A good plan and a hair crime

Fred sleeping by my lap top (when I’m writing on the couch, this is where he likes to be)

A while back, I wrote about my 85-year-old mother wanting to get a computer and me nixing the idea. I really couldn’t imagine her learning any new technology (since she has never shown the slightest interest in anything like this before now). Well, she decided she was going to get one and asked Amanda (her granddaughter, my niece) to drive her to the Apple store where she bought an iPad, and had high-speed internet service by the end of the week. 2 days ago, I received the following email from her;

“I don’t know which Mary I have  but Mary daughter. Igot the hair crime  thanks. Love u bye spelling. I’m sending it anyway
Sent from my iPad”

I’d sent her some hair-gel, and she was thanking me. I loved this! When I called her to tell her how funny her message was she said, “I don’t know how I typed ‘hair crime’ but I thought it was funny so I just sent it.”

I’m so glad that I didn’t get involved with her computer buying when she asked me. I think the combination of me telling her that I didn’t think she would do it (which she admitted got her a little fired-up) and her needing to step out on her own and prove to herself that she could do it, have opened doors that wouldn’t have opened if I (or any of her children) had set her up.

Since Amanda was only passing through town, my mom couldn’t depend on her (long-term) either, so she needed to figure things out for herself. She found (and signed up for) a computer class at the senior center, and I know that this will expand her social circle which is another thing that she’s wanted. At 85, my mother is starting to plan her own life and go for what she wants…I’ve never been so happy to be proven wrong.

“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.” Jim Rohn


30 thoughts on “A good plan and a hair crime

  1. What a great lesson for those of us who think we should control everything! Stand back and get out of the way is sometimes (often) the best way to allow progress and growth . The trick is understanding when to lend a hand and when to let it go
    I love the thought of your mother stronger, more confident and having more fun for having accomplished the conquering of computers on her own.
    Love from Fran

    PS Fred looks as if he is sending I told you so thoughts our way.

    • For me, I always have to feel inside to know if I’m called to get involved or not (and get out of my reasoning mind). I try to take each situation individually and then follow that guidance and trust that it will unfold in ways that could surprise me!

    • I wholeheartedly agree with your comments, Fran. My mother, who will soon be 80 – to her credit and my amazement can do lots more with the computer than I can, even though she does have her challenges – as we all do – when she puts herself in a mind to figure something out she can be relentless! Go Mom!

      Thank you Mary for today’s post.
      This is a good reminder to reel in our projections and expectations of our loved ones – in the end they really say more about us than they do about them anyway!

  2. Thank you for sharing this…sounds so much like my mother…perhaps an iPad will work for her too…??? You are so wise, holding back and letting her do this on her own…and looks like she did just fine! Love to you and your Mom…

  3. WAY TO GO, Mom!! I am 10 years behind you, but got into it in the late 90s in spite of DH. I can’t wait till you find Facebook…..

  4. Fred looks so comfortable there! Nice story about your Mom and her ipad. Good for her!

    ________________________________

  5. Ha ha ha! Hysterical – “hair crime”. I love this, Mary, I really do. I totally agree with you and how wonderful she stepped out and did this on her own. I have to admit and I had to smile when your mom decided to send it anyway the way it was because it sounded funny……,,I’ve been known to do that, but it can backfire as when some friends thought I was drinking….. a lot, because what I sent made absolutely no sense. Hee hee! My hands had shifted off of the home keys typing and I had written this long paragraph and it just struck me as so funny with the crazy punctuation marks and such! Fred is looking handsome and comfortable as ever. Oh, I’d love to see his painting in your home when you get it framed, if you don’t mind. I love to see where they end up like that:) Have a great day!

  6. GREAT for both of you! If Mom can do it at 85 I can do it at 53. 🙂
    Yes, no one has a better plan for us than us.
    Love you Mary!

  7. This was such an enjoyable post to read. Brought a big smile to my face. Your mom has so much to look forward to – looks like a fun time is coming – with new ways to communicate and to communicate with new people. Fabulous!

  8. I think your mom proved she could learn something new. Just think of the technological changes she’s seen in her 85 years. Staying in touch with tech savy grandchildren can motivate seniors to give this a try. I’m hoping that my mom, at 83, will follow your mom’s lead … maybe she will in 2 years 🙂

  9. This is wonderful. There is such hope for us all. My father is 94 and he still emails with me. The amazing part is not so much his age, but that he is nearly blind and does it all by touch. He includes fabulous typos, but it is always decipherable.

