I have been thinking a lot about my mom. So many things run thru my head: questions, regrets, questions, memories, and more questions.
What was going thru her mind at the minute she realized she was having trouble breathing? Did she think it would pass like some of the other episodes after walking to the bedroom and getting ready for bed? Did she know that what she had for dinner that night would be her last meal? The last few stitches she made would be her final project?
What was the last thing that she remembers seeing? Did she see Grandma’s face when she came to help? Or was it blurry by that time? Did she hear Grandma telling her to breathe and to hold on? Or was everything blurry and distant? Could she feel her pacemaker firing off trying to regulate her heartbeat? Did that make it hurt worse?
Was she aware, even if she wasn’t responding to my aunt and cousin that came over or the ambulance and medics that came and took her to the hospital? When did her spirit leave her body? Did she suddenly feel better then she had in decades and breathe a sigh of relief that all her aches and pains were gone?
Was she there in the hospital when I walked in and fell into my cousin’s arms when he shook his head which I knew meant I was too late? When I went into the waiting room where Grandma was sobbing uncontrollably and screaming that she couldn’t help her, did she understand why I felt like I needed to stay with her and calm her down? Did she walk beside me when I walked back into the cold room where they placed her? Was she there when I held her hand and smoothed back her hair? Did she know that I didn’t want to let go of her hand and leave that place?
I was in my hometown where my Mom lived on the Thursday night before she died. I didn’t stop by to visit her, but I remember talking to her on my drive back home. Oh how I wish I would have stopped over even if it were just for a minute and show her the ridiculous handbag that I “won” at the auction. Would those extra 15 minutes have made me late for anything? No not at all, but I didn’t think about it, just thought it was past 10 and I still had a thirty minute drive home and needed to get up for work the next morning. I thought I just saw her on Tuesday when I got my hair done and that I’d see her the next weekend at my uncle’s wienie roast. I feel so selfish for that decision, not sure if that will ever change.
I know that I will never know the questions to many if any of these answers, and I will probably ask myself these and more as the years go on. But I like to think that the responses that first pop into my head are put there for a reason.
*I wrote this on Saturday afternoon before heading to my cousin’s baby shower.
My husband woke me up Sunday morning because I was sobbing uncontrollably in my sleep. I had a dream I was with my mom, and she was wanting me to wear this bracelet she had gotten me for high school graduation. It had XOXOXOX on it on the middle of a thin gold chain. I haven’t worn or even thought about that bracelet for years. Why did that piece of jewelry pop up in this dream?
I think my mom was wishing me a Happy Valentine’s Day and wanted to remind me that she loved me. That I will never question.