Today in honour of my mums birthday I decided it was time to share her story, well a part of it.
Barbara Anne Spry 30.6.1938 – 14.10.10.
My mum was a deeply compassionate and loving woman, not the perfect mother however the gifts she taught me I am deeply grateful for and appreciate more and more as time goes on.
It was the day after my gorgeous daughter and I had taken mum to the ballet ( she loved the ballet), when she had her first stroke, from there we kept her home and we took care of her daily until the day another more significant stroke happened, she was doing her usual daily outing to have lunch, she adored eating out and this day was at one of her favourites, Coffee Culture in Bowral, Chris the owner called me and the ambulance. The next 48 hours I will skip over as they were intense. Once we got mum to a private room in the private hospital we began our farewell party. A party was what my mum wanted. For the next 10 days I stayed with her, Elly, Jakob and Jesse ( her beloved grandchildren) and Greg her much loved son-in-law came and went, sat with her chatted when she was present and held her hand when she was elsewhere. There were wonderful friends that came also,
My mum had very clear intentions and instruction as to how she wanted to be treated or rather not treated when the time came and even though this was a challenge for me at times I honoured and respected her request. I sat and observed the conversations she had when she slipped to somewhere else., they are very enlightening. Now some may say this was the effect of the drugs, maybe, however the conversations and what she shared with me about how beautiful if was and how there was no more pain or suffering and you could do anything you wanted to do seemed very real and .reassuring both for her and for us. My mum was not afraid to die.
On the last day when I arrived back from having a sleep mum directed me to go and buy lollies and lemonade and party food, we were having a party. So that is what I did, the children, mum and I had a party, we laughed, we shared stories and the atmosphere was one of love and gratitude,
As I kissed my mother for the last time and told her I loved her she said “ you have given me the greatest gift a daughter could give a mother” I replied “ no mum you have given the greatest gift a mother could give her child” she smiled, I left. at 2am the hospital called – she had gone.
To witness my mothers honourable and gentle passing has been a beautiful gift, to dieing can be gentle and respectful and even beautiful is a gift. I miss my mums physicality every day, but I am blessed by her guidance, love and support always.
I love you mum.