Wednesday, March 24, 2010
There are no words to describe the past few hours of my life. Many of you knew that I was heading south to spend some time with my mother. She suddenly became ill a little over 3 weeks ago and has had one issue after another. She was finally ready for me to come to visit and the plan was that I would arrive yesterday...she would be going home from the hospital and I would be around to help cheer her up, help her get her strength back and just make her feel normal again. There were still tests to do, results to wait for and probably treatment and stressful news ahead, but we were going to try to get back to a regular routine while we waited.
They did a fairly routine test on her early yesterday afternoon. Her blood pressure dropped during the procedure and they were a bit concerned. They got her awake as soon as possible, her blood pressure started going up and she was talking to my dad. I was still on the road. I was 2 hours away when I got the call that her blood pressure had dropped again. At an hour away, they knew she was bleeding internally from the procedure and they were pumping her full of blood, trying to stop it. My dad told me to hurry. When I arrived at the hospital, she was still in trouble and they had called in a surgeon to consult about going in to stop the bleeding. I got to see her, hold her hand...and even though she couldn't talk because of the tube they had put down her throat, she knew what I was saying. She knew that I was there and my dad wasn't alone.
Surgery became the only option and it wasn't a good one. Her wonderful surgeon took us aside and told us that he really didn't think she would come out of surgery. She was still awake, we got to talk to her. We prayed, we called others to pray and we waited. The surgeon came in and told us she was back in her ICU room. He stopped the bleeding, he "felt good" about the result. I fell in love with him on the spot. I spent the night curled up on a couch in the waiting room. We got to see her a few times and she knew we were there, she rolled her eyes when I told her she was fine. She hates that tube and we hope they remove it later today.
Medically, she isn't out of trouble. She does have some serious health problems that she had no idea she had. I don't know how this will all turn out. I do know that after trying to get her to let me come down for 3 weeks, I was able to get here at the most important time of her life, my dad's life and mine. I do know that she shouldn't be able to look into my eyes today, but she did. I know that when almost all hope was lost, I could feel love and prayers all around us. I know that for today, they were answered. I also know that life can turn on a dime. I don't have any unfinished business with my mom. As I waited last night, all I felt was worry for my father, sadness for my sister who wasn't here yet and fear of the loss that I thought was coming. I didn't feel as if there was something I hadn't said, or issues I hadn't fixed. I didn't feel any guilt, just intense sadness. I've always known that life can change quickly. I had never experienced it in such a drastic way before. Within an hour it went from what we would have for dinner when we got her home, to "go in and say what you need to say to your mom". I counted my blessings and could feel the prayers and love through every minute.
Don't wait. If you have unfinished business with someone and there is any way to fix it...do it now.