I know the caption is rather quirky resembling ‘How I Met My Mother’ the tv show, and you probably are reading this expecting a more humorous post, however I am about to reflect on one of the most tragic events to ever occur in my life. By doing so I am hoping to open a door of relief for me by hearing strangers comments on this and maybe helping me finally..after 8 years move forward with my life.
This day is still drilled in my head I can remember even the slightest details, the smell in the air of spring approaching, the chill of the wind yet the sun made you just warm enough to only need a light jacket. It was March 31, 2007… We were sitting in a work meeting room, my mother and I worked together at a little daycare down the road from our trailer.
It was actually pretty fun we got to do crafts to get ideas for things to do in the classrooms at the daycare, my mother was sitting next to me working on the growth caterpillar. It was made of a stocking and you put soil in it and watered it and it made the caterpillar sprout leaves. I was coloring some magnets I remember my mom said she was feeling extremely cold so I carelessly took my Hollister jacket off and offered it to her. I small gesture that now plays a role on that jacket to this day.
We were leaving to head home, we had plans for the day, Mom and I, we were going to go shopping at Kohl’s (a Saturday ritual once or twice a month). I was excited, I had a trip with the school choir to New York coming up and mom was going to help me pick out some new out fits for this trip. Mom was driving with one hand on the wheel the other holding her head as we pulled up to our little home.
“I’m going to lay down for about an hour, I’m not feeling so good my head hurts” she had said…those were the last words I will ever remember my mom saying…and they were to me. I shook my head and went to the computer room to play some videos games or AIM some friends (the cool thing around that time).
About 25 minutes went by when I heard my mother walking down the hallway it was weird though it was like she was bumping into the walls..I didn’t think too much of it and continued with the task at hand, beating a level to boost my stats. Then I heard her again this time heading back down the hall doing the exact same thing.. this was weird was my thought..what is she doing. I should have asked her..I SHOULD OF SAID ANYTHING AT THAT MOMENT… I didn’t though.. I didn’t even come out of the room…
5 minutes later that’s when I heard it…A loud crash..it scared me..this time I peaked out of my room very curious what on earth she was doing, and there she was, laying by the coffee table doing something totally weird. I was very sheltered my mom didn’t even let me have a boyfriend till that very year I mean the woman still picked out my clothes every morning and did my hair she never prepared me for this?!
She lay on the floor banging her head, making crackling noises from her mouth it reminded me of the Grudge, scared in shock I just stood there and that’s when a voice in my head I can still to this day hear clear as ever instructing me “Leave don’t look at me like this, go in your room, go outside, please don’t see me like this” it sounded dead up like my mother but it wasn’t her because she was there, and this voice was in my head. Still in shock I ran to my room grabbed my camera and ran outside as the voice had told me to. I was scared. Then I heard it again “Kaelin, can you live without me, I need you to be strong because I have to leave” thinking to myself what does that even me I shook my head hesitant.. How could I live without a mom, I was only 15.. I hadn’t even gone to prom, learned to drive, graduated, gone to college, got married, had kids. You need a mom there for you for these things. “It will be hard, but you stay strong, I need to know you can do it without me” the voice kept saying..Finally I agreed and went inside.
Calling my grandmother first who rushed over in a good 5 minutes tops with my aunt they called 911 and I guess maybe they had hope she would be ok.. I knew long before anyone my mom wasn’t going to wake up, she wasn’t coming back, we weren’t going to go shopping today, and she was not waking up in an hour..
I told my aunt and grandma I didn’t want to accompany them to the hospital that I would goto my friends for the day, they were hesitant to let me stay knowing I should be with mom but had no time to argue after one last quick “are you sure” I was left alone in the trailer without my mom. I stared at that spot for a good 15 minutes before calling Stephanie to have her parents come get me…That spot still haunts me. The image is still so vivid it hurts.
Once at my friend’s house we went outside to take our mind off the matter and decided to be childish and draw on the side-walk with chalk. I wrote in small letters RIP mom and Stephanie freaked out “Why are you writing that your mom is going to be fine, that’s depressing stop!” I wanted to tell her she was so wrong that fine was so far from the vocabulary to describe my mother at this moment but I rolled my eyes.. Then my friends mother came outside and said my family keeps calling and its very serious and I should go be with my mom. I dreaded that because I knew that they were going to call I wish they understood I didn’t want to remember my mother this way but I had to do what I was asked so I left.
They rushed me to that hospital with the emergency lights on, looking out the window I watched everything rush by..rushing..rushing for what nothing was going to change this. I remember stepping into the hospital horrified to even have to see my mother lifeless on a hospital bed…but I had to..They gave me no choice.
“Kaelin, your moms chances of living are very slim, she’s had a brain aneurysm erupt..theres nothing more they are able to do for her at this point” said my aunt her words went right through me, could I have done something more to prevent this? Could I have called sooner? I could have called when she was bumping the wall.. “They said that her fall probably caused the aneurysm to erupt” my aunt continued.. That stuck to me hard…
I knew something hadn’t been right, I waited and didn’t go ask her what was wrong..
Several hours had passed, it was late, 3 am maybe, April 1st…April fools day. “Kaelin what are we going to do without your mother” my dad cried to me. Was he really asking me this, a 15-year-old girl?! How the heck did I know, I mean I’m the one losing my only mother?? My dad crying in front of me made the guilt so much heavier, why couldn’t he have been the one to see her last, to make the decisions. Where the hell was he anyways when she was dying. Anger began to rage inside me only for a minute, then it passed as I realized maybe the doctors were right, there really was nothing any of us could do.
I remember heading home, exhausted, drained, empty. I decided to try to write about it on paper, so I jotted down a story similar to this in my diary about the guilt I felt and hurt and pain I was experiencing. It helped for the time being but then it was time to get things together and prepare for a funeral of my mother…
I won’t continue with the details of the wake/funeral as those are more insignificant as the next part of the story…
A couple of weeks had passed, the pain was setting in, nothing was really “going back to normal” nor did I think there would ever be a “normal” again not for me at least. Boy was I right.
My father on a drunk rage one night slammed my door open to my room and began cursing at me, confused I yelled back to “get the heck out I needed my privacy” that’s when the words rolled out of his mouth.
“Privacy!? You got your privacy when you left your mother for dead on the floor and just went outside. You cared that much that you left your own mom to die! Your worthless, you didn’t even love her! You just sat there and watched her die and made jokes about it, is it funny now?!” His words…his words were like a sword going through my heart and turning it so many times I could feel every turn and with each turn it took another piece of my body. How could he say that, how could he even of possibly known….
“You read my diary! How could you! That’s personal and priv-”
“Private, ya you knew all about that! I should have been there I at least would have called 911, not watched her die. You careless little B****” and with that he slammed the door knocking my pictures on the wall to the floor. It was my fault? I didn’t love her? I didn’t care? Was this true..I did what I thought I was supposed to.. how could I have known. I was scared, where was he..?
This wasn’t the first incident like this..there were many more that came.. several nights that had got so bad I would try to take off running. One of the nights, the worst I can remember, scared for my life I ran to my neighbors (very old couple) banging on the door frantically I didn’t know where else to turn.. Then he came and grabbed me by my hair yanking me back pulling so hard I couldn’t walk. He dragged me by my hair to the trailer, my feet were bloody my knees were all bloody, my grandma came to my rescue that night.
I wish I could say I finally believe it actually wasn’t my fault but sometimes I still get this doubt that…maybe my fathers drunken words were right..
Maybe I did let my mother die….
But for now,
That is How I Lost my Mother.