Friday, March 16, 2012

Please pray for my Mom

Earlier today (actually, it was yesterday, as it's past midnight already) my Mom was admitted to hospital, from where I'm posting this. She was found to have a pulmonary embolism, effusion, and some issues with her heart. They say that everything can be controlled with medication. Yet, Catherine, Gerard, and Warren find it particularly hard to have seen their Grandma having shortness of breath.

Her name is Nydia Soracco-Godone. She is a saint on this earth. Now she is almost blind and in a wheelchair because she preferred to use her monies to contribute to the international adoption expenses, first from Haiti and then from Bulgaria,with two failed adoptions in between (that were more expensive than the three successful ones plus the two new ones in process all together).

Starting in her late teens, and during her twenties, she used to deliver some radio talks on literary issues--but as soon as she knew her only really cherished dream had become true, she gave up an active social life and a very promising professional future to devote herself totally, entirely, unconditionally to that baby she was carrying. From then on her whole life always revolved around me--until her grandkids stole her heart away.

Many years go, at a lonely beach resort she saved the life of a lost child whom a depraved-looking man with blood-shot eyes was trying to take away--for sure to abuse, and most likely kill in the end. They started pulling at the child, one arm each--and my mom did not let go of the boy, although that meant facing a knife pointing at her. I was a baby at the time, and the child was 7 years old. There was nobody nearby at that moment, though. My Mom remembers thinking about me, but also thinking that she shouldn't let go of the boy because if the man killed her, my Dad and my maternal Grandma would still have done an excellent job raising me whereas if she had let go of the boy, for him there would have been no chance. She didn't want to shout for my Dad not to hear and rush to the rescue because he was recovering from surgery and was with me, on the other side of a stone wall. Yet, my Mother's determination not to let go in spite of the knife aiming at her, her threats to start shouting, even though she never intended to actually do it, and a vehicle miraculously appearing in the distance put the man on the run. That child may have grown up to be a grandpa today, and may not even clearly know what really happened that day long ago--but wherever he is now, he owes his life to my Mom.

Please join us in praying for her.

Thank you,

The Godone-Maresca Family

UPDATE, as of Saturday, March 24, 2012
The reasons why I'm doing an update in the same post as opposed to doing it by means of a new one are twofold: first of all, so that more people will read about her and not just about her prognosis, and secondly in order to prevent my own children from noticing it.

On Tuesday, March 20, they did a thoracentesis on my Mom, and drained lots of fluid from around her lungs--but that won't prevent the fluid from accumulating again. That's what CHF (congestive heart failure) is all about.  On Wednesday she was discharged from hospital, and is extremely happy to be back home, but is not doing well. Yet, she seems to be doing better than when in hospital. She's on oxygen--well, let's use the real words: she was discharged to hospice care at home. She's totally lucid, though. Her IQ may have dropped from very superior IQ to average, but her reasoning is as clear and her heart is as big as always. To the extent we talk about 'heart' as a synonym for soul and giving, she's the very same person she always was--but in the scientific sense of the word, her heart can fail any moment--and there is nothing the medical technology can do to avoid the unavoidable. . . although for sure prayer can prevent it from happening so soon.

Nobody knows about this except my Mom and I--not even Catherine. There is no point in having her and the twins suffer so much in advance while she is still with us. It won't mitigate their pain when it actually happens. It's not a matter of getting "prepared." There is no way you can prepare yourself when your whole world can change from one moment to another. We've been always all of us together. It's impossible to think that one day she may not be here with the rest of us on this earth. It's impossible to imagine everyday life without her.

Except for a few short trips, I've been near my Mom all my life. Still now, she is the one who comforts me--even though it should be the other way round. She keeps on telling me she'll be with my Dad and my grandparents, and that we'll be together again for all the eternity one day. Yet, the day she goes I'm afraid I won't be able to see her again. I'm not even remotely as good and as selfless as she is and as they were.

She is making Catherine promise that she'll finish her dissertation no matter what, and is making Gerard and Warren promise that they'll do well in college so as to be able to pursue their goal of going  to medical school later on--but still no one of them accepts the idea that something may happen. No one of them conceives life without Grandma. They keep on making long-terms plans with Grandma in them. Human minds trick themselves for self-protection. When they make plans, there is always Grandma in their plans.

My Mom wants to be able to hug Maximilian and Philip. I do know she'll always hug all of us no matter what--but she wants to give them a hug here, to know that they're home. Many times I've told the story about how my Dad, fifteen years after going with God, brought Thomas and Nicholas from Haiti to us. The next day after dreaming that he was knocking at the door carrying both of them in his arms, the problem the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince had created for us was miraculously resolved. In my dream, my Dad had told me, "I went to Haiti myself because it was the only way to bring them home to all of you."  And it was only a matter of a few days before I was booking the plane tickets for the actual trip to bring them home.

I'm drowning in tears. My mind is confused, my heart is aching--and the only protected world I always knew may become upside down any time. As opposed to a fairytale childhood, in my adult life there were some difficult times--but my Mom was always there to make things easier for me. Even at my age, I always knew my Mom was right there for me for whatever I might need--and I do know she will always be. Yet, I need her here. We need her here. She always knew everything, she always gave me encouragement, praise, support, comfort, ideas, resources--everything, everywhere, every time. She never thought about herself one single minute of her life--and even now, as weak as she is, she still does not think about herself, but only about us.

As a cute note, on Wednesday, when my Mom was discharged from the hospital, Nicholas hugged the ambulance driver who was bringing his Grandma back home.

When Catherine asked me something about prognosis, all I could say was that she won't make it till 100 as we'd like--but said she was O.K. for now. I simply couldn't say anything different--and Catherine immediately replied, "She can make it till 99!"  She is still in her eighties. Catherine, Gerard, and Warren think of every single detail that can make their Grandma's life longer--but the truth is that, although she is on medication, the doctors told me that issues such as diet and room temperature won't make any difference.

Please keep on praying for my Mom's heart to hold on for as long as possible--for a few more years at least.

God bless,



stephanie said...

Your mom sounds amazing! Keeping her in my prayers!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much, Stephanie--from all of us. She's doing much better than yesterday.God bless, The Godone-Maresca Family

Leila @ Little Catholic Bubble said...

She sounds like a saint, for sure! Be assured of my prayers for your lovely, cherished mother.

Blessedmom said...

From all of us, thank you so much, Leila, Lillian

eliz said...

Oh Lillian, my heart hurts for all of you. What a blessing your mom is. What a legacy of love she leaves behind. We are praying. (((HUGS)))

Blessedmom said...

Thank you, Elizabeth. Please keep on praying for her to continue being a reality for a long time to come-not a legacy yet. Her love has always been boundless, endless, infinite--and we're too used to having that enormous love right next to us. God bless, Lillian

eliz said...

Sorry Lillian, I did not mean leaves behind as in she was no longer with you. I meant it as in past years, she leaves behind memories each year as she is with you. I say things wrong often, I'm not as literate as you! I wish I could word things better.
I am praying that your mom is having a wonderful day today, filled with God's blessings! (((HUGS)))

Blessedmom said...

Please don't worry, Elizabeth. I didn't mean to take offense at that either--and you're very good at writing too! Memories keep unfolding. I need to post the latest pix--including the twins' Confirmation and the after-Confirmation photos. Provided that she is next to us, my Mom is always happy. She and I are the only ones who know the prognosis--and her sole concerns are about how it'll affect us when it happens. No need for any apology at all--on the contrary: I should apologize to you for being so touchy!. God bless, Lillian

eliz said...

Confirmation pictures! How fun! Yes! If you get time I'd love to see them!


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