I write this blog post both with great sadness and a little joy, first of all the sadness is the passing of my dear mother who fought the awful disease Cancer and secondly the little joy of knowing my mum is free from pain and safe in the arms of Jesus. Even though it is so very hard to except I feel I need to share my experience with you.
About 2008 my mum had to go into to hospital to have her gallbladder removed after suffering a long time with sickness and pain from it. It was the nurse in charge that looked at mums throat and said directly and quite firmly you need to talk your mum into having this Goitre removed. I will never forget her expression of sincerity. You see before the op for the gallbladder mum had never been into hospital for any operations she was very healthy and a real wee worker mum went back to work after each child was 6 weeks old back in those days not the long holidays we receive now.
So when mums operation was successful I said to her mum you really should have your Goitre removed or at least see the doctor. You see the sickness what we thought was coming from the gallbladder hadn’t stopped I had so many memories of mum and dad being at my home for Sunday dinner and mum would run to the bathroom to be sick, “I thought to myself this can’t be right”. After a few months had passed mum started to go for tests on her throat it was when they sent of samples of they discovered her Cancer we never found out until after the throat operation which lasted over 9 hours and mum being in intensive care that the doctor said to my dad and I on the way up to see mum could “I have a word”.
My heart just sank to my feet! I looked at dad so scared and said what do you think it is? My mind was racing and my heart felt so sad at what I was going to hear almost wanting the doctor not to open his mouth that day in the private room. Well he did and the words where “your wife has had a MASSIVE cancer growth removed from the side of her throat the Goitre was hiding it but your wife lost so much blood during the op I don’t want to give her a blood transfusion in case of more cancer but I will give her iron to see how things go” Can you imagine “WHAT Cancer was the words in my mind no way not mum”
I know you here so much of this awful disease and its now got that almost every family will receive some form of it within that unit but when it is YOU it’s so hard to deal with nothing in life can prepare you for the next 6 years of a roller-coaster, dealing with good news and bad news and hospital visits. When I think back to after a year of mum having treatment for the disease I remember the doctor saying mums condition is Terminal WHAT Terminal I just couldn’t take those words in. I lay in bed at night and thought after all these dealings with this disease does anyone really want a cure? I know this is crazy to think but the money that has been invested in such an awful illness that takes the life from a Person how can we not know how to make us all better?
I feel my mum’s faith really brought us all through this awful stage in our life. I say the words our as I am the youngest child of a family of four there is two brothers and one sister the most amazing brothers a girl could ask for. I remember having this awful feeling in 2010 not sure why or what but I remember saying to my husband I am not going on holiday in 2012? as I have an awful feeling that something is going to happen not sure what but no holidays in case. I would have dreams and its hard to know what it was about but clearly that year was so vivid why? That year I have no idea I just felt in my heart something is going to happen and boy I couldn’t have been more right. I had forgotten at the time saying in 2010 about the dream of that awful year and I got word from Belfast to come down and speak with mum’s cancer doctor in March of 2012 about mums condition.
My dad and my brother and I all took the journey to see the doc YES we knew mums was ill and terminal was the word but really do you ever believe the outcome is death. I think you sail along this awful path dealing with one day at a time and living in hope that the doctor is wrong? Maybe that’s just how I coped with it who knows all I know what we where about to here, I was not prepared for in NO WAY could I have taken in the words your mum has six months to live “WHAT MONTHS no way”? “ “You must be mistaken look at the scan again “ I even ask could I see it on the computer not wanting to let the words sink in I set in the doctors chair in misbelief of what I was hearing.
Well he said “its like this 6 months maybe a year at the most so go home and make the most of your time together”. We never told mum until about two and a half years later yes that’s right the doctor never knew the plan that God had for my mum she touched so many people along her path she had the most amazing prayer life that others love to hear she was an amazing lady and had the strength of Goliath and the cancer was not on her mind she had a great love for The LORD and this disease would not take that away, after all in life when all is said and done if you don’t believe in the creator who made this world we live in, you have nothing. I have often said I would rather believe on the man who died on Calvary to save us from our sins than no faith at all at least if I believe and I die and there is nothing no Heaven or Hell I have lost nothing, but if I die and I have no faith in GOD and its real well I have lost everything.
