Mothers... it's that time of year when we all think about mothers. I was lucky to have the best Mother possible... I just didn't realize it until I was in my 20's. Maybe the teenage years are a lesson so that when we have our own children we will know that this stage will soon pass.
What can I say about my mother that someone else has not already said about their own mother. We read all about every kind of mother in the aisle of Hallmark and we are reminded to buy our mothers flowers and little gifts to say thanks. But, really what if we had to say it with our own words??
My mother was not one to tell me she loved me out loud ... but, after having my two children I felt the need to know... to hear it... to feel it in my heart. I would speak to my mother every day on the phone and finally one day... I did it.. I told my Mother "out loud" over the telephone wire that "I love you" now at this time she says... "oh, Debb".. and I said say it to me... so she said it "out loud" and said "you know I do I don't have to say it" Well, I've always been the person that I need to see it, hear it and feel it and then I would believe what a person said. Well, with each of our following telephone calls we always ended with "I love you, Mom and she would say "You know I do, Debb. This was usually followed by a little hhmph sound coming from her end of the wire as if she were saying "after all of these years, Debb, you should know".
Well, I was then 35 with three children of my own and it was all to soon to say goodbye. She fought the good fight starting with breast cancer, then lymph nod and at the end cancer of the brain. May 1995 she was referred to a larger teaching hospital three hours from our hometown. She was brave and proud till the end. My sisters and I split care taking duties, while my father and brothers did their best to be helpful in any way they could. This was a humbling experience not only for my Mother; but, also myself... as I was now doing things that she was mortified that I would have to do. My sisters and I all became very intimate with our mother's daily needs. I hope that this made us stronger women if not better daughters and mothers.
My Aunts (of previous post) were also in attendance and did their share of helping, hand holding and praying. During this time... my mother was unable to use the telephone and she would tell me that this was God's way for us "girls" to get use to not talking to her every day. We all lived with in 10 minutes of each other; but, each of us girls had a time we would call our mother and if we were unable to get her we would then call each other to see where she was when she should have been waiting for our calls. This was well before the cell phone in every hand stage.
If you have never taken care of someone with a terminal illness, watch some one who is in pain lose the will to fight anymore, see that the treatments are only prolonging life not curing the disease ... you will know how hard this was for me. I would leave work and go straight to my childhood home with a prayer on my lips ... begging, God, please let her be OK... only to return to my own home after my sister relieved me of my duties with a prayer, Please, dear God, don't let her suffer any more. Sadly, in Sept 95 she passed away with family and friends around her and that's the way she wanted to go. This is a life altering experience and I hope that I was a good daughter to her til the end.
So, if you are lucky to have a mother... hug her, hold her tight, embrace her life, rejoice in her and your time together, honor her and be proud of the woman she was, is and will be; because, life is so short and time is so fast and dear. Precious few of us realize how dear our mothers really our until we no longer have them with us. We forget to honor them for their sacrifices, for their determination to give us a better life than their own, to thank them for instilling their virtues in us, to teach us that life is not always fair; but, that with will and determination we can overcome anything and be a virtuous person.
Happy Mothers Day, Mom... "you know" ... Some say Love is a river... from The Rose... sung at my mother's funeral...yes, that song will bring my tears ... a mother's love or love for a mother... it is one of the deepest loves in the world.