I loved her. She sacrificed so much for me. From the moment she found out she was pregnant with me… to my dad passing away when I was 9 and Mom had to build a life for us. All the years. So much is flooding back. Years when I was little and then a few Christmases ago when she wanted a nostalgia family dinner, and I ran around getting so much to make her happy. And I found a photo of the two of us from my first holy communion; I don’t remember ever seeing it before, but I got a 5×7 and gave it to her. She cried happy tears and I joked that the tears said it was a good present.
Today, Sunday…. she took me out for my birthday. Cathi took a picture of us with my arm around her…. a few hours ago, I joked with her in the mall. And I said a fast goodbye, because she was in the front seat and I was in the back, and people were behind the car rushing to get my parking spot…. I didn’t kiss her goodbye. I said love you! fast and dashed out.
I’ll never see her again. And my last chance to kiss her goodbye, to really thank her for a nice day, and I didn’t do it. I didn’t do it!
I’ll never call her and say “Hi, Lady!” the way I always did; it was a little special thing between us. She once told me it meant so much to her; it brought her peace and joy to hear it.
why didn’t I kiss her goodbye… even as I dashed out, i thought I should take the time, but ….
I thought I’d have another chance.
It’s not right.
Cathi called me around 8 to say she was in the hospital. She couldn’t catch her breath suddenly and got sick. John and I went to the hospital, but I thought it was something easy… she’d be up and out in a couple days tops. Then the doctor is saying she needs to talk to someone, who would be the spokesman for all of us…. and my stepfather is barely holding together, and my sisters who were there…. and I’m standing there in front of the doctor saying it’d be me. And she’s telling me it’s bad, it’s critical, and we have to go hour by hour…
Even then…. Mom had beat the hour by hour so many times. Massive heart attack, a stroke, 3 types of cancer…. She was a fighter. She always came back.
Then they’re telling us her heart stopped again. Then it was…. she would keep coding, did we want them to keep rescusitating. I knew she had talked about that with Ralph, and he’s answering but my sister Cheryl is saying don’t make fast judgements…. they came out again. Mom coded again, her heart just wouldn’t keep going, her brain may be damaged from lack of oxygen…. and Ralph saying stop, but so many people talking, and the nurse looking at me and I… I told them what Ralph said and what I knew Mom had said. She had a living will. Don’t put her through agony when it was over.
But how can it be over….
I was going to take her to the town where she grew up. She, me, and my aunt. See the house where they were kids, their schools, the spot where she met my dad…. then, as a surprise, she didn’t know it, I was going to take pictures of it all, make notes, and put it in a book for her. I had it all planned. Then there’d be a chapter for each of us kids, with our favorite pictures over the years, and something we’d each write to her. I was going to put a picture of her as a kid on the front and call the book simply “Doris”. I was having it bound like a real book through the Blurb software and Flickr. It was going to be her surprise present for her 80th birthday.
We were supposed to go on the trip in June, but she and I forgot and made other plans. I told her, no big deal. We’ll pick another day.
Why did I let that slip away…. That trip would have meant everything to her.
We booked a place on Long Beach Island for her birthday week, and had plans to celebrate. She deserved so much….
But when I talked to her this past Tues, I had a pounding headache and she kept going around and around and badgering to make decisions on things, and then still going on and on about them…. I was aggravated. She got aggravated with me.
She deserved better from me. From so much, from life itself. She never got one of her dreams. Not one. And now….
I once had a nightmare that she died. I woke up devastated and had to call her, had to hear her voice.
I wish I would wake up from this nightmare.