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A Day I Never Thought I Would See

Today is a milestone of sorts for me even though this day has absolutely nothing to do with me.

You see, today is a day I feared would never ever come.  It’s a day I only hoped I would live to see.  It’s a day that I now celebrate as relief floods through me.  Today is my mother’s 63rd birthday.

My grandmother passed away at the young age of 62.  She suffered a heart attack.  For some odd reason, I’ve always associated that age with my mother’s death.  Like if she could make it past 62 everything would be all right.

There has been a multitude of turbulence along the way, however. Many incidents and much nail biting.

She had ovarian cysts in 1998 and required a hysterectomy.  Normally that’s not a problem but since she has had 3 c-sections they had to use an unorthodox method to keep her insides together.  She has so much scar tissue built up from her c-sections that they had to use steel mesh to hold her abdomen together after the surgery, so it was anything but a routine hysterectomy.  A few years after that, part of her intestines got caught, and pinched, in the mesh and she was, according to the doctors, pretty close to death before they repaired it.

Next she was diagnosed with diabetes.

Then high blood pressure.

Then, just a couple of years ago, she had to have a triple bypass due to three arteries being more than 90% blocked.  I wept as the doctor explained this to me.  I happened to be there because I drove her to the hospital for her angiogram.  She was immediately admitted and I stressed out like a smoker without a cigarette for the next three days.   She was admitted on a Friday afternoon and they don’t schedule operations on the weekend, so she wasn’t operated on until the following Monday morning.  The procedure took hours.  I spent all day in the waiting room nervously staring at the phone.  A nurse would call every so often to update me on progress and to assure me everything was going fine.  In the late afternoon, when I was finally able to see her, I almost lost it.  She looked dead.  Her skin was ghost-white, which is saying something considering how pale she already is.  She had a huge breathing apparatus coming out of her mouth.  Her IV had 8 lines going into it.  There were monitors stuck all over her body.  I was in shock.  The fact that they told me she had done well seemed to be contradicted by the sight before me.  Luckily I had my wife there to hold my hand and keep me calm or I might have broken down right there.  I kissed my mother’s forehead, which was hauntingly cold.  I was then instructed by the nurse to leave.

My mother has made a full recovery, of course.  She takes care of herself.  She eats right (which is hard to do when you’re diabetic AND have high blood pressure).  She exercises.  She does what her doctors tell her to do and she is in good health, generally.  She found new motivation in all of her grandchildren.  At the time of her surgery she had only the twins.  She’s become a grandmother 4 more times since then and she loves every minute of it.  My children adore her.  Baby C loves going to see Grandma.  Because mom lives in the same neighborhood as we do, he always asks if we’re going to Grandma’s house whenever we leave or come home.  Even the twins, at 13, still love going to see their grandmother.  They ask me often to go see her.  I envy them that as my grandmother passed away when I was 7.

It has been a long and arduous road for my mother just to make it to this day and she has given me plenty of scares along the way.  Still, I wasn’t sure during all that time that this day would ever come and I’m ever so glad it has.

I love my mother with every fiber of my being.  She has been so strong through so much and still smiles.  She still laughs.  And she still takes care of me.  I’d be lost right now without her help since my wife and I separated.  I hope that I can be half the parent she is.  If I can do that I’ll consider myself successful.  I hope that one day my children feel about me the same way I do about her.  She is truly an angel.

Happy birthday, mom.  I love you with all of my heart.

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66 thoughts on “A Day I Never Thought I Would See

  1. Happy birthday, TwinGrandma!


    Posted by sortaginger | June 30, 2013, 11:10 am
  2. Happy Birthday to your mom. :-)


    Posted by 1jaded1 | June 30, 2013, 11:18 am
  3. Happy Brthday to your mom. :) I loved the post.


    Posted by Archita | June 30, 2013, 11:27 am
  4. Wonderful, post, TD. Happy birthday to your mom. I’m wishing her many more happy and healthy ones.

    Isn’t it funny the way numbers stick in your psyche? 54-1/2 is the average ages of my two sisters when they passed. Every day passed that number I feel lucky indeed .


    Posted by Elyse | June 30, 2013, 11:52 am
  5. Happy birthday to your mom!!!


    Posted by Chatter Master | June 30, 2013, 12:04 pm
  6. Wow, your mom is very strong.

