No, I was not on the phone with my mom…

First and foremost, this is not a sad post, at least I don’t think it is. Who knows what I’ll get up to by the time I finish it. But it is inspired by what the GG said to me when he walked in the door tonight: “Every time I walk in the door, I think you’ll be on the phone with your mom.”

Of course I was *not* on the phone with The Commander tonight. I do not know how to phone someone on the other side. What I *was* doing was dealing with a few little snippets of her affairs, thank you notes and things mostly. Although I have certainly called my mother about a billion times in my life, in the last few years, the phone calls have been rather tortuous. If she didn’t answer the phone I would wonder, well, uh, you can maybe imagine what I might have been wondering… When she did, we often had a horribilus time talking. She couldn’t hear me. She couldn’t understand me. I couldn’t hear her. I couldn’t understand her. My blasted iPhone would drop the call… Her blasted iPhone would drop the call…

One of the great reliefs of my life was when she moved to Freighter View. I called her there every day. If she didn’t answer the dern phone, I didn’t worry. I knew that I could call FV if I needed to find out how she was doing and I knew that FV would call me if there was a problem. All too soon they did start calling me, over and over again. Emergency trips to the north country ensued… And then there was this winter, which I don’t even want to think about right now…

When you spend hours and hours and hours and days and weeks with someone who is desperately ill and in constant pain, you feel relieved when they die. And you hope that they feel relieved too. The Commander and I spent hours and hours and hours talking about death this winter. She was constantly asking me existential questions that I had no answers for. How do you decide to die… Etc., etc., ad infinitum… In the end, I told her that it was her decision. And… 1) I loved her, 2) She had been a wonderful mother, 3) I would miss her, and 4) I would be OKAY. I cannot tell you how many times we had a version of that conversation…

There have been a few times that I have wanted to ask The Commander something but really, I am still in a sort of numb state of mind. I go to work and fling stuff or whatever. It’s a relief to not have to worry about my mom being ill and five hours away from me. That may be “bad” but it is reality.

I’d rather remember “us” in the photooo at Tahquamenon Falls back in the day when it took forever to get there.

5 Responses to “No, I was not on the phone with my mom…”

  1. Marquis Says:

    Try upgrading your iPhone to the 4God network.

  2. Paulette Says:

    “Like” the Marquis comment…the 4God network.

    I’ve walked the moominbeach beach the last two days (very little snow) and greeted the old Fin friends who have transcended this time and place. The funny thing is I can remember almost to the point of “hearing” each respective voice and hearty laughter. The Commander joined their troupe, and we all miss her. So thankful to have spent time with her, and to have good memories of her “with-it-ness” and sound mind until the passing.

  3. Aimee Nassoiy Says:

    Such a wonderful photo from Tahquamenon!
    The thing I love about communicating with our beloveds on the other side is you don’t need a phone, a battery, or any type of network plan. It is hard to hear answers, but presence is sometimes palpable, especially in places that they loved. And yes yes Paulette, I love the memories of laughter and hanging out together.
    I do so miss the Commander, and was so stunned by how utterly mentally sound she was through thick and thin. . . the “word search” was faulty at times, but the humor and sparkle were there.
    It’s been a couple years now, and I still have the occasional inspiration that I should call RB and tell her something. . . I don’t imagine that ever really goes away.

  4. Margaret Says:

    Yes, so many wise words here. I am trying to bring my mind around this idea, but it’s hard. I won’t want him in pain and I love him–but he’s so young. 🙁

  5. becky courtois Says:

    For me – it is the little things that cause a heartfelt stir. When I see a cardinal I think of mom. Although – I did get my mom’s diamond ring – that doesn’t mean as much to me as her cedar recipe box with her handwritten recipes (from the u.p. no less 🙂 ) All of the little animals remind me of my dad – he was like a male version of Snow White. At any given time, I would see the rabbit, the squirrels, and the birds pigging out at his feeder in harmony. Take note, although perhaps we may do grand things in life (pretty sure I won’t!) – it will be the little things that people remember us by.