Tags: #Life, #Blogging
Loss and new beginnings.
“I could live to be 💯 and I still would not be ready to lose my mom” ~Lisa Molnar
Lisa is my beautiful mother, is going through one of the most painful hardships one can endure: the loss of a parent. It does not matter… Whether you are young or old, it still does not undermine how much it hurts. I feel as though people’s hearts go out to those who lose family members early on in life yet overlook tragedy when it happens to someone who has had been around longer.
Happy birthday Lisa, my beautiful mother!
They say my grandmother was the person to provide a soft word, or even just a shoulder to cry on while she she listens to you. I have missed that shoulder from the moment I saw her lay lifeless in her hospital bed. Myrna was a tough lady. She survived breast cancer in 1983, A stroke in 2014, and had a heart attack which resulted in a pacemaker in 2016 while she was on her trip to Mexico, and her breast cancer returned in 2018. She was a fighter, staying strong until the bitter end, to allow us that one last chance to visit her before she passed.. A mere 8 hours prior. She knew she did not have much time left, as the night before, she kicked everyone out. This time around, she could not speak, it was a quiet whisper, skin was paper and mottled, her breathing laboured despite being on oxygen and nodded as we asked if she wanted someone to stay. She watched the clock, with the look of frusteration painited on her face she was articulate in her mind but the infections took away her voice. She chose my grandfather, of everyone who was there to stay on the cot, next to her bed.
We had a general theme that revolved around this poem. It was important, as she lived hers with passion and never complained much. She had arthritis, but never shown her pain. She would rub her knuckles after a long day of office work. She would be asked by others if she is hurting she would simply nod. She was tenacious yet humble and put others first. She was among the most selfless people I knew and always ensured everyone else was comfortable before she even found it appropriate to help herself. Never asked for much, but any gesture no matter how small and insignificant it may seem was met with the deepest of gratitude. She was even excited for “wash day” which was every other Tuesday because doing laundry including folding & ironing them perfectly gave her something to do. She liked her birds and her gardens, she spent a lot of time outdoors. The birds were gone the 3 days prior to her passing, but were present on the 16th. Mom would look at the birds and say “Hi mom!” Yesterday there was a lot of birds outside when we proceeded to the garage. They would usually fly off with the slightest of disturbance but this time there were more still, and they weren’t phased by the excess of 💯 people entering and exiting the garage.
by Linda Ellis
I read of a man who stood to speak
At the funeral of a friend
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
From the beginning to the end
He noted that first came her date of her birth
And spoke the following date with tears,
But he said what mattered most of all
Was the dash between those years
For that dash represents all the time
That she spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved her
Know what that little line is worth.
For it matters not how much we own;
The cars, the house, the cash,
What matters is how we live and love
And how we spend our dash.
So think about this long and hard.
Are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left,
That can still be rearranged.
If we could just slow down enough
To consider what’s true and real
And always try to understand
The way other people feel.
And be less quick to anger,
And show appreciation more
And love the people in our lives
Like we’ve never loved before.
If we treat each other with respect,
And more often wear a smile
Remembering that this special dash
Might only last a little while.
So, when your eulogy is being read
With your life’s actions to rehash
Would you be proud of the things they say
About how you spent your dash?
© by Linda Ellis, Copyright Inspire Kindness,
LLC 1996, http://www.thedashpoem.com
It was a hard time, my date night was cut short due to some really bad news, as she has deteriorated rapidly between Christmas and valentines day, from her being her vibrant self to a frail version of someone who once jumped up and down in anger when 5 of her 6 grandchildren were rowdy while one was dealing with a migraine. I have never seen her that angry, and could only recall a handful of times she actually put her foot down in our earlier years. When nobody else cared, she vouched for my comfort jumped up and down while calling the night, “It’s my house it’s my decision!” A few hours later from that I was disoriented from my sleep thought the day was gone, but it was around suppertime… I meekly asked her what was going on and if it was still a go… she asked me softly if my head was better and I nodded and said “Thank you, grandma for standing up when everyone else went crazy” she held me and said “I love all my grandchildren and I want all to be comfortable”
My mother has known hers for 54 years, and the bond they share was among the strongest I have ever known. “Anyone who knew Lisa would go over to visit her mom even if she has stubbed her toe,” Blair added to the eulogy.
Mom would not think twice before driving nearly a thousand kilometers one way to see hers and when the opportunity presented itself, I took the chance to see her. This time was different, I knew something was not quite right and I wound up leaving for almost 10 days to go tend to family matters. Our family is close, and we have strong family values. “Family First” mentality. These wholesome close knit connections communities once prized are now a rarity; Everyone became so detached, and society has become deficient. Factors that kept people together now bar us from building close interpersonal relationships.
I can get lost time back by pulling more hours and do more work but I cannot get my grandparents back.
Grampa Lorne is the last one left, but he is never truly alone. He has his community and his family to provide support. This time was the most involved with arranging the plans for Myrna’s service. On a Saturday, and the oldest grandchild made the PowerPoint. I remembered being especially misty eyed when Shara composed Ruth’s presentation. I was unsure if I would actually ever be able to do that if I was asked to make the slideshow. Well, be careful on how you question yourself, as you may hold your words as that very question was put to the test. My mother asked me if I could make the presentation. I had no choice but to take on the task, it was like going up to speak in tribute. I had Darcy (minister in our family who officiated) say as a segway to introduce the presentation that it was among the best he has ever seen. I was flattered, and I was showered in compliments from others who attended on the show during the luncheon. I know the old saying “if you wouldn’t show it to your grandmother then it is unacceptable. Well, when you are holding that with already the high standards of everyone else. I spent emotional 3 days on that show, most of which was troubleshooting and locating photos, and being bombarded with “Did you put in _______ photo?!” Each slide (except the first two slides had a quote) I had the Dash poem peppered throughout the show, with a stanza on each third slide. I had her memorial slide pulled from the funeral home’s website, second had a pictogram of the progress of aging entitled “Live your Dash -Linda Ellis” bottom was a smart art graphic of 3 arrows, 2 with her dates, and a dash in the middle. Each slide lasted 15 seconds and it was actually really heavily animated. I had a lot of flowers growing throughout, animated pictures, moving rings and text effects & fade, change colors in as well as fading credit effect. The song “Five More Minutes” played behind there and the last slide was the finale and it had a lot of movement. From grandchildren flying in keeping everyones head on a swivel and the constant up and down path of the zigzag represent in the relationship between the grandchildren. And as the grandchildren went away, there was a collage on Mexico. They spent 19 years there, you bet I was going to put a bunch of family, time & travel quotes. Moments after a “thank you” shows up on the bottom as it just ends. Very meticulous indeed, just like she was.
It is truly a matter of perception I am now no longer in doubt and I was glad to be involved in this whole thing. It was painful, but it rekindled a sense of joy as you have had the chance to connect with memories and family that were elusive yet cherished. We now have a list of people who want the copy of the presentation. Actually I had Candy (mom’s cousin) ask me if she could have me do her presentation at her funeral. I responded “I would. However, I do not want to do that anytime soon, I want you around for many more years to come.”