Friday, May 8, 2015

I'll love you forever...

Mother’s Day is going to be upon us this Sunday.  Every year since Naomi was born, my mom has called to tell me she is thinking of me and wishing me a Happy Mother’s Day.  This year, however, that call isn’t going to come.  I will not be hearing my mother’s voice with the familiar, “Hey, girl” that she always opens our conversations with.  My mom is still fighting to get her voice back.  I have purposefully not shared what happened in August 2014 that just devastated my heart to its core and continues to break me nine months later.

I had just walked in the door from an afternoon out with the kids, and Josh was home…middle of the day...standing in the living room waiting for me.  He stared at me, and I knew.  The next words he said just took my breath right out of me.
“Your mom has had a stroke.  It’s bad.”

She had called me two or three days before this happened. The morning of, I had told the two littles that we were going to call her.  Now, I couldn’t.  I didn’t even know if she was going to live through the night.  Would she be in a vegetative state?  Would she ever walk again? Would she ever talk again?  WHY DIDN’T I CALL HER BACK???  That last question has haunted me for nine months.  Nine very long months.

Progress has been slow as far as recovery.  She can walk with a cane or a walker, but she has no use of her right arm.  Speech is coming back slowly, but not enough that she can form sentences…yet.  She’s in there.  Completely in there.  She smiles and laughs when we joke.  She rejoices when her grandchildren talk to her and show her the things they’ve made her.  She can express dissatisfaction and frustration…but not very many words.  The physical disability.  That we can adapt to.  The worst part is the silence.  I can’t pick up the phone and call her just to hear her voice.  I’m so broken that I didn’t call her back right away because now, there is no voice on the other end of the line, and it might be a good long wait until there is again. 

My mother is the strength in our family.  She keeps everything and everyone together.  She is the peacemaker, the home builder, and the thread that keeps us connected.  She is the one that fought for us, taught us to fight for ourselves, and showed us what it means to have grace toward others.  Her strength is what continues to keep me strong when I’m not.  I’ve cried an ocean of tears and prayed my hardest prayers that God’s plan includes them moving to where we are.  I’ve celebrated her new milestones and fought back anger and heartbreak over what used to be.

My mom was there to hold my hand when I needed her support, and now, it’s my turn.  I’ve heard a few people lamenting at “having to” call their mothers this weekend or “having to” go to dinner at their parents’ houses this weekend.  Hold onto the times that you can do that and cherish what time you have while it’s here.  My mother was my first fan.  She was my first champion and my first supporter.  She celebrated my victories with me and comforted me through my falls.  She mended my broken heart and kissed away my boo boo’s.  She corrected my “wrongs” and bragged on my “rights”.   She was my advice giver and my complaint sounding board.  I miss her, I love her, and my heart hurts because this year, her voice will not be on the other end of the line telling me “Happy Mother’s Day.” 

If you’re not celebrating your own mother, celebrate the mothers you know this weekend especially.  Love on them just a little longer this weekend.  Don’t let yourself regret that you didn’t make that call.  I love you, Mom.

I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my Mommy you'll be.

–excerpt from Love You Forever by Robert Munsch

1 comment:

  1. This is beautifully written Kim - thanks for sharing it. Thoughts, prayers and lots of love are being sent to you and your family, especially your Mom. Happy Mother's Day to both of you. Aunt Bev