  10. Get post this morning. I am like your mother. At 75, I also got a computer for the first time. I can’t imagine my life without it now. I am lucky that I have my daughter nearby to help me out when I need it.

  11. I am glad you respected your Moms wishes to do this but yet didnt interfere….and am glad that you are happy for her now that she has proven she could do it! I am sure your approval after the fact meant alot to her also!

    I dearly love the photos you post of your sweet dog and your adorable cats! They are wonderful and make me smile at the start of my day or whenever I am reading your blog!

  12. I love the honest humor and underlying, genuine compassion in your post today Mary. Such a wonderful lesson in letting go and trusting the big picture. And congratulations to both you and your mom…..the joy and harmony that has blossomed around the whole computer thing wouldn’t have happened had you pushed against your instincts.

  13. Hurray for Mary’s Mom!! This was such a feel good post! Saturday I had to run over to the super tech’ed out Apple Store because my laptop fell, from 4 feet right smack down onto stone flooring. I quickly checked it out and miraculously everything was working but I wanted to have a “genius” at the Genius Bar confirm this (that’s what they call them at the Apple Store) – Small miracle again, everything passed the diagnostic and the visual exam of the innards! – I guess what I enjoyed as much as anything about my visit was seeing the many, many people in this huge room talking to Apple customer service people – people of all ages gathered at tables for lessons, little tots! playing at the low table with Ipads to keep them happy while Mom and Dad browse – amazing! My son has been after me to get an Ipad as he tells me it is much easier to navigate than my Mac Book Pro – I hold off – but now I’m having second thoughts. Thanks, Mary’s Mom! I resist the change, but maybe it would be a good thing. – Fred is so precious cuddled up and snoozing. Happy day, all!

  14. I remember the first few emails I received from my Dad – hysterical auto-corrects! And then, he decided to activate the voice feature – he talked into it and it sent me an email – laughed for days at some of the gibberish I received! He’s got the hang of it now!

  15. Mary – When reading the title of this blog, my curiosity was piqued to know what hair crime had been committed. I had visions of bad haircuts. What a hoot! I love how this worked out for you both.

  16. Mary, such wonderful pictures of your cats, I’m enjoying them all remembering the few cats I’ve had in my life & how they make themselves comfortable in the most impossible spots. And to your mother…she gives hope to reaching the age of 85 & still wanting & being open to learning something new. Good for her. But most of all, the message of you not feeling you had to be responsible in her learning how to work with a computer. Whatever your posts do for me, most of all they allow me to stop & think before I rush into something…or to help someone…They remind me that I am not in charge always nor do I have to be. I now try to think…is this going to enhance my relationship with someone or not…and most often, the message is…sit back, let others work things out; they are in control, not me. Before I always felt I had to be so responsible for everything…now I don’t, so thanks for the reminders, Mary…
    SandyP in Canada

  17. Mary, i was in the dr’s office waiting room when i read your post! i laughed so hard out loud people must have thought i was loony!! so funny. We got my 91 year old mother on at 80 and she has been navigating since. but her hands are crippled and we also get some very funny emails when her fingers hit the wrong keys!! thanks for sharing that great story!!

  18. Love this post. It made me laugh and smile. How great for your mom to take the risk and learn something new. Even laughing at her spelling mistake but going ahead and sending you the email anyway. What great spirit!

  19. Such a wonderful story and lesson here. My man helps me navigate different things on the pc but only to a point. Then I’m on my own. That is truly how I’ve mastered as much as I have. Very empowering for me also.
    Your Mom is exceptional to have signed up for the computer class. What motivation and drive. I worked many yrs. in geri-psych and so so many sweet, dignified elders just give up.
    I too thought the post would be a haircut horror story!

  20. PS Congratulations to your Mom embarking on her new, exciting adventure!
    From Fran again
    And, I think Fred is saying that he knew things would turn out well all along.

  21. Someday, I hope I’m 85 and interested in trying new things and surprising people. Think we have another potential blogger on the horizon? 🙂

  22. I’ve had my iPad since Santa brought it this past Christmas. I didn’t know until a month or so ago about the free assistance that the Apple store will give – via classes or visits to the “genius bar” — I went 3 times to the genius bar to understand how to sync music – all 3 geniuses were very patient with me. I still don’t know how to do it – but I did learn from them that this is NOT an easy process (it’s easy enough to buy a song from iTunes, then it appears on the iPad, but I had music that I’d bought from Amazon or had burned from a cd – synching that kind of file is harder, they tell me.

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