This post has been churning in my head for the last ten days. I’m not sure I can write it because just thinking about it brings me to the point of tears. If you’ve been reading for any length of time, if you know me at all on any level, you know I am not someone who cries easily. I hate tears. Intellectually I know better, but emotionally, tears are a sign of weakness. Growing up in my house, if you showed weakness, you were a pre-dinner snack.
On Facebook I said that what I had been writing lately was intensely personal – and yet I felt free, more free than I had ever felt. Within that freedom is a power that is awesome, in the truest sense of the word. If you don’t understand what I mean, I’m afraid I don’t have the talent to paint the picture for you.
My mom was released from the hospital into a skilled nursing/rehab facility. The place she wanted to go didn’t have a bed, so she had to choose another facility. The level of care there leaves something to be desired. That’s really all I can say about it. Seeing her in there tonight just broke my heart – and I mean, shattered it. Remember when I said that I felt like a rubber band that had reached the snapping point? Yeah. Shattering, snapping, it’s all pretty much the same when you are completely powerless in a situation.
My mom has always been a 5’2″ tower of strength. She is an optimist who sees something good in almost any situation. But this? This has thrown her a curve ball and I find myself searching for a bat so I can pinch hit for her.
When I got to my car tonight, I snapped. I just sat there crying until I realized I was just sitting there crying and it made me mad. And sometimes mad is good.
My mother saw me through the worst and scariest time of my life and she never blinked, even when she probably thought it wasn’t going to work out very well for me. She stood beside me and was quietly (and humorously) optimistic until I wanted to smack her. She never backed down and she never stopped fighting for me, even though her heart was probably breaking.
When my dad was sick, my mother never showed us she had lost hope, even though her heart was breaking. She had faith right up to the end. In fact, she was so hopeful that I honestly thought she had lost her mind. It took me a long time to see her strength for what it was. Once I saw it, my respect for her increased a thousand-fold.
When she was in ICU, I promised her I wouldn’t let her down. I promised I would see it through, no matter what. I promised her I would be there every single step of the way, no matter how long that road was and no matter how tired she got. I promised her that I would take care of everything. Of course, she was asleep and didn’t hear me, but still …
So yes. Yes, I can. And I will, even though my heart is breaking.