Recently I heard what I presumed to be a grandmother tell her granddaughter something that instantly took me back to my childhood. "Don't eat that before supper or you will spoil your appetite!"
"May I have a lollipop?" the eager child had asked the grocery clerk.
Though she was given permission to have the lollipop, she was given strict orders by her grandmother to NOT eat it before supper!
I smiled to myself. I had heard similar words most of my growing up years. We were not allowed to eat any kind of snack before a meal and were often reminded that it would spoil our supper if we did.
My Mother was a fabulous cook and I was too young to appreciate it at the time. Now, in her 89th year, she has had to give up cooking for herself and it has been very hard on her. As I watch her age, I realize that though aging brings wisdom, it also brings loss of independence and a new level of wisdom is needed.
It has been quite a year for her and I knew that things were shifting significantly when she began to delight in having afternoon tea and CHOCOLATE! Her expression of pleasure when I offered her a chocolate bar told me that we were no longer living under childhood laws but mutual love between two grown-ups maneuvering our way through life together.
The roles have been reversed. As a child, I needed her to guide me into proper eating habits and she now needs me to help her adjust to the challenges of aging. I can think of no better way to do that than with afternoon chocolate.