Rattling My Soul

I've never thought about it before…the dying process.  Of course I've thought about death.  Who doesn't do that?  But I've somehow managed to avoid the intricate details that accompany a person's last days & hours.  The sounds, smells and surroundings can't possibly leave the human mind once it's been experienced.

Today as I sat with my mother and listened to her struggling to breathe…I realized some things are better off never being known.

How will I ever forget?    

I'm grateful for the opportunity to be with her as she leaves this earth.  Just today, a friend called to tell me that someone close to her was killed in a car accident earlier this morning.  No warning.  No bedside visits.  No last words spoken purposefully.  No more time.  Gone.  It made me feel guilty.

Why do I get to be with and know what is happening to my mother?

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God's choice.  I accept it and I feel utterly privileged to walk this path with her.  Maybe it's because of our painful past.  I can't help but imagine God had this in mind all along when He assigned me this mother.

I'm trying not to feel fear or regret.  Over & over I've hashed thoughts of all I should say and do to help her make this transition.  I've questioned myself about past hurts (they seem frivolous now and forgotten) and all I can feel for her is compassion.  More of God and His authority in my life.  It's funny what becomes important at times like these.  

My heart feels as though it's protected with a sort of God bubble wrap.  I don't have to cling to mean comments or hold a forever grudge from the past.  Her mistakes are history.  This last year of medical ups & downs gave us both a chance to say some things that needed to be said.  It would seem that hearing her say "I'm sorry" would be my favorite but actually it's not.  When she told me how proud she was of the kind of mother I turned out to be….it filled my heart with gratitude.  Hearing my mother admit she made mistakes and that she wished she could've been a mother like me literally shook me to the core.

Even if I never hear it from my own children…..I believe I did my best as their mom. 

Mom,

Thank you for building me up as a mother.  Admitting your mistakes and the pain you've caused in my life was hard for you. I'll always cherish knowing that you believed I was a great mom to my kids and a wonderful wife to my husband.  How blessed I feel because of those words.  

Go and be in peace now.  I'll love you and think of you, everyday.  And I'll remember the qualities that you passed along to help me be the kind of mother that I am.

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