My mother and I had a very difficult relationship for most of my life. But as I started to grow in my recovery, it was easy for me to forgive her. And as I’ve learned to forgive those who have wounded me in my life, it’s been easier to forgive myself for my own shortcomings. The healing power of forgiveness is great.
“That day as I walked out of my mother’s room, I turned to look at her one more time. When she was young, she was a striking beauty, with brunette hair. As she aged her hair lost its color prematurely. I’ll never forget the dreadful blue rinse she used to put on her hair to cover the gray. Then there was the reddish dye. Finally, I’m not sure exactly when, she stopped messing with the color and one day, like a full moon against a dark sky, her hair was as white as freshly fallen snow. It was gorgeous.
Her eyes had closed and she looked so peaceful. This time, I knew, was the last time I would see her in this body. I just knew. But I didn’t feel sad. I didn’t run back to her and hug her one more time, the way we do when we want to push back death. Any anxiety, had I done that, would have transferred right to her, undoing all the journeying Hospice was at that moment attempting. But I had no anxiety. I walked away. I knew she was embarking on her own journey now, and there was only room for one passenger.”