Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Life and change

I've always tried to keep this blog upbeat and art related, only occasionally dropping in a bit of personal stuff, like grandbaby births, so please forgive this diversion. Feel free to stop reading here.
Just over three weeks ago I was teaching at a pARTy when my cell phone rang ( I normally turn it off), the only reason I answered was because the call display said Mom and Dad, and they had never called my cell before.
Long story short, Mom had been taken to the hospital with pneumonia, but was home again. Almost of week followed of her going back repeatedly...and them sending her home, until finally I had her call tela health. God bless the nurse on the other end of the line, she called an ambulance and pre-called the hospital. Finally someone was taking her seriously.
Not quite a week ago she was diagnosed with lung cancer...she who never smoked a day in her life, and never failed to tell off my husband when he did, and my son when he started.
She worked in restaurants and catering much of her adult life and hated the smoke. Ironically the anti-smoking bylaws were passed just after she retired.
Today is March the 15th, we're hoping she call hang on long enough for my brother to get here tomorrow. Watching her is like watching a baby develop awareness of the world, in reverse. Everyday there is marked deterioration. Last night she couldn't hold a glass, or the phone to her ear even though a pillow was supporting their weight.
I'm worried about my Dad. In two weeks he's lost almost as much weight as she has, and he seems lost. I've always thought of him as a tough old bird, so seeing him holding her hand and crying for hours on end is frightening.
I don't know what we're going to do without her.
Edit March 16th: Mom waited for my brother to arrive. He took her hand, she smiled beautifully, sighed and flew away.
Edit July 23rd: It's been a tumultuous 4 months, kids in crisis-lost jobs etc, Dad in crisis-he failed his 80 year old's driving test, and tonight I sit here in tears, because I realized that with all the s--- that has been happening, some how I'm losing the memory of my Mom's voice, I can hear certain words and phrases, but not sentences. Mom you're slipping away, and I feel bereaved all over again.
Edit Spt 16th, 6 months since you've been gone Mom, my wedding anniversary today too, I've spent a lot of it in tears. I don't have as many melt downs as I did a few months ago, the hole is still there but I'm learning to live with it. I miss you like crazy Mom, I still can't go to the cemetery, I just can't. But since both of us believed that the 'person' has moved on, and the husk is just that, a husk, I don't think that you'd think badly of my weakness.
Edit Jan 2nd, 2012. Happy New Years Mom, we got through our first Christmas without you, I made your famous coleslaw, can't have Christmas without it, but it wasn't as good as yours. It's almost your birthday, and some how that hurts worse than Christmas, I miss our girls days out, and your birthday was always the best one. I wish you could see Maddy, she was just a baby when you left. She has your smile, and some of her mannerisms are so like you. Both of your precious great grandbabies are growing so fast. So much has changed. You were right about 'that woman' who sucked us all into the art gallery of Lambeth, but we've moved on and better things are happening. Mother knows best, sometimes I wonder if you've had a hand it how things have worked out, the good stuff I mean, some of it seems almost miraculous, like I have an angel watching over me. I love you Mom, just as much as I ever did, I miss you, the hole in my heart where you should be still hurts, and I don't think it will ever go away. I don't think I want it to.
Edit Feb 13, 2013. Going through pictures, looking for an idea for my next painting, and came across some pictures of you. The pain was swift and deep, taking me off guard. That doesn't happen as much any more, hard to believe it's almost been two years, the wound has healed, but aches, daily.  

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