It is pouring today, and I don’t mean just pouring in California terms, but actual buckets of rain pouring down causing trees to fall and rivers to form in the streets. The water is trickling down the beams in the living room and waterfalling down the fireplace. As I got ready to venture out for an early appointment, I prepared by covering my cast with my Seal-Tight giant protector, wearing my mother’s calf-length London Fog raincoat and a cute knit cap that my daughter’s friend made for me, I looked like a taller version of my mother albeit with a gimpy leg. My husband Gary said, “Your mom is still taking care of you.” and I realized that it is true, for as much as I resented her constant over-preparedness I have now come to appreciate it. As Mark Twain said, “The older I get the smarter my father seems to get.” In my case, it is my mother’s wisdom that I now cherish.
Hopefully it won’t take my own daughters quite as long to realize that I too have some words of wisdom to impart and each of them, in their own way are beginning to realize that. So in the tradition of the many notes and reminders I leave my family, here is a short list of rainy day musings:
1. Dress for the rain. You really will feel better if you stay dry.
2. Make your bed every morning. You will feel like you are beginning your day and will be happy to come home to a neat room.
3. Clean up as you go and absolutely before you go to bed. No one really likes to wake up to a mess and it won’t look better in the morning.
4. Take time to spend with those you love (including pets) because the memories will stay with you forever.
5. Listen more, talk less.
6. Expect the best but prepare for the worst, and that includes rain, earthquakes, fires and other impending disasters. Oy!
Some of these I learned from my mother, and others are things I have learned from my own experience. Wisdom can be compiled and gathered from many sources, but mothers are stronger than we look and know more than we are given credit for.