Tuesday, August 21, 2012

One More Moment


I know everyone always says they wish had just one more moment with their loved ones who died. One more moment... There are so many questions I have for my mother. I have so many things to tell her. Why the hell didn't I ask all these things before she died? We knew it was coming. But not really. I was on my honeymoon and everything was peachy and she might have found a cure, I received great news when I did call my family from Cancun...and I came back to my sister telling me she was dying and only waiting for me to come back and to hurry home. WHAT?
It was true. In that week I was gone she deteriorated rapidly, they stopped her experimental treatment, and she started receiving hospice care at home. She was in a lot of pain and a lot of painkillers. She was awake for only an hour or two a day. At that point...it was too late. She couldn't speak much any more. She couldn't bathe herself and walking to the shower from her bed almost made her pass out. What the hell happened? She wasn't nearly at that point when I left...I thought we had at least another year...
I found a song today. It reflects how I feel perfectly, only I received the call from my sister and not my father. She was crying and I couldn't tell if she said mom was dead or mom was dying but I rushed off to Goodyear. It was about 9am. Mom  died at 11pm that night. I took a nap with her that day when she was finally able to get some rest from the horrifying agony. I held her hand and rested with her, taking in her smell and how her skin felt, taking care to memorize every last freckle on her hands and arms... and I knew that was the last time. I cherished every second laying in that bed with her. I fell asleep for only a few minutes but it felt like when I was little.She, the person who was dying a horrifying death, she  was still managing to comfort me. That's how great of a mother she was. She was asleep, but holding my hand back. That was one of the only times I was alone in her room with her all day and I am so grateful...but I wish I got another moment to tell her everything...

"One Moment More"
Hold me
Even though I know you're leaving
And show me
All the reasons you would stay
It's just enough to feel your breath on mine
To warm my soul and ease my mind
You've got to hold me and show me now

Give me
Just one part of you to cling to
And keep me
Everywhere you are
It's just enough to steal my heart and run
And fade out with the falling sun

Oh, please don't go
Let me have you just one moment more
Oh, all I need
All I want is just one moment more
You've got to hold me and keep me

Tell me that someday you'll be returning
And maybe
Maybe I'll believe
It's just enough to see a shooting star
To know you're never really far
It's just enough to see a shooting star
To know you're never really gone

Oh, please don't go
Let me have you just one moment more
Oh, all I need
All I want is just one moment more

Oh, please don't go
Let me have you just one moment more
Oh, all I need
All I want is just one moment more
You've got to hold me and maybe I'll believe

So hold me
Even though I know you're leaving "

Monday, June 25, 2012

Driving and Babies

Driving and babies make me cry. Today I got a little of both.
I went to Goodyear to visit my dad. It is so hard not to scream and throw things every time I walk into that house. I just want to go plop on the bed next to my mom and tell her every meaningless thing that is happening in my life and then listen to her prattle on about the latest thing the babies she nannies for did. Instead I am greeted with her pictures in the living room and flowers that are there to remind me that she's gone. Her urn was there but my dad has taken it into their room now. My dad. Seeing him breaks my heart all over again. She was his life for 35 years. He is just so lost now and I can't stand it. Today I was in the living room and I heard clear as day the exact sound her slippers made when she walked into the kitchen from her room. I know she's gone but that didn't stop my heart from doing a little joyous back-flip and it certainly didn't stop me from looking up really fast. Even as my heart broke all over again, I got up and walked over there, just to make sure.
There was nothing there.
Any time I go visit and drive back home I cry the whole way. The stark contrast between what my visits home used to be and what they are now chip away at my soul and I cry. Today I stopped at Target before driving off, and I had to pass by the baby section. The only thing I can think of when I see all the adorable baby clothes, car seats,  and nurseries is: who is going to care about my babies? I mean, aside from Anthony, I can't imagine anyone is going to care the first time my kid smiles or rolls over or sits up. Who the fuck is going to care when they are just sleeping really cute for the 200th time that week and I HAVE to take a picture? No one is going to want to see that many pictures. Who am I going to call freaking out when I don't know how to do something baby-related? Who is going to call me ten times a day just for me to gush?!? No one. No one is going to do that. I know how crazy my mom was with my nieces and nephews and how often she called my sister and how happy she would be to hear any little thing about the babies. I feel like other moms aren't like that, not to the extent my mom was anyways. My moms' ideal vacation was one surrounded by grandkids, and all of the vacations she ever took were to Mexico to see them. My mom was a nanny since I can remember. She has raised so many children from little babies until they start school. She was an infinite source of baby knowledge and I was so thankful for her. She has been curious as to what my kids will look like and act like since I was about ten. She really wanted to meet them. At the end, that was all she wanted. She would pray to God that she could be here at least for my first. She wanted to see me pregnant and to see how in love Anthony would fall with a little tiny blend of us. We aren't having kids for a while, but it already breaks my heart whenever I see little baby clothes at the store or see a pregnant girl out shopping with her mom.

This is all so fucked.

