Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Adulthood (07/30/09)
TITLE: In the Throes of Adulthood
By Laura Manley
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It has been sixteen years since my mother slipped into a deep coma, never to wake to bid us good-bye. I remember my sister, niece and I had just left her bedside and arrived home only moments before the phone rang. It was the nursing home notifying us that our mother had passed.
We returned to the nursing home shortly after the phone call. She looked so pretty in the white satin nightgown with little dainty flowers the nurses had put on her before our arrival. I took one look at my mother and unrecognizable wails manifested within the depth of my soul. It wasn't that I didn't realize my mother had died, but I recognized something else; something I had never thought of in my entire life, until that very moment.
I had suddenly been plunged into adulthood whether I liked it or not. Oh, sure, I was in my early fifties when both my parents passed away, but it was the finality of my mother passing that seemed to bring everything into perspective.
I thought to myself that now I was “the” generation to be looked up to , to have all the answers to any age-old questions about the past. Could I fill the bill? Oh, sure, I had two other sisters who were in line for that job, but never had I felt so much responsibility as I did the day my mother passed away.
Years have past, and oh, how I wish I would have asked more questions of both parents. The questions never asked will never have answers for those who are under my reign. Any family of my parents have since deceased so there is no one left to ask. For instance, there is some belief that my mother's name was different than what she went by. This is just one question, that as one of the Matriarchs, is my duty to find answers to, if at all possible.
When my mother passed away, I felt for the first time, even though I was as old as I was, that I had finally reached adulthood; that I could no longer be the child, that I had the responsibility of being the adult now. That feeling of pressure being thrown into adulthood without any warning has passed now, but having lived through it, I believe my children will one day experience the same thing I did.
My thoughts over the years have been many as to how I might make my children's path just a little easier when the time comes to say good-bye to their father and myself. Over the last few years, I have traced the genealogy of their grandparents, but still have more to do. I don't know if they will appreciate the effort made, but I have peace knowing I did what I could to lessen the reality one day of them being thrown into adulthood without unanswered questions.
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