Solo Breakfast

It was hard work to keep our brood under control as they waited for their pancakes at a local diner last Sunday after Mass.  I was exhausted just playing referee to the game of 20 questions that we were using to pass the time.  At the table next to us, a little old lady ate her fried eggs and toast while she read the paper.  It might have been easy to think of her as lonely or pathetic, but in fact she looked rather content.  When we got up to leave she was still drinking her coffee and she patted my arm.  I want to tell you, she said, I have 9 children.  My grandchildren are older than your children now.  I had tears in my eyes as I said, I feel like it is all I can do to put one foot in front of the other.  Some days are like that, she responded.

I hope that they remember to call her, I hope that she is not lonely, but I bet she really, really enjoys getting to read her paper and drink her coffee as slowly as she likes!

  • Juris Mater

    I hope when I’m a grandmother, I am sipping my coffee in my daughters’ kitchen on Sunday at noon while she cooks pancakes and my grandchildren run wild around me playing with their grandfather. I don’t plan to disappear alone to a diner on Sundays after all these years of hard work!

    • texasmommy

      I suppose that is the difference between introverts and extroverts as well. Maybe she relishes in being around family much of the time, but also in the ability to escape for a little Sabbath peace and quiet!

  • Bethany “B-mama”

    I love these types of exchanges–especially when its apparent that the person in your immediate surroundings is not put off by children. You all probably made her day and helped her to appreciate every sip of that solitary coffee. I think I will enjoy moments like those… interspersed with family and grandchildren and craziness. I hope my family grows knowing how much I love their lively contributions. Family is never a burden.

  • http://www.buildingcathedrals.com Katrina

    These wise women are such treasures to us all – they have raised their children well and are now able to share their perspective with us, as we raise our young children. What a fun story, Mary Alice!

  • Kellie “Red”

    I love this. On really bad days I think about being older, and sitting alone or with another well-behaved adult, sipping my coffee!

  • JMB

    It’s always interesting when your preconceived notion of someone is different from the truth. I wonder how often I’ve judged someone on his or her appearance or manners and have been completely wrong on all accounts. You just never know how the Holy Spirit works in your life.


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