At the end of a year during which I attended medical education in Paris I sat my final exams and returned home to our house in Kaşüstü village to spend a part of my vacation and visit with my family.
In the past, we rarely came together and sat around a breakfast table with them because of our life. It must be because we missed each other so as the whole family began to get together in the mornings and enjoyed the breakfast.
I felt the need of responding to a situation which I never noticed before or maybe did not observe because it was not within my domain. It must have sprung from my recently adopted doctor identity. As soon as I noticed that my mother filled up her glass half with sugar I interfered hotly, and said:
“… Mum, how could you fill your glass half with sugar?” And continued to speak to make clear under the sarcastic and puzzled eyes of my mother after I asked the question.
I mentioned what “diabetes” is, how it occurs, the damages it causes on the organs of the body and that she may put on weight because of instant calorie in line with my knowledge of that time.
Although she continued to regard me with the same glances like she was not at all convinced, she said:
“All right, I’ll put less sugar.”
After my mother kept her empty glass on the table for quite a long time she put two teaspoons of sugar in and asked for tea to be poured. After she stirred it well she checked if all the sugar is dissolved and took her first sip; she said nothing but her displeasure was reflected on her face. She did not put more than two teaspoons of sugar in her tea until I returned to Paris. It looked as if my mum had gotten used to drinking tea with less sugar but the amount of tea she drank also became less as the days past.
I used to call my family from the telephone boots operating with coins about midday on Thursdays during the years I lived in Paris, informing them of my well being and asking after them. The length of these conversations was as much as the coins I saved allowed. After the telephone call was over I took pains to save the coins for the next conversation.
On the first Thursday after I came back, I called home. After we talked about being apart and longing each other, my brother told me that my mother shed a lot of tears after I left; but she did not fail to say:
“Now that he is gone, I can enjoy a cup of tea.”
Dr. Süleyman ÇAM