Last Thursday night, Mom fell -- a common occurrence these days -- but this time she broke her wrist. The ambulance took her to St. Luke's South hospital, I met her at ER, and we spent a few hours with a truly wonderful healthcare team. A few X-rays and sedatives later, her wrist was set and they helped me settle her in the car for the quick drive back to Village Shalom.
By this time, it was around midnight and the temperature had dropped to about 45 degrees. It was chilly, and mom was just wearing her nightie. We tucked a blanket around her legs. And, as luck would have it, I had one of her jackets in the car, so I put that around her shoulders.
Now, keep this in mind: Mom is 95, in pain, confused and cold. And you know what she asked as I drove her home?
"Are you warm enough, Janet?"
One of the keys to living a long and happy life is caring about others. Even with her skittish memory, Mom never forgets to ask about me and my family and to wish us well. She never forgets that other people matter. And that extends to people she doesn't know: At the hospital, Mom repeatedly expressed her gratitude to the doctor and nurses and X-ray technicians -- and asked questions about them.
I told her, as we drove, that she had been an excellent patient.
"I try to be as good as I can, Janet. That's just how I was raised."
Lillian Sokoloff raises the bar daily for what it means to be a good person. Her concern for me, our family, the people around us? Well, that's enough to comfort me, no matter how cold this world might seem.
It's a new week, folks. Stay warm.