Turning the Tables: Letting Go

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It’s here. We are that point. The one thing that all adult children fear. The one phone call that adult children are afraid to receive. The one conversation that we all dread. This is the day where we struggle between feeling hopeful and feeling hopeless. The day that our parents are getting ready to leave us.

Within the past 24 hours I have vacillated between screaming out in frustration because I want things to go a certain way, let’s get to a hospital, let’s get extra help in the house, let’s figure out a plan, let’s, let’s, let’s, LET’S do something to right now:  beyond sad and struggling to find resignation and acceptance for the inevitable.   I’ve always been afraid of goodbyes – and some very important people in my life passed without me able to say goodbye to them, much less say what I wanted to say to them.

Our collective hearts were broken today at 3:20pm when my mother told us how she wanted to continue living out the rest of her life on this earth.  On the one hand, she was so peaceful that it became impossible to fight her decision.  So, as I sit here calm one minute, crying the next, I realize that my mother has given us an incredible gift:  the chance to be with her as she goes on to her final journey.   I am so afraid of letting go of her, what if she wants to come back? what if she gets scared? what if she feels lonely? what if? what if?   The best part of it all is that Mom is completely alert and completely sure of what she is doing…she sat us down and told us her wishes and told us all that she loved us.

So many people go thru their entire lives without feeling a parent’s love, respect, and approval.   My siblings and I KNOW what our parents think of us, they have both told us how proud they are of us and how much they love us.   Their love and support will get us thru the very hard times to come as we learn to accept Mama’s wishes and to, as Mama always says, to let go and let God.

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2 thoughts on “Turning the Tables: Letting Go

  1. carmen, soooo happy to hear that ur mom is good with where she’s at in her journey here on earth. as u say, this aging process is inevitable for all of us so we choose: do we live a life of love, gratitude, joy and contribution, and thereby carry that “energy” to our death process, OR do we live a ruff, mean-spirited life and have that reflected at our end? me, i choose the love and joy. i have ALWAYS believed, without any observable evidence, that we “die as we live.” if we lived decently and with love, our death process will reflect that. in my world, there is no right or wrong way to live, but instead, one that either “affirms” life and brings joy, OR… one that does not.

    it is wonderfully clear that ur mama has lived a loving, engaged, joyful and compassionate life and this, for me, is why she’s good with where she’s at today. i still think of my mom every day, and it’s bin 15 years. but u know, i miss her because i liked knowing her; being able to touch her and swingin’ by the house after a long conference in the bay area and taking her out for root beer float—she loved her floats!!

    so feel what u need to feel for u; for the collective familia group, but in the process, continue to be present for ur mom as u guys have done to date. keep her safe, warm, fed and truly loved. there is no greater gift we can give our parents than to humbly honor/respect them, their lives, and at the same time be present for them.

    u have the pix of ur mom & dad’s life; pull them out and share them with her and anyone who wants to see. continue to celebrate her life, here with all of u, and ALWAYS do what u feel is “right” in ur heart—take the lead hermana cuz that’s what u do as margaret’s first born!!

    my prayers/positive thoughts r with u and the rest of the familia. take care of ur papi and let him know all of u r there for him; for whatever he needs. don’t allow anyone or anything to “dishonor” ur mama’s life and the current day–trust me, this kinda stuff can happen so u gotta be ready. bueno pues, abazo fuerte y te me cuidas, eh? 2bro4life!!

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