Paradise is Sharing...

Monday, December 17, 2012

My Mother's Bucket List...

Victoria Mansion, Portland ME
"Let's go to lunch on Sunday, then we can go to the Victoria Mansion, and then we can walk around the Old Port and look at the Christmas lights..."  The suggestion surprised my mother, and shocked the hell out of me.  I couldn't believe the words came out of my mouth. 

Again, I have to preface every post about my parents with "I love them dearly, I do...." but there have been times when I wasn't the best daughter to them, and they weren't the best parents to me.  But now that I am getting closer and closer to 40, and they are getting further and further away from 40, we have softened towards each other - and we are able to keep alot more of the awkward tension at bay.  Now that they don't have the stress of raising me, and I have lowered the expectations of pleasing them, we can just get down to the business of being friends.

Victoria Mansion, Portland ME
She squealed "OH! That's on my bucket list!"... I had no idea a simple suggestion like lunch, touring an old mansion and looking at Christmas lights was a life long wish of my mom's... but it was. 

So, Sunday afternoon, as fat snowflakes drifted down a city fit for a postcard, the three of us - My mother, my future mother-in-law, and I sat and dined at Silly's Restaurant.  We giggled at the silly names of the entrees, we chatted about Christmas plans, and we just enjoyed each others company.  This is fun I thought to myself, and allowed myself to enjoy the mother-daughter moments without worrying about tension - past, present or future.  I soaked in my mother's giggles, admired her sparkling blue eyes, and pushed down the mournful feeling that we hadn't had more moments like these before. 

After lunch, I chauffeured the "Moms" to the Victorian Mansion.  I thought Mom was going to jump out of the car before I parked it.  She chattered all the way down the side walk about the decorations, the history, and the advertisements she had heard about the Holiday Decor Event that we were about to see.  She was downright giddy.  I don't think she felt the biting wind on her face or the snowflakes on her eyelashes....

As we pushed open the grand wooden doors to the entrance way, Mom gasped.  I had to push her through the entry way so we wouldn't block the doors.... she was in a trance like a child seeing Santa for the first time - she made me smile. 

Throughout each room, she ooh'd and ahh'd, admiring each decoration, each flower, each tree, each piece of furniture, each mantle place, each sconce, and each chandelier.  What my mother considered beautiful were the simplest things... "OH, look at the pine cones"  ..... there were gold angels and painted masterpieces, but my mom admired the pine cones.  My heart smiled.

We walked through the rooms, some of them twice, and we each chose favorites.  We exited the Mansion via the gift shop, and we commented about the admission price  .... my mom glowed "OH, it was worth it!"

Yes, it was.... it certainly was.

I wonder what else is on that bucket list of hers....

Paradise is Here, Paradise is Now... Paradise is seeing your mom admire pinecones, and cross something off her bucket list...

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