing to take her to my home -- along with the seven cats. It was hell. Not only was my mother as unpleasant as an old woman as she had been as a young mother, but her cats also had me either doped up with allergy meds or sneezing my head off.
The pills made me drowsy, and I needed to be alert to work and drive, but my mother wouldn't hear of placing the animals in a cat hotel. I explained my situation over and over again but she wouldn't budge.
"Don't be so selfish! It's only temporary, so you can put up with it!" she told me. But as it turned out, it wasn't as temporary as we'd both hoped. After three months, the doctor told us there was no way my mother could live alone.
I sat there in his office still trying to digest the news when my mother said, "I'll stay with my daughter. We're already settled in nicely. She's a spinster, you know."
I was embarrassed by her statement about my personal life and enraged by her presumption. "You're welcome to stay, mom," I replied, "but the cats must go. At the most, you can keep one."
"What?" my mother cried. "You want me to get rid of my cats? NEVER! I'll move in with your brother. He's a loving, dutiful son!"
And she did. Three days later, I drove her 160 miles to my brother's house, with the cats in their boxes yowling all the way, my nose dripping, and tears streaming down my cheeks.
I deposited my mother, her luggage, and her cats in my brother's arms and drove off. I was finally free! My mother's decision had been a blessing! Now it would be my brother and his wife putting up with her temper and her cats.
Two days later my phone rang and I heard my mother sobbing on the other end of the line. "Sally," she cried, "she's a MONSTER!"
"Mom?" I asked. "What's going on?"
"That monster your brother married had my cats taken to the shelter! She said they ruined her drapes..."
"Oh, dear!" I said, stifling a giggle.
"Please, Sally, can I come to stay with you?" she asked. I'd never heard my mother ask for anything before, ever!
"Mom," I said, "you know I have allergies, so the seven cats are out."
"Yes, Sally, but you did say I could have one..."
"Ok mom, we'll go and pick out a Siberian kitten, OK?"
So my mother moved in with me, and we picked out a crazy cute blue Siberian kitten we named Atchoo. I'm not going to tell you my mom and I get on like a house on fire, but we are learning about each other, and maybe we'll learn to like as well as love each other.
What can we learn from this story?
1. We can't impose our way of life on other people.
2. Learn to give in a little, and you may find you gain a lot.
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