Sunday, April 15, 2007

Mom lost her fight today (well I guess it was now technically yesterday). This picture of her was taken by Lindsay after her first release from hospital, when we thought she'd be o.k. It was Thanksgiving dinner and, before we could say grace (a first for us), she was "digging in". We laughed about that.

She'd go back into hospital two months later and never come out. Today we dressed her in these, her favorite red pyjamas. I put her red slippers on her for the last time (she used to claim I was the only one who knew how to "do it right"). Her favorite cardigan, with smokes in the pocket. She always freaked out if her smokes weren't in there.

It was tough...I wasn't there. I've been by her side the entire time and I wasn't there in the end. Damn it, I was on the phone as my brother tried desperately to reach me from the hospice. The nurses tried me at work. They tried to have the telephone company cut in with an emergency call - I heard the beep but didn't know what it was. They failed and told my brother that "there was no conversation and my phone was off the hook". So my sister in law rushed over and told me to hurry but I didn't make it. Damn it. I was doing my fucking income tax when I got "antsy" and started pacing around. I began reading pamphlets from the hospice about how the body shuts down at the end. I've had them here a month, and I chose the exact moment that her body was shutting down to read about it. Very strange...as I read the words she (apparently) experienced it exactly as it was printed. She stopped breathing and my brother gently shook her and said "mom hang on" so that I could get there. And she started breathing again but I didn't get there in time. I was on the god damned phone. I'm NEVER on the phone...that's the part that gets me. I hate the fucking phone...everyone knows that. It's a struggle for me. I was always there with (for) Mom and it was so important for me to be there at the end. Selfish reasons. And I was talking to my boss, of all people - I'd decided to return unanswered phone messages from the day before. What timing I have.

Anyhow, gonna be rough for awhile. She truly was my best friend. I'll be posting a lot about her, mostly just for me. Ty wrote this last night, before she passed.

God bless you Mom. "All in".

Through this all I check my head
To see what's left and what's been spent.
Collect the change to see what I've got left.

They say that it gets easier, you know
as all time passes, down the road
but that to me provides no such relief.
To sit here as it slips away
maybe for but one more day.
To wish that I could just rewind the years.

To think that just a year ago
that we did not even know
the ugliness that lies within your head
Would quickly begin to arise
As we rehearsed final goodbyes
Around a kitchen table filled with food.

That night I sat next to your room
that had indeed become your tomb
Collecting all I thought that I had left.
And to this day I check my head
to see what's left and what's been spent
collect the change to see what I've got left.

And though I may buy back one day, the will to move ahead
To stand strong, and carry on, and not to hang my head.

Just know "Gaga", I love you so
wherever you reside.
Don't fear what's next for you will find.
I'll see you soon.
Somewhere.
Sometime.

29 Comments:

Blogger Lucia said...

I came upon this blog rather randomly, and am very sorry to read about your mom. Sending you a hug from a stranger in the UK. x

2:34 AM  
Blogger whitenoise said...

Deb, I'm so sorry for you. But please don't kick yourself, life happens chaotically, and unscripted.

We get tripped up by the little things and your mother would smile and relate to that. All we can do is our best and be proud of the fact that we cared so much.

I'm only about 4 or 5km away from you right now in an airport hotel... Sending you my very best wishes.

4:13 AM  
Blogger tfg said...

I'm very sorry for your loss. Your mom sounds like a special woman.

7:34 AM  
Anonymous kelly said...

very sorry Deb

8:00 AM  
Blogger Barbara Bruederlin said...

I'm so very sorry, Deb. My heart goes out to you and your family on the loss of your mom, her struggles at the end, and especially the heartbreak that you are feeling for not being able to be there when you wanted to be. Although, Deb, you were with her all the way through and that is truly the important part. Still,I understand how important that final touch was for you.

From the wonderful stories you told about your mom, she sounds like an amazing woman. I'm sure you are very proud to be her daughter. The world is a lesser place without her.

8:40 AM  
Blogger Toccata said...

Deb, I was so sorry to hear about your mom. Your stories that you posted about your mom always made me feel as though I knew her. She sounded like such an amazing woman just like her daughter Deb.

My thoughts are with you and your family. Take care my friend.

9:37 AM  
Blogger Toccata said...

You always wrote with such affection about your mom and I just wanted to share with you one of those little stories.

I remember the two of us had decided our mothers were a lot alike and would make a great team. They both possessed a great fiestiness. Here was a comment you left on my blog about your mom. I have always loved this little story. "My mom had a very similar story. She heard someone in the house once and went to the top of the stairs to see who she thought was my cousin coming up them (it was dark and she was tired). As he got closer she quickly realized it wasn't my cousin and confronted him "you're not John, what do you want....GET OUT OF MY HOUSE!". He pushed past her at the top of the stairs and she began whacking at him, at which point he ran out the upstairs door. She chased him down the street in her housecoat, getting a very vivid description of his detailed jacket which helped police catch the teen (who was breaking into neighbourhood houses). We still laugh about the "what would you have done if you caught him?" scenario."

