Wednesday, April 4, 2012

All Good Things Must Come to an End

Spring has come too soon.


  Winter is when we flee south to the sunny, southern climes of the Bahamas.  Spring is the transition between boating and "regular living" for the Captain and Crew of Steadfast, saying goodbye to our Sailing Life and hello to Life as Landlubbers.  In the usual course of events, we pack up the boat, drive north, jump into yard cleanup and garden prep for the summer ahead.  Once things are under control on the home front, I usually make a trip out west to visit my family in Alberta and British Columbia and then...well life happens.


This spring, Steadfast made her passage back to Florida, crossing the Gulf Stream in excellent conditions before the weather closed in for a whole week trapping our friends on the other side.  We were having a lovely time in a new-to-us marina called Sunset Bay in Stuart.  The people were so nice, friendly and helpful.  We will definitely go back there again.  Out of the blue, we received a call from my sister in Western Canada.  My mother had had a "spectacular fall" and was now dying.  

The extended family had gathered to celebrate Mum's 90th birthday Christmas Day in Southern BC. before we had sailed away.  Four generations revelled in a wonderful life-celebration with bounty, bubbles and bouncing gatiy.


These things always have a bittersweet quality to them, as one never knows if "this may be the last time...."  Sure enough, it seems that happy day was the last gathering with Mum as Matriarch of the clan.
  

I left the Captain, Nelson and Steadfast to make their way to our seasonal storage spot at River Forest Marine with a "rented crew" and began the epic journey to be with my Mum and siblings:  
Stuart to Fort Lauderdale by low-flying taxi cab (the cab driver hit 85 mph as soon as we got on the highway and maintained that speed until our exit ramp 90 minutes later), 
Fort Lauderdale to Houston, 
a 3.5 hour layover, 
Houston to Calgary, 
Customs clearance, baggage claim and redirect, then 
Calgary, Alberta to Kelowna, BC.  
The next morning, Kelowna to South-central BC.
wow!  I was wiped!

Driving the last leg of my journey, I went from singing 
to
Zippity do dah, zippity day, as a literal blue bird flew in front of my car.  

So here I am.
The family has gathered.  We are resigned to the inevitable, just waiting for Mum to decide it's time to go to her final reward.   Friends have sent love and virtual support.  The resident cats are snugglers, giving us much-appreciated tactile soothing as we move thru these hard days.  The end of Mum's good life is making room for an anticipated new life--a baby boy two weeks from now to add to our family tree.
The circle of life:
Good endings, great beginnings.

16 comments:

Darlene said...

It's so wonderful that you were able to have such a happy Christmas together. Thoughts and prayers are with you during this time. God bless. Sending you hugs.

SamiJoe said...

It sure was one fine celebration. Glad we could be there with her for her special day.

You're in our thoughts through this time.

Thisisme. said...

The circle of life indeed my friend. How wonderful that you were all gathered together like that before you set sail to warmer climes. Lovely photo of you all together. I'm so sorry to hear about your mum's fall, and I pray that the end will be peaceful for her, with all those she loves around her. That's all we can hope for at the end, isn't it? Take care.

Sush said...

Oh blessings to you and your family. A life well lived is always hard to say goodbye to, but it's lovely you have your family there and each other for love and comfort. You and yours will be in my prayers....

Unknown Mami said...

I'm glad you are able to be there. I am so sorry for the difficulties ahead.

Kristin said...

sending lots of love your way, hope you have a beautiful time with your family! and congrats on the new grand baby! that is SO exciting!!

Roy and Christine said...

So sad. God bless you and your family.

Pat Tillett said...

It's all part of life and sometimes so very bittersweet. Dying of course, is part of living, but it doesn't make things any easier on us knowing that. All the positive and healing thoughts I can muster are with you and your family...
Take care my friend...

Veronica Lee said...

This is so sad, Rosemary.

Sending you lots of hugs and prayers.

Teena in Toronto said...

I'm sorry about your mum.

Anonymous said...

Aww, 90th birthdays are the best. WE celebrated my Grandma's back in December. I'm a little bummed our Spring is sooo short lived. Only one of my tulips bloomed. Oh well, another thing to look forward to next year.

Menopausal New Mom said...

Oh Rosemary, your post brought tears to my eyes. That phone call is the one I think we dread most as we get older and our parents reach their 80's and 90's. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

Hugs,
Deb

Lucy said...

Oh, Rosemary my sympathies.

Tami said...

I'm so sorry that this is how your winter ended. But so glad you get the chance to be with your Mom in her final moments.

Prayers and hugs to you and all your family while you struggle through this.

Nessa Bixler said...

What a beautiful way to word things - her final reward yes indeed. Prayers for your heart and your family.

"Cottage By The Sea" said...

90 years sounds like a life well lived. Are you Irish? You sound like you have an Irish state of mind about life and death. (And that's a good thing!) I'm sorry about your mom and wish you and your family peace. Can't wait to hear about and see pictures of that new baby! The circle of life is a beautiful thing, is it not? Blessings, Tia