Good morning everyone,
This will be a very short message and request for prayers. Early yesterday evening, my mother Joanne died at age 84 from complications of pneumonia. She and I had spoken late yesterday morning, so I'm in a bit of a state of shock with how quickly this happened. She had been ill for a number of years with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) due to a severe scoliosis (spinal curvature). The scoliosis resulted in her having a severely reduced lung capacity, shortness of breath, and severe chronic pain. But yesterday, and, in fact, this whole week, she had been doing well. I spent a couple of hours with her on Tuesday afternoon, bringing her some French pastries, which she loved. She was so excited and having a great deal of fun eating the pastries one at a time. Yesterday morning, we talked about President Obama's talk at the memorial service in Tucson. By late in the afternoon, the pneumonia that she first contracted in early December and which had never really gone away had overtaken her lungs, and her lungs and heart couldn't fight it one more time.
I moved back to CT just over a year ago, at the end of September 2009, in large part to be closer to my mother; I hadn't lived in the stateas my mother since Spring 1973, and now, we were living 4 blocks from each other. Since my return, we talked 3 to 4 times each day on the phone, and we saw each other 3 to 4 times per week. Yesterday, as I stood in the Emergency Room and cried, I said to the ER physician who had cared for her, "Who will I talk to now? We talked 3 or 4 times a day. Who will I talk with now?" Much of the time, our conversations were much like our lives -- about inconsequential things. I realized that much of our lives were comprised of these inconsequential things -- what she planned to eat for lunch or dinner; what I planned to do that day; funny things her cat, Sam, or my cats, Geoffrey and Spooky, had done. But they were an important connection between us, and I shall miss them, as I shall miss her.
Please pray for her, my friends, that she may now be at peace with G-D. The blessing is that she is now out of pain, no longer short of breath, and no longer fearful of being unable to breathe. Please pray as well for strength and comfort for all who loved her, including my younger sister Andi, my step-sister Jackie, her younger brother Bob, her numerous friends from Congregation Beth Israel and other places. And please pray for me, that I will have the strength to make it through these next days.
Thank you, my friends. May all of you know G-D's blessing and love.
Love and Much Shalom,