I could just see your mom flying down the street with her housecoat flapping in the wind. Thinking about the teen makes me laugh because I just have this vivid image of a kid with a stupified expression, wondering, "Of all the houses, why the hell did I have to pick this one!"

10:01 AM  
Blogger mellowlee said...

I'm so sorry Deb. I think you really were with her in the end, because of the amazing connection between you. *Hugs* Love you!! xo

10:34 AM  
Blogger junky said...

God speed dear lady.

so very sorry Deb

10:49 AM  
Blogger Allison said...

Deb, I'm so sorry, my thoughts are with you all right now. As others have mentioned, you always wrote about your mom with such a passion, one could hear how proud you were to be her daughter.

Take care friend.

11:16 AM  
Blogger Gledwood said...

I'm so sorry to hear this Debs.

Whitenoise is right, don't kick yourself.

Big *huggs*

and take care of yourself.

12:51 PM  
Blogger LaLa said...

I'm very sorry to hear about the loss your family has just endured. Stay strong, Deb. And may your mother rest in peace.

2:15 PM  
Blogger Alana said...

I'm sorry to hear about such a loss Deb, she was a wonderful woman. I didn't want to leave anything too personal here, so check your emails when you can, okay? I'll be thinking about you and everyone, and I'll talk to you soon. Love you.

3:49 PM  
Blogger Deb said...

Thank you, all of you....I'm hanging in there. Gotta' put on my brave face for the kids. :)

Your kind words have really helped me...I don't feel quite as alone.

The only comfort I have in all of this is that Mom is no longer suffering like she was. Though, despite knowing it would come one day, you can never really be "ready" to lose someone so special.

I'm coping...stole the ex's dog for hours today and headed to the beach with him. That did a world of good.

I'll be mostly checking in at your blogs...fairly uninspired at the moment.

Love to you all...you're wonderful people and your words have helped me more than you know.

(Oh yeah...woooo Canucks.)

10:02 PM  
Blogger Toccata said...

Hey there, I'm glad you were able to steal your ex's dog and have some time down along the beach.

I figure that win tonight was for your mom. Take care.

10:40 PM  
Blogger tkkerouac said...

awww
So sorry to hear about the loss of your mother DEB. you were there for her through thick and thin and she knew that Deb, be very proud of yourself.
You're poem made me cry
I wish you well in your grieving process, you are an amazing woman.
Blog your heart out about your mom if it helps
Hugs, Tracey

5:49 AM  
Blogger CheekierMeSly said...

Deb, I'm sorry to learn of your loss and wish you and your family comfort and solace in each other.

6:22 AM  
Blogger Michelle Ann said...

My heart goes out to you...I just lost my mom 9 months ago and I wasn't by her side when she passed either. But our moms knew we were there in spirit.

8:07 AM  
Blogger busterp said...

Sorry for your loss Deb. She seemed very special.

8:47 AM  
Blogger Alana said...

Hey hon, go to Matt's site and check out the free stream of "Moon Over Marin" (Dead Kennedy's cover) while you can. It's gorgeous.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Deb said...

Thanks sweetie...I SO needed something like this. Matt's voice always makes things just flow for me...this was no exception. The tears go well with this. ;) Thank you. Beautiful.

1:41 PM  
Blogger Alana said...

You're very welcome. *hugs* Glad you were able to catch it before he took it down, I missed the last one (Born Losers) while I was at work. Hope you're feeling alright today, I'll be thinking of you. :)

1:55 PM  
Blogger eddie said...

Sorry to hear about your mom, i lost mine 15 years ago and to this day i miss her, know that if you need a ear or any thing let me know, eddie

3:00 PM  
Blogger Toccata said...

Just stopping by to let you know you're in my thoughts. Take care.

10:52 PM  
Blogger aka k said...

words aren't enough I know but my thoughts are with you.

4:19 AM  
Blogger Evelyne said...

I'm sorry for your loss Deb, Take Care. Hugs.

7:19 PM  
Blogger 668 aka neighbour of the beast said...

i am so sorry for your loss. and i am sorry you were not able to be there at the end.

take care of yourself, ok?

8:19 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

Deb, You remain in my thoughts and prayers.

2:20 PM  
Blogger Rositta said...

I'm a random visitor but the story of your Mom caught my attention as my own Mom is now in hospital. The thought of my Mom dying and my not being with her was my greatest fear the first few days. I would come home, get undressed and go to bed and promptly get up, get dressed and go back to hospital. Fortunately the nurses were good about it and now I think the panic is over for a while. My thoughts and condolences are with you...ciao

7:23 PM  

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