Thursday, March 31, 2011

My Mother's Passing

     On this past March 24th, at 8:20 AM, my mom took her last breath and is now in Heaven with the Lord.  I got a call at about 2:00 AM that Monday morning saying she was starting to go, and so I headed out the door to her house.  It was hard because every breath seemed like the last.  However, she hung on till Thursday morning.  Cancer is an awful, horrible, unfair illness that shows no mercy.  It has taken my grandma (my dad's mom), my dad, my uncle (my dad's brother), and now my mother.  I can truly say beyond a shadow of a doubt, I would never wish cancer on even my worst enemy.  We gave her pain meds every 2 hours around the clock and anything else we could give her to make her last days and hours as pain free as possible.  We are thankful for the Hospice nurses that helped us, and whom were there to answer our questions 24/7 any and every time we called.
     To me, it is hard to watch someone die, but especially when it is someone that you care about, but also have built up mixed emotions about from the past.  It leaves you with a quandary of mixed emotions that are now forced to a head before you want or plan to deal with them, and that you have to decide how to deal with.  What does one do with these mixed feelings that you remember like it was yesterday, but are now faced with how to handle it, whether you like it or not.  Death doesn't rear its head at "convenient" times.  No one has "control" over the exact minute that someone is going to die except the Lord Himself.  Not even the Devil himself can decide this.  We get no say whatsoever.  And there is no way that we can make everyone happy about our chose to stay with the one who is dying, or walk away and make it easy to pretend it is not really happening, or can make it happen when we want it to.
     So, this coming Saturday, April 2nd, we will have a memorial service for my mother.  She requested that she be cremated and divided in to 3 for us brother, sister and I.  This has been done, and now her ashes sit in three cherry wood urns, sitting in our homes.  It's an odd feeling to look over at my china cabinet and know that my mom is in part, sitting there in my living room.  It is still a little hard to grasp this concept for me. 
     Before she left for home Heaven, I believe it was Wednesday when she seemed to rally for a short time, and suddenly wanted to sit up more and started talking.  So I gathered everyone around.  Well she seemed to be wanting to talk to me in particular.  My siblings had long ago made peace with the horrible childhood we had once my parents got divorced.  I was 7 at that time, and my siblings were younger than I was.  After that, well I could write a book on our childhoods!  At any rate, she had allowed me to pray with her, just maybe the week before, so that she was certain she had received Christ as her Savior and would be going to Heaven with our Lord and Savior.  However, she, to what I believe was the best of her ability, tried to make her peace with me, and me with her.  Then, shortly after that short little while, she slipped back in to what was almost a comatose state. I believe that this is the closest I will ever come to an apology, or a "I should have protected you better when you were growing up," or anything else of the sort. So, I am left with the choice, if you will, to decide what God's plan is for me to do with all these mixed emotions I have and how to let go of the pain and the hurt from the past, and move on and use my past as my testimony in a way God would have me to do it.  I don't know what that is yet, and I have not begun to try to decipher what I really feel about everything that has happened these last couple of months since she first broke her hip, had a stroke, then fractured her upper thigh, which left to finding her cancer in her leg as well as her lungs.  It is hard to not be frustrated that the reason she got her cancer was from her smoking (as did my dad and my uncle).  I want to scream and say, "Can't you all see what smoking can do to you?!?!  So what part of it killing people don't you get?!"  BUT, I cannot make someone stop smoking, and I cannot make all those that I love stop smoking.  And I also cannot stop loving them even if they don't.
     So, I am left now to deal with these mixed emotions and feelings I have, and try to sort them out as best as I can.  God will need to pull me by the hand and lead me to what the next step is, because I can't begin to know where to start. 

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