Going To God’s Paradise
My mother passed away just before the joyous family time that is called Christmas.
When I wrote this, my mom was slowly changing before my eyes. I had the same feeling each and every time I went to visit. A robber is someone that takes something from you without your consent. Cancer is a robber that does the same to families at an alarming rate. It sneaks up on our loved ones and friends and takes away the person that we knew. What it does give is an endless journey to doctors, hospitals and pain, with an overwhelming sense of helplessness.
Cancer can destroy families by taking away the communication and feelings to express oneself. How? The person with cancer doesn’t want to talk about the fear he/she feels. No one wants to think of themselves as a burden, so they internalize their fear. The person tries to perform their regular routine. All the while, they are in pain, scared, exhausted, but to actually say these words makes them feel that they no longer can contribute to the family or to friendships.
The family member/friend wonders what to say when someone has cancer. They verbalize words of encouragement, but still these are just words. They want to take every waking moment to be understanding and caring, but again it's just words and things. They watch helplessly as this robber takes away the physical appearance of their loved one or friend. They watch the hair loss, blackened hands, teeth loss, and the fragility of the person. They try not to stare at the transformation that takes place due to not only the cancer, but also the treatment that’s supposed to give them days, months, and maybe years of additional life.
The go-to treatment of chemo and radiation is hard on the body, and is debilitating in some instances. The treatment of cancer is so radical to the body that some wish to forgo it and just aim for a quality of life without the drastic changes that are brought on by treatment.
My mother, I hope, is in paradise right now, and without pain. We will see her again. I lived with my mother and sister until the end.
A year has passed since my mother's passing, and it still hurts. The pain at times is unbearable. I wake up to hearing her screams as the hospice nurse touches her brittle skin. I get up and pace.
I pace because what else can I do? I talk to her and wait and wait for her to answer, so I call the answering machine just to hear her voice. I even at times blame God for giving her this disease that took her from us. This year on her birthday I had no one to send a birthday card to. I cried. When Mother’s Day came around, again I didn’t have anyone to send a card to, so I cried. I was envious of those who could still send a card to their mother. Don’t judge me. It has gotten better. As they say, time heals all, but what I’m realizing is that time just allows us to go on in our day. Maybe that’s healing. I wish I had an answer to the most burning question in my heart. Why? Why her? Why cancer? Why so much pain? Days turn into weeks, and then months with years to follow. Time goes on no matter what is going on—war, death and life. It goes on. There is no stopping time, so you just have to learn to keep going on with it. What alternative is there? If your mother is still alive, cherish her, because one day my pain might be your pain.
My spouse’s mother passed away a couple of weeks ago, and I could feel her pain. I know the anguish in her heart, so I let her cry. We cry together some days as I remember my mother. She will get through this one day at a time.