That was the question my brother asked me with tears steaming down his face. We were in the midst of cleaning out my mothers apartment at the assisted living where she had passed away the day before.
Through his tears he told me that he knew that my mother loved him, but he said she envied me. She envied all the traveling I had done over the last few years, the places I had been, but mostly the fact that I had gotten sober. As I mulled this over in my mind, he added, that had she been healthy and lived, she would have quit drinking. She never said that to him, but he had gotten that sense through conversations they had.
She did not live long enough. On February 4, the cancer that had invaded her, took her life.
If I dig deep, I can find a gratitude in this. I am grateful that my higher power listened to my prayers, and took her quickly. I talked to her on Tuesday morning, she told me she was feeling better, by midnight Tuesday night she was gone. The last thing I said to her on the telephone was I love you Mom.
We spoke on the telephone every day for over 25 years, sometimes multiple times a day. Her world was small, so I loved sharing my daily adventures with her. Sometimes our conversations were short, sometimes over an hour long. No matter what I said, whether I was right or wrong, she always had my back. I don’t know how I am going to get used to not being able to pick up the telephone to share my thoughts,to gossip or to just babble with her.
I am so grateful for my sobriety. Through that, I reconciled my past difficulties with her, and finally felt at peace with my relationship with her. It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t what I thought it should be, but it was the best she could do, and in the end, it really is enough.
Love or envy, it doesn’t matter now, I have a hole in my heart. I know that time will help it close up a little, but it will never go away.