Tuesday, November 01, 2005


My daughter Melody called me tonight and we got on the subject of my mother. Melody said she found herself reaching for the phone to call Nannie and feeling sad when she realized she couldn't. I told her I had been doing the same lately and remembering last year at this time when she first started getting really sick. Mother had colon cancer 4 years ago and after surgery and treatments she was cancer free. 2 years later they found tumors on her liver and told her its was too advanced for treatment and gave her 6 months. She lived 2 years and was at home painfree and living a normal life until this time last year. She started getting sick at her stomach all day and couldn't eat anything. She drank protein shakes and green tea for weeks. Last Thanksgiving my brother and his family took dinner to mothers home. She ate a few bites and didn't eat any food again til after Christmas. She went into the hospital the second week of December and they put her on IV's and prepared us for the end. I stayed with her during the day and my brother stayed at night. 2 Weeks later she was moved to a hospice care center. There they took the IV away gave her different meds and she started eating and talking and planning on going home. We knew she wouldn't but for 2 weeks she was my mother again. We talked, looked at pictures and even fussed at each other (I had been with her every day for over a month). 2 days before she died we were talking about my daddy promising to be my guardian angel when he died and that he would come back as a white butterfly. I ask her what color butterfly she would be or was she coming back as something else. She said a bird and then a nurse walked in and we never finished that conversation. A few days after her funeral my brother ask me to call and have the her phone, lights, etc turned off. I was sitting in her living room crying and telling my husband that I felt like we were rushing things. That mother would be mad we were cutting everything off and closing her home down. We both heard a small tap tap on the door and William went to open the door..... No one was there. He closed the door and I kept on talking about mother had had the same phone number since 1971 and now it would be gone.... Another tap tap at the door. William again opens the door... No one there. He goes outside and yells for me to come. On the side of the house where the phone wires ran inside was a woodpecker pecking holes around the wires. Around where the electric wires run inside the house was another woodpecker pecking holes around those wires. We watched them and they each pecked a circle around their wire and looked at us and flew off. William said " I guess your mom is telling you its okay to turn the lights and phone off as she is happy and with Scottie (my stepdad)." We went inside and I called and turned everything off. This summer I have sat on my deck and watched the birds at the feeder and once when I was feeling a little down a beautiful redheaded woodpecker came and sat on one of the feeders, then flew over my head. As it flew away I said thanks mother and I love you. So this year as we plan for Thanksgiving it will be sad not having mother included in the plans. It will be hard not to pick up the phone and tell her what her great grandchildren are up to or fix her left overs to put in her freezer to eat later. But it will be happy too knowing I have a special angel looking down and laughing with us and watching over us as we give thanks for our many blessings including having had such a wonderful lady in our lives. We love you mother.

6 comments:

ms*robyn said...

what a lovely, lovely story for All Souls day. thank you so much for sharing & I truly believe that the bird was from your mother. the same thing happens with my dad. Every time there is a drama or tradgedy in my family, a kookaburra is always seen near to our home. Most times sitting on the clothes line. I just go out and say 'hi Dad' .... big, big hugs to you dear Peggy xx

Veronika said...

What a tribute! Thank you for sharing with us. I looked at your blog earlier this evening, and I'm looking forward to you sharing your recipes.:)

Anonymous said...

Oh God bless you my dear friend.
I know how hard it is when we lose loved ones especially your Mother!
Love and prayers!
Those who live forever in our hearts are never far away!
Love Jeanne

Gina E. said...

Peggy, this is a beautiful story. I do hope you have recorded it elsewhere for posterity (ie not just on your blog). This is the stuff that family heritage stories are made of - and should be told for generations after.

judypatooote said...

Peggy that sounds so much like what I went through...My mom died 2 and a half years ago of complications from colon cancer. I still have the feeling i have to pick up the phone and call her.... I wrote a blog on her....and it explains a few things.....I do believe she is looking down along with my husband, and dad and granddaughter....smiling.....

Your story brought tears to my eyes. Moms are a special breed....and that means were special too......

Maggie Ann said...

What a loving tribute. I'm sorry about your loss of a wonderful Mom. Now she is your legacy, part of what and who you are. *hugs*