Saturday, September 12, 2009
My mom died
Nancy Carol (August 26, 1947 - September 4, 2009)
I went back to FL to be with her in the final 18 hours of her life. I truly didn't think that I would want to go but when the time came I really felt like I needed to go - for her and for myself. I'm glad that I went. Being with her in those final hours was the most powerful experience of my life. Even more so than giving birth. It has sent me into a tailspin of sorts.
My mom and I had been so close when I was growing up. We have had problems communicating and finding common ground for several years now. There are so many things that contribute to that. Maybe I'll find the strength to write about them objectively here at some point, but not now. Interestingly, when I went to her the day before she died all of that just vaporized and it was like I was 5 years old again and running to my mommy. Her eyes were pleading...for what I don't know. She wasn't ready to die. She told me that she still had so much to do. I told her I loved her and that she was a good mom. She replied, "sometimes I wondered". Sigh.
Now I find myself in foreign territory. I feel so much guilt for every wicked, senseless, stupid thing I ever said or did. Here is the catch: my mom was hurt that I grew up and made a life of my own. That was unavoidable so I don't know what I could have done to prevent it. So you can maybe see the rock and the hard place...The best I can hope for is that I will be much more measured about how I interact with people from now on, especially when I feel frustrated.
Heaven and spiritual matters also loom large in my mind now. Never before have I felt such a driving need to know that heaven is real. I am devouring recollections of near-death experiences to try to reassure myself that she went somewhere better, her anxiety and pain is gone, and that in her newly found divinity she has forgiven me everything. A few hours before she died she spoke the last words I was able to understand, "I am so scared." God couldn't spare an angel or my grandfather to come down and give her comfort? That makes me so angry and disappointed.
The timing couldn't be worse. She has been looking forward to having a grandchild for years and was so excited. They got to meet when Ada was just 3 weeks old. Being so very pregnant and then having a newborn to care for meant that I couldn't come to take care of her or to advocate for her. I had hoped that she might do some of that for herself or that the people around her would be a bit smarter about their decisions for her. In the week that we were there with her I could see the ways that she struggled to not complain when Jeff did things that were so obviously not to her liking. I guess that I just feel like I could have done it better.
Bye, mom. I'll see you again soon. Until then, please watch over my family. XO, M