Monday, September 7, 2009

Life

I was a soldier, I was in combat, I was shot, and returned to battle a couple of months later. One time I was face to face with an enemy combatant and he fired his pistol 2 feet from my chest, I heard his weapon click, it misfired, that gave me time to pull out my weapon and shoot him point blank. From behind me, I heard my commander yell “run, run, get the Hell out of here!” Three days later I was captured and held prisoner for 32 damn months. Darling all that put together is nothing compared to these last three days.
My father has said this to me twice since I have been here, his eyes well up with tears every time, he is not exaggerating, he is dead serious when he says he would die without my mother.


My parents have been married over 50 years, my father no longer knows how to exist without my mother, how to breath, how to eat, how to wake up and get out of bed in the morning if she is not by his side. His thoughts are not so much incoherent, as they are irrelevant if she is not there to hear them and share them. Nothing makes sense to him if she is not here. This is painfully clear to me and to him, and he has told me more than once in these last few days. This is a fact that truly freaks out my poor sister, since she was alone with the first 24 hours that it took me and my oldest sister to make our way to Guatemala from Florida, and she alone bore the brunt of the immense anguish my Dad was in.

My mother had a brain aneurysm Friday night just after midnight, I was not able to get here (Guatemala) until Sunday at about 9pm. She had a stroke sometime Sunday night and was put in a medically induced coma on Monday morning. Before she was put under she would grab my father’s hand and say “Thank you, thank you for staying with me” The old man’s response was, where else would I be? I have always been here and will always be here. My Mom is 70 (Mom, if you are reading this, I’m sorry for revealing your age, I’m sure you’re not thrilled about it, but if you are able to read this then I couldn’t ask for anything more) my Dad is 75, he is a man and doesn’t mind revealing his age. He and I are big cry babies, so it is not as shocking to see his eyes tear up, as let’s say as some other men who never cry. What is shocking is the fear that was there the first few days where as he repeats to me frequently was touch and go, he shakes his head and says I almost lost her, I almost lost her.

We go back and forth from the Hospital to the house all day, and we gather little bits of good news, she opened her eyes, she moved her right hand, she wiggled her left foot, she responds to verbal commands, she squeezed my fingers, we removed the ventilator, she breaths on her own, she said Mama and she said Papa! This is not how I think of my Mother on a regular basis; she is as strong, willful woman. Smart, disciplined and daring. Now we are brought to tears of joy and relief because she said mama, our lives changed forever, none more so than her's and my father’s.

21 comments:

  1. Saying lots and lots of prayers.

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  2. I wish your mother a speedy and full recovery. It is possible and can happen in time.

    I wish your father and you and the rest of your family strength.

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  3. What a beautiful and eloquent description of such a devastating time for you all. I am moved to tears by the love your father has for your mother - if only we could all experience love like that. All my love and best wishes are with you and your family and for a speedy recovery for your mother.

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  4. Thoughts and prayers are going out to you and your family. Your father's statement/analogy brought tears to my eyes. What a beautiful relationship.

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  5. Maureen suggested l have some tissues nearby when reading your families story. l didn't use them. l'm a guy...l used my shirt sleeve...Some of the tears were out of fear,some were out of joy having known your family for over 35 years and having so many wondrous memories come rushing back. My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Please give Ed a hug for me...Much love...Patrick

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  6. What beautiful tribute to your parents and to you. It is very moving, showing us all what is important in life. I will keep praying for you and your Mom. Martha is a very special woman, but you already know that. Keep loving each other.......... Rita

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  7. Que lindo lo que escribiste, Ylla, que Dios les de la fuerza de seguir adelante apoyando a tu mami, que los milagros todos los dias pasan. Te tenemos siempre presente. Saludos,
    Jose y Ana

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  8. Ylla,
    I had no idea. I just left you message. I love you and am thinking of you. I dont know how to get in touch with you. Please know we are praying for you all.
    Love,
    Lola

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  9. What a sad tragedy and a touching love story. You, your mom and dad will be in the thoughts of FB and me. I will send some positive thoughts your way.

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  10. Mi amor, so sorry you're going through this but so happy your mom has responded. All of us who are still lucky to have our parents around can surely relate to your situation. I would not want to be in your shoes right now. You know I've moved from Florida and left property and everyone behind just to be with my parents in Boston, so your situation is close to my heart. I will keep your mom and all of you in my prayers. May God bless and keep all of you strong. Love, Margie

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  11. Healthy vibes and bear hugs from Chicago.

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  12. This made me cry, it is simply beautiful.

    If I could be like a little sponge and soak up some of your family's anxiety and worry and fear, I would. In the meantime, I am sending you a big hug and lots of prayers.

    tp

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  13. Wow que historia de, imagino lo que les ha costado llegar a esa sintonía de amor!!!

    Wow that story, imagine what it cost them to get to this line of love!!!

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  14. Oh, wow. Thinking of you and your family and wishing your mama the absolute quickest of recoveries.

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  15. Ylla, Que lindo escribis. Senti como si hubiera estado contigo todos estos dias. Gracias por compartir. Animo! Te mandamos fuertes abrazos,
    Gio y Romina

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  16. There is so much I want to say... but it really doesn't matter...

    just know that someone you don't know is praying for you and your family.

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  17. I happen upon you post this morn, you are in my prayers. My parents were married for 66 years in May.
    I lost my Mom last month after a fall resulting in a broken hip the first of June. We were in and out of rehab-ER's, ICU's and hospital rooms.I stayed with her the entire time exept when when she was in ICU. We thought we were coming home, then on Aug 2nd, I think she just gave up. She was 83. My Dad is 87 and has alzheimers and esophagus cancer that returned in April. His alzheimers is not real bad yet, just short term memory gone, which means he doesn't remember what has happen to Mother. I explain when he brings it up and he says he thinks that it good the good Lord removed that part of his memory. He is really having a hard time getting his food down, including booast. He's down from 175lbs to 106lbs, 14 lbs since Mother died. He finally agreed to let a nurse (Hospice) come in. Just hold on to each moment that you have with both. We never know when they'll be gone.
    Ogtkkus

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  18. Aww. Seeing our dads tear up is the WORST! Hoping the best for your mom.

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  19. Thinking about you...hoping you are well

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  20. Hard to know what to say, Just popped in from mama kats. So sorry. Wishing all the best

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I love you Darling, really! Thank you!