There are fewer relationships more precious than a true friend, the “family” we choose in this life. Besides our family, momma made it a point to be a true friend to others…a card, a casserole, a roll of quarters for the hospital vending machine, a basket of clean folded laundry (don’t ask), and more were her standard MO when someone was in need. Well before being asked, she was the first on the scene because she lived by the mantra: “A true friend is the first one to come in when everyone else has exited the building.”
Such was the beloved Coffee Club during mom’s last few years. A group of retired public educators, these ladies possessed a combined 350+ years of experience, forgetting more than most of us will ever be blessed to know. Even in the midst of a rapidly deteriorating memory and failing body, these faithful ladies gathered with mom to drink coffee, chat, tell stories, and more. Mind you, this wasn’t a short conversation or visit; this was (at minimum) a half-day event. Trust me, there was never a lag in the conversation; these ladies had YEARS of stories about everyone and everything…they were educators after all!
Even after moving into assisted living, the CC came without fail, bringing yummy treats, sunshine, and lots of laughter no matter how difficult the day for mom. These faithful friends shared JOY, love, comfort, smiles, and strength. CC gave purpose and meaning; they were the ones who cared. Mom forgot so many things living in constant confusion, but she never forgot her beloved Coffee Club. They accepted her challenges great and small, funny and sometimes frightening, with grace and forgiveness. It didn’t matter who momma was in the moment; changes never took away from what she meant to them or her lasting legacy.
We could all use a Coffee Club in our lives. We could all benefit from being a Coffee Club member as a champion for another in our own life. For more years than any of these ladies most likely want to share, they’ve traveled through life together, weaving a uniquely checkered quilt of true friendship. So, here’s to the Coffee Club, to the ones who chose to raise their cup of kindness; thank you for giving more, expecting less, and sharing your unconditionally caring love…