A (Not so Tiny) Tiny Little Heartache

On May 29, 2015 my mother didn't die.

On May 29, 2015 sometime during the day my mama had a stroke. It left her unable to phone for help or even push the fantastical button she always wore around her neck.

We never prepared for a stroke, that would leave our mama unable to speak, to lift her right arm, or her right leg. She had written all the directives. She has prepared a will. But the heartache we suffer now was not something any of us were prepared for.

Why? Why didn't we think of this? Why were we not prepared? I don't know. I guess we thought that if she had another stroke she would just pass on. She's 88 years old. She told us repeatedly she was "ready to go". So we prepared to let her go.

But she didn't go. She's still here. She can't speak, express her heart or her love. She can't tell you she doesn't like this or that or the other. She can't tell us if she's in pain. She can't tell us she wants to sit up more or lay back. She can't eat. She can't swallow. She can't hold herself upright.

Yesterday. She cried. My mama cried. And she can't tell me why. I know she must have been scared. She had been picked up by an ambulance and the young men who would escort her to her doctor's appointment. But when she got there? They put her in the conference room. I can only imagine what she was thinking. None of it good and as her fear and questioning overwhelmed her? She started to cry. No sound. Just tears. And her breath was ragged. And my heart broke as I wept for her and with her.

If Mama had died? I would mourn differently. I would mourn the loss and celebrate the homecoming she would be having with her friends who have gone on before her; she would be dancing and smiling with my daddy. She would be singing and shouting and laughing and crying joyful tears with her Savior.

But. None of that is happening. And it's awful. It hurts. It hurts me for her. It hurts me to see her lying in a strange place, being attended by strangers, and waiting. Just waiting. Maybe tomorrow. Or the next. Only God knows that day, the hour He will call her home. And everyday until then I will have a tiny little heartache that slowly breaks my heart in pieces, as I watch her live out the rest of her days. Without a voice. I believe if she could speak she would ask you for God's mercy. So since she can't ask? I will ask for her. I don't want to lose my mama. I love her. Just the way she is. But, I can't bear to watch her suffer this way. When you pray - and I know you will - please pray for God's mercy and will to be done here, on earth, as it is in heaven.

Amen and amen.


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