I am no relationship expert but building strong relationships with friends and family is a big component of maintaining a high level of personal wellness. As I sat in my beach chair contemplating when I had my last tetanus shot, I caught view of a gentleman holding the left arm of his elderly mother as he helped guide her across the soft and potentially treacherous sand to get to the water’s edge. In her right hand was a cane and it was clear she was very frail.
I continued watching them for a few moments. As they reached the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, they turned facing the water and just stood together in the surf letting the gentle flow of the water bathe her feet. They stood there together, his arm being the stabilizing force for his mother to experience a simple pleasure in life and I wondered if perhaps she did the same for him when he was a little boy. It was beautiful.
I am glad my sunglasses were on because I did get misty-eyed. Ironically, no one on the beach besides me and my wife noticed this event. Everyone was off doing their own thing but Beth and I were privileged to witness a rare and precious moment.
I don’t know what the relationship between your mother and father is like but I do know that time is fleeting and while it seems like we have a hundred years to get this thing right, we never know when the next time we see our parents might be the last. My suggestion: If you do have conflict, communicate and make sure you have more precious moments than tense. Oh, and never miss a chance to tell them how you feel.
As I lead my boys to the water’s edge to watch the sunset, I now fast forward 60 years in my mind and wonder what it will be like when they lead Dad to the water.