Last wishes…

Tuesday, 9-13-11

A good afternoon with Mom.  She lay in her bed, one knee up (as usual), hands behind her head as we leafed through a holiday cookie cookbook (with lots of pictures).  We talked about her apple pie and how good a piece would taste right now, with coffee.  Then settled for ginger ale.

She seemed very content, smiling often (where’d my mother go?).  She did not pull away when I placed my hand on her stomach and asked how she felt.  She did not pull away when I gently touched the bruising on her arms.  And she did not pull away when I foofed with her hair.

I had brought her bedspread with me, freshly laundered and placed it over a chair.

Mom – You take that when I’m gone.

Me – Okay, if you want me to.  Is there anything in particular you want others to have?

Mom – I don’t have much anymore.  You take the bedspread.

Me (uncertain if I should bring it up, but…) – Do you still want to be cremated?

Mom – Yes!  And don’t you dare have a wake!

Me – I know!  I know!  You’ll haunt us if we do.  I know!  What would you like us to do with your ashes?

Mom – Oh, just put them in a can…a nice can.  Then put them on a shelf.

Me – A can?

Mom (giving me the look) – And it better be a nice can!

Me – I thought you wanted each of us to spread some of your ashes in our gardens.

Mom – Oh, I’m not sure I’d be good for the flowers.

Me – And I thought you wanted the rest of your ashes in TX with Joey.

My brother Joey was the ‘rascal’ in the family, typically into some mess or other.  He died a few years ago at 52.  His remaining ashes are with my youngest brother, Chris, who lives in TX.

Mom – Joey, Joey, Joey.

Me – Yup…

Mom – I’m sure he’ll just get me into trouble.

Me – Yup…

Mom (falling asleep) – That would be nice.

Me – Yup!


About hereisakiss

Daughter Writer Art's Educator
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5 Responses to Last wishes…

  1. dale says:

    Oh Elizabeth… you write so well… I am crying and laughing at the same time. Your mother is such a fisty character! There is so much humor in all her comments. I so wish I had known her better – years ago when you first met David. That you for sharing your life E..

  2. cortezsharkman says:

    So poignant…..


  3. Ursula says:

    Great post to read, Elizabeth, as I sit here watching your video and writing your story. Having met your mother, reading your post puts a huge smile on my face. THIS SMILE belongs to me, not like the smile of your mother’s, which, as she says, belongs to her dentist.Hahaha. I did get her to show those pearly whites, capturing them in a picture. I loved witnessing the relationship of you and your mother. As Dale posted, she is “fisty.” That’s a great quality to have. Enjoy your time with her, knowing she looks forward to it and adores you. – Ursula.

  4. I remember that time too. Mom and Dad had just come to Texas for Casey’s cancer surgery and before they left mom was complaining about her eyesight. She didn’t seem to upset, but bothered enough to say she was going to go to the doctor when she got home. I remember the phone call too. I also remember getting to talk to mom before she went in for her surgery. It was a nice conversation. I will never forget it as long as I live.
    I also remember getting to talk with dad the night before his stroke. He sounded so down, so sad. I asked him if he was taking care of himself and he said he didn’t have time for that. I called you that night, Elizabeth and asked you to go to dad’s and make sure he took his meds and had something to eat. You told me you would see him in the morning and make sure he had breakfast before he went to see mom.
    It’s funny what we remember. I miss Dad so much. I look forward to the day when I get to see him again. When I will see his smile and hear his voice once more. What a wonderful day that will be.

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