A little while ago I started seeing another woman. Actually, it was my wife’s idea.

“You know you love her,” she told me one day, completely out of the blue. “Life’s short, you should give her more of your time.”

“But I love you, dear,” I replied.

“I know, but you love her too!” she said.

The other woman whom my wife wanted me to see was my mother. She had been a widow for a few years now, and because of work and my kids, I didn’t get to see her very often. I called my mother that night and asked her to join me for a movie and some dinner.

“Did something happen? Is anything wrong?” she asked.

You see, my mother belongs to the generation that thinks that any phone call after 7 pm can only mean bad news…

“I just wanted to invite you for dinner and a movie, just the two of us. What do you think?”

After a few second, my mother simply said: “I’d like that…”

I drove over the next evening after work to pick her up. It was a Friday night, and I had a feeling I hadn’t had in a long time – the kind of nervousness you get before a first date.

When I got there, I saw that my mother was also excited and nervous. She was waiting outside, wearing her beautiful old coat, her hair all done up and had the dress she wore for her and dad’s last anniversary. Her face was lit up with a bright smile.

“I told my girlfriends I’m going on a date with my son tonight and they were very excited for me!” She told me when she got in the car.

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The restaurant we went to was not the fanciest, but the staff were incredibly friendly. My mother held my arm and looked like the first lady! We sat down, and she asked me to read her the menu (“My eyes are not what they used to be” she said). Halfway through, I looked up and saw she was staring at me with a nostalgic smile on her face.

“When you were a child, I was the one who read you the menu.”

“Then allow me to return the favor, mom”, I said.

We had a lovely conversation, not about anything in particular, just sharing what’s going on in our lives and eventually we spoke so much that the conversation just trailed off…

“I’ll go out with you again, but only if you let me pay next time!” my mother said.

When I dropped her off at her house, I felt genuinely sorry to see her leave. I hugged and kissed her and told her how much I loved her. When I came home later that night, my wife asked how the date went.

“It was wonderful, thank you for suggesting it!” I looked at my wife and added “Much better than I could ever have imagined”.

A few days later, my dear mother passed away from a heart-attack. It was very quick and there was nothing anyone could do. A short time afterwards, I got a letter from the restaurant we went to that last time.

The letter read:

I’m quite sure that I won’t be able to make it to our next date, so you and your wife can enjoy each other’s company like I did with you. I paid for your next meal here in full and I want you to know just how much that night meant to me!

I love you,

At that moment, I understood just how important it is that we let our loved ones know that we love them, and make sure we make time for them – we don’t know how long we’ll have them in our lives. Nothing is more important in this life than family! If your mother is still alive – appreciate her. If she isn’t – remember her. Either way, send this to others and help them remember just how much their mothers mean to them.

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You just might inspire them to call their mother, because time is the one thing we can never get back…

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