Wednesday, August 24, 2011

When Home Is Forever

If you've ever lost a loved one you're probably with most folks. If not, you're either very fortunate that it hasn't happened yet or you haven't loved enough.

I've had several online friends that have recently lost mother, father, grands & of course that sort of news brings back memories of my own losses. This got me to thinking about why I feel sad when I think of them. What is grief about?

When my mother passed, she had battled cancer for nine long months. Surgery had been done to remove most of her liver, but no other treatment was recommended. She suffered greatly. Knowing what she went through & being there with her daily, I can say, although it was one of the hardest times of my life, it was a blessing being with her during her illness.

All things had fell into place before she got sick that would allow me to be with her as much as I was. I was a single parent with only my income to support us. I had been out of work for about three months & things were looking pretty hopeless. My uncle, whom I had never worked for, came looking for my help. Later when we found out about mom, he would let me off anytime I needed to be with her for the day or several days.

I went through such a depression after her passing & didn't realize what was going on. But that too had been taken care of years before by my being put into the care of a specific doctor that had also been mom's doctor, as was his father before him.

Mother was 44 years old when she had me. She always told me the story of how she thought she wouldn't live long enough to raise me, so she wanted to give me up. In 1953 that wasn't a common thing to do. Her doctor in '53 was the father of our present doctor, but the son hadn't been born yet. Her doctor was going to adopt me.

I've always marveled at the story of Jesus raising Lazareth from the dead. The shortest verse in the Bible is there in that story. Jesus wept. I've wondered why did He weep? He had to know He was going to bring Lazareth back from the dead. Maybe He weep because of the people's disbelief? Maybe it was the accusation of the sister blaming Jesus for not being there in time?

Whatever the reason, Jesus wept & to the people there it must have seemed as in grief of losing a loved one.  This tells me it is right to grieve at one's passing. But isn't grief the deep, emotional feeling of missing them?

I sing to myself a lot, mainly cause no one else wants to listen. Sometimes it's old Journey songs or some crazy song I've heard that gets stuck in my head until I hear something else. But sometimes it's songs I need to hear; songs that comfort me. Beulah Land is the one going round now.

"Beulah Land I am longing for you. And someday on thee I'll stand. There my home shall be eternal. Beulah Land, sweet, Beulah Land"

Anyone that has been with someone through a fatal illness doesn't need a play by play recap of the heartbreak, stress, anger, fatigue involved. But to be able to say, " It was a blessing to be with that person through it", does have to have Holy intervention. God gave me a wonderful gift to be with my mom through the worst & best time of her life & for me to be able to realize it.

I had the privilege of hearing her make her peace with God. I heard her cry out in disbelief, in sadness, in anger & then her take comfort in what He was giving her. When she left this world, she was ready.

My sister-in-law was there the night mother passed. After so many nights of me not getting enough sleep, I was exhausted. Sometime after midnight, I woke to mother calling my name just as she had always done to wake me. I raised up in bed & saw her standing at the closed door. She was young. I had never seen her when she was young. She said, "Cindy, everything will be alright" & she was gone. At that very second my sister-in-law was knocking on the door for me to hurry & get in mother's room. She was taking her last breaths.

I am convinced that there is no way that a loved one that has passed on, saved by their belief of Jesus as the Son of God & their Saviour, & standing before the Holy presence of God, can ever wish to be in a mortal body again. Knowing & experiencing all that my mother went through, there is no way I could wish her back in that condition.

So my grief is for me. It is my missing her presence & others I have lost. I don't believe she misses me. Instead, I think she watches for my presence with her when the time is right for me to come home.


  1. This needs a Kleenex alert. I could relate to all you said. I know it meant a lot to me to be with my father during his illness and I will never forget his telling me when I left to fly home that he would not be there when I returned. It was a difficult decision to leave but I had my own health issues to deal with at the time. He too made peace with God and was ready. I know he is watching over me and when the time is right I will join him. You are right that we grieve for ourselves and what we have lost. May you be blessed with your memories, and always carry her in your heart.

  2. I am glad that I was able to be with my Mom last week. I am still very sad and missing her. I do know that she is no longer in pain and she never has to do battle with physical illness again. I am grateful. I am also grateful that two former pastors officiated at her mass even though they are retired. It was so nice to have comforting words from ones who actually knew her well.

  3. Cynthia, know your feelings I watched my Dad, who had been gone 20 years, take Mother home to be with him. They were both young and could walk without a cane or walker. After all of my grief I know that they are there with Howard waiting for me to come home. I watched as Howard left this world, it was hard for him to go and leave us, he stood on top of that mountain for a long time before leaving. I know they are watching over me.