Mom’s Fight

She sat next to me on that gray and blue upholstered couch, the one that pulled out into a bed whenever guests stayed overnight. She sat next to me and stroked my hair, my hair wet with sweat from a fever that revved to 103º and was still pouring on steam. It was a Sunday night, strange those hazy memories: 60 Minutes flickering on the screen, heat, fuzzy, dizzy. I felt like I was trapped in a kaleidoscope.

But my mom sat next to me. I don’t remember anything she said. But she sat there, and she fought the fever with me. She fought it for me. She loved me. Because I’m a father now, I know that she was fighting harder than me, that she felt a kind of pain my little, feverish body couldn’t yet know.

With the fever still climbing, my mom put me in the bathtub with cold water and ice. I shivered and ached while she poured all her love and energy and fierceness into that fight. And she won. The fever cried uncle.

Today, my mom battles cancer. She’s tenacious and strong; but she’s got a real brawl on her hands. I wish I could sit with her on the couch and hold her hand and let her rest while I fought for her. I wish I could do more than pray to God, more than text a line of love or plan a visit a few months away. I wish I could say more to my dad than I love you, and you’re not alone. I wish I could get my hands around that cancer’s neck and squeeze the very life out of it. I wish I could make that bastard cry uncle.

18 responses to Mom’s Fight

  1. Cheryl Hyatt Smith February 10, 2012 at 12:26 am

    No words. Only gratitude for yours here.

  2. winn. no words, except that I would help you squeeze. my heart hurts for all of you.

  3. I work with her and she is a true trooper.

  4. But you can help her inch forward in squeezing the bastard. Through knowledge and research and choosing good doctors. And through not living in denial but embracing this reality that God has given.

    Today, I fought for a guy who denies that he has diabetes despite taking his Metformin. I fought for him to have the courage to face reality. You can still help her defeat despair and all other cheap feelings. Face the truth, God’s truth – you the educated pastor can help her do this. This is your way of loving her, and us all.

  5. My heart hurts for your mom too. This brought tears. Praying for grace, mercy, strength and blessings in the midst of darkness for your mom, dad, and whole family.

  6. Know that there are many who are “sitting” with you as you suffer the fever of sadness and grief…for this, there is only moving through the darkness a day at a time, knowing that there are more joys ahead as well. Be kind to yourself as you are to so many others :)!

  7. Brian Clingenpeel February 10, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    Winn, prayers for you and your mom.

    Brian

  8. I’m praying for you and your family, Winn. I owe a lot of who I am today to your mom and her influence in my life.

  9. I’m so sorry, Winn. I am pausing to pray for your mom today, and for you and your family.May God’s grace be tangible. Thanks for sharing so vulnerably. I know I certainly felt connected to moments in my life.

  10. Thinking of you and your mother, Winn… Holding each of you up to God’s light, praying that he will wrap you up in his strong tender arms and grant you his peace and hope… Dave

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