“Courage doesn’t always roar,” it doesn’t always require a sword and a fearless heroine. My courage came as a quiet voice inside, giving me strength to continue and move forward despite the fact that I was terrified and alone. I was a young lady when my mother went into palliative care. My mother had always been my beacon of strength, she commanded respect, she was brilliant, and I always looked up to her for guidance.
With her declining health our roles suddenly reversed. I needed to become her rock, fight back my own tears and fears of the unknown future, and give her peace of mind and comfort.
For three months I had the opportunity to feed her, bathe her, hold her hand and tell her it will be okay. I never let her see me cry, she had enough to deal with. I was the happy smiley face that sat by her side and would sing her to sleep. I’d cry once I’d leave the hospital, not sure if I could face another day, but sure enough once the sun would rise, I’d find the courage I needed to smile for her again.
Not everyone has the opportunity to parent their parent, I’m grateful I had the time with her. I’m not fearless like my mother was, I’m the type of person that cries at Bell commercials when the kids go off to school. I was always the emotional one that my mother would carry, I admire her strength and never would’ve guessed I’d find it within myself.
I am beyond proud of our final days; they were days that had nothing to do with the way I was feeling, but instead about giving my mother back a small amount of everything she had done for me. Sometimes, all we need to do is muscle up the courage for the next 20 minutes! Just 20 minutes at a time! Step by step and keep moving forward.