Asking God Why…A Story Without An Ending

I woke up this morning thinking about my Mom. I know that because I tend to speak of her in the past tense that most of my readers assume that she has passed on. No, she’s still alive. And what is happening to her is one of the most painful questions I have posed to God. Why?

When Mom was about my age, in her early forties, she began to have some skin issues, or at least, that is

My mother and me...

what we assumed her problem was. After almost a decade of going to doctors, she was finally diagnosed with primary biliary cirrhosis of the liver. Her liver was tanked and putting bile in her blood, which was making her whole body itch. She was miserable, to say the least.

My mother has lived her entire life waiting to go to heaven. If you were to ask any of us what her one defining characteristic was in our opinion, I imagine it wouldn’t vary much from the fact that she was staying in her home, writing her romance novels, and waiting for Jesus to return, or her to die. She always seemed to be waiting…To see Jesus’ face was her only goal. And it irritated all of her kids to some degree or another.

Mom wasn’t much able to function like most of us today. She’d only held down a few jobs in her life ( and, only for brief periods of time), choosing instead to raise her 5 children as a homemaker instead. Our home was always clean, clothes were washed, a meal cooked each evening. But when it came to our lives outside of those four walls, Mom didn’t want to participate. She preferred the world that went on in her head. She was by the very definition, a romantic.

When the doctors told Mom that she would have to have a liver transplant, her first reaction to this news was to reject the idea. She didn’t fear death at all, and she was ready to go….had been for a long time. Her decision rippled through her family, sending us like waves in all directions. One of my sisters and I were of the opinion that she should do as she wanted. It wasn’t our decision, and we had faith we’d see her again when we died. Another sister and one of my brothers found her decision to be selfish, and encouraged her to get the transplant. After all, she had kids and grandkids to think of. And then, her husband R. and one other brother just stayed neutral, not giving an opinion one way or another. I remember thinking that if my husband chose to stay neutral on a subject like this with me, that would break my heart.

In the end, Mom folded, and got the transplant. A few short years later, R. dropped her off at my doorstep with an old Jeep Cherokee, it’s title, and $100. Their marriage of 30 years was over. She was devastated.

Within a few short months, Mom had stroke after stroke, and disintegrated mentally and physically down to a small child. Her personality changed, becoming mean-spirited, frustrated, angry…My New York sister and I took care of her back and forth for about a year before I was in the motorcycle accident. After that, she had to be put into a nursing home. She ended up in New York state  nursing home– one of the youngest residents in it.

I talk about my mother in the past tense because I don’t recognize this woman who is my mother now. Even physically, she doesn’t feel the same to me. Like she’d always done all my life, she’s waiting to die. Ironically, that transplanted liver is over a decade old now, even though we were warned she’d probably only last 5 years more after her transplant…It all seems so cruel to me.

I don’t know what other people pray for when they pray for my mom, but my prayer is always that God will end her suffering and take her to the home she has been dreaming and longing for all of her life. Maybe it is cold…but I don’t think so. I can’t imagine how horrible this has got to feel from behind her eyes…

I guess I write this today to show that I don’t have all the answers. I haven’t figured everything out in my life, and while I will always trust that God knows best, it doesn’t mean that I don’t wish sometimes He’d just do what I want Him to do. He knows how I feel about this…we’ve talked. In the end, I have to force myself to pray “Your Will be done…”

For the prayers out there, maybe I could ask you to say a little prayer today for my mother…..

Thanks,

Bird

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Author: Catherine aka "Bird"

Marketing Specialist Recruiter Freelance Writer Blogger

27 thoughts on “Asking God Why…A Story Without An Ending”

  1. it doesn’t seem fair that your mom has spent most of her life wishing it was over. for the part where you stated that you pray for her suffering to end, i feel guilty at times, but i pray the same thing for my brother. he is suffering. he has suffered at the expense of a family member ever since teen years, so why is all this added medical issues added now in latter years? i don’t know god’s purpose, but i want his pain and suffering to end. i want him to sit by god and have a smile in his face for always. no more pain, no more suffering, no more tears, tremors, non understandings…..just peace

