Saturday, August 23, 2008
For some reason, I feel like I have to put these words down for my kids. I don't know why...I don't mean them to be morbid or sad or macabre. They are just contemplative and they have been in me for a while now. Just over four years to be exact.
I remember that morning in April , just before Mother's Day, in 2004. It was Saturday and I was up early cleaning house. The phone rang and the caller id told me that the call was from my parents home in Pittsburgh, some 1,000 miles away. By the way my dad said, "honey", I knew something was wrong. "Honey, something has happened to Mom. She's had some kind of seizure and I've been doing CPR on her. The paramedics just came and took her to the hospital, but it doesn't look good, honey." I fell to the floor, all alone there in my family room.
"No Dad...we're going to pray and she's going to be alright!" I clenched my fists and my jaw and got ready for spiritual battle. Then my Dad asked me to call my brother and sister to tell them about Mom and ask them to pray.
So, I did what I always do...I put on my "I can handle anything shield" and called them to let them know what happened. I assured them that she would be okay. We were going to pray and she would be alright. That's all there was to it. We all decided that we would get on a plane and go to Pittsburgh to be with her.
I jumped in the shower, yelling at the devil that he couldn't take her from us. I pleaded with God to let us have her a little longer. She was so young...66. Then came the moment that changed who I am, forever. My husband opened that shower door and just looked at me so compassionately. "Honey, she didn't make it," he barely whispered.
I don't know what I was thinking, but I kept yelling "Take those words back! Take them back! Don't say that to me!" Somehow, I was going to make time go backwards just two minutes and change everything back. But how, how do I do that? If I could just make it so that he didn't say those words. But he did. And those words changed everything.
How could this woman who was so wise, so wonderful, so much a part of me, be gone? She loved her family ferociously. She couldn't walk so she spent everyday in prayer for her children. She would listen to praise and worship music for hours. She would talk to me about how that music took her into the throne room with her Father. Could it be that she had had enough of the pain and agony and she just wanted to stay in that throne room?
It's strange how one moment in time can change everything. It's strange how one minute I could be daughter, and the next, be motherless. I went from feeling secure and safe to feeling disconnected. Almost like the umilical cord was cut again. I was just here, going through the motions, but my anchor, my base was gone.
Thankfully, that feeling softens over time and gradually I began to realize that what Mom put in me is eternal and more grounding than I could have imagined. She showed me the Father. She was adamant about His place in my life and mine in His. She put things in me that I have put in my children and her legacy gets more and more beautiful as life goes forward.
Although there are days when that familiar sharp ache of missing her pierces my soul, I feel a sweetness and a peace when I think of her. My life calms down and makes sense when her words come to mind. She is the greatest influence in my life and I hope that I have made her proud. I can't wait to see her again one day. I know that she'll say, "See, isn't He wonderful!"