Sunday, May 01, 2005
On April 23, 2005, my mom passed away. Mom is gone. I keep hearing that in my mind, and I still can’t believe it. Even now more than a week later, it seems unreal, like a bad dream that I can’t wake up from. I don’t think I would have ever been ready to go to the funeral of either of my parents, but this was so sudden. She wasn’t old, she wasn’t sick, there was no long-term health problem that we could come to terms with; she was just taking a short drive down the road to have lunch and knit with a friend when the accident happened.
The past month Emma and I spent with my dad in the hospital was one of the longest of my life. It was so hard to be there with him every day, to try to support him in our desperate hope that Mom would recover, or at least open her eyes, and still take care of and play with Emma. She was wonderfully behaved the whole time and brought a lot of smiles to my family and everyone else in the ICU Waiting Room. While I was glad she was there, it was heart-wrenching to look at my smiley happy girl and know that she had no idea what was going on.
What I regret most about this whole senseless tragedy is the lost time. Emma will never know her Grandma. She’s still too young to even remember her. Mom and Emma should have had maybe 25 or 30 more years to enjoy being grandma and granddaughter. They will never sew together, never bake a pie, never pick beans and pull up carrots in the garden, never watch the phoebes build their nest on the porch beams at the house in Maine. Mom won’t be there when Emma starts kindergarten, is in a school play or art show or concert, graduates high school and college, and won’t see her as a bride. There will be no more three-generation mother/daughter photos.
Mom and Dad had planned to come out to Friday Harbor and visit us this spring, and were looking forward to seeing our new house. April 20, the day they were planning to arrive, was the day my dad, sister, and I had to decide to discontinue life support and let Mom go.
Emma and I planned to spend a month on vacation in Maine this summer. Mom and I had hatched a plan to make a quilt together. I had even started looking at patterns and color combinations. I can’t even express how much I was looking forward to this.
I just keep thinking “This isn’t fair.” I know the corollary to that is “Life isn’t fair,” but this seems almost too unfair to bear.