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  2. Father please end the suffering of your beloved! I feel all Involved has learned a valuable lesson in watching this loved filled women, mother, daughter, wife, and grandmother, suffer enough! We always think we know whats best for others in our family. But if people were able to see pasf there own ideas, and honor the fact that you are God! Our loved ones wouldnt have to carry the burden of not only there cross, but the weight of theirs too.
    Heal this family, and take what is rightfully yours, and give her the life she has fairhfully held so long in her heart. I come before you as a humble and faithful servant in our precious Saviors name Your Son Jesus! Amen RJ Da Warrior

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  3. Baby Bird, this one is just so hard. My husband had this tight-fisted grip on life all throughout the 19 months of his cancer journey. We were all pulling for him, because his spirits were up, he was interested in other people and life, even when he was too weak to stand. There was a time though, when the cancer invaded and eventually shut down HIS liver, that things changed. The job that the liver was supposed to do, wasn’t getting done. He hallucinated, went in and out of reality, and finally, during a period of lucidity, asked me to make sure that no more measures were taken. Comfort measures only. I cried my eyes out, but asked the Lord to end his suffering as soon as He would. He died about ten days later. I carry no guilt, just the heartbreak of four teenagers who don’t have a dad.
    I can tell you one true thing, Jesus is as broken up as we are about these things, this is a true thing.
    If you like, over on victoriasvisits, “Tom Seedroff Died Today” is a fun, upbeat essay I wrote after another young, family man friend of mine died of stomach cancer. Chris and Tom were friends. Bird, I can tell you with truth, they would NOT like to come back from where they are, and are eagerly waiting for us to see the results of the work Jesus is having them do in Heaven.
    I pray that your mom will join that community soon.

    Much love,

    Victoria

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    1. I know what you mean. There are just no words sometimes, but I do thank you for being there for me… sometimes the silence says it all, doesn’t it?

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  4. Wow, ok hmm, i think that everyone’s entitiled to their own opinion here. Your mom’s your mom. You love her subjectively as your mother, the woman who raised you and cared for you and loved, and still loves you. But now due to a range of different things you mentioned above, you find it difficult to recognize her. You can no longer identify with her as your mother because the things that you once associated with her, are different now. Your previous idea of what should be, isn’t. I get that. No, i don’t think It is cruel to wish happiness and peace for your mother. It is what we all want, what we all strive for. And I believe we’d do anything to have it, however we can have it….and if that means death, then so be it. God see’s and understands, and always has bigger plans than our little human minds can conceive. But as long as we believe, there’s nothing we can’t achieve…even forgiveness.

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  5. My goodness…look at that beautiful photo of your mom, she looked like a doll! My heart goes out to your mom and to you. I relate to this story a lot…my mother was not exactly like yours, and her story was not exactly the same – but she suffered and suffered so much in life, from her marriage too despite being such a good wife, then from serious health problems that came from the stress. Towards the end, she seemed to be waiting to die. She too suffered from 2 strokes a couple of years ago, and she was so debilitated, it was as though there was to be no end to her suffering. Amazingly, my mother came to Christ about 2 weeks before she died. She hadn’t studied anything, she had just suffered and suffered, and she always bore her crosses like a Christian. She was not expected to die – she was expected to live on, paralyzed. But I really believe she asked the Lord to take her, and one morning, she was suddenly gone. And I felt peace for her – I miss her very much, but I am so glad that she is with the Lord now.

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      1. Yes, I completely understand. My mother’s personality also changed a lot from the suffering in life, then from the strokes. She was a beautiful soul, but beaten down a lot by a bad marriage. Now when I see her in dreams, she is like a different person – radiant and peaceful. I wish her earthly life could have had more joy, but God let her have many crosses, then took her home at just the right time in accordance with His wisdom.

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        1. I know God has His reasons for keeping Mom here. And I know He owes me no answers. But it doesn’t change the fact that I want her to rest peacefully now….I will continue to pray His Will be done, but as I said before, it is a hard prayer for me.

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          1. I really feel for you….I should correct myself, I can’t completely understand, because yes, my mother is at peace now. It was a blessing that she had the time she did to come to the Lord, but she went very quickly after. I am sorry that you and your mom are going through something so difficult.

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            1. Thank you, Rebelsprite. It is hard, but as with everything else in my life, I’m sure there is a lesson in it somewhere, and in time, God will point it out to me. In the meantime, I will continue to pray and hope my mother finds happiness one way or another soon.

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