A woman in sunglasses and a wide brim hat loading a suitcase into the trunk of a car and gazing off into the distance.

Driving Down the Highway

Recently I had the opportunity to finally spend some time visiting with my Mom in St. Louis, Missouri. These pandemic days certainly present challenges in keeping in touch with the ones we love the most. So after carefully managing my outings for the two weeks prior to this visit, I headed out the door. There is nothing better than heading “home,” the place where things all started years ago.

Hitting the highway

The drive is a pretty simple drive, pretty much all highway until you get into St. Louis. The day I left was a nice day, with no unpleasant weather and slightly overcast. A nice combination when dealing with the challenges that can come from too much sunshine or precipitation and myopic degeneration. I often plug into a podcast or three and the trip is quickly complete. Home again.

Cooperative weather

Seems rather quickly that I have factored in instances that can make long-distance trips a no-go. I no longer enjoy or even tolerate those bright sunshiny days, too much to try to filter out just to see well. Also, rain can really throw a trip into cancellation, lane lines, and general visibility issues. It is simply too much to deal with. Thankfully I was successful and had a nice visit with my dear mom.

Homeward bound

As is mostly the case, the trip was short and sweet. Obligations back at our own home called and again, I headed down the road.

Fueling up the car after leaving Mom’s house, soon I was on the highway again. On this leg of the trip, I found myself thinking as I was driving. I was pondering this little bit of independence that I have, the opportunity to slip out of the door and spend time visiting family out of town. Retirement has its own schedule and ours is pretty loose. An understanding husband helps too. Sometimes the girls just need their time together.

As I was reflecting on this I was suddenly stuck with a thought: What happens when I can’t do this anymore? It is not feasible to “Uber” 235 miles just so I can independently spend time with Mom.

She is 84 and it is not a good idea for her to drive quite that distance. There is not a decent bus system between our city our two cities. Would these visits come to an end? I do not think my heart was ready to even think these thoughts.

A husband's reassurance and love

As I got home, these thoughts were weighing heavy on my mind and on my heart. At dinner that evening, I shared these thoughts with my husband of thirty-five years. Quite quickly he said, “I’ll get you there when you need to be there.” There it was. The reassurance and love that I needed to hear more than anything. This man of mine took away the anxious, uncertain feeling and laid out the plan as if it was nothing at all. Yes, that reassurance and love made the day that much better.

Here’s to driving down that highway again and again.

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