Mom’s Secret

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© Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

“What the hell happened to the car, Mom?”

“Sorry, Mark. I thought I had enough clearance pulling out of the parking garage. I must have hit something?”

“Hit something? Mom!”

Since Dad’s death, Mark was trying to help Mom out, but she was getting more forgetful and disorganized each day. Clearly she wasn’t fit to drive, but getting her to give it up was going to be tough.

“Damn! That last invader agent hit my car with a disruptor blast before I could get away,” she thought. “Hate lying to my son, but he can’t learn my secret.”

I wrote this in response to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers writing challenge. The idea is to use the photo prompt above and write a piece of flash fiction no more than 100 words long. My story’s word count is 98.

My Dad passed away about three weeks ago. Afterward, my brother and I helped my Mom deal with a lot of the details in settling Dad’s affairs. My wife and I came back to help out some more, and Mom continues to have problems remembering important details. Eventually, we plan on having her move in with us, but giving up her independence will be hard for her.

No, she hasn’t had any car accidents, but then again, she doesn’t need to be driving either. In my wee bit of flash fiction, I recreated Mom as having a secret that makes being absentminded just a ruse. Would that this could be true.

To read more stories based on the prompt, go to


41 thoughts on “Mom’s Secret

  1. I hope that your mother can find independence that will suit her. When my mother gave up driving it was hard on her.


    • It’s pretty recent, but when I had Mom drive with me a few weeks ago, she was a little scary. One big problem was she couldn’t remember where she parked.


  2. A lovely, whimsical skit on forgetfulness there. As you say, if only it were the real reason.
    My sympathies, James. My mother in law is in a similar position – plagued by health issues, VERY forgetful (forgets what she was talking about in the middle of a sentence) loses credit cards, hearing aids … She’s not willing to leave her home, but the struggle to stay there grows harder day by day. I hope all works out well for you and your mum.


  3. I enjoyed your take on the prompt, James. Losing your independence is tough. I saw it happen to my mother, and eventually, if we live long enough, it will happen to all of us. Hang onto those secrets as long as you can.


    • My Dad was sharp as a tack until the day he died. Unfortunately, my Mom is declining by degrees. Thanks, Russell. I hope Mom keeps her secret and keeps defending us all.


  4. Love the twist at the end. I hope your mother will adjust to her new life. She’s very lucky she has you to make sure she’s okay.


  5. Sympathies about your loss of your dad. Hope you folks don’t find the new living arrangement too stressful.

    Older folks have so many more opportunities now to be active get out for a morning and such.

    Good take on the prompt, too.


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