It was 10pm, and I had these nice photos and some lovely tales of shopping with the kids, swimming, dinner and, yet another living room camp-out with the kids to blog about. But I read my email first. Got my sister's email saying they'd been calling my US cell# but I wasn't in. My mother passed away.
This was not unexpected. Mom has been very frail and in poor health for many years. She eventually went in for heart surgery, during which she had a massive stroke. The doctors didn't have any real hope for her then. That was 10 years ago. She never regained full capacity, but she kept going. This past year though. She's been quietly going down. She's had more health problems and lately has been sleeping all the time.
We were blessed that my sister and her family were able to find a very good assisted living facility for her. Mom was not mentally able to allow us to care for her, but she seemed to accept the staff and nurses in this home. She was able to have her own apartment, furniture, and pretty things that she'd collected over the years or that Dad had made for her.
My sister said that mom went quietly. The staff had woke her, got her dressed and ready for breakfast. She was talking normally with them and they took her to the dining room. As they sat with her, as she waited for her meal, she dozed off. Within a couple of minutes, as they continued to sit with her, she'd passed on. Peacefully and gently.
I'm not going to be able to make it home for the funeral. Long story, but there would be absolutely too much cost and chaos at this point... my husband is not even in the same country right now. We are supposed to be with my sister and her family by the beginning of July, and we will have a private visit to mom and dad's gravesite then. This is when it really sucks to be far away.
At least I like to think the my parents are happy to finally be back together again. Dad probably met her as she arrived, his arms loaded with her favorite gladiolas - no doubt picked fresh from his celestial garden. Then he probably helped her into their golf cart, popped open a couple of cold MGD's, and drove off across the greens. Going to get a few rounds in before heading home to have dinner together, and then afterwards, plop down into matching recliners to watch Wheel of Fortune.
Bye Mom. Say Hi to Dad for us. We love you.
--- I have to include this poem that a dear friend sent to me, thank you Leila.
Sweet RemembranceLet fate do her worst; there are relics of joy,Bright dreams of the past, which she cannot destroy;And which come in the night-time of sorrow and care,To bring back the features that joy used to wear.Long, long be my heart with such memories filled,Like the vase in which roses have once been distilled;You may break, you may ruin the vase, if you will,But the scent of the roses will hang round it still.~ T. Moore