I trust that who I am is perfect for my unique journey and soul path.
Soulful Woman Guidance Cards (#32)
When I was younger my mother used to comment that she wished I’d stop doing things my way. She’d plead with me to please just be like ‘the others’.
I wasn’t good at it. I always wanted to carve my own path, seek my own course. Just because others did it one way didn’t make it a good way for me.
Yesterday, while visiting her at the hospital, a nurse came in to help her sit up higher in her bed. She was doing really well after the hip replacement surgery two weeks ago. Was walking a few metres with the help of a walker and though she still needed one person to help her get out of bed, she was determined to get up on her own.
And now, she’s not doing well. A cough that she’s convinced is pneumonia, (the x-rays will be back today) has left her feeling weak, frustrated and defeated. She’s not allowed solid foods and is confined to bed. Looking at her yesterday, I could see the ravages of no food on her frail body. She’s lost more weight and is now below 90lbs.
On the phone with my middle sister yesterday, my mother asked her to promise that she’d be here for her funeral. I’m ready to go, she told her. I’m sure it won’t be long.
At my sister’s admonishments that she’d be fine soon, she laughed and said, well we have to be able to joke about it don’t we?
I don’t really believe she was joking. I think she’s preparing us for what comes next.
My mother has proven to be resilient and stronger than even the doctors imagined. Her doctor calls her ‘the floor mascot’. One of the nurses told me she was doing better than any other person on the floor, in spite of them all being decades younger.
My mother does it her way.
Perhaps it is what she saw in me that concerned her so much long ago.
It is not always an easy path. Sometimes, it feels like going against the flow. Pushing against the wind, especially in those moments where you know, without a doubt, what is best for you, and others are holding on to the way things were.
When it comes to our parents, no matter our age, it is hard to let them go.
For my mother, she is ready.
She was so excited to be walking, to be showing everyone that at over 94 she was not some helpless old lady lying in bed, ‘a burden’ (her words) on everyone. And now, despite her desire to reach 100 years of age, this latest setback of a cough that is now confining her to bed, keeping her on a liquid diet only, is bringing her down.
I understand. Life isn’t about constantly fighting the winds, it’s about setting your sails to let the wind carry you where you want to go.
My mother is tired. Her resilience is waning. Her conviction she can get through this weakening.
I want to tell her to do it her way. To be her own unique self travelling this segment of her journey with the grace she has shown all her life. To let go of aspiring to reach a certain age, or prove people wrong. (She’s been so proud of the fact she’s proven the medical staff wrong. They thought she’d be confined to bed forever.)
I want to tell her to be her own unique self on the journey of her lifetime. That no matter when she takes her final breath, the gift she’s left behind is carried forward in the grace-filled women who follow in her path. From my sisters to my daughters to my nieces, the grace my mother has always shown through trials, tribulations and triumphs is what inspires each of us to continue to live with grace in all ways, in all things.
Thank you mom. Your courage, strength and grace continue to amaze me and inspire me to live as uniquely me, travelling my journey creatively and lovingly, just like you taught me.