Thursday, June 11, 2009

Dancing in the Rain

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to's about learning how to dance in the rain."

That quote was on the bottom of an email I received right before I went out into the garden the other day. I immediately thought that it described my mother.

My mom has been battling stage 4 cancer for almost three years. They found it in her one kidney (which they removed) but it had metastasized into the liver, lung and spine. There was no waiting for the storm to pass as this was not curable.

She worked full time until last year when the side affects of the chemo made it impossible. She is not one to let someone else carry part of her load and when she thought she wasn't pulling her share, she retired.

She has been in the hospital a couple of times due to dehydration and lastly it was congestive heart failure from the water building up in her as her one kidney was not able to keep up. Each time she exited the hospital raring to go again.

The last time she came home with oxygen on 24/7. She has almost pulled her ears off going further than the oxygen hose allows then takes it off to finish the task at hand. She will never be nominated for the best patient award!

Early this week she was admitted again and they started emergency dialysis. Once they get her stabilized she will be going 3 days a week for 3 hours each time.

Through it all we have maintained a fairly large garden and processed it all. This is the first year she has not been right beside me, bent over planting or weeding. She is the queen of the hoe, which I hate. Luckily my sister moved home and took the hoe in hand to help get the garden planted!

Mom has walked out to critique what my sister and I have done. So far we have received her stamp of approval for our efforts. The real stamp will come with the harvest.

So with Mom in the hospital and me in the garden alone I was thinking about what Mom has gone through over the past few years. She truly has learned to dance in the rain as she has met every obstacle head on. This should not have been a surprise since she did the same when my father died unexpectedly when she was 35, leaving her with his aging mother, three kids and a working dairy farm.

So I forgot how much I hate hoeing and hoed up 75% of the garden. Hopefully I will finish it tomorrow and get some paper and straw laid down. She will be home from the hospital soon can't let her think I dropped the ball.


Tam said...

Judy, you, your family and especially your Mom is in my thoughts and prayers.

Sandie Knapp said...

That was a beautiful tribute to your Mother, and I heartily agree, she is one strong resilient woman. I do wish her all the best and I hope she is resting comfortably at least.

Take care