I tried to remain calm as we threw some clothes into a suitcase and jumped into the car for a very long 4 hour trip home. My wonderful siblings kept in touch the entire time we were driving. I was kept updated on the reports from the doctors and was even put on speaker phone when the priest came in to give Mom the Annointing of the Sick. It was one of the longest trips home I have ever taken.
By the time we arrived at the hospital it was determined that Mom had suffered a deep brain bleed and would not recover. There was nothing they could do to help her. With all of us at her bedside we kept a 14-hour vigil that included many prayers, sharing of memories, words of love spoken to Mom, heartfelt tears, and a final letting go as she took her peaceful last breath.
How does one possibly say good-bye to the person who gave you life, who taught you to love, who exemplified steadfast faith and who shared the wisdom that she acquired over the many years of joys and sorrows that she lived?
This is one of the last pictures that I took of my Mom as we celebrated her 85th birthday in April. She was so delighted to have her family with her on this special occasion - the best gift we could have ever given her. Mom was not a woman of material wealth, but she would say she was the richest woman on earth with her family nearby.
I love you Mom. May the Lord bless you and keep you until we meet again.