Saturday, January 9, 2010

odds and ends

[Reminder: see this post for information about the memorial service for Mom. I'm assuming that, if you're savvy enough to be online, you're savvy enough to use MapQuest or Google Maps to get directions to the church. There's no reason to phone the church (or us) for directions. Both aforementioned websites are extremely easy to use. Thank you for understanding.]

Sometime around the end of January, this blog will go dormant, its purpose having been fulfilled. It had originally been about my walk across America, but it became a chronicle of something far more important: the decline and death of my mother due to glioblastoma multiforme, the most common and most aggressive form of brain cancer there is, and a cancer for which there still exists no cure.

There's very little left to write about as regards Mom's story; we stand in the aftermath of her passing. For now, our family's focus is on getting through the memorial service more or less in one piece, emotionally speaking. I did most of my sobbing on the day Mom died, and have cried a few times since then, but we are all, slowly but surely, picking ourselves up, dusting ourselves off, and doing our best to climb out of the wreckage of the past nine months.

Nine months. The time it takes to gestate a baby. It's still hard to believe that Mom is gone, but there we are-- those are the facts. Mom stepped through one door, and soon we'll step through another: the gateway to the rest of our lives. Here's hoping for brighter horizons.

You may have noted that I haven't described the events of Wednesday, the day Mom passed away. That was a deliberate choice. I did, in fact, tearfully type out a detailed report of Mom's death a day later; that part of the story might appear in the book version of this sad tale, but for now, I'm keeping it private. You, Dear Reader, don't really need to know what I saw and felt that day. Not yet, anyway.

Mom's been gone a little more than three days. Dad's been on the phone with various people, and today he received a visit from the funeral home providing cremation services. I've been working on several things at once: the format for the memorial service liturgy, Mom's bio for the church bulletin, her eulogy, and the biggest project of all: the compilation and finalization of a pictorial tribute to Mom. I'm hoping to send Pastor Jeri a draft of the liturgy format tonight; I also want to send her the finished bio, if possible. As Dad reminded me, we've got a lot of housecleaning to do since we're sure to have guests over the weekend. Relatives will be flying in from Texas; I'm not sure how many (if any) will be staying at our house, and how many will be rooming with our relatives in the area, or at local hotels. David and Sean are already sleeping at our house, but we're all willing to give up beds for house guests. To be discussed, I imagine.

It's been a bright, sunny day. Another day without Mom. I feel no self-pity about my own situation-- no sense of "woe is me." Instead I'm sad, profoundly sad, that Mom doesn't have the chance to see today's sun, or enjoy the way Sean's dog Maqz has been bounding happily around the house. I suppose this empty feeling will be with us for a while.

Ah, yes, before I forget: once the pictorial tribute is done (which should happen in the next few days), it will first appear on This blog will provide a link to it.



SJHoneywell said...


Know that you've always got people to talk to, people who care about you, and people who love you.

Lee said...


My condolences to you and your family.