My Mom on her wedding day at the Oakland Temple 1977.
The month of October was a bit of a shock for me. My mom had been sick for the past 3 years, but was seeing doctors regularly. We didn't know what exactly was wrong with her. She felt tired, she had problems walking and would fall... the doctors were worried about her heart.
One Friday she hadn't called me in the morning and I got really worried. My dad found her in the bedroom and she couldn't get up. They rushed her to the hospital where she spent a few days in ICU and seemed to get better. When they transferred her to a different room she started bleeding and they couldn't tell from where.
I was used to these type of episodes where she would lose coherency. Her last words to me were, "Get the Bollywood off me." (Oh how magical this is, I can't even tell you.)
The doctors did an emergency procedure to stop an ulcer, which she survived, but had to be put on a breathing machine. It was all downhill from there. Come to find out, she had end stage liver disease. She was such a trooper. We had no clue. It was pretty traumatic trying to decide with my dad what to do. We prayed, went to the temple... so many things were wrong with her. Would I feel guilty for having to take her off life support? She never would want to live that way. Thankfully, I've felt nothing but peace.
I spent hours each night talking to her. Holding her hand and telling her the same things over and over. I love you. You are so beautiful. Thank you for everything. We had sacred moments together even though she was comatose.
The great thing is that she already knew that. She is my best friend. My number one fan. And I am hers. I am grateful in the knowledge that came through the death of my son- nothing separates a loving mother from their child, not even death. I have felt her close by. I know she is safe, free, and most importantly- I know that she lived a good life. She was an angel and is an angel.
My daughter Christina (age 11), who was named after my mother, came to see her one night. She threw her arms around her Yaya and cried. I thought I knew grief. But I was wrong. Seeing your child grieve gives new meaning to that type of pain.
And yet, through all that pain, it just means that the love was so very deep. It's that type of love and even more that The Savior and our Heavenly Father have for us. There is not a doubt in my mind that They are real. That They carry us. That They live up to Their promises and comfort us when we need comfort.
Words hold power. The spirit prompted for her headstone, "Always loving, always loved."
I hope you don't mind if I share a little bit about her. She taught me everything I knew.
My mom was crazy fun. She was such a party animal. She brought so much joy, happiness, and love to all those around her.
My mom always told me I was beautiful. Even stuffed in 80's frocks, I felt like a princess swaying to the beat of Phil Collins.
Oh mom. It's going to be a long haul. But I'm so grateful for the years I did get with you. And I look forward to having you be one of the first people to hug me when I pass through the veil.
Thanks to Heavenly Father for making this life a wonderful one, one where you are my mother.
Just so you know, we're Greek. And it really is like My Big Fat Greek wedding. There are 5 different Christina's in the eulogy. It's tradition to name after your mother or mother in law. Yaya means grandmother in Greek too.