Thursday, 25 October 2012

A little bit Personal

I'm taking a different tone tonight in this post. I have something a little more personal that I really want, or I should say, NEED, to talk about. Now my blog's name is Amy's MAMA Mania. Because well, that's my name, I'm a mom and life is manic. What I want to talk about is my own mother.

I feel like I'm my mom in a lot of ways. Not meaning the, “Oh gawd, I’m just like my mother” kind of way. More like the fact that we both had two children, one boy and one girl. We also struggled with weight and both lost the weight on our own terms.

We have similar features (dark hair, large almond shape eyes though different colors, same nose and mouth), however other than that I am unsure where our similarities end. I know to most that may sound odd. However, those who know me know that I lost my mom to leukemia when I was just 14 years old.

Now, I want to go back a little further to give some background information.

 My parents divorced when I was young. I know they stayed together for as long as they did for me. I know I’m not the root cause of their divorce (unlike what I thought when I was 7 or so). I had to find out later one that it isn’t normal for your parents to constantly fight or that one parent always slept on the couch instead of their room. Also my brother and I have different fathers, and he did not live with us (his dad was from my mom’s previous marriage). After the divorce, I lived with mom and spent every other weekend with my dad.

Our last picture of us being a family.

My mom and I were very close. She was my best friend, as we moved a lot and I always relied on her being there for me. We would go rollerblading together, then walk to dinner and grab a movie to watch almost every weekend. We would have drama queen competitions to see who could the biggest drama queen. We had E.R. Marathons, dinner of queso and tortillas, and we would talk about everything, as she never talked down to me for being a child. I’m not saying I never got in trouble, because I did, a lot. Usually for leaving a messy room while I was at my grandma’s or dad’s house (what Savannah gets in trouble for).

My mom, my best friend.
All of that changed however, when my dad came over one night, and they both sat me down to tell me that my mom had been diagnosed that morning with the blood cancer, Leukemia, and she would be starting Chemo treatments the next day.

 I remember trying so hard not to cry, as I didn’t want my mom to see me upset. I felt she needed my strength. I told her she would beat this, because she used to say she was going to live forever. I reminded her that she will see her grandchildren who one day will call her “grandma”, the name she dreaded hearing (she said she would always be too young to ever be called that). We laughed that night when I told her that when she’s in her 90s that I would drop her off at Home Depot to wonder around all day till I came to pick her up.

 I then went up to bed and cried the whole night.

 Two weeks later, as I was finishing up freshman band (my first class of the day) my dad picked up from school. My heart sank, because I knew something had happened.

 My mom was in the hospital under observation from her first round of Chemo treatments. We went up to visit her the night before, I told her how much I loved her and that to stay strong, and she would be home soon.

My brother, mother and myself
After my dad signed me out of school we walked to his car in silence. I saw my stepmom waiting in the front seat. I climbed in the back and we drove in total silence. Finally my dad stopped at local convenience store to grab something to drink.  That is when my dad turned around and told me that my mom was in a coma. Sitting there in the back seat of my dad’s car in front of a gas station, my world crumbled. I don’t remember the drive to the hospital. All I do remember is entering the ICU and the doctor sitting us down to tell us she had a brain aneurism and she had been declared brain dead. Also, it was only a matter of time till her heart gave out. When I finally saw her, hooked up to life support, I just lost everything I had left and let out the most heart breaking sob. I held her hand and wouldn’t leave other than to pick up my older brother from the airport. I would pray that she could hold on till the whole family could fly into town, because I knew it was useless to ask for my mother back. We would hold our breaths when her heart rate slowed down. I remember refusing to eat and finally being asked if at 14, I wanted to make the decision to take my mother off life support.

To this day, I am still haunted by that decision. I went ahead and said yes, to end this for everyone. I watched my mom almost die twice in front of us and I didn’t know how much more I could take. Everyone was finally in from out of town and had their own personal time to say goodbye.

When they made us leave so they could take her off life support, I could hear her mother screaming down the hall (we are not close with her family, which is for another time). I will never forget seeing her body just laying there while I grabbed onto my dad for dear life. I kept getting asked to hug her one last time, and I would scream no, that is no longer my mom. I would look up to see my dad crying and hugging me back, as we comforted each at that moment.

My beautiful Mother, Sept 22, 2001

 Now, I believe 14 is a hard age for anyone. Factor in the loss of a parent and moving homes, I was downright lost but refused to show it. Again, I was being a teenager. I’m not saying that my dad didn’t try to get me help after everything, because he did. I just didn’t need the places I went.

Christmas at my Grandma's house
I became angry and bitter inside. I was so mad at my mom for leaving me like she did. I even went so far to think terrible things about my only living parent, which made me feel even worse, because he was my dad and he was doing the best that he could do.

It wasn’t that long ago that I realized I was still holding on to that anger, I just didn’t know it. I was miserable, overweight, and angry at the world.  My children would never meet their Grandma, I could never ask her advice for things that where life changing decisions. She missed my prom, graduation, my marriage, my children being born, buying our first house; the milestones you are suppose to have your mother there for.

I finally let go of the anger along with the weight. Now, I want to let go of this sadness that creeps up on me at random times. It’s a heartbreaking sadness that will knock the air out of me and I can’t see right. It will hit me when I try to remember her laugh and I can’t. Or the smell of her perfume but I can’t. I can’t remember her voice or her presences. And I have to realize, that’s alright I can’t remember, that this happens with time.

I am going to focus on the fact that I had her in my life. That I got to spend the best 14 years with her, that she is the most amazing mother I was ever blessed to have.

This is my goodbye to this pain. I wrote all my pain out in this blog, so I can finally stop carrying it around in my heart.

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