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  • dkudipietro

It's Time




It's been months since I last posted. Delayed grief response and recovering from 2 years of caring for my mom at home. She died from a cut on her leg. A cut. On her leg. Her life, her story is so much more than that, but that was the beginning of the end.


For as long as I can remember, my mom picketed abortion clinics. Went to March for Life. It could be freezing or burning hot. Not politically correct. Insults would be hurled, she would be harassed by security guards, even spit on. No matter what your conviction, you have to admire her absolute dedication and the quiet, steadfast way she stood up for what she believed. She would pray, always pray. With absolute humility and without judgement.


That cut got infected, and the doctor gave too strong of an antibiotic-twice. C diff followed and medically induced delirium from infection after sepsis. She lost her ability to swallow. Babies learn to swallow when they're introduced to solid food. This was the opposite.....my mom would have to have surgery (not an option for an 90 year old) or therapy exercises (also not an option for someone who keeps suffering from delirium). I'll never forget the hospice nurse perched on a chair, telling us that her systems would shut down in a week. 9 months later, my mom finally passed. She basically starved to death.


As the Corona virus makes its rounds, I feel badly for those who are suffering, dying. Most of all, I am so grateful to all the doctors and nurses who continue to work. I know what it is to sit bedside on the watch, and work to bring comfort and peace in whatever way you can. She would be horrified that people are hoarding the masks and gloves the healthcare workers are running out of while they are doing their job. You'd probably find her knocking on your door or in front of the store with a sign asking if you had extra medical supplies for the healthcare workers. Fearlessly. And praying, always praying.


She grew up during the Depression, and as farmers, they often had only one meal a day-the half rotten apples they picked up off the ground. She had fruit and nut trees wherever we lived. Kept every piece of paper, stockpiled canned and dried goods, sugar, rice, oatmeal and flour. We wouldn't have to worry about toilet paper or medicine, though it might be mercurochrome from 1982.


Grief comes and goes in waves, and as I watch the media panic frenzy overtake and swallow the true details and real threat of the Corona virus, I can't help but think of my mom. People die. Sometimes from a cut on their leg. It doesn't matter as much when or how it's your time, but what you do when you are here. And pray, always pray.




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a mom's last lecture

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