Friday, October 28, 2016

What A Difference A Day Makes

What a difference a day makes... the day after your Mother passes... it just feels Odd.   She's always been there since the day I was born, even nine Months beforehand as she carried me in her womb... and now she's not.  I actually didn't know how I Feel... I couldn't Feel entirely Sad, since her suffering had ended and she is now Free... and I couldn't Feel entirely Glad for her either, because we tend to be selfish about holding onto those we Love and not wanting them to ever leave us.

I knew that The Day After would and could be rough, the numbness and shock wears off some and you're left with how best to Grieve and begin that Process?  You never know in advance how long that Process will take, it is so different and so deeply Personal for everyone. 

 There is no right way nor wrong way to Grieve and express your Grief.  There is no time limit involved... and I would never presume to tell anyone there is... it takes as long as it takes for each to go through their Stages of it.

Some never recover fully... others are fortunate enough to, though the Missing and the Emotions will always be there and rise up every so often, sometimes randomly and unexpected.   

Something will trigger a poignant Memory and the floodgates can open again as you well up with intense Emotion.  I knew I needed this Day After for myself... alone... to Process this profound Loss.  I was Thankful actually for the Season we are in, as I knew where I Needed and Wanted to be this day.

I knew the Ofrendas for the Dia de los Muertos Celebration were being expanded at The Desert Botanical Gardens and it was a Beautiful Cooler Morning to make that particularly poignant Pilgrimage this day of all days.  Altars where Family can Gather to Honor and Remember deceased Loved Ones. 

 Mom's departure still being so Fresh, it brought me great Comfort actually to Commune with her at the Altar in such a Beautiful Setting the day after.  Especially since I had been unable to get there in person in time beforehand to say Good-Bye and be with her at the end.

I lingered at the Altar a great long while... as other Visitors came and went. Most clearly just viewing it as a Cultural Art Exhibit and perhaps not fully understanding the significance of Altars Created to Honor and pay Homage to something or someone extremely significant.  Any and every Altar constructed to me is a Sacred Experience to behold and that is the Feeling I always get when I visit any... it always Moves me deeply.

This time it Moved me even more profoundly than usual given the particular personal reason I was there.   If you have ever been before the Altar at your Church or Temple perhaps you will understand that Feeling and that significance and reverence it imparts.   I knew that at Home it would Feel different that this year on our Altar Mom would be being Honored as well.  When I began Creating our Dia de los Muertos Altar of coarse I never considered that she would be.

I Felt very Close to her while in the Stillness of the Garden and standing there before the Ofrenda.   This was a particularly Magnificent one and in my Head and Heart I Personally Dedicated it to my Mom telling her that it Reminded me of the veil being particularly thin this time of year.  I told her that I knew she had just left, but I Hoped she would linger with me there in the Garden this one last time, since it was one of our Favorite places to visit and have a nice Meal.

I knew distance would no longer be a barrier for her or I... like it had been these past five years since she moved to Cali and thus we couldn't get together so often as we always had to do things and have Fun together.   You always Wish you had been able to do more, see more and spend more time together on this side of Time and Eternity... Life gets so complicated sometimes and fills up our days.

I am Glad and Grateful that we always lived so close for almost all of my life, with the exception of these last five years.   That we had been able to do so much together and Create so many lasting Memories, have so many Good Times and especially so many Laughs.  

 I am Glad that my Children got to grow up around this Nanna... and that The G-Kid Force got to grow up around Gt. Nanna too and get to know her so well.  I'm Thankful she had such a good run, such a long one... too many lose their Moms far too prematurely, I was Blessed not to have.

For just shy of six decades I had mine.  Wow, that's a long time... and yet, a part of me would have liked it to have been longer if she could have remained Well enough.   I had her over a decade longer than I had Dad though... and now they're together again.   And she's reunited with her own Mom, Dad and younger Sister... as well as a slew of other Loved Ones, both Human and Fur Babies she Cherished and was so looking forward to seeing once again.  She had outlived almost all of her Friends and Family you see... it's hard being one of the last ones to Cross Over.

Since my Brother and I have had our Share of growing older and not being particularly Well, she always worried she might outlast us... and no Mother wants that.   So she had told me numerous times she wanted desperately to go first, before any of her Children, Grandchildren, Great-Grandchildren or Great-Great Grandchildren.   It is the Natural Order of things she Hoped would play out and it has, answer to her fervent Prayers.  I'm Glad about that too, my Brother and I had concerns about what would happen to Mom if one or both of us preceded her Crossing Over?

As Parents Age and grow frail or ailing it is a consideration you must contemplate, ensuring their Care and Well Being.   I Thank my Dear Brother and Sister-In-Law in Cali for being so dedicated to Mom these past five years and shouldering that enormous burden of making all of the difficult decisions in recent years on her behalf almost exclusively.   It is very hard, I've done it when it was my turn and Parents lived in Arizona, I can't begin to tell you how much of a difficult and weighty responsibility it is to make decisions for someone who can no longer make their own.  Sometimes you have to make those Impossible decisions on their behalf!

If you have never come to that Season yet, it is akin to making those Impossible decisions on behalf of a Child, where your decision affects their Life and thus you're holding their Well Being in your hands!   It takes a lot of Prayer and asking for direction, strength, fortitude and patience.  It might not be the least bit appreciated at the time and it definitely won't be the Path of Least Resistance, since giving up one's Independence and being at the Mercy of others making decisions on your behalf is very humbling and probably very scary and upsetting.

It takes a lot of Trust and Humility on behalf of those you are the Guardian or Caregiver of.  And I Thank You Mom for Trusting my Brother and I with your Care in the latter years when you were most vulnerable and in Need of that Help and our Assistance with Life decisions that were so difficult to make and not really a Voluntary Choice.  

 Not that you were always in complete Agreement with us, feisty and as fiercely independent as you are... but you Humbly allowed us to choose the direction we felt was Best for you.   I Hope when it is my time I possess that level of Trust in those who Love me dearly and that the Lord give me sufficient Humility and Acceptance.

I would have to say that though I knew not HOW to Feel right now, this day... the day after... it was a Good Day.  One with a measure of Peace beyond all understanding and a Quietness of my Spirit connecting with yours, there in the Garden in front of the Altar... communing... from two different dimensions. And yet, Present in a palpable way so I knew you were there with me... lingering together one last time so we could say our Good-Byes properly and without distance or finances or illness being a factor.

God's Amazing Grace and Mercy so apparent this day... even though He took you Home and away from us, we entrust you into His most Loving Arms... until we will meet again in Paradise one day.

But until then I know you wouldn't want a flood of Tears or for us not to Enjoy Life this side of Time and Eternity even without you.  You would want us to Live Fully, Laugh loudly, and Celebrate your Life.   We cannot have the kick ass Wake as you would have had back Home in Wales, since everyone is so scattered among States and Continents... but we will Joyfully Celebrate YOU. Well over Eighty years of being the Unique and Wonderful Person everyone always Loved so much and could never, ever Forget, even if they only met you once... you are truly Unforgettable!

Yes, what a difference a day makes... my first day on Earth without a Mom or a Dad... and it Feels very Odd indeed.   And Sharing my Heart here in the Land of Blog is therapuetic and so I will... as often as I Need to as I continue to Heal and move through the Stages of Grief in my own time.


Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

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A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

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