Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Departed, or Flown Away

A momentous Tuesday. Mom died this morning, quietly, her caretaker said, after two short breaths. The world has changed for us all and we are able to absorb this change only in small increments. It is too huge. Kate was already on her way to see Mom and I was not far behind when the caregiver called her and said Mom was 'gone'. Dad was dressed and waiting for a morning report on Mom, whom he continually calls "a beautiful woman". Kate was charged with telling Dad, "She's gone." She added, "She's still warm." And Mom's hands were still warm, but already turning waxy white.
Indeed, a person is not a person after death. "They" are gone. We could tell the difference right away. Mom was not there in bed. Her spirit had flown. We are here, crying and earthbound.
What a very busy day followed. At the caretaker's suggestion, I took Dad to their old house on Arapahoe for the day. Good idea. Kate stayed behind for the hard part. Or maybe each part is hard.
At the house, we had a visit with the pastor and then as others arrived, the pastor and I set the date for a memorial celebration and I had discussions with the church's music director and then the organist. Music, order of service, numbers of singers. My tablet pages filled up with information.
Caroline arrived and said, "Tell me the time of the service and then don't even think about the reception afterward. I'll take care of it." What a gift. She'll deal with a caterer, flowers, the printing the program. All will be beautiful.
Denny brought in Chinese take-out for lunch and we gathered around the dining room table just as always. And then Dad went into his old bedroom for a long afternoon nap. When the house cleared at 3:00, I could do nothing but wander from room to room. Took me over an hour to get myself into the shower. Kept checking Facebook comments.
What a new way to let folks know about huge life events. Earlier in the day, Chris asked Denny if he could post about Mom's death on his Facebook page and Denny asked me if all immediate family had been notified before giving Chris the go ahead. Imagine. It's out there. My daughters and niece and nephew are talking about their Bama's death on line. It's what they do. Post their life. I jumped in too and let folks know what was on my mind. Have almost two dozen comments, some from folks I've not talked to in a long, long time. Old fashioned phone calls from others who derived their information from emails, also a dated way of receiving information. I don't think Mom's hit Twitter yet, but Caroline may have tweeted her passing.
Mary and Queta arrived in time for supper here at Denny and Kate's. Thanks, Denny for homemade spaghetti and a super salad. The supper together was totally unexpected. The table was filled with laughter and conversation. We flow from tears to laughter so continuously, over and over. I drank wine so wrote no obituary tonight.
Mary took photos of Kate and me reading Facebook friend comments. Thanks to all for your kind words. It's been quite a day.


Sharon said...

Each part is hard. A lot of demands will be made on your time and energy, and remember to take care of you, too.

Joan Price said...

"We are here, crying and earthbound." So beautifully said. I wish you peace during your time of grief. My best to you and your loved ones.