Becky Says...

March 2007

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Eleven - March 9

It's been eleven years since I last heard my mother's voice. This entry is a reprint of one I wrote last year this day. I'm reposting it because some of you haven't known me that long, and because it was on my mind.

...and I know you love me

There are days when I really, truly miss my mother. This is one of them. It was ten years ago tomorrow that she had the third stroke, the one that ultimately killed her. But it was ten years ago today that I last heard her voice.

She was at a rest home several miles away from me, and had been there since the prior summer. Definitely long enough to have made friends, and to have made some really good strides toward recovering from the effects of the maltreatment after her second stroke. I had gotten into the habit of visiting every other day, knowing that if I were needed I could get there quickly and trusting the staff there to know how to deal with any possible emergency.

So that March 9, which was a Saturday, was a normal visit. Mother had been left with expressive aphasia after the second stroke, and although she had regained some of her words, there were still more times than not that it was necessary for me to translate (at least to myself) what she meant. And there were times when it was just easier for both of us if I either filled in both halves of the conversation (by asking yes/no questions) or started off telling her something chatworthy and let her ask the questions.

That day was my chosen sister Donna's birthday. (As is today, of course -- Happy Birthday, Donna!) Because Donna and Mother were also very close to each other, it strikes me as meet and right that a large part of what I remember about Mother's final conversation had to do with how well things were going in Donna's life.

Mother and I had long been in the habit of saying, "I love you," to each other, especially when we were parting company. The expressive aphasia changed that a little, in that what usually happened was me saying, "I love you, and I know you love me," with Mother either nodding or saying "Yes!" to indicate her participation.

I'll end this by saying I love my mother, and I know she loves me. And in my mind, I see a nod and hear a "Yes!"

Text © copyright 2000-2007 Becky