    Happy birthday, Twindaddy’s mom!


    Posted by MissFourEyes | June 30, 2013, 12:08 pm
  7. Awesome post! Your mom has lots to live for with a awesome son and grand kids! I often think my girls at 19 and 14 are so lucky to still have my parents and my grandparents (there great grandparents) who are 91&88 and they both are still living at home with minimal help. Happy Birthday Mom!


    Posted by Just Another Canadian Gurl | June 30, 2013, 12:21 pm
  8. Aw.


    Posted by merbear74 | June 30, 2013, 1:01 pm
  9. Aww, Happy Birthday to her! She has been through a great deal, wow.
    She is one strong lady.


    Posted by DaydreamsinWonderland | June 30, 2013, 2:01 pm
  10. Happy Birthday, to TD Mother!


    Posted by behindthemaskofabuse | June 30, 2013, 2:32 pm
  11. I understand this timekeeping drill. I’m glad this day brought you some relief. I’m close to my Mom as well. I understand.


    Posted by BrainRants | June 30, 2013, 8:21 pm
  12. How fortunate she is to have such a son as you!


    Posted by lisajohnsonsawyer | June 30, 2013, 9:18 pm
  13. Beautiful! Happy birthday to TwinGranny!!


    Posted by rarasaur | June 30, 2013, 9:38 pm
  14. Happy birthday to your mom. Her birthday is one day after mine. That’s a lot of June birthdays.

    So glad she’s still with you and that you guys have that connection. Great post.


    Posted by aliceatwonderland | June 30, 2013, 10:22 pm
  15. Happy B-day to your mom! Excellent post..so emotional. Tnx for sharing your thoughts! :-)


    Posted by Trigeminy303 | July 1, 2013, 4:42 am
  16. Sweet…Happy Birthday to your mom…and many more to come.


    Posted by Kayjai | July 1, 2013, 7:10 am
  17. Happy birthday, Momma Twin.
    And thanks for raising a great son.


    Posted by El Guapo | July 1, 2013, 2:08 pm
  18. Sweet. I hope my boys feel this way about me when I’m 63! I used to hate those tattoos that say ‘Mom’….until I had 2 boys. Now I love them ;-).


    Posted by dhonour | July 1, 2013, 4:23 pm
  19. I had a big scare with my last year, so I know the feeling. When she turned 60 this past Fall, the celebration was that much more poignant. Sweet post.


    Posted by kelloggs77 | July 1, 2013, 7:06 pm
  20. That just made me tear up.


    Posted by Polysyllabic Profundities | July 1, 2013, 8:37 pm
  21. Wow. Awesome. The things they can do these days. We are living in a time of medical miracles. I am happy for you both.


    Posted by pouringmyartout | July 2, 2013, 3:29 pm
  22. Happy birthday to your mum. My dad died young as did most of his family. There is also a genetic link to breast cancer on my side which is getting a bit out of hand so I so get you thinking she wouldn’t make it. Mind you I use the situation well by constantly reminding my conservative accountant husband that we must spend that money as I may not live to enjoy it!! Sadly it doesn’t work! Lovely post.


    Posted by tric | July 2, 2013, 7:02 pm
  23. Such a sweet appreciation of your mother! :)


    Posted by gita4elamats | July 2, 2013, 11:27 pm
  24. Happy Birthday TG!! What a wonderfully detailed tribute to your mother and everything she has overcome to be where she is today. I’d like to think of those diagnoses as lucky, because now she has the knowledge of how to improve her body and how to live right for herself. Her surgeries tune-ups to keep her body in perfect condition to live many many more years to enjoy her grand kids.

    Congrats TG, on making it past the “death year”! (that’s what we call it in our family. My mother’s mother passed away at 52, I was 5. My mother and her older sister are now in their early sixties (yay!) having made it past the death year. There is still one sister left. She is 48 – 5 years left to pass that year.)


    Posted by jack joseph's mom | July 3, 2013, 5:40 am
  25. Well done, Mom!
    Keep up the good work!


    Posted by The Hook | July 3, 2013, 7:51 am
  26. Very belated birthday wishes to your mum, TD. I’m really glad for you and her that she’s with you and going to be with you for so much longer. Xx


    Posted by faithhopechocolate | July 16, 2013, 5:54 am


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