Just 2 days before she died, I was sitting with my Mom in her room when Nick came over with Jack. Instinctively, he walked into her bedroom with Jack to come and see me. I hadn't expected it and frankly, I hadn't really wanted Jack to see my Mom anymore. I really didn't think that I could handle it. But there we were, Mom, my Dad, Nick, Jack and me.
After Jack said hi to everyone and gave me a kiss and hug, I told him that it was time to say good-bye to Nanny. I told him that Nanny was going to have to go soon, so we should give her a kiss and tell her that we love her. So Jack lovingly kissed his Nanny Shells and said "Love you, Nanny Shells." and then I told him that it was time to say good-bye. So Jack blew Nanny one more kiss and waved bye-bye.
This is my Mom meeting Jack for the first time minutes after he was born.
She was in the room for his birth.
I still to this day don't know how I kept it together to get through that. I cry every time I think about it, but at the time I knew that I needed to be calm. The minute that Jack left the room, I started to cry. My Mom hadn't opened her eyes at all while Jack was in the room, I think it was just too hard, but once he left I laid next to her and held her hand and we both cried. Then I looked at her and said "that's the hardest thing I've ever had to do. I don't even know how I did it." and after a quiet moment, my Mom said "But you did." Those words were so simple but yet so profound. They have stuck with me through so many of these difficult days.
That day was the hardest for me - harder than the night she died or the day of her funeral... The only other day that really compared was the day that she told me that she was going to die, that her cancer was too advanced for them to cure it. That day was tough. But watching my innocent baby boy kiss his grandmother good-bye was the worst.
But I did it.
My Mom never stopped reassuring me - even in her toughest days. She never stopped encouraging me. And she never stopped sharing her wisdom. Life is full of difficult things that we think must be impossible. But we do them.
And here she is meeting Wells for the first time. Again, she was in the delivery room.
This time she held the baby before anyone else did.
I was thinking about this a lot yesterday, Mother's Day, and wanted to share. All in all, Mother's Day was a lovely day. I will write more about it later. There was much to be grateful for and many things to reflect upon. And though I was dreading it a bit... I did it.
Here we are together, with both of my boys. Wells was just hours old.