Tonight I had the privilege of celebrating a special birthday of someone very dear to me. Technically she is my step-mom's mother - however Doris is so much more to me and my family. At 91 she embodies excellent health - the kind that comes from leading a good clean life. She is quick witted, sweet, loving and full of life. She is one of the most open-minded individuals I have ever encountered. I remember sharing the news with her that my daughter had " come out" and was gay. Doris - without a second's hesitation - said, well there you go! Now she can find someone special to love. It's love that is important, not whether it's with a man or woman. I was awestruck by her reaction -- or lack of one.
At her party, after she had opened all of her gifts, Doris smiled at us all and said that when she has to go, she hopes she can just " go" in her sleep. It's as simple as that. Doris has a way of seeing things in very simple terms. She is not a complicated person - what you see is what you get. And there is great comfort in that. She makes you feel loved and warm all over.
But don't be fooled. This feisty senior citizen has a rebellious streak. Don't tell her not to climb up on things, or not to go near the pool when someone isn't around to help her. Cause you can just bet that she will seize that as an invitation - a dare of sorts - and before you know it, you will find her straddling the kitchen sink and the countertops as she reaches for that dust atop of the cabinets. Or you will find her sweeping around the pool in those hard to reach spots - just to show you she can.
We love Doris not only because she is a joy to have in the family (cause she is) - but also because she reminds us of what is possible. A long, fruitful, healthful life surrounded by loved ones. Sound good? Sounds like a dream come true.