A college buddy of mine lost her mother to lung cancer. Her father had died when she was a child, so she and her mother were especially close.
While death is a very evident part of our lives, certain deaths affect us more than others. This one made a special impact on me.
After numerous attempts to reach my friend Nancy, I was finally able to connect with her on the telephone. She was careful not to sound too sad as she gave me the details of her mother's last few weeks on this earth. She reminisced a little and I listened quietly.
With a job and children, there is not time for her to curl up and cry.
Life carries on.
I felt sorrow for her, for having to go on and be strong. The one person she had leaned on for so long was no longer around.
She told me she was too young to lose her mother. I said, "We're never old enough for that."
We talked about how my friend and her mom would no longer talk on the telephone as each prepared dinner at night with miles between them. How Thanksgiving, Christmas and birthday celebrations would never be the same.
When our conversation was exhausted and we'd said all that we could say, we said our goodbyes. Then, she made a comment that I am reminded of every Mother's Day. She said, "Hug your mom ... No really, hug your mom."
And so I did.
Life speeds by too quickly, but death comes quicker and often when we least expect it. I learned from Nancy to hug my mom and anyone else who means a lot to me.
I hope that once my time has come to leave this life, that my hugs will be complete. How about you?
Hug your mom. Really, or hug another special person.