"So, when are you coming?" my mother asks.
I know that she needs to be reassured, right now, that she will see us soon. Hence, the truth, very much stretched, that I shall book my plane ticket as soon as my daughter comes back from Africa. Daughter has already returned from her trip, but I figured that the Africa trip is a good excuse that my mother can readily understand. She is curious. "What is she doing there?"
I tell her, and it makes her proud to know that her granddaughter is doing good deeds. "So, tell me again, when are you coming?" She succeeds in having me pin down an approximate date. "In a few weeks, mother." That's too long of a window for her. "Can't you come sooner?"
I need to better meet her sense of urgency. "Let me see if we can come sooner. I will let you know tomorrow." She seems relieved. "How long will you be coming for?" I give her my usual answer, that which always makes her happy. "A full week, mother."
In this moment, my mother's heart rejoices. Tomorrow she will have forgotten my lie, but her heart will still be filled with the anticipation and the relief from our earlier talk.
What is real? What is not? It's up to our mind to decide . . . with love as the only guide.