Awhile back I watched this movie about a guy who had the ability to travel through time. All the men in his family had the gift. They could travel back into time, revisit any situation, repair relationship blunders, correct those awkward moments in life you’d give anything to do over. The only catch was that they could only travel back so far. Anyone who wasn’t alive at the time of a direct descendant’s birth couldn’t be visited again.
Toward the end of the movie – sorry for ruining it for you, but hey, I didn’t give the title away completely, so you’ll still have to figure that out – the father of the main character gets cancer and dies. It’s okay for the son, though, because he continues to come back to the place where he and his dad had conversations after the son was in college. They continued to talk just like they always did. Until the birth of the son’s second child – which occurs after the father dies.
Before the child’s birth, father and son both realize that their visits will soon cease. That the father really will pass, that he will no longer share a physical presence with his son on this earth.
And so one last time father and son travel back in time. Only this time, they go back to when the son is just a boy, running along the beach with his daddy.
It was at that point that I burst into tears, because that’s precisely the time I would choose to go back to with my mom.
I don’t long to have the 92 year old mother back whose body was wracked with pain, with confusion, with so little of the quality of life – the vibrant life – she once knew. That would be cruel.
But I’d give anything to talk to the mama who packed a lunch for me in a Casper the Ghost lunchbox.
That’s the mama I miss.
Whose presence I feel.
The mama I can’t wait to see again.