Dare I open my heart to feel the pain that lies before me.
Shall I remember all that will be lost to her upon closing her eyes after her final moment?
Empty is what I feel as I think about her end.
The end of an era.
The end of what I carried with me throughout my life.
As I hold onto her currently warm hand I feel safe for the moment.
If there is warmth, death can’t be close by.
Life still exists within her.
She laughs as I reminisce and share recent family news.
I’m overcome with her struggle as she lets out her trapped laughter.
I swallow both my fear and the tears because she doesn’t want nor does she need to see them.
I feel empty inside.
Consumed by what I hope isn’t around the corner waiting to steal away the woman who carried me in her womb. I know whatever it is, sits there in wait for just the right moment to steal her away from me.
Swallowing my fear I recall her struggles to eat her food. Her tray is home to an array of pureed foods that she happily slurps down to hide the test of the medicine she had previously taken.
Her favorite classical music fills each corner of her hospital room. Judge Judy plays without sound and she’s reading Soap Opera digest. This is how she keeps her mind off of all that follows her.
Together we are trapped in the denial of our circumstance, devoured by time and ailments. Not all things can be fixed, not all things can be forgotten, and most certainly not forgiven.
Who do we have to thank for our losses? There are certainly no gains here, except for stolen moments and stained memories.
Who will comfort us and our children? How do we move past the pain without losing the rest of ourselves?
Empty is the only feeling we have left.
By Felina Silver Robinson