Monday, May 9, 2011
My partner and I both lost our mothers about six years ago, two months apart. JB's mom passed first. Unlike my mom, it was sudden and unexpected. She came to visit us on a Thursday. Friday she started complaining of back pain and JB took her to see a doctor. Despite heroic efforts by the staff and doctors at Piedmont Hospital to repair an abdominal aneurism, she passed on Sunday. As tragic as this was, JB saw it as a blessing that this happened while she was here with us rather than home in Texas where she lived alone.
My mom had been ill for several years after struggling with diabetes then suffering a stroke. She bounced back at first, but one setback after another made it impossible for my dad to care for her at home. She spend the last four years of her life in a nursing home.
I don't know what happens after we die, but JB does. He was comforted thinking about our moms hanging out together in heaven telling each other all the funny stories they have about us. And watching over us.
When that first Mother's Day rolled around, we already made plans for it. We have plenty of wonderful friends in our lives and many of them have fabulous moms that we've come to know as friends. On Mothers Day we give our attention to our "foster Moms" and to our sisters. We spend most of Sunday on the phone.
Yesterday one phone call made us sad. When we called our friend Phyllis down in Florida, she was thrilled to hear from us. But she admitted that when the phone rang, she was hoping it was her son calling. Her son happens to be JB's ex. (Yes, it's complicated. One of these day's I'm going to diagram the relationship dynamics between myself, JB and our exes.)
We haven't seen Phyllis in a few years. She hasn't visited since shortly after her son started a new relationship. I really like these guys and I've always been happy they found each other. What I didn't realize was that there is some sort of animosity between the new boyfriend and Phyllis.
I know there's two sides to every story. And frankly, I don't care about the details. Their family drama is none of my business. What I do care about is a sweet, lonely woman who feels shut out from her son's life. And about a son who, for whatever reason, is squandering the precious time he has left with his mother. To JB and myself, who would give anything for one more Mother's Day, this seems incomprehensible.