Strength Through Losing My Mother
Today I look book through the fading but memorable recollections of my youth and my parents, and I see myself playing sports at school, cards with friends, and assembling puzzles in my secret spot in the attic.
In 1992 my best friend’s mother died of cancer. It was a disaster, but my mother used her power of connection to get his family back on solid ground footing. I remember how she cooked for my friend’s grieving father and mourning children for two weeks, and if you asked him what he thought of my mother, he would say “That woman has a heart of gold”. I agree one-hundred percent My feeling is that what makes her such a wonderful person is because the Holy Spirit resides within the temple of her body. My mother is one of the most reverent women I have ever known, and she is the person who convinced me to visit the priest with her every Sunday for as long as I can remember. She is a member of the RCIA (Right of Christian Initiation for Adults), which provides the public with the opportunity to become a part of the Catholic faith.
About 6 years ago my mom decided that she wanted to follow her lifelong goal of becoming an educator, and she knew that it would be hard work due to her experience with raising three children, doing housework, and studying at the same time. Yet, in the long run she felt that it would pay off. However, what my mother didn’t understand was that not all work pays off in the way that we expect it to in this strange world. After four challenging years of preparation at college, she graduated on one of the most beautiful, sunny, and radiant spring days that I've ever seen. My aunt and her family drove up to celebrate this momentous occasion, and this was the first time in my life that I remember shedding tears of joy.
Life Can Change Quickly
It’s strange how life can change so quickly. 2-months later my mother was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis as the age of 44, and hearing about this made me sick. I couldn’t believe that this would occur after all of the good that she dad done for others. This was one of the most challenging times for me, and my faith in God had just about disappeared along with my mother’s dream of being a school teacher. This was a personal tragedy that impacted both me and the entire community.
My mother soon became bored with her lack of engagement, and she became depressed with the whole situation. She took pills that would delay the progression of the disease, and I began to pray that something good could come of this, but I felt helpless without anything that I could do to help her. I felt that I could not just sit there and watch her body slowly fail as she experienced daily full-body spasms and slowly lost her memory. Multiple Sclerosis is a heartbreaking disease that slowly causes death by disabling the nervous system, and I just wanted to tell her that everything would be OK as when I was a young boy with the chickenpox. Over the past two years my father has secured a second job in order to support the family, and I have been spending time with my mother in order to help her through her condition.
My feeling is that I must find strength and resolve within my own heart in order to move forward with life and recognize that she will likely not recover from her progressive condition. This is my choice to move forward with my life as I have grown into an adult with my own responsibilities and the potential of caring for a new family of my own. More recently I have felt less compelled to stay at home with my mother on Friday and Saturday nights in order to make sure that I am living my life to the fullest as well, which is what she would have wanted anyway. The most challenging aspect of this experience is facing the fact that my mother is slowly losing her body, and that one day she will not be with us. However, I recognize that I am a hard-working young man with many years of growth and development ahead of me, and that I can choose to shape my life according to my vision. Perhaps learning to live my life to the fullest will be one of the redeeming lessons of this experience, and perhaps it has been this experience that has helped me to discover my inner strength, a life to live, and a world to shape.
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