April 15, 2015 – 7:15am Dubai Hospital
The sound of your breathing and your occasional snores are the sweetest sound and melody I have ever heard. It’s the sound of safety, security and at this moment my life line.
I feel my heart beating in tune with your breath. It even skips a beat when you fall silent and drops to the pit of my stomach in fear.
Every moment is so precious, and every breath so priceless. Mama, I am not ready for what is to come. I will never be ready for that day. Every day I pray and plead with God, please God, not today, please God keep my mama safe and bring her back to health. Please God, I can’t bear to even think of life without her.
As you lay in your hospital bed so silent, my sleeping beauty, it was my turn to spend the night with you, and as peaceful and silent the nights used to be, they now frighten me.
The nights are scary and I find myself breathing a sigh of relief when the first rays of sunlight shine through the window.
Thank you, God. Alhamdella. My mama is safe.
I have witnessed too many scary nights on this floor at the hospital. Nights when loved ones separate, when sobs of grief fill the corridors in mourning for the departure of a family member who has finally lost the battle against this awful disease. Cancer.
How I hate this disease, the thief that robs us of our loved ones and robs our loved ones of everything.
Mama, I love you. Even in sleep I learn from you. I learn how amazingly courageous and gentle you are. How the touch of your hands as fragile as they are at this moment, continue to give me comfort and strength.
My heart drops as you suddenly gasp. On no! I jump to check on you and your breathing, to make sure you aren’t choking or aspirating (the dreaded word I learnt a month ago; the word that could rob me of my precious mama).
I talk to you even as you sleep. I whisper in your ears I love you, I miss you. We’re going to be okay mama (I lie to you and to myself) we’re going to be okay. We’re going to look after each other and after Baba and you will be okay.
I stop writing to make sure you are okay, to try and discern from your facial expressions and find out if you are in pain or need another shot of morphine.
Although you are sedated most of the time, the pain is still there, the doctor told us to watch out for it because you still feel it and can’t tell us yourself.
I am at a loss for words; I am in awe of your bravery and grace. In the past four and half years, you’ve battled this and done so with a smile and never complained, not once, you’ve always said Alhamdella, God is Kind and Merciful.
Mama, I still need you. I still have so much to tell you. I need you to be a grandmother to my unborn children and I need your wisdom and strength to help me get through every moment in life.
Please Mama hang in there. At times I feel selfish; I know this isn’t how you would want to live. I know I need to let you go but I can’t because I know if the roles were reversed you would never give up on us, any of us.
Even in illness you bring us all together, you unite us all, as family flock to your side from all parts of the world, I am in awe of how you have even brought your in-laws together.
Sadly thirty seven days after I wrote this in my journal, on May 22, 2015, at seven thirty on a Friday morning my Mama took her last breath and lost her battle with cancer. She may have lost to cancer but she won the everlasting love and admiration of all those fortunate enough to know her.
As she was laid to rest, no longer burdened by her physical diseased body, her spirit was free to soar. My beautiful Mama, she looked angelic, peaceful and smiled before she was buried. I knew she was letting us know that she was okay. The thing is we all know she is okay but will we ever be okay?! Will I ever be okay!? A large part of me was buried with her that day. I know I will never get that back, I know that the wound in my heart will never heal completely; it will just change and become a familiar pain that I will have to learn to live with. I love you Mama, my guardian angel.
Sarah is an award-winning entrepreneur, business development specialist, life coach, writer, banking and investments professional with over 15 years of experience. She is the co-founder of the award-winning firm Infin8Ventures. Through her column, she hopes to re-ignite the dreamer in all of us and inspire us to make those dreams a reality.