My mother called me yesterday.
“I have a question for you. Now, don’t read too much into this. It’s just something your father and I have been talking about.”
“Ok, Mom. Out with it. What is it?”
“If something were to happen to your father or I would you move up here to take care of us?”
“What? Yes, of course!!”
“You can’t just agree! You have to talk Brian and take him into consideration!”
“No I don’t, Mom! I’ve known you longer! Mom, why are we talking about this?”
“Just something we were talking about. How is your knee? When will you start school?”
Damn it, Mom!!!!
My parents are healthy, mid-50’s, active, and stable. My mom’s parents are both gone. Grandfather went fairly sudden but Grandma was in a hospital for nearly 2 years in Pennsylvania. My mother lives in Missouri and was only able to see Grandma a few times a year. That weighed on my mother’s heart more than she will ever admit. Now my father’s mother is in an assisted living home and is showing the signs of dementia and that, of course, isn’t sitting well with Dad.
I’m sure this was the inspiration of the phone call. Of course, I have thought about this before as to what I would do if something were to happen to one or both of my parents.
Oh, a little background: I live along the gulf coast of Mississippi. I moved here in 2000 and have lived here off and on since. I love it here! I have no intentions of leaving any time soon. I grew up in Mid-Missouri on a farm that has been in the family for nearly 200 years. We don’t work the farm any longer however there is a family that still works it. I am very proud of this piece of land and the family history behind it. There isn’t anything particularly special about it, though. As far as I’m aware, no notable historical event took place on or near my land, there is no unusual landmark that sets it out from the surrounding area, the standard crops grow on this farm, it pretty much blends in from one property to the next. But I love this land and it is mine. It is home in a way that Mississippi can never be, as much as I love the coast. My history is on the farm, in the woods. The trees have heard my secret screams, laughter, and, tears. I am forever rooted to that land.
Without hesitation. Yes. When I need to go home to take care of my family and my land I go. I’ve always known that I will do that some day. There is no discussion. It is only a matter of when I am needed not a matter of if I am needed.
Northcutt Homestead – Audrain County, Missouri, Approx. 1856
Of course, the house is no longer standing and the original site is surrounded by trees, but I can still take you to this exact spot…..