My mother passed away almost 4 years ago (her anniversary is coming up, August 14th) and in the weeks before she died she was very medicated and she said and did a lot of things that could easily have been a result of the drugs she was taking to reduce the pain she was in. I am going to mention a couple of strange things that happened during this time, as they are very special.
My mother suffered a lot of anger, as she was taken from us quickly, and did not get a lot of time to experience the stages in which she needed to finally accept that it was her time to go. I had a scheduled trip to visit my boyfriend at the time in Ontario, I desperately wanted to see him as my heart was breaking, but I definitely did NOT want to leave my mother. She made me go, she told me I deserved it. As much as I didn't want to, I went reluctantly and did somewhat enjoy myself although I suffered many panic attacks.
I spoke with her every night, and I had to call them - I told all of my friends not to call my cellular phone as it's for emergencies only. My parents weren't even to call my cellular to chat, the only time that phone was supposed to ring was if I needed to get onto an airplane immediately to come home to be with my mother. She did quite well, but when I got back, she was painfully thin, and her skin was turning yellow. But she was happy - and it was different. She did not have a lot of strength, and things started to steadily go downhill for her. The only sound I lived by was the sound of her respirator, if I could not hear it, I could not sleep - so I slept on the upstairs landing living room couch. It was more of a decorative couch, and it was the most uncomfortable spot in the house, but I didn't care.
As her death approached, the more the drugs were injected into her as she was suffering a serious amount of pain from the Cancer. I was laying with her one afternoon in her room and she would just blissfully stare at the television and watch the pictures move back and forth with a tiny smile on her face and wait for her next Iced Cappuccino break (my father would bring her one at least 3 times a day, she always looked forward to it, she became very much like a little girl and she couldn't speak much, all she could do was whisper). All of a sudden I could feel something was wrong, I lifted my head from underneath her hand and looked at her. She wasn't looking at the television, she was staring directly into the corner of the bedroom. She gasped a tiny gasp and whispered "Who's that?" - she kept staring at the figure she was seeing. I started to ask her questions.
Me: "Mom, are you okay?" She nodded her head, still staring.
Me: "Mom, are you seeing things?" She nodded her head, quickly glanced at me, and then back to the corner. She whispered that it was a person.
Me: "Do you know them?" She shook her head a little bit and then cocked it to one side, and said "I think so..."
I held her hand and told her it was okay, I told her it was probably someone she knew just coming to visit - to let her know that everything was going to be okay. She smiled, and kept staring at the figure with a little smile on her lips. About twenty minutes later, she sighed and resumed looking at the television.
I told my Dad about this experience, and he said it was probably the drugs, but he seemed quite perturbed by it. I asked him what was up, and he just said he's got things on his mind. I left him to it. Didn't think much of it until after the funeral.
The morning my mother died, I was laying at the foot of the bed. My parents bed is massive, my father would sleep on the right hand side and my mother on the left. I was sprawled out on the bottom and half on the bench thing they had set up at the end of the bed for the stupid dog. My father was laying next to her on top of the covers, still fully clothed, we had all fallen asleep listening to the rain the night before.
It was about 6:05 when I looked at the clock if I remember correctly, I had felt my mother's hand on the top of my head. My mother had a very distinct way of touching me, she was the only one who knew how to wake me up immediately (I'm serious, the actual house alarm wouldn't even wake me up, but there's a certain way she would touch me that would wake me up immediately) and I was shocked as this would have meant she was standing up next to me or something. I looked, and she wasn't on front of me, I looked behind me and she was still laying there on her side of the bed, but she was looking directly at me. There was NO possible way she could have gotten up and touched my head, but I knew somehow she did or someone did.
I looked at her with tears in my eyes, and I asked "Mom, is it time?"
She nodded her head slowly, and I woke my father up, I ran to get the home care nurse and I grabbed my brother and was promptly right back by her side. I laid beside her and as she started to let go and her lungs filled with fluid, she gripped on to me - I grabbed her hair comb and started to brush her hair (her most favourite thing in the world was the sensation of someone else combing her hair).
My mother died in my arms that morning, and the moment she let go, I felt this overwhelming sensation come over me - as if she had passed through me. It was intense, and I will never forget it. Minutes after she passed, I desperately needed a cigarette as my adrenaline was pumping and I couldn't bare to be in the room any longer as she was no longer there. Her body was, but she wasn't. My father and I stood out on the deck and we'll never forget the sky - it was pink, and swirling. It was insane. I thought I was tripping on some sort of drug, but the fact that my father (and the neighbors reportedly afterwards told us as well) saw it. It was beautiful. A few hours later, the entire East Coast's power went out (which I just find coincidental and funny because she told me she was going to "go out with a bang" ha ha - she was awesome).
Many of my friends could tell you that from that day on for about 3 weeks, I was different, I wasn't myself. I remained the rock of the family - and even some family members will tell you that she was inside of me the morning she died as I said a lot of things that were out of character and don't really remember saying. One thing I do remember saying that utterly shocked me after it came out of my mouth was "Mo, I don't want them to see my body" - Mo is my father, and "them" would have been her sisters. I cried and ran downstairs to regain my composure. I have no idea where it came from, but it happened.
The day of the funeral was sad, but I rehashed the story of my mother seeing someone in front of my Aunt and my father. Turned out that THAT very day, very close to the same time my mother saw this figure, her Uncle (my Great Uncle) passed away in his sleep. And I think I was right when I said it was someone stopping by to let her know that she's going to be just fine. :)