A bittersweet day today...sadness and grief consume us. Instead of blowing out birthday candles or doing some silly girls-night-out for Heidi's 40th birthday, I tied balloons to the garden of remembrance in her name. Instead of buying her gifts, the family bought orange and yellow mums to brighten the garden. This is one way we remember, show our love, and keep hope a verb for our precious Heidi.
At the beginning of summer, my Mom went to the doctors because she didn't feel well. She knew it was different than the usual rheumatoid arthritis pains and it was time to have it checked out. We never expected the Stage 4, terminal cancer diagnosis we received a month later. The past few weeks have been a whirlwind. Because of Heidi's kidnapping, our family tends to live for the moment because we know all to well that tomorrow or even an hour from now isn't a guarantee. Mom's diagnosis and prognosis didn't change the way we lived yet we did alter where some of our memories were made.
Instead of day trips here and there, our time was spent at home making mountains of memories. On Friday Mom asked, "What's today?" We told her, "Friday". Then she asked, "When is Heidi's birthday?", to which we responded...on Monday. She said "Okay" and closed her eyes. This was one of the last conversations we had before she went into a comfortable and pain free sleep.
We sang Happy Birthday to Heidi, as a family around her so she knew today is Heidi's birthday. I said a prayer for her, for the reunion she has waited more than twenty-one years for, and for our family, friends, and community. She relaxed and a peaceful sleep entered. I believe in God. Do you? I think my Mom's death is an one more example of her strength, faith, and ability to overcome. Even in her death, she is an example of God's grace, mercy, and love.
Happy Birthday Heidi and Welcome Home Mom!
Lisa M Buske
P.O. Box 323