SO WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?
I apologize for being offline for the summer. I was under the weather, and my family has had five deaths this year, the latest was a few weeks ago...when mom died. That's my mom there, Maxine. I was a "whoops" baby, my parents were building their retirement home when mom got pregnant with me! There's 16 years between my sister and I and 11 years between my brother and I.
I have found myself constantly explaining that as mom got older. She hated that. She hated being old. She was really a 30 year old woman trapped in a 94year olds body. She suffered with her arthritis. She walked miles at the local track. Then slipped in water in her kitchen, and fractured her upper and lower right leg and her hip. That began her slow slide into becoming an old woman. It was 2010. Seven years of pain. She had gotten over one hip fracture, and fractured the other side. She had to use a push scooter after that. HATED it. (It made her look old). That's what she said! She was well into her 80s when she said it too.
She started having to use a wheelchair just this past year. REALLY HATED that. I tried to get her to not worry so much about it~ I've had to use a wheelchair when I go out and about for the day...I get too tired and can't walk. It's how you look at things. I want to be able to get out and about it helps me do that. Mom learned how to motivate in it, and got quite speedy, zipping around her retirement home!
I loved that my mom 'thought' young, even if she wasn't. She put me on several magazine's lists that she would like...and embarrassed me to death. The postman must think I'm a long distance runner or something. It always was magazines like "Shape" and such. I blush. What I would do is collect them and bring them to her to read. She loved them! lol.
Mom was fun to be around. They nicknamed her "Red" at Elmcroft, where she lived. She has dyed her hair a vibrant red since she went grey. She asked me once, in a whisper "Do you think I should let my hair go grey?" I looked at her carrot top head...that was a bit orange sometimes....and I asked her "Does it make you happy to have red hair?" "Oh YES!" she said immediately. "There's your answer!" I replied. Someone must have made an unkind remark about her hair. Every once in a while we would have the same conversation. I told her people were dying their hair pink, blue and green and not to worry.
She turned 94 on September 5th. We celebrated at a local restaurant. She drank a margarita and ate everything on her plate. Then the cake came out! Blew all the candles out and swiped a big swatch of white frosting on her finger and gobbled it up! In this picture, you can see a bit of the frosting on her nose...cute!Frax and Mom had a special rapport. she wasn't afraid of how HUGE he was compared to her littleness. He would hop up in bed with her, put his ginormous head on her tummy and drift off to sleep...
She LOVED it! Look at the smile. I know I inherited my love of animals from her. This was her on the 9th of September celebrating her 94th. She actually had her birthday on the 5th. She passed away September 23.
It's bothered me that nobody was there with her when she died. She must have wanted it that way. My brother and sister had gone to lunch, we were on our way to the hospital, she knew that. She must have closed her eyes and dipped her toe into eternity, then slowly, quietly let it swirl gently around her and pull her over to the other side.
I rushed into her room, but it was too late. Her hands. They were still warm. I wanted so much to be there for her. She must not have wanted that. She always was so brave. I'll miss her till the day I pass, and look for her loving embrace to guide me home.
And that's where I've been.