Thursday, April 30, 2009

"I don't feel good"

I remember mom being "different" after Jeremy and I got married. At first, I just thought she was swamped at work, totally getting out of the jive of step aerobics and that's what caused her headaches. For the first 5 months of my marriage, Jeremy and I would often talk about how mom was acting one day, and totally different the next day. At that time, we didn't pay too much attention - we chalked it up to us being honeymooners and being out of touch with our parents.

Fast forward from Oct 2006 to April 2007 - mom's at home, recovering, quite well, from what would be her first brain surgery, preparing for chemo and radiation treatment. Never in a million years would I thought I'd be witnessing this.

I stopped by dad's house this morning to check on things, and found myself drawn to this basket, containing over 200 cards from family, friends, pastors, strangers, people that had met mom and dad through this season. I bet Hallmark gave their CEO a bonus because of what folks spent on the paper with words on it to give to my mom.
As I was looking through them (yes, EVERY SINGLE CARD WAS KEPT), I found one of the earliest days after mom was first diagnosed. One said "Being Suck Sicks!" If you opened it up, it read this: "I mean, being sick sucks!"
Then another, a little more profound -

"God bless you with hreturning health and comfort from above, God grant you peace and happiness, surround you with His love, and may the sweet assurance of His constant love and care be yours today and every day - this is my special prayer."

Hm, what an answered prayer. My mom was sick for 2 years - non stop, consistently battling disease, and never back to 100%. Until 2:58 on Thursday afternoon, February 19, 2009. Then, that "special prayer" became that answered prayer.

In mom's journey of sickness, we went from praying for renewed strength, to miraculous healing, then ultimately praying for God's mercy to rest upon her, knowing her physical healing was far beyond our prayers. We began praying for her spiritual healing and the peace of God to cape over her. Our thoughts, along with well wishers all over, for "getting well soon" quickly became an impossible. Ever since she was diagnosed, she never got well, but rather, worse.

One thing I don't remember hearing from mom during those 23 months was "I don't feel good." I can't for the life of me recall a moment like that. Now, I know good and well she did on those days where it took all she had to roll over so she could get sick, or where she would sweat so much through her clothes, you thought she had jumped in a pool, or even in her last days, all she could do was stare. She carried some attitude about her, almost as if she had convinced herself that her "get well wishes" were working. She was understanding what it was like for her weakness to be strengthened by God's grace (II Cor. 12:10).

My "special prayer" is that we would all be vulnerable to that weakness, oh so that we could taste His power and strength!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Creation of something new

It was becoming more appropriate to record my inner most thoughts to you, those who love to read about what's happened in the last 2+ years of my we've moved from to just your typical blogspot. I support CaringBridge 100% and have appreciated their ministry to us in the trying season of my mother's illness, but now that she has passed, we need to free up space for other families who are diligently recording each step of their loved one's sickness.

"Hey Mom, it's me again" is a simple phrase that I've thought over for much of the past 2.5 months...we always say that there are things we wish to tell our loved ones after they passed, and I've already realized there were so many questions, silly and simple as they may seem, that I never got to ask my mom, and won't be able to ask her tomorrow, or the next day. In a way, I wanted to look back on my life, and the things my mother did to either directly or indirectly teach me a life lesson that I'll carry with me in the days to come.

May you laugh, cry, make fun of, and enjoy these thoughts...