The sandwich generation.
We both had jobs.
We both had families.
Her daughter had special needs.
Mom had cancer.
Mom was pivotal in the care of her daughter.
Mom was the leader of the family at large.
Mom was our children’s care giver.
Mom was the nucleus of our universe.
We were going to be there for Mom.
We would be her rock.
We would be her caregiver.
We did not want to lose our nucleus.
Her survival was pivotal to ours.
The hardest day...
First day at the cancer clinic.
We had underestimated Mom’s feelings.
We had not talked about them.
We were too busy trying...to avoid the truth.
We were so used to Mom being the leader.
We weren’t prepared for her to be in need.
Car parked, we walked towards the building.
We became aware Mom was not with us.
We turned to find her.
It was heartbreaking.
Mom was still standing by the car.
She could not move.
She was crying.
Mom was having a panic attack.
Her fear had taken over.
She allowed us to usher her towards the building.
But, she could not go through the doorway.
We, all three of us, just stood there.
A woman, a kind, kind woman...came out to us.
She smiled warmly at Mom.
She offered her hand.
She welcomed Mom as she led us inside.
She didn’t ask any questions.
Somehow she knew none of us could speak.
She brought us all a drink of water.
She sat with us and spoke gently about nothing at all.
She took us to the waiting room.
The place was beautiful, and quiet.
Over time, it became a familiar place.
We put our faith in the people of that place.
We put our optimism in the lead.
We put our Mom in their hands.