Today (June 2009), I stand at my mother’s bed side. My heart is heavy with pain. The fear of losing her overwhelms me.
Her heart stopped during dialysis the other day and has stopped twice since then. To make matters worse, the doctors have been unable to restart the dialysis that has been keeping her alive for the past couple of months. Now, they are pressuring me to make her a DNR. This means that if her heart or breathing stops that I will let her die. What a difficult decision to make in the face of so much unfinished business.
What the doctors don’t know is that my mother abandoned me when I was a fourteen. I came home from school one day to find my mother, her husband, and my siblings gone. They had moved. They left no food, no electricity or water, and no money. I was left to fend for myself.
What those doctors don’t know is that I have spent my entire life trying to prove myself worthy of my mother’s love. I need more time because I still feel that her love for me is inferior to that for my siblings. I need more time because even with all of my success, it is still not enough to earn her perfect love.
What they don’t know is that I have lived my life seeking to gain that love from so many other places. Those doctors don’t have a clue how many times I have found it in all the wrong places. They don’t know that the same rejection that I felt when I was abandoned by my mother had been revisited again and again in my life. They don’t know that feelings
of inadequacy still play a major role in my life.
But none of that matters. The fact is that God is calling her home and I have a small window of opportunity to reclaim my life. What I didn’t know was that God was opening that window through His faithfulness, His grace, and His mercy.
God afforded me days when she was completely lucid. In these moments that I had alone with her, I garnered her genuine love for me through long stares, lost tears, and even words without sound. During these days, He gave me the time, the strength, and the words to say everything that I needed to say. Most importantly, I told her how much I loved her and she me.
Out of this simple exchange of love, came so many things that my life needed to be made whole again. I was freed of the pain of her abandonment some 20 years ago. My feelings of receiving an inferior love vanished.
My heart was able to sing a new song. For her, it was “You Are So Beautiful To Me.” Not new in the words or even the melody. New because it came out of a pure heart, no longer bound by the hurts and pains of my past.
In those last days of my mother’s life, I was freed through forgiveness. Forgiveness not by my own will but by the will of God. As the Holy Spirit led me to exonerate my mother from the charges that I had held against her my entire life; a chain that had once been broken by pain, guilt, and condemnation was linked together again.
A couple of days later, my mother died. Not in the face of unforgiveness, pain, strife, and jealousy. She died in the presence of unconditional love. She died freed through forgiveness. She died in peace.
Today, I live in that place of forgiveness and unconditional love. As I look back, I can see God all through my situation; how He moved my heart to speak, to be silent, to do whatever was needed for me to be free. I see His faithfulness to end a lifetime of pain through a simple act of forgiveness.
HE IS THE GREAT “I AM” ... HE IS FORGIVENESS
©Copyright June 2010 Pages 8-10 of The "I Am" Monologues by: Rhonda Skinner Sullivan
about: Tyrone K Sullivan "The Muzik Director"