Yesterday morning I received a phone call from my dad, my mums doctor had given her 2-3 days to live and to see if I could come down immediately. I got the first available flight and was at my dads side 7 hours later. We drove from the airport directly to the Hospice. It had been 3 months seen I’d seen my mum and I thought she had looked bad then.
Nothing could prepare me for what I saw yesterday. How someone could still be breathing and look that frail I don’t know. She was down to 43 kgs and a shadow of herself. Her eyes were open but she saw nothing. This woman lying in the bed was no longer my mum. When I looked into her eyes she was already gone, her body hadn’t caught up with her.
Looking into her eyes, her face melted away and all I could see was the mum from my childhood. The mum who was my safe place, my rock. The mum I thought would live forever. I remembered the silly teenage fights, and even the adult squabbles we had. The mum I love with a passion that it hurts.
I stayed there for a while. staring into those eyes that always had love for me. And I talked. Even though she didnt know I was there, I talked. I told her how much I loved her, that my dad would be fine, that I was so glad she’d been my mum, that things would be okay, and that she could leave. That we’d miss her so much and if we could we could we’d keep her here forever. Even though it would hurt, she could go.
This morning we got a call from the Hospice, my mum had died. Our world had finally changed. My dad and I held one another and cried together. My dad, who was always a big gentlemen, felt like a child in my arms as he cried over the loss of his wife of 53 years.
A little later we drove to the Hospice where we were spent some time with my mum before the funeral parlour people arrived to collect her. A chance to hold her one last time, to say goodbye for the last time. Then we went home.
Now for the phone calls. Now to phone the rest of the family and tell them of our shared loss. To phone my sister, my sons, my nephews, close family friends. Telling them all, and listening to their grief, their crying, their loss.
I’m happy my mums suffering is over. That the cancer that had ended up attacking other organs in her body would no longer make her feel like she was being torn apart. And I’m happy for my dad. That he know longer has to watch the woman he loved his entire life going through all the agony and pain that she had for the last 4 months of her life.
Now its time to mourn and grieve for her. To remember the life she lived, not what she had become. To go and celebrate that I knew this woman, and she was my mum, and even though she’s no longer her with us in person, she’ll live forever in our hearts. and as time goes on we’ll laugh and cry and remember the woman we all loved.
Rest in peace my beautiful mum.
I love you