65: Best Breakfast Ever

65: Best Breakfast Ever

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Best Mom Ever!

Best Breakfast Ever

One good mother is worth a hundred schoolmasters.

~George Herbert

My dad worked in construction. His day started early and ended late. All he wanted to do was crash on the couch and relax when he got home. For the most part that was what he did. No one complained; we were just happy when he was home.

But one hot and muggy summer, when my parents’ nineteenth anniversary was coming up, they made plans to go out, just the two of them. The big day finally arrived and Dad got home at seven. Mom had fed all five of us early. She was dressed in her finest and wearing his favorite pair of high heels when he came in. They kissed, as they always did, when he came through the kitchen and headed for the family room. It was obvious he was hot and tired.

“Honey, I just need a thirty-minute nap and then I’ll get ready and we will go out to eat,” he said as he sat down on the couch.

Mom was already on her way over to the couch to give him a fresh cup of hot coffee. She bent over and kissed him on the head and said, “I’ll be ready whenever you are.”

I knew how important this evening was to my mother, but before long Dad was fast asleep. Then I watched my mother do the strangest thing. She reached into the refrigerator and took out eggs and bacon. Soon she had a batch of biscuits baking in the oven. I never said a word. I just watched her.

Breakfast was my dad’s favorite meal. Before my eyes she piled a plate full of his favorite foods. As she set another fresh cup of coffee on the end table she bent down and kissed him while whispering in his ear, “It’s time to wake up, honey.”

He ran his fingers through his head of natural curly snow-white hair and sat up on the edge of the couch. As he looked up he found my mom standing in front of him with his dinner. I will never forget the look of love that passed between them as they made eye contact.

“Honey, I promised you I would take you out to dinner and I meant it,” he said sincerely.

Mom sat down beside him on the couch as he took the plate of food. She kissed him on the cheek. “I know you would, but I also know you’ve had a hard day and you’re tired. What’s important is that we are together. We can go out any time for dinner.”

I was seventeen then, and that lesson in love is still with me today, five decades later. Dad died nineteen years ago and Mom lived into her nineties. One day, I found her holding a picture of Dad in her hands. I watched her kiss him and then, as she emerged from the cloud of dementia, I heard her say, “Baby, it won’t be much longer until I can come home to heaven to be with you forever.”

Three years ago, Mom entered heaven’s gate to be greeted by the love of her life. When I miss them I just imagine how happy they are to be together again. Then a sweet peace and comfort falls over me, the same way I felt when I saw their tremendous love for each other on that night when my mother made my father a special anniversary breakfast for dinner.

~Sylvia J. King

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