I knew it was difficult for my mom to not be able to help us out when we took Q home, but we managed just fine. She was a phone call away when I needed advice or to vent. And she came to visit with my dad a couple of times so they could at least hold him while I grabbed some food. And I drove the 45 minutes to their house with Q once I knew
The Sunday before she passed, T and I had plans to take Q down to my parents' house for another visit and to watch the Oscars. We had a tradition of watching the Oscars at their house with lots of decadent snacks, drinks, and filling out ballots to see who guessed the most wins correctly. Always a blast. I looked forward to it every year. That morning, my dad called to say that my mom wasn't feeling well and didn't think she could handle company. I was worried of course, but not that worried since I figured this was just one of her bad days. My mom called me later to tell me not to worry, that she was really tired and would rather sleep. That was the last time I spoke with my mom.
When I got the call from my dad the next morning, I was nursing Q. The news socked me in the stomach and I began to lose it. Q, all of 7 weeks old, looked up at me with curiosity in his little eyes. I had to calm down for Q. Fortunately T was home with me that day, too. I don't know what I would have done without him there. I realized that I could manage the crazy days ahead of us because I had my boys with me.
I could go on and on about how difficult this all was and how difficult it still can be, but I want to focus on some of the positives right now. Quincy was (and is) my light, my angel. He was such a calm baby and even slept through most of her funeral service and the raucous celebration of her life afterward. He kept me sane through the darkest days. And the support I received from T -- I couldn't ask for a better partner.
Above all, my mom provided the ultimate example of the mother I hope to be. A giver, a confidante, someone to laugh with, someone to cry with, a great friend but always a mother. She taught me to be strong, but that it's okay to let your vulnerability show sometimes, too. (Hi vulnerability!) Her spirit reminds me to celebrate the optimist in me, to be grateful for what I have. My health, my healthy family, my beautiful home, my amazing friends. The sense of humor she gave me. I'm so grateful that she was in my life at all and that she is no longer in pain. On the days when I can sense the darkness hovering around the edges, threatening to seep in, I try to remember these things. I make gratitude lists. I laugh at myself. I know things are going to be okay.
But how I miss her. Every day. How I miss you, Mamasay.