I'm down in the little house where I grew up. So strange to think I have lived in the house I share with my husband for more years than I lived here. But this is what feels like home in a deep, to-the-bone way.
My mom was in the hospital for three days and then discharged on oxygen. What will happen next is kind of an open question. Us three kids are all rallying around her to take care of her. I will spend nearly two weeks here, and after that my sister plans to spend a week. My brother lives around the corner.
A hospice nurse in Australia complied a list of the top five regrets of the dying. I asked my mom about each one.
I was here about a month ago, and we were walking through the historic cemetery that we both love. I saw some creepy homeless guys riding bikes and mentally braced myself to deal with them. Only it turns out they were not creepy homeless guys to my mom. She was hugging them and introducing me to her "friend" - a sunburned tweaker (or maybe ex-tweaker) with missing teeth. And you could tell he loved her right back.
It's wonderful to hang out with someone who is nearly 80. Two percent milk is sadly deficient and what's wrong with strawberry shortcake - more whipped cream, please! - for dinner?
2. I wish I hadn't worked so hard.
3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Mom and her "flower girls" - ladies who worked together at the flower shop years ago.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This was the only one that made mom hesitate, but then she shook her head no.
This is a longer version of the article. http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2012/feb/01/top-five-regrets-of-the-dying