Most of you that know me personally know about yesterday….. It marked 18 years since I lost my mother. Even those that do know me may not know the whole story….. And I have gone round and round in my head about whether or not to post this. There are many pros and many cons. But this is my blog and I think that by posting my story it might help someone else. I hope it will help someone.
My mother. She was beautiful. She was unique. She had much love in her. She also battled some serious demons. She was an alcoholic. She had a mental disorder. Some say it was bi-polar, others that it was schizophrenia. But these things did not define her. She was also giving and caring and loving. Our relationship was very difficult. I loved her so much. I guess that shouldn’t be in the past tense since I still love her so much. I miss her. I have always felt so much guilt when it comes to my mother. From a young age I felt responsible for her. Like I was the adult and she was the child. I know my mother loved me. I always knew it, even during the really difficult times. Even when I was being cussed at and hit on. Even when I was scared of her.
The last time that I saw my mother I was pregnant with my first child.I was 19. He was due in a matter of weeks. She was standing on my front porch cussing me out and trying to hit me. The Hubby stopped her from hitting me and made her leave. The last time I set on eyes on her she was in the back of a police car being taken to jail for disturbing the peace and drunk and disorderly.
A year later I would get a call in the middle of the night from my aunt asking to speak to The Hubby. I have to say that I gave her a hard time before waking him up to come to the phone. I knew then. I didn’t know the how but I knew…. When he got off the phone with my aunt I looked at him and said, “My mom is dead.” And then I lost my mind. This was 11 days before my first child turned one. My mother was due to visit in a matter of days to see her first grandchild for the first time. She lived 500 miles away.
My mother’s house had caught on fire and she was overcome by the smoke before she was able to make it out. She had taken a new sleeping medication. She had left candles burning on the wood stove. They fell over into the newspapers and kindling.
I had to go view her body to decide if we should have an open or closed casket. We were thinking of my grandmother. She had a bad heart and was about to bury her youngest daughter. She had buried her youngest son some years before.
That was the worst experience of my life. I was not prepared for it. I guess I thought she would already be dressed and ready. She was not. She was on a cold metal table with a sheet over her. As much as I have tried to forget that imagine and only dwell on the thought of her laughing or smiling, it will not leave me. The Hubby was my backbone that day. I would not have made it through that without him by my side. He was literally holding me up and steering me through.
All this pain remains in me. I try to get past it. I try to tell myself that I have nothing to feel guilty about. But it is still there. Both the pain and the guilt. I try to replace these with thinking about the good times but it doesn’t always work.
I need to pray about this. I need to ask God to sustain me. Ask Him to take this burden from my heart.
I feel like I am just rambling… I hope this has made sense. I hope that you can take something from this. Know, at least, that it is possible to live through the near unbearable and come out alright. Just as my mother’s illnesses did not define her, the situations I lived through do not define me.
Today. Just like you I will never forget where I was. I will never forget what I saw. The pain and anguish. The horror.
So, you see, the past 2 days have been horrible. I try every year and every year I end up in a state of depression. BUT there is always TOMORROW. Tomorrow will be a good day. There is always HOPE in tomorrow.
I am going to go read my Bible and try to lean on God. He can pull me out of this when I have tried and failed. I just have to remember that.