3:40am On July 12th, my birthday, My mom passed away. 27 years and 9 minutes after she gave birth to me, she left this world. Exactly 2 weeks after I left from my surprise visit. I should have never left.
So, on my birthday, i sit on a plane thinking about how I wasn't able to be there for my mom. How if my husband didn't bring me to Italy I could have been home. I hated Dan. I mean Hated him. Actually- right now (Jan 1st 2012) I still hate him. I blame him and his career for me not being able to be by my mom's side. I'm not sure how long it'll take me to deal with this. I am doing so very slowly.
I also found out that a few hours after mom had passed, my cousin had her baby. My grandmother kept saying things like, god takes one gives one on FB and I wont lie, I flipped out. I was in no position to see things like that mid-flight to the Us.
We got home to Syracuse very, very late. Everyone was still up. We never did go to bed. The next morning I had to go to a funeral home. Something I thought I was prepared to do. thought. It was clearly the most difficult thing ever. Mom didn't want an obituary. She didn't want services. She wanted to be cremated and split between her 4 daughters. I wanted to see my my. I thought. So I told the director not to cremate her until I could say good-bye.
I talked to my kids and asked them if they wanted to say goodbye to their nana, the girls did. The boys didn't so much understand. This decision was very difficult. I didn't want to scare the girls but at the same time I didn't want them to hate me like I hated my dad for years about my grandmother. *OH! I have got a post about how I overcame my anger towards my dad on my two week surprise visit!*
We loaded up, my aunts, uncle, me, dan and the kids to go say our last good-byes to my mom. We get in the funeral home and they tell me she is behind the door. I didn't want to go. I had my aunts take my kids. I couldn't do it. I just couldn't see her like that. My aunts took the girls came out and told me how she looked at peace and even better then when she passed in the hospital (they were all there). So I gather my composure and Dan and I walked through the door. My heart just dropped. She did look great! She looked at peace but she wasn't alive. Oh, my, god my mom was really gone. No! I cried. I cried. I talked to her. At some times I wish Dan wasn't in there so it could have been more personal, but dan did tell me later he was basically holding me up. Dan talked to her. I kept saying how I wanted to give her a kiss... but I couldn't I just couldnt touch or kiss a dead person. I just couldn't. But I didn't want to regret it. So after a few minutes I told dan, I am going to kiss her now. and I did. she was cold. OMG! Freezing cold. I still to this day can feel how cold she was. I don't know what I expected her to feel like, but it wasn't that. And then, we left. That was the last time I would ever see my moms body. the. last.time.
They cremated my mom that day. I picked up her Urns and brought them home to her apt. where I was staying. It seemed so unreal. Because Mom didn't want a service, we had a party. Celebrating mom's life party. With friends and family and food. Everyone was very upbeat. That is what mom would have wanted.
Mom did not have life insurance and not a lot of people in my family have a ton of money. Everyone did what they could. However the majority of all costs fell on me. I am glad that Dan and I are good with money because we did have a large savings. Granted it was significantly lower by the time we flew back after this trip. After mom's party we spent another 3 weeks in NY enjoying family and friends.
There was another life changing moment in NY, that I am VERY proud of. If you know history of the last 12 years you'd know that Dan's mom and step-dad were not a part of our life. There had been major ups and downs. And we didn't talk to them for years. They said and did nasty things and so did we. Neither one of us were right.
I was sitting in my mom's living room and I told dan we needed to go see his mom. No call, no text. Just show up there. And that is what we did. I knocked on the door, his step-dad opens it. We say nothing... he tells pam to come here there is something she needs to see and the first thing i did was hug her and cry. No words were exchanged. She then hugged dan. I told her I wanted to talk to her. She somehow knew about my mom being sick and asked the obvious. I told her that I wanted her to be a part of our lives. That i wanted things to change. You only have one mom and I wanted dan to have his. It was a moment that I'll never forget my heart felt good. I felt like there was a weight lifted off my shoulders. I know things wouldn't be fixed overnight, or a week, or even a month but I think if we all tried, admitted our faults and agreed to be better people we could be a family.
Over the course of july, we spent a lot of time with his parents. They said such wonderful things about our kids. the kids loved them! Talk about them all the time. I am so very thankful that I took it upon myself to fix that bridge. We are friends on facebook again and send messages quite frequently. I am truly happy with that part of my life and the only thing I would change is that we could see them more... or they would get skype already, damnit.
Tons of pics to come!