While I was growing up my mother probably did every craft imaginable. (I believe that rubbed off on me a bit!) She also did them really well. Perfectly almost. And that was how her life ended also. Everything happened so perfectly.
When I got to Youngstown, it was pouring rain, but on the way to the hospital, there was a huge rainbow. My mother was pretty unresponsive and the doctor had given her a couple of days to live. We took her to Hospice House (a fantastic place, I might add). They took such good care of her and treated her so respectfully, she started to revive. Well, being the spunky stubborn old Greek lady that she was, she actually lasted 2 more weeks. We found that she hadn't lost her sense of humor and sarcastic wit. She even yelled at us for having BBQ Wings and not offering her any. That didn't happen again. She had pizza and beer the next night!
We had great conversations where she said the most perfect things in letting us know how she felt about us and how we felt about her.
At the end she was not really conscious. We all just sat around her bed. She was dying, but it didn't seem sad; it was just being very present in that moment, watching her move on, working hard to get there. She was moaning and gurgling with each breath. Then I noticed she wasn't gurgling anymore. And she was breathing really slowly. Then the nurse walked in and said that this was it, (I don't know how she knew to come in at that exact moment) it was happening and she started rubbing my mother's feet. Everyone gathered around her bed. And her breathing just kept getting slower and slower and slower until it just stopped. It was so peaceful. She made it look so easy and gentle. And then it was all over. And then it was sad. It was a very beautiful death. It was all perfect. It didn't really seem perfect while it was happening, but looking back everything happened just the way it should have and I feel so lucky to have been able to have been a part of it all.To have gotten that time to be with her and talk and laugh and joke and be frustrated and sad and happy and be with my family. I can't imagine it any other way.
After her funeral there was another rainbow.