Losing Mom: Watching a Parent Die

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She was the only one I had.

My Dad died when I was six and growing up I only had my mom. We lived at home just me and her watching horror movies, listening to her Connie Francis and Carpenters CDs. I slept beside her even throughout college. We’d laugh ourselves to sleep, at times she’d kiss and sniff my hands then hold them against her cheeks before closing her eyes.

We celebrated many a Christmas Eve without a fuss. Whenever we were too lazy to cook and wash the dishes we’d eat out and stay out ‘till 12 midnight. This was the kind of mom she was—low maintenance, never demanding, didn’t fuss over small things, but focused more on being happy and having fun. Life was a party with her and we were always together.

When I wasn’t with her I was on the phone talking to her.

Everytime she’d see how much I was growing so attached to her she’d ask me if I’d cry when she dies. She was worried about how I’ll cope because she knew that she was the only parent I had and that I was so close to her.

You see our mothers’ love goes beyond their lifetime. They worry about us 24/7, they worry about what will become of us when they’re gone.

She asked me to be ready because she was getting old.But Mama no one will ever be ready to lose a parent …ever.

I thought I was. A year ago she started getting sick. Since her first confinement she spent the year checking in and out of the hospital. I saw her health deteriorate. While I was praying for her to get better I knew at the back of my mind that I was losing my best friend. For a year I would cry in the shower, while driving to work, in the middle of the night while every one was asleep.

There were times when I tried to avoid seeing her because I was denying the fact that I was losing her. The chubby jolly lady who was so strong and feisty was getting frail and weak.  I would spend nights alone in the office bawling in front of the computer.

I thought I was all out of tears I thought I have cried all my anger, my anguish, my sadness out but the day I saw her exhale her last breath as if her soul escaped her body I knew I was wrong.

 

A few weeks before Christmas I saw her condition go from bad to hopeless. That afternoon I watched her fight for her life, I cried and held her feet on my lap. “Mama do you still love me? Bakit ayaw mo magpagaling, mahal mo pa ba ako ma? (Why don’t you want to get better?)” I cried. And she mustered all the strength she had left to respond by nudging me with her feet.

I held her hand and told her, “You are going to be okay Mama, you will get better then we will go home soon.”

And then it happened. Now I know those scenes in movies where the mother would sigh her last breath and then she’ll stop moving, then the child will be shaking the parent while calling out ‘Mama!’ That happens in real life.

While they were reviving her I kept calling “mama, mama” as if I was a five-year-old crying for her mother.

They revived her, she got her pulse back but only for a little while. As if she just wanted to hear what I had to say before she left. I got to spend 10 minutes with her while she was in a comma, begged her not to leave until I heard the weird sound from the machine again.

With the beeps slowing down I knew I was losing her. The numbers dropping meant I was losing the most important woman of my life. I won’t forget the moment her heart stopped.

I felt my heart break like there was some dark force clutching my insides and twisting them. I wanted to jump out of a window, I wanted to follow her to the other side and get her back. I was crying and screaming but there was no sound coming out, the pain was even worse than I had imagined.

And just like that, she left this world.

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