My Mom was a woman of great wisdom and opinions. During her last week of life, fully aware that her days were numbered, we sat and spoke about many things together. We even discussed this blog, which I had told her I wanted to write months beforehand.
One particularly hard conversation was when she started talking about her funeral with me. With the same strength and grace as always, she expressed her desires for everything from music to readings, enlightening me on all of her favorites in both categories. I thought to myself that I better go get something to write this down, acknowledging mentally that it was my responsibility not to screw this up!!! Dear Lord, she was planning a “high mass”, and I was sitting there without pen or paper!! But for some reason I couldn’t move a muscle. I knew if I left the room to go get the required writing materials, this special moment would be broken. Then without missing a beat, we got into the important details. She leaned in, looked at me and inquired, “what do you think I should wear??” Like we were planning a birthday party for one of my siblings!! Although I was getting mentally upset, I tried my best to hold it together. We discussed a few beautiful outfits that she owned, and settled on a white beautifully beaded suit that was her favorite. I’ll never forget the way she looked at me when this decision was made, feeling that she had made the right choice for eternity. Her only other request was that I make sure that she had on all of the appropriate jewelry. Got to love her, she was a “fashionista” till the end!!!
But this wasn’t the lesson of the day. As we concluded the planning of the funeral in detail, suddenly I couldn’t hold it together any more. The realization that in a short while my mother would be gone from this earth had overwhelmed my mind and heart. I started to cry, and exclaimed to her that I was losing my best friend and what was I going to do without her? The memories of a lifetime of cooking, shopping and talking about every stage of my life together came flooding out, and I couldn’t see how I could go on without my Mom and best friend. To this she took my hand in hers and answered “I’m not your my best friend – the Lord and the Blessed Mother are your best friends, and they will always be by your side as they have through your whole life, to help you through everything. Prayer, and trusting in the Lord and Mother Mary are the most important things in life. Through them all things are possible”. I knew she was right, as I’d seen the hand of the Lord working in my life many times. But, somehow I knew she’d be watching everything from above also. It’s just the kind of mother she was!
Being a woman of great faith, my Mom was very devoted to the Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy to the Lord. During her last week, we prayed this Chaplet with her daily. As most devote Christians know, the Lord passed away at 3:00 PM, so this hour was very sacred and special to my Mom. On the day my Mom passed, she expired before the hospice nurse could get to my sister’s home. Upon arrival, we told the nurse that my Mom had passed an hour previously, and she proceeded to examine her. She pronounced my Mom as passed, and looked at her watch for an official time to register on her death certificate. She proclaimed her death at 3:00 PM, to which myself and my siblings all let out gasps and giggles! The nurse being unaware of what was happening asked about our reaction. We told her, and I added to my siblings that it was my Mom’s way of telling us that she had arrived in heaven with the Lord. And believe me, heaven hasn’t been the same since that day!! I can see her interaction in many things here on earth. She’s still pulling the strings and sticking her hand in everything for her family. What you ask…. well that’s for next time!!
Thanks for reading.