"God saw she was getting tired, and a cure was not to be; so He put His arms around her, and whispered, "Come with me." With tearful eyes we watched her suffer, and saw her fade away; Although we loved her dearly, we could not make her stay. A golden heart stopped beating, hard working hands to rest; God broke our hearts to prove to us, He only takes the Best!
Today is a bittersweet day. One year ago today, on the Feast of the Assumption at 3:00 pm, the Lord called this wonderful woman home to him. I never ask the Lord for "signs", and I know that Mom was a good Catholic-Christian woman, but still I wanted to be certain she truly was in "good standing" with the Lord.
When she began to rapidly go down hill in August I asked the Lord to take her on a Marion Feast day, but I begged him not to take her before her birthday. You know Lord, there are quite a few Marion days coming up, please get her through the Assumption and take her after her 80th birthday, which was August 26th (she shares a birthday with Bl. Mother Theresa).
Several days later, I asked for a second "sign"--in that she would be taken at 3:00 pm. I have to admit that I felt very guilty asking our Lord for two signs, but he knows how important this was to me. The night before she passed (August 14th) while I was praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet I heard the Lord tell me that she would be taken tomorrow at 3:00 pm. Whoa! "Tomorrow" was not only too soon, but it was also the Feast of the Assumption and at 3:00 pm!!!! The next morning when I met my husband at the nursing home (he worked the midnight shift) I told him what I had heard. His eyebrows went up, but he too has learned to completely rely on the Lord.
We turned on EWTN and waited. We prayed, talked to the nursing staff and watched. Mom could not speak, but for the 1st time in a week her eyes were open and she looked at me/us the entire time. Her breathing was so labored that it was heartbreaking to watch her. At 3:00 the contemporary version of the Chaplet began. My last words to her were, "Go home to God--he's waiting for you." "I'll miss you every day of my life, but I'll be OK...now go." And she did..... But, before she left I suddenly felt "someone" give me the biggest hug. My shoulders went up and tightened against my body. I know our Lord had granted both of us one...last...miracle...
I have to share the words she had picked out for her prayer cards. Several years prior Mom had bravely gone to the funeral home by herself and planned her entire funeral. She picked all the tear jerker songs that we all love for funerals...On Eagles Wings, Ave Maria, etc. Her prayer card surprised me at first. I was picturing a very "Catholic" and holy prayer. She was a simple woman, with a child-like faith in God, and a deep love for her only child. Some people who are more "new-age" would choose this poem for different reasons, but I know why she picked this poem...it was for me...... She wanted to let me know that she would be in Heaven praying for me, and that she would always live in my heart.
"Do not stand by my grave and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow
I am the diamond glints on snow
I am the sunlight on ripened grain
I am the gentile autumn rain.
When you awake in the morning's hush
I am the swift up-flinging rush,
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the solft starlight at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry
I am not there, I did not die."