With Mother’s Day right around the corner, I wanted to dedicate this blog post to my wonderful mom who is a total boss. Ya know, she did important things like raise me and my siblings, assist my dad with his insurance business, and take care of our house. However, her strengths really shined most in recent years and I couldn’t be more proud of my mom.
You see, my dad was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2011. In a blink of an eye, my mom basically became a nurse. The things she had to do to take care of my dad are overwhelming to think about. She researched and researched anything and everything she could to be as informed as possible about my dad’s condition. She managed medications, cleaned dressings, made special meals, and dealt with the rollercoaster of emotions from my dad. My mom also carefully handled all four relationships with her kids as we all dealt with this experience differently.
My dad’s throat cancer eventually metastasized into lung cancer. My mom’s job at home became increasingly more difficult as each day progressed. My dad’s care became more intense and the cancer drugs took a serious toll. He experienced numbness in his hands. The skin on his fingers and toes cracked and bled constantly. He couldn’t button shirts or zip his pants, so my mom dressed him. He eventually couldn’t drive, so my mom drove him everywhere.
My dad’s work ethic was unstoppable. He was a small business owner who literally worked up until his death. My mom took him to and from the office. She was his right hand woman, which was NOT an easy job. As a man who has essentially lost all of his independence and was frustrated to all hell, my mom was his emotional punching bag.
My mom did it all.
And just when I thought she couldn’t get any stronger, she did. Like I said, my dad worked up until he died. He went to work on Friday and died on Sunday morning. Within hours of my dad passing away, she had his body donated to science and his memorial service planned. Within a month, my mom closed down his office and sold the remainder of his business. It was eye-opening to watch her woman up and deal with everything you have to deal with after a person dies, let alone her husband of 30 years. She handled everything with such strength and grace.
In the same year she became a widow, she also became an empty nester. She’s gone from taking care of everyone to now being able to focus on herself. I’ve witnessed her do things she never thought she was capable of. I couldn’t be more proud of the woman she has become.
I love, cherish, and admire her so much and can only hope to one day become as strong of a mother as she is. Happy Mother’s Day, mom!