It was an early day--one that stared with grieving news. I had a couple of missed calls on my cell phone--but it was on silent. Dana was up getting ready for work at 5:00 am, and checked her phone and listened to voice mails telling of my mother's passing. Mom inherited diabetes--from both her mom and dad. That, along with some subsequent heart problems, high blood pressure, and a couple of strokes made her last couple of years a less than desirable existence. She had lost her sight, and use of the left side of her body.
This morning May 7 in the wee hours, she had raised up from bed to get a drink and told Dad her blood sugar was low. Dad got her some orange juice which she quickly drank, and she nibbled on a peanut butter sandwich. This normally brings her blood sugar levels up quickly. Dad went to check on something, and came back a minute later to find her on the floor face down. Her heart had stopped. He called 911, but she was already gone.
Dana and I spent the day with my Dad, a sister and niece. We cleaned house, Dana cooked a meal, and then we went to the funeral home to make arrangements. The funeral director in Sperry Ok seemed like a good old country boy--very nice and helpful. He treated our family like a friend--and not at all in a fakey salesman-ish sort of way. I was very satisfied with our encounter there. The funeral services will be this Saturday morning.
I prefer to remember all the fun good times instead of wallowing in the grief of loss. Mom lived a GREAT life. She was young at heart. She was a young bride, and I came into the world just before her 17th birthday.
Mom and Dad used to camp a LOT. We did the tent camping thing for years, then graduated to a tent-trailer and finally a travel trailer. Many summer weekends were spent on the shores of the Illinois River where we'd cook out, fish, swim, and float.
Mom was a wicked card player. Liverpool rummy was one of our favorite face-offs. She had an evil streak LOVING to catch everyone with a handful of cards. These were such fun times.
She was a stay-at-home Mom while I was growing up. I have two brothers and three sisters. After I was 18 and on my own, she went back to college. I was doubtful that as a 30-something that she could/would finish her degree--but she did and upon graduation, served as a parole officer for a few years.
Later, she taught school at Cornerstone Christian school. Mom and Dad adopted three of my nephews--effectively giving me three more brothers. Her teaching position financed these boys (as well as another nephew and niece) graduating in this good private school.
I have no doubt she made a huge difference in so many kid's lives. Mom always looked for the good in people--overlooking and ignoring people's shortcomings. I miss her--and the hurt comes and goes in waves. I look back at her last few months and years. They had moved to Skiatook--some 25-30 miles from me--and I wish now I had made more time to come see her. As busy as I thought I was--I still should have made time to pick up that phone and call from time to time. Sad--how a cell phone glued to my ear could have been so much better used.