Today is a brilliantly beautiful summer day, and all is right in the world. I woke up early, then remembered that I didn't need to get up right away...so I decided to get dressed, then..shh, get back in bed with my book. As I was dressing, I heard voices, and remembered: Mirielle (24) was picking Kathryn (17) and Evelyn (15) and Suzanne (14) up to take them to Washington D.C. to visit Samuel for his birthday! Samuel is turning 20.:)
So I hurried out to talk to them before they left, and make sure they had plenty of good snacks for the drive. I told them to give Sam a hug from me, and tell him I love him. When they drove away without me, wah. I want to go see Sam.
I walked outside barefoot in the cool wet grass to turn on the pool filter. Then a quick stop by the front garden, and yes! Tomatoes! I picked five gorgeous one, wading through the soft dirt. I took a minute to look around...we aren't landscape-y people, and we live out here in the country...the lawn is mowed, but that's about it. There are trees on all sides of us, and the birds are singing, the breeze blowing, the sky blue...I just want to bottle it up and save it for those frozen tundra days of winter. I can't do that, so I just stood there and breathed it in. I wished I had my camera handy, but even pictures can't capture a fresh summer morning.
The house is quiet. Jonathan, Char, and Cam are all at Emily/Abigail/Mirielle's house. Sonja is here but still snoozing. The dogs have been out and fed, and are napping.
My mother passed away 9 years ago this week. Her body couldn't withstand kidney dialysis anymore, she had been there sitting in that chair having her blood cleaned with a machine, three times a week, for nine years. Her heart was misbehaving, her feet weren't getting enough blood/oxygen, she was in pain, and was not relishing the thought of either having a stroke, or dying in the dialysis chair. So...she quit. Stopped dialysis. It was a long time coming, it was inevitable. Her heart just couldn't take it anymore.
She had said so many times through the years that it was too much, and she felt so wiped out when she got home...but when she actually signed herself into the hospice room at the hospital, we knew that it was real, she was really going to die. Kidney dialysis patients can't survive without it, and she was just done. A person has a right to refuse treatment, she said, and she was done. And, she was happy. Seriously. She sat there on the side of the bed in that hospice room, swinging her legs, smiling at me, and said, "This is my death bed. Isn't that weird?" um, Mom, don't do this. My father was battling leukemia at the time, and was furious that she was "giving up". He kept calling me and telling me to talk her out of it. That she needed to keep going, she had lots of life left. She didn't. She had come so close to dying so many times, and had been rushed to the hospital by ambulance from that chair...
So there she was, all happy to be done with it all and to be going home to Jesus. I kid you not, she was happy. All the grandchildren came to visit, her room was like a three ring circus with all the kids' drawings taped to the walls, and the babies and siblings in there all day. She LOVED it.
She missed her dialyis that Friday for the first time. She checked into hospice on a Saturday. Monday morning came, and she stayed there, no dialysis. The doctor told us she would fall into a deep coma, and last a few weeks. Well, not MY mother. She stayed awake and alert, didn't want to miss anything!
On Thursday night, my sister Cheryl and I, and our youngest brother Casey, were with her...she tried to get out of bed to go to Jesus. We are not a mushy family, but we told her how much we loved her, and we were crying our eyes out. She wanted to go to Jesus, but we told her she didn't need to get up, He was going to come and get her as soon as He was ready for her. She was very happy about that. We shouldn't have left that night, but when it got really late, we did. My older brother stayed with her, and didn't mean to doze off, but as soon as he did, Jesus came for her.
No, she didn't want to miss anything, so she waited until all was quiet.
I have often wondered if she realized it would be so permanent, her death. Life just goes on without her, but I miss her like crazy. She enjoyed life so thoroughly! Everything was an adventure with her. After she passed, I found that I had no patience for people who #itched about everything. They are alive, after all. I wondered why she had life cut so short, dying at 69. She who loved life.
I would seriously give a million dollars to be able to go pick her up and take her shopping, like I used to. I wouldn't even get irritated with her if she chatted endlessly while I tried to sort my coupons, or if she said to the kids, "Grandma doesn't like when you act like that!"
Life is short. Enjoy the day.