Friday, June 15, 2012

16 Percent Chance...

Well, I wrote this last January, after my mom was diagnosed with cancer. If you are reading this, chances are you already know what happened. I meant to post this and other things a long time ago and update on how my mom was doing. Too late. But here they are anyways:

January 28, 2011

I'm unhappy. I'm stressed. I'm guilty for taking the time to write this instead of being at work, doing homework, or being with my mom. I'm also kind of empty and numb. I don't WANT to feel this, I really don't. My chest feels tight all the time, and the tears are always just under the surface. If I lose my composition for even a second, I know they will come rushing out like a cascade of water breaking through a dam. And just like that, I will be powerless to STOP the tears until there is not any more water left. This is what happened the first time I let myself cry over this. It was awful. We had been drinking, my friends and I, and when I knew I could retreat into my room without anyone caring I did. And I cried and cried and cried for HOURS straight. There was no break in my crying. I took sleeping pills during this hysteria so I could pass the fuck out and after a few hours I finally did. One minute I was blowing my nose and wiping tears and crying and next thing I knew it was several hours later and I was waking up on a still-wet pillow with the tissue in my hand. Needless to say I felt awful and don't ever want to repeat that ever again. So that is why I have to repress this thing that's in my chest. It almost feels like it's a little dragon in there, and it started out as a vaguely uncomfortable little dragon egg that I could ignore but now he's hatched, and every day that I don't completely lose my shit it gets bigger and stronger, and now he has claws and is scratching at my chest from inside, and every now and then he breathes fire, because he recently learned how to do that. In fact, I  know EXACTLY when this dragon learned to breath fire. It was the day I decided to do more research on the internet to "make myself feel better" about my mom's cancer.  It was also the day I discovered the number sixteen. Sixteen percent survival rate after five years, that is, for stage 4 breast cancer.

                Five years. In five years I will be twenty four years old. That is WAY TOO FUCKING YOUNG to have an 84 percent chance of not having my mom around. I know, I know worse things have happened to other people. Some people never get to know their parents, or their parents die suddenly in a freak accident when the kids are young. There are natural disasters and poverty and wars. I honestly don't know how the world isn't a more fucked up place than it is, considering all the horrible things the majority of the world's population is subjected to on a daily basis. I can't even imagine. But then again, I could never imagine one of my parents getting cancer, either.
                Most of the people my age I know have never experienced death. Sure, they had a pet die. Or maybe a distant relative, or a grandparent died when they were little. Some kid they saw once in the hall at school died in a car crash. That is not what I am talking about. Those people might think, "Oh, I've experienced a death and it isn't as terrible as some people make it out to be." It's so much worse. I lost my grandmother when I was 7. We saw her every day, and the last few weeks she was alive she was living in my house. So yes, I knew her and was close to her. Was I super upset? No. As a child, death isn't that terrible. I didn't grasp the PERMANENCE of it, nor had I yet started to question whether people go to " a better place" or whether I would ever see my grandma again. I KNEW I would see her again, I didn't see why everyone was so sad if she was somewhere better than here, having a ball. When I was in maybe 8th grade an uncle died. Again, we weren't that close. This time, I was very, very sad that he left behind a little boy, and my cousin was absolutely HEARTBROKEN at losing her husband to cancer so young. I cried at that funeral, and I was genuinely very upset for my young widowed cousin. But again, I wasn't in mourning. It was sad, but I could leave the funeral and return to my life and not be consumed by it. I thought I understood death then. Sadly, my cousin was the one who got that horrible understanding then. She couldn't just "leave the funeral".
                Then Austin died. The grief was all consuming for a very long time. I spent months crying at night.  Our lives are irreparably changed because of his death. My family, his family, completely changed. There will ALWAYS be a piece missing. It is still so hard to think about and I still cry. The crying is a lot more spread out now. Usually something triggers it, or on New Years I don't know but I was just hysterically crying about it. Heavy drinking triggers it too, apparently. So it doesn't ever go away. It never will. Eventually during the grief you just accept that this is always going to hurt and that you can't fix it and that you can't give up on the rest of your life. The show must go on. The whole process is so long and exhausting and fucking sadder than anything I had ever known before. Before Austin died, when I read a book and someone died I would get sad and think "oh that would be so sad". Now when I read a book and someone dies I start bawling, because I know. It's one of those feelings that you absolutely cannot imagine no matter how hard you try until it actually happens. Then, no matter how hard you try, you can never forget. It's kind of like being in love in that way I guess. You don't really know what it's like, no matter how many romance novels you read as a tween or whatever, until you actually fall in love.
                 So having the experience of death in my repertoire of memories is not helping me in the least right now. It's not one of those things that will become easier because I already went through it once. Nope. Now that I know... the remote prospect of losing my mom is so much more horrible and breath stopping than I ever could have imagined when I was younger.  The whole process...of grieving...is SO EXHAUSTING. It takes a part of your soul and keeps it forever and ever. Not only that, I think of how many things would trigger a hysterical crying fit for my mom, and it's basically anything imaginable would trigger one. I feel like I am staring up at a mountain. A mountain on Jupiter. And I know that somehow I have to get up that mountain and to the other side, and I can't turn back because there is suddenly a moat full of alligators cutting me off from my old life, and I can't just sit at the base of the mountain and carve out a life there, because there's a group of orcs hunting me. So, somehow, someway, I have to get over that impossible mountain that doesn't even EXIST on earth, because if I don't climb it I will die, but getting up the mountain might kill me too because I'm not a fucking mountain climber and I didn't even bring any water. Fuck.  Oh yeah, and I've never been to Jupiter so just breathing is a huge hurdle at this point, not even taking into account the orcs and the poisonous mote.