it’s not about YOU, it’s about THEM

25 01 2011

When someone’s horribly injured, or terminally ill, it seems I hear an astonishing number of people say that they didn’t go see someone because they don’t want to remember someone “that way”.

Horse-shit.

I’m all for honoring yourself and your limits, but come on. Get over yourself. Yes, I clearly remember her discomfort, her puffy face, her scant scraggly bits of remaining hair, the flaky grey skin that wasn’t quite hers, and even at the end: her struggles, sweats, and gasps.

Yes, that memory is very clear. Crystal clear. But so what?

I loved her. Any discomfort I might have of what images might linger wasn’t diddly squat compared to what she was up against. There are loads of other memories. It wouldn’t have even crossed my mind to NOT be there. How could it?

She needed comfort. Most especially right at those very moments. And what a privilege for me to be able to be there and hold her hand, stroke what was left of her hair, breathe with and maybe even FOR her at times, and speak soothing memories and comforts to her as she endured the pain and fear until she was freed into the big peaceful unknown. Most of us aren’t so lucky– squashed on the highway, heart-attack alone, and if you’re one of the lucky ones you’re in a home for years and years only to end up choking on the mashed peas– I just hope I’m as lucky to have that kind of love surrounding me when it’s my time.

As awful as those long minutes were, and as much as I wanted them to pass, both for her to be out of discomfort and for myself to be out of it too, at the same time I wanted to hold onto every last precious second we had together.

So yeah, I remember. Some may call those images ugly. And I suppose they are in some ways.

But I see it differently.

Sure, I still cry when those images come. Because they were beautiful.

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6 responses

25 01 2011
izziedarling

This is beautiful. BEAUTIFUL. And so very true – that “no see’em” bs doesn’t fly. It makes me happy to know you had a mother you love so much to this day, and I could only pray that my daughters might feel the same way about me someday. I am so proud to know you. xo iz

7 02 2011
geauxgirl

Thanks, friend. Psst: My bet is, your girls feel that way right stinkin’ now.

😛

🙂

25 01 2011
Sara

That’s made me tear up.

25 01 2011
Sara

I meant, “That made…”

26 01 2011
thoughtsappear

I agree with you. I HATE going to hospitals, but when someone I love is in one, I’m there, no second thoughts about it.

7 02 2011
geauxgirl

Yep. Right there with ya. It’s more of a “how could I NOT be there….” than the other way around. Cold tile, chemi-smells, and harsh lighting be damned.

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