My mother passed away at 1240 am on Friday, April 25.
It was a mercy, as she had been struggling with dementia for years and had barely been able to recognize anyone in the final months.
Physically, she had been in good shape until the very end. My father worked very hard to keep her in their home of over 30 years and he cared for her with great attentiveness and love.
My brother moved to within two miles of their home, and he visited her almost every day, giving my father some breaks and looking after them both.
His dedication was commendable and heroic.
I was able to be there on her last day. She was on hospice, and the end was clearly near. I sat beside her, holding her hand and reading to her from the New Testament (Mom was a quiet believer) and Psalms. Thursday was my father’s birthday, and we brought the cake into her room and sang “Happy Birthday” to Dad. There was a tear in my mom’s eye when we finished that, so perhaps some bit of her was still with us.
Now, I’m adjusting to the new normal. For a little while, at least, I no longer fear receiving phone calls or text messages at random hours: those were rarely good news.
I am glad my mom is free from her suffering and confusion. By the grace of God, she and I had a terrific relationship. I had no doubt of her love for me, nor she of mine for her. There was nothing unsaid, and no regrets and for that, I am very grateful, indeed.
I do not use the term “grace of God” lightly, and when I see that grace, I am humbled and moved to honest gratitude.