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The last time I saw my mother…

My mom and me

I drove my mother to the airport. We got there three hours before her flight. I couldn’t wait with her beside her gate. She walked through security on her own.

No, she went to the front of the line in a wheelchair. She didn’t have to stand in line with her new hip. Or was it a knee? I told her I wouldn’t cry. But, I did.

The man helped her into her chair on wheels and he pushed her away.

I walked up to the second floor and watched her. She didn’t see me looking.

They made her stand up and take off her belt. They held the wand over her knee and her hip.

The last time I saw my mother she could fit between my thumb and finger. She got smaller as he pushed her farther away from me.

If I saw her yesterday, I would still have to leave.

There will always be a last time.

The last time I saw her she was the size of a bug.

I want to see her full size. I want to hug her and have her sing to me the song she sang when I was three and four and 54.

I want to see her one last time, and again and again. I don’t want there to be a last time.




The first photograph was taken in Boulder Creek, California, in  2010. My mother came to help me pack before we moved to Pennsylvania.

The second photograph was taken somewhere in Canada. I cut my own hair, and my mother had to cut it again. That is why it is so short. “Hey Mom, how old am I here?”

This post is part of Lisa-Jo Bakers 5-Minute Friday. Today’s story prompt is the word, “Last.”

Write for 5 minutes, unedited. ( I do correct my typing mistakes, but I don’t rewrite. That would be cheating. And, I don’t cheat.)

You can read other 5 minute stories here.

About Pamela Hodges

My name is Pamela Hodges. I am a writer and an artist. I write to encourage and to bring laughter. I paint cats, draw cartoons and write books for children and grown ups.

You are an artist. Yes, you are. Really.

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Get the FREE illustrated, sort of a comic book, “You Are An Artist.” Believe in yourself and your ability to draw. xo Pamela

  • Janelle

    These are unvarnished words and beautiful. I love it when you write like this. Thanks Pamela.

  • The last time I saw my mother I was 16 and she was 43. I cannot relate to knowing a mom as an adult. But that’s okay. I’m still glad you got to know your mom. I still have a few precious memories I hold onto. Good post Pamela.

  • So beautiful, and I love the photo of you after you cut your own hair. I hope you see your mom again soon.

    • Me too Kathleen. I miss her. And she is really goofy. We have fun together.

  • This is an incredibly touching story and I enjoyed hearing your love for you mom. Wishing you all the best.

  • Christa Sterken

    awww, I second Eileen’s words. Bless you friend

  • I love how you love your mom, Pam. My mom has been gone 22 years now and anytime I hear or see daughters loving on their moms it makes my heart so happy!

    • Eileen,
      Thank you.
      I am sorry your mommy is gone. Sending you hugs today as you enjoy time with your family.

  • Richelle Wright

    wow… that statement… the last time i saw her, she was the size of a bug. i remember waving goodbye to my mother in law as we headed back to w. africa a few years ago. she was frail, in a wheelchair. we knew it might be a last goodbye but we didn’t realize how quickly that would become true… that walking away, watching her and the rest of our parents growing smaller and smaller. it doesn’t get easier the more we do it, that’s for sure.