I have so much to share about the next three years of my life, mum was ill yes but God was so good he give me the grace to deal with the final stage of mums life, but I want to share the amazing holidays we went on after that appointment in March 2012 being told the news. The first was a cruise an amazing time was spent with mum, her and I would go for lunch to the fine dinning hall when the ship was out at sea and we watched the waves splash against the ship while taking about all things nice I can’t thank God enough for those days they where very precious to me. Shortly after that holiday in April 2012 we went to mainland Spain for a week I wouldn’t recommend the mainland holiday in comparison to the ship but all I wanted to be was on holiday as I felt when I was away with mum she was just mum but when I was at home she was mum with six months to live and I couldn’t imagine my life without her.
I have to say back in 2012 I died not literal of course as I wouldn’t be writing this blog post but inside I felt so empty and I could hardly breath as I felt my heart was cut in half. I drove home from the hospital and only God knows how I managed it with the tears rolling down my cheeks and the break I felt within my heart. I came through my door and went straight to the watertap to try and help me breath as I was so consumed with the thought I was going to spend the rest of my life without mum I hadn’t really prepared myself for this I lived in the world of denial the one where mum or dad was never away they would always be apart of my life.
If you are reading this and you still have your mum make these days precious spend time together go shopping and send your mum on loads of nice beauty treats if she likes that sort of thing. I thank The Lord so much that I was given that chance over the next three years to spend time with mum, I done as much as I could with and for her she became my life, my mum and dad always where a big part of my life with me being the youngest in the family I had never went on a family holiday ever without mum and dad coming with us. They both always came along and we had so many great times together we got on so well and had the same interest on holidays and that was just to go to the beach every day and rest and then at night after tea we would go shopping “those where the days”.
Well in 2014 June of that year mum had been so ill we thought the days where coming to an end the next 7 months was very hard mum’s hip was totally eaten away by the disease and she needed an operation just for pain management the surgeon told her she might not make it of the operation table as her condition was so low. In return she just smiled and said” you do your best I am in Gods hands and if he wants to take me home well I’m ready”. Wow what a woman the nurse in the room that day said to me she had a tear in her eyes for how strong in faith mum was and how she wishes she had that same faith. She told me how “your mum just lay there and smiled when she spoke with the doctor it was so unreal”.
That also showed me just how much God had a plan for mum one much greater than I could ever imagine, her own local GP doctors where so amazed that on paper mum should have been gone long ago but God knew the day and the hour in which he would call her home. On the Friday night I phoned to see how mum was and dad informed me that mum was so sick. I came over and washed and cleaned her up got the Marie Curie nurse in charge that night to call out with an injection for the sickness and on Saturday 14th March mum’s body started to close down she was still aware of what and who was in the room she was able to talk just faintly.
I decided to have Mother’s day early the boys and I bought her lovely flowers and a card saying how much we loved and appreciate all the love and care she had given to us over the years. She smiled when she saw them and went back to sleep, you see when mum died it was on Sunday the 15th March 2015 The Lords day not Mother’s day for us as God was so good he give me the knowledge to celebrate Mother’s day the day before. I never felt as though mum was stolen away or I didn’t get to have mother’s day with her I felt The Lord took mum home on his day and what a joy in my heart in knowing she is in his presence today.
I couldn’t have asked for a more caring and loving mother ever from an early age up until I was in my 20s mum would still kiss me goodnight and tuck me into bed she would always leave my room with a kiss and saying “God bless you now don’t forget to say your prayers”. I felt so blessed in many ways to have been given the most amazing parents ever both my mum and dad where saved over 40 years ago and my dad always told me a couple that pray together stay together and that couldn’t have been further from the truth. After 52 years of marriage when mum died my dad lost his best friend. I am very blessed to have two boys and the most loving husband ever of my own and my Photography, which is such an amazing part of my life to meet great people along the way and tell their story through my images. Thank you for taking the time to view my blog, and may God bless you in your journey ahead, and if you find yourself on the path I was you will know after reading mu post that there is a great saviour one who if you let him in with walk with you all the way!
Thank you and God bless