Remember Debbie and Gladys, from the story titled “Every Day, A Gift“?
It’s about a daughter’s efforts to bring joy to every remaining day of her 90-year old mother’s life and it touched the hearts of many of you from around the world. Late last night, I got an extraordinary letter from Debbie. I asked and got her permission to share it with you. It’s simply titled:
There is a Holy bathroom here at the hospice.
You go in to use the toilet ( please forgive the graphics here), after days of not being on a normal routine, when – suddenly – you find yourself shouting out to God that what Mom is going through is not fair! That you are mad — at God!
And then you get an answer.
You’re told that you have been on a journey and now it is ending. You cannot micro manage any of this like you have been…. appointments, drug refills, nursing care, then hospice care, micro managing the nurses here, mom’s injections … the when and the how and the what kind of everything!
You’re told that YOU ARE DONE!
It is out of your hands. She is about to start HER personal journey with God WITHOUT ME.
I have done my job….a job well done….but a job that has finished. I cannot, no matter what I do, change the when or the how. I have to let it all go.
I have said my goodbyes each time in the past day that we thought mom was dying . I know she loves me and she knows that I love her. We had the opportunity to say all the important things. And yet I have said them over and over again.
When I flushed my troubles down that toilet, with the realization that I am NOT IN CONTROL, and that it is totally in God’s hands, I felt a huge relief wash over me… a letting go… a handing of a precious package in to His care. I left that washroom feeling tremendous relief and with a smile on my face that has not been there for a long time.
Back in her room, I wished Mom a wonderful journey. I told her to have fun.
I told her as my guardian angel that I was going to keep her busy and see some of the world that she didn’t see. I told her to do the same.
“What the heck … take a spin around the world in the arms of the angels and have them show you the mountains and oceans, fly over the jungles , spin around the Eiffel Tour, buzz over Europe …see it all. Have the angels soar through the heavens….have a blast.”
She told me to look for her in the first dandelion that I see. I will wonder at that gift.
Often Mom and I would think of something at the same time and say it at the same time. I would joke with her as to who really had the first thought. Before Mom and Dad moved in with us, quite often I would pick up the phone to call Mom and find that she was on the line. The phone didn’t even have the chance to ring. We had timed it at the same instant.
So maybe when I’ll be doing something and think of Mom, maybe at that very instant mom is up in heaven thinking of me.
She is very peaceful now as she has been put into a medically-induced coma. She won’t feel the anxiety as her body fails her.
So my friends, grab a glass and fill it with something like a fine wine and raise your glass in a toast to my Mom. Here’s to a life well lived, to a job well done. Here’s to all the love she gave and received back tenfold.
May we all be as blessed.
Thank you, Debbie, for sharing this loving letter with us. I am asking everyone who’s read your letter to raise a glass to Gladys. “Here’s to a life well lived, to a job well done.”