Friday, March 7, 2008

Second Chances and Taking Turns

I'm experiencing one of those rare moments of feeling truly blessed. While being utterly exhausted. Okay, that last part is pretty well par for the course but the first is ... amazing.

Some of you might be a bit familiar with what we are going through with my mom right now. And it's been hard. Really, really hard. Still is, for that matter. But one of the things I have truly been lamenting is that I feel like I have been losing Mom while she is still here. Grieving her being gone while I still help take care of her.

But my brother came down for a visit a few weeks ago. He was only here one week (a little less actually) but the most miraculous thing happened. I don't quite know how, I don't understand the why, but for once I don't need to. Mom is so much better.

Not physically. In fact, I think that has been steadily getting worse. But mentally ... I have my mom back! That is so huge. It overwhelms me just to think about it, let alone type the words. I came home from work tonight (late as always when I work in the city) and stopped by mom's to pick up the containers I use to crush her pills. She had just got her hair done today and she looked so good. She looked like Mom. And, much more importantly, she was Mom.

We sat and talked for quite a while until the Kit Kat and her dad got home. And I shared with her how I was feeling. How wonderful it is to have her back. How much I had missed her. How tired I was am. That even though I knew next week was March Break and had been trying to figure out activities for the girls, I never realized until I was driving home tonight, that it is March Break! Last year, the five of us had spent a couple of nights at a hotel in Halifax over the Break. It was a real treat for the kids (swimming pool!) and we all had a nice time. And what bothered me wasn't that I hadn't made any plans to do anything special (we usually don't, in fact) but that life had been so insane that it had never even occurred to me to even think about whether we should do anything.

Mom has always loved to travel. I guess I have come by that wanderlust honestly. And about a year ago I had suggested to her that I would really like for her and I to take a trip together. Somewhere. Anywhere. But just the two of us. Which is something we have never done. She thought it was a great idea. But before we could even consider doing anything about it, things started to fall about. And given the results of Mom's trip to see my brother last year, I do believe that is the end of her traveling days. But I am grateful that the girls, her and I managed a road trip to Florida a few years ago. Let's just say that was quite an adventure. When I say road trip, I do mean road trip.

But having Mom back for now is so wonderful. I say 'for now' because I realize that I don't know for how long it will last. But I do know that right now, by some miracle or twist of fate, I have been given a second chance. So, tonight, I told Mom all this. And told her repeatedly how much she means to me. How much I need her and love her.

I also shared that most days I feel torn and pulled in a hundred different ways. Work. The kids. A husband. A house. Appointments. My passions. They're all important to me but I can only be doing so many things at the same time, right? And right now, in some ways, I just wish that the other parts of my life could just take care of themselves for a while. To give me a chance to have some time with Mom.

So I asked her what she would like to do. And influenced, no doubt, by what I had just said, she said that she thought a trip to Halifax for a few days would be nice. Physically, for mom, I know that will be much more of a challenge than it was last year. Logistically, life is always interesting, especially when you haven't planned things. But I won't, I simply cannot let myself be put in the position of knowing I was given that second chance that I prayed for and I still blew it. I have some time with Mom, the real mom. And I need to take advantage of it. So who knows, perhaps a small trip is in our future next week.

Oh yeah, the taking turns part? I use to find when the Blue Jay was small and spent a lot of time in hospital with seizures, that things took turns. When her seizures were bad, things were fine at school. But when her health was good, invariably I had issues to deal with. You guessed it, at school. So now that things are settling down a bit with Mom (at least for now), something else had to happen, right? The 'something else' this time happens to be the Kit Kat. Trust me, don't ask. But I just have one question ... when do I get my turn?


Punkys Dilemma said...

Gee M.....You have me in tears. Imagine me giving you a virtual hug. :) What an absolute blessing that is to have a second chance. What a blessing it is for you that you're aware of this gift you've been given. You're taking advantage of it and I know you're going to treasure each moment with your mom. You've got me thinking of my mom and how we all would have loved to have that second chance too. But I had that chance. And I'm so thankful for that. Awww M...I'm so happy for you. :)

MMC said...

Thanks, punky. I knew you would get it. It really is amazing, I am almost afraid to wake up. The downide is ... I start to relax a it. And then I crash.

But a virtual hug right back at ya.