I was  in the kitchen just starting to make our luncheon soup. Mom was downstairs doing I don't know what. I heard a crash so I went to investigate. As I descended the stairs the scene that came into view sucked the life out of me. My angel was on the floor. Mom was on her right hip but she was twisted at her waist so that her back , head and arms were also on the floor. As I knelt beside her restraining my tears of agony she managed to say, "I missed the step".

While I was thinking of phoning 911 Mom made an effort to get up so I knew I could help her. As I gathered her into a sitting position I tried to console her and  asked her if she had hit her head. "Yes", she replied, so I checked it  and discovered a lump that fit nicely into the palm of my hand. Not one to sit around however, after a few minutes of hugging Mom rolled onto her hands and knees and with my help she stood.

Mom sat on her bench by the widow and composed herself as I continued to fuss. When I told her I wanted to take her to the clinic she said she didn't want to go. I insisted, she refused. I said, "Yes". She said, "No". I said, "Yes", so we went. On the way to the clinic Mom kept insisting she was all right and at the end of an hour the doctor confirmed Mom's diagnosis and lessened my concerns.

Throughout the entire ordeal Mom did not shed a tear either in pain or self-pity. Over the next few hours she apologized several times for putting me to so much trouble and for frightening me. I accepted her apologies without mentioning the true extent of my 'injuries'. I will now be thinking of her fall every time Mom goes near the stairs. Her fall was also a brutal, unbelievably painful reminder of the coming time I will not be able to console her.