Today is my second mothers day after losing my twins, and the first that I have felt relatively sane since then. I awoke to the sad, but not entirely unexpected news that the mother of one of my close friends had passed away in the night.
Marie was diagnosed with a brain tumour last year. She had surgery which couldn’t remove it all, then chemo. Six weeks ago we saw her and she was going really well. Last week Pete rang me to say she was going downhill, and to come and visit soon. Of course, last week Inigo was the focus, and we didn’t get up the coast to see Marie.
Yesterday, on our way in to the marriage equality rally, Peter rang. Marie’s condition had deteriorated markedly, and if we wanted to see her, we had to move quickly.
Mum and Dad took Inigo, and Mark and I called friends to let them know we wouldn’t be at the rally. We went to see Marie and her family, and I was able to say goodbye and tell her how I felt about her. She was in a coma, but I want to believe she knows how much she meant to me.
Peter and I were friends in high school. I think he is one of two people from that high school of over 1000 kids that I still have any contact with. His mum was always so kind, and giving, and thoughtful to me, and since marrying and having Inigo, to Mark and Inigo too.
Marie left her family and community to travel the world, and built a new family in Australia. She was a mother of four children, two of whom died before her. How she survived the loss of two adult children and remained graceful, gentle, loving and kind is completely beyond me.
Of all days to lose her, Mothers Day seems especially hard.