Longest Road


It’s been six weeks, I think, since I got the text.


That’s it. What can be done in six weeks? A month and a half. I can’t think about much that’s too significant at all that can happen in that amount of time.

But in the past six weeks, my mom has gone from having troubles walking around, or needing a walker, to not being able to get out of bed at all.

She can’t lift her arms up.

Her writing isn’t legible.

She hurts.

She has big troubles breathing (Co2 builds up in her lungs), even moving her head is a challenge.

We’ve gone from no bad days to every day blows chunks.

And yet, she has retained as much control over her life as she can, as she moves rapidly towards the end of this life and the beginning of the next.

Her head remains clear with this disease. Totally clear and aware of it all.

Motherfucking wickedly cruel disease, that it is.

She has made all financial decisions recently.  Who to pay, how much, when, who gets what when she is gone, how much, and so on.

All the documents are ready, signed, and completed. Totally completed. She even had the funeral home come out to the house, so she could get the information for the death certificate to them, and pay them.

She told us she wants her ashes in a Folger’s can, just like in the Big Lebowski when Donnie died at the end.

I laughed so hard at this, I cried. 

I cry so easily these days.

I am over 250 miles away from her.

I have been going up almost every weekend to be with her. Every time, for the most part, it’s been with my young kids ages 12 and nine.

The nine year old, my daughter, sits on the bed with her Memaw, and talks endlessly. They are so alike it’s crazy.

It sucks being here and her being there. And yet, as bad as it may sound, I need that break between weekends.

The drive home is long and short at the same time.

I don’t remember much of it each time. Flashes of the weekend run over and over in my head.

Her pain, Her fear of being moved around.

Her fear of losing all control, as though she’s already gone.

Her fear of losing all humility, not able to get up to go pee, smelling from lack of showers, but not wanting anyone to wash her.

She cut all her hair off because she didn’t want anyone else brushing it. No one did it right.

After all that, I need to come home and fill my head with my children and their worlds.

My heart feels so heavy and angry.

I need to go into work so I can set the overwhelming pain and sadness of the situation aside for a few days before I go back up.

And I smudge myself and our home like crazy. Clear the air with the smoke of sweetgrass or sage. Purify the energy.

It’s hard for the energy to break apart. It wants to hang on so tightly to me.

Yet, eventually, reluctantly, it let’s do. It goes home.

And she will too, soon. Very soon. She will be released. She will fly.

And she will be free….






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Introverted parent here. I love hanging out with you, but then you need to go away for a while. Avid mountain biker, spin instructor, trail runner, eater, sleeper. You get the idea.

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