My mom has been on my mind a lot this past week, but it had nothing to do with Mother's Day. A week ago today I fell down a flight of steps at work. I landed hard, directly on my shoulder dislocating it. I spent several hours at the local ER with a coworker who brought me there. She said that while I was still under anesthesia I expressed a desire to do water aerobics. I do not have a clue where that one came from. Before they put my shoulder back in place, I felt the greatest physical pain I have ever felt in my life. When it was done I woke with my right arm and hand immobilized in a brace. The right is my dominant arm. I would be forced to be a lefty until I healed. The doctor’s orders were to not use or raise my right arm.
My sister, Cheryl, came to get me and took me out to her farm in WI. Together we figured out how I could do things one-handed. Dressing was difficult the first time. Have you ever considered how hard it would be trying to put a bra on with one hand? Fortunately, I was wearing a front clasp sports bra. It is doable. Cheryl expressed the fact that she felt a little helpless watching me. I could see her frustration in wanting to assist me. But, I would not let her help me. I needed to know that I could do it myself and I did, mostly. In retrospect I realize that this is nothing new. I seldom let anyone help me. In the end, the only things I needed help with were shoes and socks.
I had many hours last week to think and memories of my mom kept creeping in. In my struggle to adapt to using one arm, I was reminded how she adapted her life so that she could function on her own with declining skills after my dad died. As good as she was, putting on socks was always difficult for her too. At odd moments when I was alone in the house, while my sister and her husband were out doing chores, I found myself wanting to call my mom. But, she is gone now.
Surprisingly, with everything that happened last week, I had totally forgotten that tomorrow was Mother’s Day. It is the first without her. I realized it while I was checking in on Twitter this morning. There were numerous posts for Mother’s Day. It hit me hard. I had not shed many tears from the intense physical pain from my broken body, but tears flowed from the emotional pain of grief and loss.
In the past I had been told by several of my mother’s friends that I remind me of her. This past week reminded me of the struggles she faced as I myself struggled with this injury. But, right now, I just wish she were still here to talk to. No matter what your age is, when you are hurting you just want your mom.