I’ll be taking a little holiday break for the rest of the week and will be back again Monday with more posts. But before I sign off, I wanted to leave you photos of what I’ll be cherishing over Thanksgiving. If you’ve been following this blog, then you know that it was inspired by my mother and her untimely passing when I was pregnant in my second trimester and my sister in her third…
Needless to say, every Thanksgiving is bittersweet. I have Zilla and my family to be thankful for but there is always the annual reckoning of my mother passing in hospice the day after Thanksgiving. A few weeks ago, I was on the phone with dear ol’ dad and he mentioned a photograph of my mother up on the wall of the ICU unit of the hospital she had worked at. He said it with such nonchalance I almost didn’t catch it. I requested him to take pictures (above and below) and mail them to me. When they arrived I carried them in my bag for three days straight so that I could take them out and and hold them in my hands.
My beautiful mother was a working mom. She was a cardiac nurse and dedicated herself to over thirty eight years on the floor of the ICU wing of St John Macomb Hospital. She was so dedicated she received a little gold pin, or to put it more precisely a “perfect record of distinction” for never missing a shift. Talk about a perfectionist. I grew up knowing she had another world in which she dedicated herself to but was not privy to the details nor the gravity. I only knew that she spent every other Christmas, New Year and Thanksgiving with us…and always requested if we could shift our Graduation dates or birthday parties so that she could make her shifts. We always joked, “all this for a gold pin?!”
In truth I never really knew how important her role was at St John. We rarely visited and she rarely divulged any tangible details about work. But the photographs that recently arrived in the mail from my father were more than evident. She is one of two nurses whose picture graces the ICU ward’s entrance. It struck me right then just how amazing a nurse she must have been. It was a swift reminder that she wasn’t just my “mom,” but that she was a great woman who had dedicated herself to her hospital, the doctors, staff and tending to and saving tens of thousands of patients over the years. She will now continue to greet countless patients and families in crisis, hopefully offering them a capable, friendly, assuring face as they pass down the hallways. Perhaps she will inspire the other nurses (new and current) to strive to her standards of work and ethics. Surely I know the hospital treasured her as I do. My mom is my Florence Nightingale, as strong, graceful, and everlasting a woman as I could hope for. I am so, so, so proud of my mom. I hope all of you give your moms a big hug this holiday.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.