This was the view from the plane I was in just the other day while approaching Seattle, Washington for landing.
I am now in Oroville, California at the home of my brother and sister-in-law where my mother also lives. Getting straight to the point, my mom came home from the hospital yesterday to die. I've come down to be with her and help where I can. Her lungs have reached that point in life where they are too tired to work on their own. She's made the decision that she does not want to rely on machines to breathe for her therefore she's letting nature take it's course. However long that may be.
It's been over ten years since I've seen so much of my family....nieces, nephews, brother, sister-in-law, great nieces that I've never previously met....and I can't even explain the peace and comfort I feel here. I feel like I've "come home" and listening/watching/talking with everyone makes me feel so good I can't even put it into words.
Today, while mom was resting I took Penny's dog for a walk. 81* and sunny! (You all know how much I love the sun!) And it really glares off the concrete (something I'm not used to) so I may have to invest in sunglasses. I'm itching to get out and rake or sweep the drive...anything to feel that heat! Penny's napping as she cared for mom all night (I fell asleep at 3am and never heard them!) so I wasn't much help. I'm "on duty" now, but hospice comes soon and while they are doing their thing, I'll be outside!
*continued from earlier*
I did get in another walk with the dog and my great-niece Olivya. And then out again after dark when the girls and I played with a light up ball. It's been a full evening of visiting with Mom when she's awake, making sundaes with the girls, the arrival of my nephew Michael and his (pregnant) wife Karissa, Steven and Brittney's anniversary, playing with baby Zoey, kids visiting who consider Mom their Grandma and playing dice with Penny. Although the circumstances that bring me here suck...really no other word for it....the last two days with family have been perfect. It has so hit home that family is what has been missing in my life for far too long. Sooooo....I guess we either have to move to CA or they all have to come back to AK!!! What I wouldn't give to have us all neighbors spending our evenings together and having Aunt Penny be an influence on my kids (she is such a great mother!!).
I have no idea how long I'll be here for. Dying isn't something that is exact, but I do know this is a process that brings a family together. And I have the most amazing husband that has told me time and time again to cherish each moment, remember each detail and take as long as you need.
And so I will.