Thursday, November 26, 2009

My Best Friend.

This was my best friend. Her name was Shirley. She died on April/21/2009 And nothing I did could save her.
She wasn't supposed to die. She was fighting the cancer, it was going away again. But I wasn't there one day and she left me. I worked for a month after that to get her to wake up. But she never did. And in the end she died alone. And all I could do was wait for her body to be taken away.
She was supposed to come over to my house for dinner that night. We had finally got all of our things out of storage and my apt was put together and she was going to come over and share it with me. But she never came. And no one answered the phone. And the next day they called and said she was going to the hospital in an ambulance. Diabetic Coma.
The one day I wasn't there to cook for her she falls into a diabetic coma.
The last night we spent together I had brought over all my photo albums and I showed her myself, and read her my poetry and sang her favorite songs to her. I wouldn't change a thing, it's a great last day we had. But we needed more days.
I trusted her with everything. She always held me when I cried and told me how much she loved me. I knew I could trust her with anything....because she would never let me down.
It's so unfair that I lost her!
I never had anyone in my life like her before. And I didn't even get to know her for a whole year.
This is the first time I have talked about her since the funeral. I cry just saying her name.
She was so loving. And she cared so much about others....She started cooking Thanksgiving dinner the night before, and had it ready by ten am, so that she could feed everyone. She invited homeless people over, anyone who needed a meal or friendship.
I would hold her...she would be in so much pain from the chemo...she would lay in my arms and cry, and I would cry, but I would hold her for hours until she fell asleep.
She always told me that she was my Mom. And that she would make things better.
She used to tell everyone that we were Lucy and Ethel! lol always out raising hell and shopping!
We used to talk all the time about how "if we had a time machine we would go back..." lol and then she would tell me some funny story about something embarrassing she had done...and afterwords she would say "Actually....I wouldn't change a thing. What happened to me made me who I am. I would just go back and re live the fun!" lol We talked about sex all the time. lol She loved to tell stories about what a romantic man her first husband was. How he would always sweep her off her feet. And how much passion there was in their marriage!
I can still hear her playing on her organ and singing her heart out:
"Shirley loves her Caden."
I miss how she would lick her fingers when I made her something to eat.
When she was on morphine she would walk around like a robot and call herself a Jive Turkey, and we would all laugh

.......morphine. I missed all the signs. I feel like an idiot too. She lied to everyone about how she was doing....I just didn't think she would lie to me. But I should have known.
I know what morphine means for a stage 3 cancer patient. I saw how much worse the wound where the cancer was had gotten. But I didn't think about it! I never thought she would die.
I have worked in nursing homes and hospice for over 6 years. I have helped people get through this point, even people I know. But I totally missed it with her, and it caught me so off guard.

The sad thing is that she would have lasted longer if her husband would have taken better care of her. Everyone knows you don't give a diabetic coke and a banana and that's it for the day.
3 weeks I spent at the hospital, reading to her, singing to her, crying. I went every day. I washed her face, and rubbed her feet and painted her nails.....but nothing worked.
She was moved to a long term care facility an hour away and I only got to see her on weekends. She was lucid for a few days there, but it was as if she'd had a stroke! The only word we could make out was "honey". That's what she had always called us.
Everyone at the hospital and the care facility knew I was her daughter. They called me first for everything. When I got the call she had died I brought flowers, and sat with her until they came for her. I put her funeral together. And in the end I was one of only a few people bothered to show up.

I have spent the last 7 months with this huge hole in me. I can't talk about her. I can barely think about her without having to hold back tears. I don't know if I'll ever get over her.
I don't know if I want to.
She was my mom. My Jive Turkey. My best friend. She was the Ethel to my Lucy.
She was my Shirley.

1 comments:

middle child said...

Remember her and strive to be the person you were with her. And consider the fact that you quite possibly gave her even more than she gave you.