*So I try to keep things cheery around here. I’m usually a very cheery person, so that’s easy. This isn’t a cheery post & if I’m MIA the next few days/weeks you’ll know why. Written Friday night…*

I think I’ve said I few times in passing over the last year or so that my mom’s mom who lives in Charlotte has slowly gone down hill. That was exacerbated by a fall she suffered in Jan 09. Since then Ma was first at a rehabilitation place then wheelchair bound in a nursing home. We’ve noticed changes over the last months, but she’d been holding her own for a while now. That changed at the beginning of this month. You might remember that I was there visiting both Ma & Papa the weekend before Thanksgiving. My parents & brother were there the first weekend in December. They enjoyed a great visit but noticed a difference Sunday from Friday & Saturday. Since then she’s gotten weaker and weaker & hospice was called in. My parents went back last weekend as well as both my aunts. My mom called me Tuesday night to say she wasn’t swallowing anything anymore so they took her off foods & liquids. Since I’ve been there so much & just love them so much, I couldn’t imagine not being able to say goodbye. I arrived Wednesday around 530p and left this morning at 915a. I spent the vast majority of the time reading aloud (The Upper Room & Bible as well as O & People magazines) and holding my Ma’s hand or even both hands. {photos taken without flash on my cell photo. LT photo from Wed at 7p. RT photo from Fri at 9a.}


Holding hands brought comfort to us both. It made me think of all the times we’ve held hands in the past (probably not enough since I was out of elementary school). I was also thinking about all that her hands have done over the last 85 years…
played with her brothers & sister growing up…
helped her through college at what’s now UNCG…
used for lesson plans & grading papers as a teacher in Charlotte…
holding hands while dating & marrying my Papa 62 years ago…
hugging & carrying for her three daughters…
praying for friends & family…
holding Papa’s hands as those three daughters left the home, graduated from college & got married…
hugging, rubbing, helping to change diapers for her three grands…first me, then 9 months later my cousin, then 2 years
later my brother…
playing bridge with couples & her girl friends…
cooking countless family meals…
decorating her home especially with Santas at Christmas…
baking countless Christmas sugar cookies…
stirring while making Ma’s famous green beans…
shopping with the daughters…
spreading sunscreen at her & us at OIB…
holding our arms as we helped steady her on our last couple of trips to Vegas, Hilton Head, & Williamsburg…
holding my hand while I give mini-manicures at the nursing home…
turning over cards while we played hours of crazy 8s & then helping me play solitare this summer & fall…
squeezing my hand & rubbing my fingers Tuesday night, Wednesday & today…
blowing me a kiss as I walked out of her nursing home room in tears this morning….