21 Nov Mercy
Tuesday November 12th, 2013
I identify sorrow sitting in my right mid back, caused by unresolved issues with my mother, who could be difficult. I invite God into the space and hear nothing. I tell my mother that I understand that when we cause pain towards our children, in reality it is toward oneself. I tell her that she did not deserve to have been treated unkindly in her life. I forgive her for the pain she caused me, embrace her and tell her that I love her. Then I hear “You have given mercy, therefore mercy shall be given you.”
That evening I receive a phone call informing me that my 86 year old mother had stopped breathing, had CPR for over 20 minute. When the paramedics arrived she still had no pulse, legally dead. The paramedics intubated her and restarted her heart.
She was placed in an induced coma and her brain cooled. The plan was to remove the life supports in five days, hoping she would breathe on her own. Thursday night she was internally struggling. It was determined that it would be harmful for her to continue fighting. Life supports were removed and she took her first independent breathe.
I arrived Thursday morning. She was still unconscious. Speaking to her, she opened her eyes. It took awhile for her to be able to talk. Her prognosis was not positive, so I arranged for my out of province sisters to connect with her on speaker phone. When she could speak she did not recognize me, introducing me as her best friend to the nurses. She asked if I knew her daughter Mary Anne. Affirmed I did. She told me that Mary Anne is okay now; that she had lost her husband. So sad. She informed me that Mary Anne had been her right hand and that she couldn’t have done without her help.
My mother struggled with her memory over the next few days. Amazingly, she had no negative thoughts. She was transformed – gracious, positive and appreciative to all. I spent a fair bit of time with her. She enjoyed having me read to her (only way to stop her talking as she tried to piece together the memories of her life) and enjoyed having me hold her hand. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have spent such loving moments with my mother.
On Sunday morning I spend time with her before returning home. When I asked how she felt her response was ‘I’m not afraid. I’m ready to die”. She then informed me there are differed levels in heaven; that she had been thinking of her mother, father and David (my late husband) and that when she got there she’d look down and say “David, what are you doing down there? Get up here!” Humor intact and truly funny!
Less than one week after her massive heart attack, her memory is totally restored. She now has only 30% heart function. She is joyful, walking and returning home. She has defied all medical expectations.
As for myself, I realize my perception can be flawed. I grew up feeling unappreciated and believing that I was not good enough. We truly do not know what is in someone’s heart if not disclosed. Many suffer with self sabotage, anxiety and depression because of withheld life giving, affirming words. In my life I try to be attentive to speaking from the heart and pray for forgiveness if I have caused another needless pain.
My mother is truly one very stubborn Dutch woman! When I wonder where I get my tenacity and determination from, I do not need to look far.
Yes, mercy was given and mercy was received. I give thanks to God for the wonderful healings that took place.