Yesterday was five months since we said goodbye to our Mom. Five months have passed and it feels like it was yesterday. Five months since I sat in the waiting room to call the hospital Chaplin who my Mom was friends with that we wanted to do her funeral. I remember sitting there after I got off the phone with him thinking this absolutely cannot be real life. There is literally no way. No way that I just got off the phone with someone asking them to do my Moms funeral. I just sat there staring for I’m not sure how long, when I noticed a guy sitting a few chairs down from me. He and I were the only ones in the room on the Neuro floor and he was stressed out and on the phone. I heard him say they came in with what they thought was the flu and his wife actually had a brain bleed. He said she was stable at the moment but hadn’t woken up. He explained to the person on the phone that he wasn’t sure if she could hear him or not but he thought maybe she could.
I have no idea why but for some reason I felt so strong I needed to tell him that she could hear him and he needed to talk to her. I am outgoing but not in that way and I had never done anything like that before. So I ignored the feeling to tell him and headed back to my Mom’s room. Right before I walked through the door I felt so strongly that I needed to tell him. He was alone and I need to tell him now. So I turned around and went and sat down again. He was off the phone but I chickened out and started walking away when last second I turned around and said, “I am so sorry, I overheard you on the phone and I just felt like I am supposed to tell you that your wife can hear you and you need to keep talking to her.” He was appreciative and we talked for a few minutes before I excused myself to get back to my Mom.
I didn’t think about it again until the next day my sister and I were waiting in the waiting room while they did some donor tests on my Mom. The man was there again and I asked him how his wife was doing, and he asked how we were doing. We sat there in silence for a little while and I was staring out the window at the old hospital building across the way that looked like it was off one of the vampire shows my Dad and I used to watch. I don’t even know if I meant to say it out loud but I mentioned how the building had seen so much evil and death I don’t know how anyone could ever want to work in it. I only saw pain, hurt, and death.
The man paused for awhile and then took a deep breath and told me how he could see how I see it that way, but a year ago, one floor down, he had open heart surgery that saved his life. Two floors down is where his niece lived for over a year when she was 6 years old and waiting for a new heart. She then was in the same hospital again 10 years later where she was saved again from another new heart. It didn’t even cross my mind that good things happened there, amazing things. What he told me completely opened up my eyes because until that point I could only see death. There wasn’t just death though, people were saved or even given a new life there daily. I needed to hear that, I needed to hear that there was good. We ran into him as we were leaving the hospital for good and his wife was awake and doing well, I still think of him from time to time.
What I learned that day was so valuable. I could have walked away and never spoken to him even though I felt deep down I was supposed too. I could have ignored it and not given it another thought like I’m sure I’ve done so many times before, but I didn’t. I’m not sure if he even needed to hear that from me but what he told me that next day I most definitely needed to hear. It didn’t fix anything I was still hurting, my Mom was still gone, everything was still changing, but I needed to hear what he had to say. I needed to hear that there was still good in this world.
As I drove home yesterday and was reflecting on everything that happened I couldn’t help but be appreciative of that man and the blessing he gave me, just a little sprinkle of hope. He snapped me out of my doomsday mentality even if it was temporary at first. It got me thinking on how many times I should have listened to that feeling that I’m supposed to say something or do something and I chose to ignore it. How many blessings have I missed out on because I was too scared, or too busy. I don’t ever want that to happen again. I want to be so in tune with what God is telling me that I don’t skip a beat if he asks something of me. God says to listen to him because our hearts and minds are deceitful. In Proverbs 3:5 NIV it says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.” I can be my own worst enemy if I am not careful so I have to make a conscious effort to try to listen to God. I am still repairing my relationship with him and some days still working through some anger about losing my Mom-but God has never left my side. Now that I see more clearly I can see all the hidden blessings he put in my pathway from the time I got that phone call about my Mom, until now.
Five months has passed since we said goodbye to the person that made all of our worlds go round. Five months has felt like a lifetime and at the same time like no time has passed at all. We miss her so much it feels like it’s been forever since we got to talk and hug her, but at the same time feels like we lost her yesterday. We are all still pretty messed up and haven’t quite found our new normal, but what I do know is my Mom would want us to live the life God intended for us. To find joy again even if it’s one second at a time. So we will keep trying. I will keep fighting to be better than I was yesterday no matter how much some days I just want to crawl in a hole. I will continue to restore my relationships, beginning with Jesus. I will work to live a life she would be proud of. All we can do is try, and so that’s what I’ll do.