Honoring Endings, Beginning Again

My 83 yr old mom called me last night. I’d attempted unsuccessfully to reach her by phone throughout the day. One of my sisters had sent a group text with the information I knew my mom was calling about.

Her best friend, Nancy, died yesterday. Mom related this fact immediately. Before I could respond, she asked me if my son and daughter-in-law had received the Christmas check she’d placed in a card to her great grandson. I answered her question. My response was the same one as last week when she’d asked the same question. She knew they were moving from a condo in Boston to a house. Last week, she understood that the work they were doing to pack likely placed this task of depositing her check as a lower priority. I added that the movers arrived a day early, 2 days ago, due to the winter storm.

Then I asked her about Nancy. How did my mom feel? What did she know about arrangements? My mom barely responded and spoke, instead, about the freezing weather in Pittsburgh and the Boston floods she’d seen on TV.

I asked her how many years she’d been friends with Nancy. (I knew.) “25”, she answered. “Oh, I said, almost as many years as you’d been married to Dad.” “Yes, that’s true”, she replied.

Mom and Nancy had been widowed young. My Dad died a week before my mom’s 50th birthday. Nancy’s situation was similar. These 2 women had a dozen children between them. Their 20’s were consumed by pregnancies, childbirths, and raising babies. They’d missed out on all the things those in their 20’s without marriage or children tend to do and experience.

Nancy and my mom did their best to make up for those losses, beginning in their late 50’s until several months ago due to Nancy’s declining health. They traveled, dined out, went to the movies anytime they desired and talked to one another on the phone, incessantly. My siblings occasionally expressed concern over their late nights out and youthful behavior. One of my brother in law’s spoke to my mom about her late nights! My mom related this interaction to me with giddy laughter!

“I’m going to miss my Buddy”, said my mom.

Yes. Her need to say this was why she called. It’s so sad and going to be so hard for her to adjust to a new routine. She will but I said nothing to this effect. It wasn’t the time for future talk.

Mothers and children know one another. I knew why she called me and what she hoped to experience in that call. I’m certain she spoke with my other siblings with her own intentions with each call, perhaps not conscious intentions but she knows us. Intuitively, she knew how each one of us would respond and that she would receive what she needed from each of us. It’s likely she said a prayer to my brother, Jim, asking him to help Nancy pass into this next part of her journey. I’m sure she called it heaven.

All of us process information and feelings in our own way. My intention is to deepen my attention to this uniqueness of others’ and for myself as we enter this new year.

Happy New Year

Inner Progress

Kate

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