As I repot this Dieffenbachia plant, I find myself thinking about my Mother.
My Mother passed away in March of 1997. She was ‘only’ 74. Over 22 years ago. I received a call in the morning on a Saturday.
I was in my office at the time when that call came in. It was my sister telling me my Mother had had a stroke and she was in the hospital. It didn’t look good.
Funny what we think about in times of crises. The years passed before my eyes. A few days before, my Mother had called me from Houston and I hadn’t picked up. I decided I would call her in a few. That conversation never took place.
As we all waited for our flight. I found my way to the Airport chapel where I knelt and prayed to please not take my Mother before I reached her. I needed to say goodbye and to tell her I loved her. I knelt there for a long time. Suddenly the Holy Spirit told me that she was gone. I felt it in every inch of me. A feeling of peace enveloped me as I accepted that this was as it should be.
My sister had had her palm read by a friend. The palm reader had told her that someone very, very close to her would soon pass away suddenly and that this person was elderly and a woman. My sister wanted both of us to fly to Houston that weekend. I declined thinking it was important that my sister spend one-on-one time with my Mother. I did not believe that my Mother would pass that very weekend. She did.
At our age, we all have been through the trauma of losing someone we love. The older that I get the better I understand that we all handle loss in different ways. There is no right and wrong answer to coping with the loss of our loved ones.
This particular plant I am repotting is a new offshoot of the plant I carried home with me from my Mother’s funeral service in Houston. This plant is very special. It is a living, thriving memory of all my Mother represented to me. It has given joy to me for all these years and as it grew, it gave joy to my sister, to my daughter and circled back to me when the Mother plant decided it was time to give no more. Yet, here was another new plant spreading its leaves to the filtered sun. It still brings me happiness.
I’m still unsure why and how the Airline let me carry this plant onto the plane. Perhaps, they saw the pain in my eyes. I just don’t remember flying home since I was walking in a fog with so much sadness that I couldn’t feel anything more.
Why had I decided not to go to Houston? Why did I not pick up that phone that evening? Why couldn’t I have told my Mother I loved her one last time before she had died?
So many whys and so many questions. I know now not to take life for granted. We all face our medical problems as we get older and if I have learned nothing else, I know to tell family and friends that I love them without hesitation. If by chance God calls me home unexpectedly the people I love will take away the memory that I loved with all my heart.