Mom was moved to the Hospice wing of St. Thomas this afternoon. It’s like night and day from where we were. No beeps, a much bigger, more comfortable room (I said it looked like a Labor & Delivery room. HELLO? It used to be).
Mom is pretty comfortable and has been quite alert today. She’s tried to talk quite a bit, although you can’t really understand her a lot of the time. Tyler came to see her today and she said “Hi Tyler!” very clearly. i know that made Tyler happy.
This is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever experienced but at the same time, it is such a joy an blessing to be here. Mom has given us so many fantastic moments the last few days. Things we’ll be talking about for years and years.
I find myself just looking at her face because I know once this part of the Journey ends, she will be a memory. My beautiful mother…she looks so tiny and fragile in this bed. Her skin has gotten so thin. My hands look just like hers, except they’re younger. I wonder if my hands will one day look like hers do today and if my kids will stare at me so they can remember what I look like?
I can remember as a kid how being nestled next to her was the warmest and most wonderful feeling in the world.
I think of being in church with her, laying my head on her lap and her running her fingers through my hair.
I can remember (because I AM the female Rainman) her playing “Peek A Boo” with me when I was really little.
I can remember one time she came to eat lunch with me when I was in First Grade and being SO proud because I thought my mother was the prettiest mother ever. (I still think that)
I can remember going to the old Nashville Airport when we went to pick her up when she returned from either her father or mother’s funeral in California. These events happened in less than two months. I remember spotting her way on the other end of the terminal and she had on a red shawl (1972) and remember like yesterday, her running towards us with her arms wide open, glad to be back home.
Seeing her lying in this bed also reminds me of 1984 when she was in a horrible car wreck. She was in the ICU at Baptist Hospital. I had never been inside an ICU before. She had dried blood all over her-a huge cut on her forehead…being scared to death. She still bears scars from that accident, that I haven’t seen in years until the last couple days.
I had a moment a couple weeks ago that was surreal. It was during the Arctic Coldsnap and I took her to the grocery store one evening. We got separated in the store and I was walking aisle by aisle, looking for her. It was kinda deja vu-ish and I had a recollection of being a kid at the Brentwood Kroger (the OLD Kroger, where that deli place is now…can’t recall the name. Next to CVS across from Brentwood United Methodist Church.) and when I’d get done looking at magazines, I’d go hunt for Mom…aisle by aisle. I hadn’t thought of that in years.