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Sunday, May 8, 2011

I Wasn't Ready To Say Goodbye To My Mom!

It wasn't supposed to be this way. I know I waited to have children far too long, and I'm the youngest of four siblings myself, so expecting my parents to be healthy enough to enjoy their last set of grandchildren from me was a far-fetched hope. Still, my son was supposed to have a grandma. There she laid all but motionless on that hospital bed as we checked off one rare surgical complication after another that she suffered. I wasn't ready to say goodbye to my mom and wasn't ready to end what was only 6 months into a grandparent relationship with my new infant son.

This was the mom whose side I would not leave as an infant. I clung to her screaming at any other arms attempting to hold me. She nursed me through severe allergies and worrying over me through asthma-like attacks as an infant, then held me in the hospital after having my tonsils out at only 13 months of age as the nurses left the room due to my screaming upon the sight of them. She was the one who would rock me to sleep and read me bedtime stories in her sleep as she would grow weary of reading and drift off yet continue to read, most likely a memorized story for her because she would read word for word in her sleep to me.

As a child, I would not leave my mom's side. Oh, it wasn't all rosey. Though, she gave me her best, as a late teen and early adult I demanded more. We had our share of arguments - One that ended with me walking out and not speaking to her for months. Thankfully, I came to my senses and began to make amends. I'm glad I did because now she could be a part of my wedding, and now a part of my children's lives too. That's what I thought. That's what I had hoped for anyway.

She is a woman who has a natural gift of hospitality. As a child our doors were opened quite frequently to visitors, traveling missionaries or singing groups who needed a place to stay and relatives. When we moved to St. Louis, we must have visited the Zoo and Arch 27 times in one summer with all the visitors. She is a natural cook. She is quite the chef, though she will tell you it's just something she enjoys and that at one time in her life she was actually quite the picky eater. She values her family. I don't know that I would call her a "Mother Bear" type, but she loves to have her children near. She's a natural grandma too. And, my husband often says she's a great mother-in-law as well. In fact, that day before her surgery, she wasn't thinking of herself as I would probably have been fearful of the outcome. Instead, she looked each one of my siblings and I in the eye and made sure we knew how proud she was of us and how God had answered her prayers for us to find wonderful mates. She was thinking of me while she faced the unknown in that hospital room.

I'm happy to say that as I write this it is 10 1/2 years after those long months spent recovering with showers of prayer over her bedside. She is alive and just celebrated another birthday on Easter this year. She has welcomed not only my son who was 6 months old at the time of her hospital stay, but also my two daughters who love their Grandma. Oh, she no longer drives a car and her mobility is slower due to other issues of hips, knees and bunyons. But, she is alive. She is my children's grandma and she is my mom to whom I have not yet had to say a final goodbye!

Happy Mother's Day!

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