She’ll Be Wearing Pink Pajamas

Mom hair Sandy Jan 2014A shaft of light settles just so on her white hair. Her eyes are unusually clear and bright: the right one reflects the sun as it shines through the window; the left is hidden in shadow.

“You look like an angel Mom,” I say, caught in the beauty of now.

Sandy wraps a stray wisp around the curling iron, rolls it close (but not too close) to Mom’s scalp, and waits for it to set.

“I will be one soon.” Mom replies.

My eyes meet Sandy’s.

It’s one of those moments of profound knowing that caregivers, hospice workers and those whom they serve share unexpectedly – one of those times in which there is no denying the depth of our connection with the divine.

Mom knows. And she’s letting us know she knows. While her brain and body struggle in the late stages of Alzheimer’s disease, her heart, soul and spirit are ready to be set free.

She rarely strings words together to form a sentence anymore other than when she sings (see below), or when there’s a break in the clouds as there has been with her reply. Mostly her speech is disjointed and random, a pick-up-sticks game of subjects, verbs and objects with no real meaning, except when the occasional tear in the increasingly thin veil between here and there allows something astonishing to slip through.

I’m not a religious person, not at all. But I recognize divinity when it touches down.

As Sandy curls Mom’s hair on a Friday afternoon in January, 2014, I imagine an invisible-to-us angel singing in her ear:

“We’ll all come out to meet you when you come. We’ll all come out to meet you when you come. With a hug and kiss we’ll greet you, yes, we’ll all come out to meet you when you come…”

My mother knows she is in the final stages of her journey. Maybe in some ways she’s lucky. Some of us are taken suddenly, snatched without warning from this world we think belongs to us but clearly doesn’t.

Death by ambush? Or a long drawn out siege? Either way, living fully is our duty, discovering joy is our privilege and life breaks our hearts  whichever path we choose. Life is meant to be lived after all, joys and sorrows notwithstanding.

Mom still lives with gusto like this, this, this, and this. Maybe that’s why she’s not quite ready to go around the mountain. But she’s getting closer to being ready. When the time is right a whole host of angels will be there to “greet her when she comes.”

I’ll bet she’ll be wearing pink pajamas.

Heavens!

Special thanks to earthbound angels Sandy Card and Eric Manolson.

Related links:

Loving Words at Sunset

I See You and Me. And Love.

85 And Feistier Than Ever

An endless prayer

Oh Mom! (A mother/daughter moment remembered)

15 Empowering Things to Tell Your Kids (and Yourself)

10 Things Our Daughters Could Learn From Whitney Houston

6 Powerful Ways to Make Your Life More Beautiful

Life Breaks My Heart

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Merry Christmas from Mom & me

Merry Christmas from Pinkie Patti and I in frosty and frozen Canada to you, wherever in the world you are.

(It’s amazing what you can do when you try…)

I See You and Me. And Love.

This is a second short video for the What I See project.

The first one, “What We See,” was made in collaboration with 21 friends from around the world.

Continue reading

I see amazing women. What do YOU see?

Here’s a short (about three-minutes) video I put together for the What I See project with the help of (in order of appearance): Carolyn Theriault, Daniela Lambert, Georgia Lewis, Judith Carter, Jesta Phoenix, Judy Matte-Thompson, Maria K. Lawton, Kathleen Musso, Kim Noce, Laura Littlefield Bush, Mary Murphy, Sunny Jones, Kate Burke, Molly Bainbridge, Robin Adair, Sue Rosen, Padi Mayhew, May Tartoussy, Lynne Andersen, Noora Nasrallah, and my Mom Pinkie Patti.

I also submitted another which touches my heart in a special way. It’s of me and my Mom Pinkie Patti; it’s called “I See You and Me. And Love.” Continue reading

85 And Feistier Than Ever

AWR celebrate life“Pretty good for the old girl,” is Mom’s standard response to “How are you Patti?”

And yeah, she it pretty damn good for 85, which she turned today.

She’s an amazing woman who inspires me every day with her courage, determination, and ability to prevail.

(She also drives me crazy on occasion!)

Until recently, I wished she could see me more clearly. But I’ve come to terms with her incapacity to do so, and, as a result, discovered unconditional love. What a priceless gift.

I’m grateful to her for being such an inspiring role model, I couldn’t have asked for better. Continue reading

Men Speak a Language All Their Own

Twin Boys talkingThey say women and men speak different languages.

That may be true.

They say women talk more than men.

That’s definitely not.

Another thing for sure: men speak a language all their own. (Maybe women do too.)

The fact that male mumbo jumbo starts at a very, very early age is clearly demonstrated by this 86-million-views-so-far YouTube video of twin boys captured by their Mom having a conversation in the kitchen (enjoy LOL): Continue reading

25 Useful Things to Remember When You Screw Up

Pink golf ballI played in my first-ever golf tournament last week. My preferred (quelle surprise!) ball is pictured at left 😉

In golf, as in most sports, it’s important to follow the rules  when you compete. (Mostly.)

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it),  following the rules is not my strong suit (not in games, not in sports, and especially not in life generally).

That’s probably why I ended up breaking the rules and being disqualified In my maiden tourney. (So far I haven’t been disqualified from life, but who knows what lies ahead…)

Interestingly, I subsequently learned I needn’t have been disqualified from the tournament, having followed the proper corrective procedure after the initial infraction.

This rule-breaking experience reminded me of some random life lessons, which I thought worth sharing: Continue reading