Sunday, May 20, 2012
I lost my Mom 19 years ago to a brain tumor.
She was friendly, outgoing, real extrovert. She held the family together like glue. With an 8th grade education, she progressed in banking until 25 years later she had met her goals of loan officer and the pay she dreamed about. She was able to retire with Dad and move out West. She buried her Mother.
I woke up the first day of that year with a serious feeling that I was in a hurry. You have been in a hurry to get somewhere before, so you know the feeling. Can you imagine the feeling lasting a year?
We lived in a lovely home in Northern MI. Mom & Dad visited that summer from the West. A few things seemed odd during that visit in retrospect.
Not one moment of one day went by without the sense of urgency.
We made plans to travel for a couple months, sold the house in the fall, put our possessions in storage, set out on our journey. We bought a bag cell phone and had the answering service so people could leave us a message. The service was too expensive to leave it on. My oldest sister had been a 5 year survivor after breast cancer. The cancer was back and she was in and out of the hospital. The last the family told me was she was back to work.
Mom sounded angry on the phone. I did not get Dad alone on the phone to ask what was going on. I told my other sister that there was something wrong with Mom and she did not think so.
I thought I wanted to get out West as soon as possible, but my DH had other interests, so we took it slow, touring across the Northern states. We made it into Merced, CA. I called for messages and called family every 2-3 days. When I called, Mom said my sister passed away!
We rushed to AZ. My other sister met us outside and said there was something wrong with Mom. It was November. I was still in a rush inside. After the funeral, we worked at getting Mom to each doctor and test. The last thing Mom accomplished was to purchase off the home shopping network. She wrote and mailed a check. A couple weeks later a black knit suit arrived. I asked her why she bought it and she said for a New Year Eve party. I asked if she had been invited to one and she said no, but they always get invited to one.
By the time we were to get the testing results back, Dad decided to take her to the hospital. He had me bathe her first. The last doctor had said, if we decided to take her to a hospital, call and he would say which one to use.
At the hosp, a dr showed us cross sections of her speckled brain, said it was astrocytoma or gleoma and he could take her to surgery to find out which one. He said she would probably bleed out and die on the operating table and that would be best.
We did not think so. We called family to come visit and say their goodbyes. We put her in the local hospice. She died peacefully on New Years Eve with all the family around her.
I awoke normal on New Years Day, without the hurry and urgency feeling.
I had been there for Mom. It was over. I miss you Mom. I appreciate you for being a wonderful Mother. You were the best Mom. I was blessed to be raised in your loving tender arms.