Mom’s home. What a journey. The flying part went smoothly. I called to arrange for a wheel chair to meet us, and it was right on time—we were met at the curbside check-in by a really nice woman who was Mom’s designated pusher (no--not that kind!). Do you know that every time the airport wheelchairs pass security they have to go through the metal detector? The pusher too—shoes off, the whole nine. That could get old in a hurry, but I guess it goes with the gig.
We flew back first class, because with broken bones, a cane, etc., I didn’t want her to have to deal with cramped seating, or armrest hockey. I haven’t flown in those first few rows in quite a while. You know the ones where they’re already seated, sipping cranberry juice (it was too early for cocktails) and ignoring all the folks filing down the aisle trying not to trip over their wheelie bags and praying there’s still space in the overhead. It reminded me I could get used to it given half a chance.
Mom napped and flipped through the in-flight catalog—she had missed her daily mail delivery of dream books—Mom has a serious catalog jones. Guess it’s the little things that make life seem regular.
We actually touched down 15 minutes early. Woo Hoo! BUT—you know the drill. There was no gate available so we sat. Then we rolled and sat. Then we taxied somewhere that felt far enough away to be New Jersey) where the pilot could turn off the engine—not a good sign. Fifty minutes into our tour of the JFK runways we were met by the “people movers”—two big Transformer looking vehicles that took us to the terminal.
The good news—the east coast pusher met us just as scheduled. The bad news—the luggage took another hour and fifteen minutes. Oh, then there was the line to get out of the parking lot. The supposedly speedy EZPass lanes were so jammed, they started letting people go through the cash lanes, for a flat $6.00. What? You thought I was going to say for free? Get real. This is New York. You gotta pay. Welcome home.
In one way Mom was glad to be home, but in another it was hard—somehow it made the accident and all she had been through feel real. But we’re taking it one day at a time. We went to the hairdresser on Tuesday—‘cause I knew Mom wanted to get her head together before she did anything else. My mother didn’t wear an Afro even in the sixties, so she was not feeling her forced natural ‘do. With her fuzzy dome of salt and pepper, her Timex with the big face she could see, and the cane, she all of a sudden reminded me of my Grandmother. Mom has never looked like Nana to me, until now. It startled me. Then we went to her doctor on Thursday. There will be a lot of those visits in the months ahead—baby steps, but it’s progress. Home seemed a very long way away a few months ago.