It was the first day of summer. I remember her telling me just a few months ago that she wanted to get her treatments done in time to feel good for the summer, when her grandchildren were going to come for a visit. When she said it, I silently prayed, "PLEASE, Lord!" (add that to the list of my prayers that God completely swept aside). Now there will be no more summers with her..... WHO is going to get excited about the seeds I buy for my garden, or ooh-and-aah over my plants??? (I haven't planted ANYTHING this year, I just didn't have the heart for it....)
It was so strange, because I had been crying all morning, and I couldn't get myself to stop for long enough to care about doing anything. I went to see her two days earlier, and had been teary and sniffly since then as a cold horror settled around my heart..... but yesterday I was losing control of it and had to go into my bedroom several times. Then I got that phone call, and it was like all the color left and all the doom that has been on my heels actually enveloped me.
She came back here two weeks ago to pick up some things (she's been staying about 25 minutes away), and although she was too weak to get out of the car, I was able to stand with her and talk to her for an hour or more. Her voice was soft and weak, but we enjoyed talking about "regular" things for a little while, and then she pointedly told me that she wasn't getting any more chemo, so what would be, would be. I told her I was praying for her every day. Before she left, I hugged her tightly, and she hugged me back.
When I visited her three days ago, she hardly knew I was there. She was on a couple of heavy drugs for pain and anxiety, so she had been sleeping almost all the time, but she looked at me briefly when I held her hand and told her I was there. When I got in the car to leave (Brian was driving), I suddenly realized that I would never talk to her again..... NEVER. And now I'm alone back here in the woods, with no one to talk to about gardening, and canning, and internet problems, and homeschooling, and our kids, and husbands, and God.....and everything.....and anything. My dear friend, my only friend down here, is gone. TAKEN....
When she first told me she had cancer a year-and-a-half ago (was it that long?), I remember praying desperately to God that he please, PLEASE, not let me watch her die. And now that's exactly what I've had to do. She never even got into remission, not even for 3 months.
How can I even talk to Him now??? How can I ask Him for comfort when He wouldn't answer any of my other prayers....??
If I should die and leave you here a while,
Be not like others, sore undone, who keep
Long vigils by the silent dust, and weep.
For my sake - turn again to life and smile,
Nerving thy heart and trembling hand to do
Something to comfort other hearts than thine.
Complete those unfinished tasks of mine
And I, perchance, may therein comfort you.
|- Mary Lee Hall|