March 2, 2022

may angels lead you in

This story is very sacred and special to me, but I write pieces of it here for my family (which is actually my reason for posting anything here in this space). Though, I put more details in my personal journal rather than here. I'm so grateful for the tender mercies of the Lord during this difficult time.

I found out on a friday that my mom had fallen on Thursday. She had hit her head multiple times and so had a black eye, a cut, and broken glasses. Eric and I were in the car within an hour of hearing the news and I'm so glad we went right then verses coming the next morning like we had thought about doing. 

She was struggling comprehending some things and hearing us, but still pretty coherent. We packed up some of my parents things and drove them to our house that night. But it was a rough night back at our house.

In the morning, my mom slept in the bed while we sat around her trying to make a plan. We woke her up to take her medicine but she couldn't hold her head up or swallow water so we knew we needed to get her to the hospital. 

I was able to stay with her in the ER. Her nurse was amazing and the doctors were good. In short, her blood sugar was too low, her hemoglobin was down to 3.8, and her liver and kidneys were not in good shape. While in the ER, she said my name twice and it was comforting for me to know that she knew that I was there with her. I wanted her to know she was not alone and she was loved.

They got her into the ICU pretty quickly. At first I was told by a cranky nurse downstairs that I wouldn't get a visit, but then, thankfully, we got up to ICU they let me come in for a 30 min visit. I am beyond grateful for that short time I had with her. As she lay there asleep, I stood there holding her hand and rubbing her head, I was able to talk to her and tell her what was in my heart at that moment. Then I had the thought to play some music for her. I put on the Monkees and then asked my sisters for other music suggestions. When I turned on "Hear You Me" by Jimmy Eat World, her eyes finally opened. She looked at me with such peace over her face. She smiled the sweetest smile at me. And an overwhelming feeling came over me that my mom would be ok, it was ok to let her go, that she wanted to be with her mama and daddy again, she had been suffering so much for so long. Her smile at me and the peace in her eyes were the reassurance I needed in that moment. Too soon it was time for me to go.

That night her oxygen levels dropped and they had to put her on a ventilator. 

On sunday, my sister was able to have a visit with her and another sister was able to drive down to our house. 

On Monday, after discussion as a family and with the advice of the doctors we made the excruciatingly hard decision to take her off the ventilator and transfer her to comfort care.

The kind nurse let four of us come in and say our final goodbye (picture above) and be with her as she passed. We had some other family with us over facetime. 

Eric gave her a sweet priesthood blessing. We spent some time with her and played her a few songs. Then it was time to take the ventilator out. We stayed right with her for the next 25 min until she passed, all the while playing Jimmy Eat World for her, “…May angels lead you in…”

Walking away from that hospital room was hands down the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. I couldn't control my loud sobs and intense tears.

My mom's spirit had left this earth.