Posted by: Kathy | June 5, 2009

I Talk to You, But You Can’t Respond

Because my mom’s parents lived into their 90s, I always thought I had a lot of time left with my mom. On my long drive to work, I was thinking about my mom, about how on similar drives several months or even a year ago I spent the drive praying for my mom to get well. I also thought a lot about the time I feel I wasted.

I talk to my mom all the time, but unfortunately she can’t respond to me these days. I miss talking with my mom. I miss telling her about things the kids did. I miss just hearing her voice and that when I picked up the phone to talk with her, she’d always be there for me.

This morning I told my mom I was sorry for all the time I missed with her. I’m sorry for all the times I didn’t tell her about something, for all the times I didn’t share something with her because I was too busy to pick up the phone or just figured I’d tell her another day and then forgot about it.

After my mom was diagnosed with cancer, I called her every day until the day she died. I can still remember the last conversation I had with her. I was in the car driving home from the store with my son. I had stopped to get gas and pulled out my cell phone and called my mom. She sounded good, she sounded happy, she said she was doing ok, although there was a bit of confusion in her voice, a hint of weakness, and when I got off the phone with her I started crying.

If I had known then that that call would be my last conversation with my mom, I would have said a lot more. The next day, my mom basically stopped talking, and the day after that she was gone.

My mom did so well for so long, and then she slipped away quickly. By the time I realized I didn’t have much time left with my mom, it was too late. The cancer had started affecting my mom’s mind and she got confused easily. The conversations I had planned to have with her stayed in my head and were never spoken. I felt a lot of guilt about this right after she died and still do to some extent. I also get angry at myself for all the time I wasted.

If I could go back and do things over again, I would share a lot more of my life with my mom. I would ask my mom questions about her life. And instead of just thinking about conversations I’d like to have with my mom, I would talk to her.

I know a lot of people have regrets, and mine is not talking with my mom when I had the chance. Does anyone else feel this way? If you could go back  in time, what would you do?

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