Many of you know, cause I have mentioned before, that my oldest has become a hospice nurse. She is doing a job that I knew would be emotionally draining for her. I worry about this. She is young and that is a lot to deal with on a regular daily basis. But what I did not anticipate, was how much her job would impact me and my husband and even my other older kids.
My girl had to work on Thanksgiving and managed to eat with us but was called out to death that evening. I just kept feeling these pangs of how we were celebrating a lovely holiday and that poor family was saying goodbye to a loved one. Well, yesterday we had a nice gathering for my husband's birthday. Friends and family all here and a delicious dinner with cake and presents. The usual things. But I have to say, my daughter working for hospice is teaching me the real value of life, the everyday, the wealth and blessings around me.
This year I have been really enjoying all the holiday preparations like I never had before. After everyone abandoned me while decorating the tree the other day, I had a realization of myself just smiling and singing along to the carols on the radio. I just felt so happy to have Christmas here and not the twinge of panic or exhaustion I might have in previous years. So much to do and get done. Who cares. Just a sense that I was truly happy and enjoying all the busyness of the season.
Christmas has always been my favorite time of year but this year I have felt so much joy. I did not put two and two together until last night. My dear girl could not make it to her daddy's birthday because she was on call and had a very stressful day of call outs and in the evening a text came that she would not make it. She had to attend an active death. Her and I always send texts back and forth when she is out. Just occasional ones to encourage her and to make sure she is okay. I'm her mom, I worry right?
Last night a woman was dying at a facility so I received texts updating me when she had time while waiting.
"She's struggling to breathe now." "It's so sad mom." How does your heart just not burst for your girl for that woman, for that family? I share on and off with our guests here for the birthday. This grounds you. I mean we were so enjoying each other's company. How precious this all is. Life, family, friends.
Well, after we went to bed I was awoken by my dear girl letting me know at 12:45 am she was home safe. Thank God. I can sleep soundly now. But then a stream of texts, "Mom it was so sad." "She died alone." No one was there. No one called. "Mom, I cried for her." I asked if she was alone with her? "No, the owner of the board and care was there too." That's it.
I know she needs to vent, to release a little after these kind of events. But that was it for me. I just wept. I wept for my daughter having such a hard job. Wondering how this will affect her. I wept just cause I am a crier and I was sad thinking of my folks and how we all were around them as they passed and how thankful I am for my family and loved ones. But mostly I wept for this poor lady. After an entire life how does one have no one to be there, no one to call when leave this earth? It just isn't right. Too many answers I know to that question.
I have no idea why God has lead my daughter in the direction she has gone. Words cannot express how proud but how amazing her dad and I think she is. I truly would not be able to do that job. I would be a wreck but we wonder how she is so strong. But I will simply take from this time in her life a bigger, deeper realization of the sweetness of life. I will savor this Christmas I think like no other. And dear lady who passed away last night, I do not even know your name but you did not die alone, my girl was there for you and she wept for you and I have wept for you. God speed.