Whole Living Daily

Your Daily Laugh: Notes on The Funniest Mother I Know

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Karol's mom (left) with her friend Estelle

Last week I talked about what angels fun people are, and this week I want to introduce you to one of mine – the funniest mother I know.  On September 23rd ,  my 87-year-old mother had open heart surgery.  She got a new coronary artery from her left leg, and a new aortic valve from a pig – an idea she accepted without reservation because, in her words, “There’s no chance of rejection.  I love pork.”

I moved in with mom for two months to help with recovery, taking notes daily of the funniest comments.  This is the $#@! my mom said after surgery.

Day 2  Sitting in a chair.

Nurse:  Shirley, are you in any pain?

Mom:  Yeah.  My ass hurts.  This chair’s too hard.

Day 3  Visiting hour; me and my sister, Jackie.

Jackie:  Okay mom, it’s time to do the breathing tube again…

Mom:  Why don’t you just sit down and mind your own business.

Day 4  Visiting hour over; we’re leaving.

Me:  Mom, want the water closer?

Mom:  Yeah…and push that blowing thing closer.  I won’t use it, but it looks effective.

Day 5 Dinner being served.

Nurse’s Aide:  Shirley, here’s your dinner!  (She lifts the lid on a white plate with a big meatball and a lump of mashed potatoes).

Mom:  Eat it.

Day 7 Home.

Me:  Mom, would you like a Pixie (Fannie May candy turtle)?

Mom:  Nah.  I don’t feel like chewing.

Day 9 Back in hospital.

Rob, Nurse’s Aide:  Okay Shirley, do you want to get back in bed?

Mom:  Yeah, wanna get in with me?

Day 10  About to be discharged again. Nurse explaining that an occupational therapist will be coming to the house.

Nurse:  They’ll help you in the kitchen and make sure you can prepare a meal.

Mom:  I can open the freezer door and fix a Lean Cuisine myself.

Day 12  Home visit by physical therapist, Felix.

Felix:  Hello Shirley, are you feeling better today?

Mom:  Let’s just visit.

Day 13  Home.  Dinner (leftovers) with family.

Debbie (my sister):  Okay mom, we have beef stew, pork roast, and jambalaya…what do you want?

Mom:  Pumpkin pie and ice cream.

Day 14 Me straightening up the table for the occupational therapist home visit.

Mom:  Don’t move those exercise sheets.  Leave them out so she’ll think I was practicing.

And just last week…session with Felix, physical therapist.  Practicing leg kicks.

Felix:  Oh Shirley, look how strong your legs are…look how high you’re kicking!

Mom:  Oh yeah…turn around.

Nothing soothes the soul like a good laugh, so if you got one, thank Shirley Jackowski with a healing prayer for being such a great angel of laughter.

Until next week, think about this from the funniest mother I know: “I know I’m going to heaven because I have hell right here on earth.”  --Mom to 7th Day Adventists at the door; circa 1957.

Karol Jackowski, Ph.D., became a nun in 1964. She's also been a college administrator, graduate of New York University, manager of a toy store, author of eight books, painter of religious folk art, and sister to everyone she meets. Please visit her website at KarolJackowski.com.

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Comments (5)

  • Now i know where you are coming from.
    I want to marry you AND your mom !

  • SINCE I FOLLOWED ALL OF THE QUOTES ON FACEBOOK, I ENJOYED THE CONDENSED VERSION. THE ONE FROM 1957 REALLY CRACKED ME UP....YOUR BROTHERS HANK AND DAVID WERE JUST GETTING STARTED!!!! SHIRL WILL SURELY GO STRAIGHT TO HEAVEN!! GOD LOVE AND BLESS HER.

  • Yesterday she turned down a chicken fried steak dinner -- her favorite -- and drank Ensure instead.

    Me: Didn't you have a taste for chicken fried steak?

    Mom: Nah...I just wasn't in the mood for chewing.

  • It's nice that you love your mom and see the humor in her comments, but she really sounds grumpy and not very nice to the people helping her. Maybe she just means to be amusing, like her own Borscht Belt comic. I hope so.

  • None of it feels grumpy or ungrateful. Those are clearly some of the best days of my life so far.

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