Thursday, January 23, 2014

Happy New Year

Most people attribute this quote to Buddha, but it's actually 
from a character in a Carlos Castaneda book.  
But still, it's true.
It's already 2014.

How did that happen?

I must say, some pretty awful stuff happened since I last blogged.  I was glad to see 2013 end.  The last three months were crapola.

My mom died on November 25th, just a couple of days before Thanksgiving.

October started innocently enough. I turned 44 and Bella turned 9.  We had a dinner to celebrate both on the 5th - my mom had gone in for testing the day before for what she thought was a GI issue.  She was concerned but not too worried.

She was diagnosed with cancer (affecting multiple organs, but originating in the colon they believe) the next Monday, October 7th, went through two rounds of oral chemotherapy, and ended up succumbing to the disease the evening of of Monday, November 25th.

So, 6 weeks, beginning to end.  It's still so surreal.

(This certainly isn't the way I was expecting her to go, the way I worried she would go.  Isn't that life though? The things you worry about don't ever really happen, do they?  It's the stuff that hits you on the side of the head that really take it clean off and shake you up.)


She's gone.  And I'm devastated.  My father, her husband of over 50 years is too.  My brothers, sisters in law, nieces, nephew, and friends are as well.   She was quite a lady.

But I'm also thankful.

Thankful for the goodbye we were able to have.

Thankful she didn't suffer long.

Thankful for 6 weeks in which Bella and I (and Bella's dad, and my entire immediate family) were able to be with my mom and sit with her and talk with her and tell her we loved her, to tell her what she'd taught us and to thank her for being such a good mom.   How lucky were we to be able to do that?!?

Thankful I got to ask her questions about her life, go through her recipe book with her, hear her stories one last time, burning every moment in to my brain to celebrate her life beyond her passing.

And I'm thankful that I got to hear my mom tell me how she felt about me (my parenting style, my love life, etc.) and being thrilled to bits that it was all good.  That may sound a bit selfish, but having your mother tell you that after 44 years, that you're on the right track?  It just feels great.  What a tremendous gift!

I still want my mom back.  So badly.

There's just never enough time.

She's always with me though.  I heard her talking to me over my shoulder when I was making Christmas dinner.  Spooky, but true (to me at least).  I hope it wasn't the last time.

I guess that's all I wanted to say.

Peace and love to you all in the new year - love each other (even if you're mad at someone, take a stab at forgiving them) because life truly is too short.  I've already taken my own advice and have begun to patch up some broken relationships hurt during my divorce.  It feels good.


p.s.  PLEASE get preventative testing done if you can.  push your doctors for you to stay on track with mammograms, colonoscopies, whatever.  own your health as fiercely as you own your or your child's food allergy safety.  please.