The streets of my town did not run with milk and honey when I moved home after my father died. My professional life dwindled rapidly, and with grief as my co-pilot, my energy was low. I tried every avenue I could to make an income and worked in bits and pieces at some jobs that were so hilarious, I'd love to tell you about them another time.
Let's just say I wasn't at the top of my game. But I had Mom to confide in.
One day when I was feeling particularly loser-ish, I lamented how fearful I felt about not being able to stand on my own two feet.
"You don't have to," my mother told me. "You can stand on my feet. They're the same feet."
Mom is better than she was when I made it home from Disneyland, thanks to Tinkerbell claps and prayers. She does not feel good, though. And I don't either. Same feelings, same feet.
I urged her to stand on mine, until the physical therapist can get her back up on her own. But I am wobbly and weaving.
I wonder how many of the Designated Daughters intensely mirror their mother's condition? If you feel weepy and exhausted and brainless and zombie-like, holding your mother's hand as she is lying in bed? Particularly if you've already been there, doing the exact same thing for your father. Designated Daughters, how do we do it? How do we reserve our strength on these up and down, up and down days? Sometimes we succumb, as I seem to be doing at the moment, all the while whispering, "Feet, don't fail me now."
D.G. Fulford is the author of , written with her mother Phyllis Greene. She is also the co-founder of . You can find her at .
Photo credit: Marcia Smilack