Friday, March 03, 2006

The fever compounded with the Vicadin brought me to the brink of hallucinations again this afternoon. As I curled myself up into a ball on the bed, I suddenly had full clarity about how to live a purposeful and successful life.

It's about showing up and doing what's right during the Life Defining moments. It's about being kind. And it's about not putting myself first all.of.the.time.

My mother's biggest wish before her death was to live with us in our house until she passed away. I couldn't do it. I couldn't even imagine how I would continue to live there if she died in one of the rooms in my home. It was an opportunity for me to give my mom the one thing that was utterly and completely vital to her. And I wouldn't even consider it because I lacked the courage to deal with her death.

My mom died at the assisted care facility. It was a place that she had grown to love, but I know deep down in my heart that she would have preferred to have been with us. As mom slipped away, she was comforted by a 24-hour care nurse that I had just hired 4 days prior. She was an angel - stroking my mom's forehead and telling her that God loved her - until mom passed away quietly and peacefully. I wasn't there with her. I've always felt that this was a good thing because I would have been frantic. Crying, begging her to fight fight fight. So there I failed again. I wasn't there with mom...and that was the best thing for her. How pitiful is that?

I've certainly worked very hard to live honorably. But I believe that we are given Moments of Truth that test our goodness, our wholeness, our kindness to others.

It occurred to me this afternoon that I have created a life of responsibility and comfort. But I haven't worked as hard to recognize when my actions and decisions count on the level that eclipses our transactional world. I've either been clueless or completely riddled in fear.

And that is a failed life.