Tag Archive | Missing You

Don’t Get Too Comfortable

My spirit was disturbed in the wee hours of the morning on April 25, 2015. I was unaware of what the day was going to bring and I was not prepared for the events that followed. News spread throughout my family that my one and only brother in law William Crawford had passed away at the young age of 55 after dealing with an on going up and down battle with congestive heart failure. My sister Latrese  (affectionally known as Trese) performed CPR until the paramedics arrived desperately trying to save his life. The paramedics and the doctors at the hospital did all they could but his poor heart couldn’t take it and he transitioned to be with The Lord, his mother, father and mother in law.

William Crawfrod

William Crawfrod

Having to break the news to my 14 year old son AJ  who says to me “Why does someone else in our family have to die. We’re not over memama.” was the beginning of the overwhelming emotions that would transpire throughout the course of the day. It took me about 45 minutes to get to the hospital in the pouring rain. Walking into WellStar Douglasville Emergency Room, I could feel the sense of loss. When I turned the corner I saw my oldest brother Calvin holding Trese in his arms, my niece Jasmine being comforted by her Aunt Nell (William’s sister) and my nephew Jeremy sitting off to the side with his hands in his head. I went to my sister and embraced her. Through her muffed tears she said “I tried to safe him, I tried.” My heart was broken for my sister.

Hearing Latrese explain the events leading up to her husband’s passing is surreal. From the dinner they ate together, the conversation and laughs that closed the evening, to his non responsiveness of the early morning and crying out for her sisters Carol and I for comfort because the world around her had crashed in a matter of minutes. Everything she knew to exist was gone.

When we returned to the home she shared with her husband, Trese tried to maintain well but in those moments she sat in silence tears started to fall and she cried out in pain. Even though she was surrounded by her children, siblings, other family members and close friends the one person she wanted, the one who understood her more than anyone wasn’t there. We knew her heart was broken and you could feel it in the atmosphere. Unless you’ve loss a spouse you could never know the pain that she is experiencing in but can sympathize. Every time you loose  someone different in your life it resurrects the emotions of a previous loss. True enough you never get over one loss, you learn to deal but how do you deal with loosing a parent and a spouse all within 3 years? Latrese has loss her husband of over 20 years, father of her children, friend, confidant, biggest support and cheerleader. I had no words of comfort and I couldn’t tell her “I’m sorry for her loss.”.  I gave Trese the only thing  I had and that was to be there in whatever capacity she needed so I found myself laying at the foot of their bed watching her rub the place where he slept and crying till she fell asleep.

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Latrese and William ‘Husbands love your wives.”

William loved my sister with all his heart and I can only pray to have that kind of unconditional love and supportive love from my significant other. He was a very good hard working man, caring and compassionate, loving husband, father, brother, uncle, friend and a damn good cook. With all that goodness wrapped into one person the family found ourselves asking the same question on April 7, 2012 “Why?” and the same answer is the same as it was then, “It’s God’s will.” That age old answer does’t provide the necessary comfort that is very much needed but prayerfully it will follow in the months and years to come.

William will be missed and this unexpected loss truly hurts. His physical absence is a constant reminder to never get too comfortable in thinking your loved ones will be always be around. You should learn to enjoy life’s moments and the people you love in. Stop texting and start calling. See one another and let people know how much they mean to you. I never thought in a million years that Easter Sunday, April 5, 2015 was going to be the last time that I saw, spoke, hugged and broke bread with my favorite (and only) brother in law, William.

Matthew 24:36 New Living Translation
However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself.  Only the Father knows.

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Surrounded By Family February 14, 2015: Willam seated on the far right.

Where’s My Reward?

Alzheimer’s came into my family’s life in the early to mid 90’s when my precious Grandmother the Late Julia Mae Brown was diagnosed. We knew very little about the disease and went along with what the doctors said and did what they told us to do. Gran became a shell of her former self. She was very forgetful, didn’t remember her family, wandered off and even had angry out bursts. The Grandmother who would walk me across the street to Mrs. Winner’s to get cinnamon rolls, dance and sing was mentally gone.

Mom watched my Gran slip away and I know it hurt her terribly. She was the only girl and shared a very special relationship with her. I recall the hurt in my Mother’s voice as she eulogized Gran on December 11, 2006  “So long Julia, So long Julie, So long Mom… Bye Bye take your rest…” It was after that moment that we would often hear Mom say “Lord, let me keep my mind.” Then a couple of years later my step-mother passed away from a tragic fall due to hemorrhaging in her brain. Mom became extra careful with going up and down steps and more cautious of things around her. She didn’t want what happened to Gran or my step-mom to happen to happen to her. As a life skills trainer for the Learning Services Mom had a soft spot for the patients she worked with who suffered from major brain injuries. We were all shocked to learn that Mom had a terminal and cancerous brain tumor.

I remember taking Mom to her very first oncology appointment. The doctor had no beside manner, was very cold (to me anyways) and told Mom she could do radiation and take the chemotherapy pill that at the end of the day most people with gliblastoma mutliforme only live 2 to 5 years from diagnosis. I sat there in shock, looking at this man who basically told me that my Mother, my world, my reason for being a “miracle” would die! Mom on the other hand seemed unmoved by what he was saying, she was very polite and said “Ok” and “Thank you.” took the prescriptions, referrals, gave the man a hug and walked out. I’m not sure if she held it together because I (the youngest of her children) was there or what. On the way home steady tears streamed down my face and Mom said to me “Merical Joy, do I need to drive?” I said “No, ma’am.” and then she said “Well, fix your face.” I knew that while the doctor told my Mom she was going to die, she knew who had the final answer. (1 Corinthians 15:58 | NIV Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.)

Mom's first oncology visit

Mom’s first oncology visit

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This is why I found myself being upset with God today… Psalms 37:4 Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Mother prayed to keep her mind, so why couldn’t she have her hearts desire to not suffer like her mother, my step mother and her patients at work? She accepted His call, did what He asked and during the worse part of her illness she felt as if she had more work to do.” For the life of me I can’t understand “WHY??” To me, she DID have more work to do. There was so much more that I needed to know and learn from her. By no way do I believe that God is a magician, but I do believe that He is a miracle worker. Didn’t my Mom deserve a miracle? With all of her ups, downs, struggles and success shouldn’t she have gotten something?

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Mom’s Last Radiation Treatment

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After I got out of my feelings and into my Bible and then to google for further research, 1 Corinthians 2:9 was revealed to me and it says, “However, as it is written: What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived — the things God has prepared for those who love him.” At the end of the day how can you question that?

Everything that happened leading up to Mom’s transition is still very fresh and hard to accept sometimes especially with the anniversary of her passing approaching. I’m doing the best I can for the most part because I DO know God, I DO Love Him, and I DO believe in His Word and I KNOW she’s not coming back. It’s just today is not a good day. I really miss, want and need my Mommy and I pray tomorrow will be better.