My mother is moving in with me, along with my wife and 3 children. Yes, there will be difficult times, but over-all I think it's the best thing. My children will be closer to their grandmother. My wife is very open and understanding with my mom, and as a result I think both will benefit. Me, well, it's my mom, the woman who gave me birth and raised me when I needed her most. How could I turn my back on her now?
This morning, feeling like she may be a burden to us, my mom said "I wish I had enough money to buy an apartment." For me, the money is not as much of a factor as not wanting my mom to live alone. I recently saw a great movie called the "Edge of Heaven" where one character says, "Only God should be privileged to live alone." I have plenty of apartments where my mom could live either rent-free or low rent. And even if I couldn't do it alone, then my 2 brothers would happily help.
It got me thinking about a tenant that I had in the past. I bought a building, and one of the tenants was a very old woman, living alone (I'll call her Eva). I remember her as being a very sweet old lady I would stop by and chat with her every now and then. She spoke so proudly of her late husband and how they emigrated from Poland. She spoke highly of her daughter "The doctor" and her son-in law "The Doctor." Oh! And of course the grandchildren! There were 2 of them, a boy and girl, both attending prestigious Ivy League Universities.
About 7 years later, in 2005, Eva passed away. Her daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren all gathered to collect her belongings. I had only met her daughter in the past, and as I watched them come and go for several days, I felt like I knew them through the stories I was told. I quickly realized that the bond was one sided, as they walked by me with barely a glance. To them, I was a stranger. On the verge of tears, I contemplated talking with the grandchildren (who were now post college) and telling them how proud their grandmother was of them. Only I couldn't because it seemed that they lost (or never had) a connection with their grandmother, so I didn't bother.
For years, I felt really sorry for Eva, but on that day I really felt sad for her grandchildren. They lost so many precious times with their grandmother that they will never be able to recover. How could I not take
my mother in? I owe it to my children and their grandmother. I admire the person responsible for creating the mother-daughter house, only I wish it were called grandmother-granddaughter instead.