My mom was a teacher by profession. It was not surprising that she taught me so many lessons about life. As I am approaching the four-year anniversary of her death on August 31st, I wanted to remember four life lessons that she taught me and share them with you.
In March 2011, my mom had a severe stroke which left her partially paralyzed on her entire right side. I felt devastated thinking she could no longer be the independent woman that she was. She had many deficits and needed a wheelchair. That first night, I could not imagine her new life or my own. In my visits from March 2011 until August 2011, she taught me a lot, including these four unforgettable life lessons.
- Be in the present moment. I learned from this experience to focus on what we have. Both of us were grateful for the capabilities she had and for the time we spent together. She did not dwell on her losses but focused on being with me in the moment; first through writing then through talking. This crisis made it clear what was important in life; that was being together.
- To be connected to your own spirit and that of the Divine. My mom often talked about her faith in God, even before the stroke. After the stroke, she expressed to me that she thanked God every day that she was alive through prayer. She had a great faith in God and what God could accomplish in her life. Prior to her death, we were shown one miracle.
- To have acceptance. Mom taught me that no matter what your circumstances are that you can enjoy your life. She accepted her condition with peace; she did not let it affect her mood or positive attitude. When her physical rehabilitation ended, I thought she would have had a setback because she gave it her all. Instead she accepted it gracefully.
- To remain curious. Mom was open to learning. She signed up for all sorts of activities at the nursing home and would tell me all about them. In turn, she wanted to know all about my life since our last visit. Limitations did not stop my mother. She was determined to find creative ways to accomplish tasks that many stroke victims would do on their own. She was an inspiration not only to me but also many others.
These practices did not heal her condition, although they freed her spirit. Mom naturally expressed a positive attitude, which was never forced or feigned despite her challenges and hardships. Her body was handicapped yet her will was not. She never gave up on living that is my greatest lesson of all.
For that I thank you Mom,
With Much Love and Gratitude,
Your Daughter Lisa xx
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