As you can see from the previous post, one of my best friends, Terri, passed away last Wednesday. And remember in the post before that one how I mentioned that she had her milestone days at the hospital when I was there with her? Well, her last day was no exception. I had a message earlier in the day from one my friends checking to see if I could come sit with Terri that afternoon. I worked it out and told her I would be there by 3:00. The nurses were with her doing their normal daily routine when I arrived, so I waited on them to come out before going in - along with one of Terri's friends who had been sitting with her for a few hours. We went in and her friend got her things, held Terri's hand, and prayed with her before leaving. I stood at Terri's bedside, and she just seemed to really be having a hard time with her breathing. I went and found the nurse who thankfully was just outside her room, and she came and checked her oxygen, which was dropping. I called one of my other friends, and thankfully she works nearby and said she was on her way. She came into the room a few minutes later, and we were able to stay for a while longer until they decided they wanted to try a procedure and asked us to wait outside. A few minutes later, a doctor came by and said they were moving her back to ICU. A few minutes later, we heard the "code blue" alarm for Terri's room, and the lights outside her room started flashing and doctors and nurses and techs started "coming out of the woodwork" it seemed. I am so thankful Bonnie arrived when she did and that I didn't have to go through this alone. We waited outside her door, and slowly one by one, everyone started leaving. We noticed no one wanted to look at us, and then someone came and asked us to go to the waiting room. We knew what was coming.
It is still beyond belief.
We waited patiently as we waited for her family to arrive as well as the rest of our close group of friends. No one really knows what happened for sure, but we assume it was probably another blood clot or stroke or her heart just got tired.
We left there and went to her mom's house where we began helping make the arrangements. Her mom wanted us all at the funeral home the next day with her, and we were there. We then spent the rest of the day working out the details. The next day was the funeral home visitation, and then on Saturday, we had her funeral. It feels strange to call a funeral beautiful, but it truly was. It was a wonderful tribute to Terri. She loved the Lord, and as a result of that, she had a great love for others, and I can definitely say that others loved her, too! She had the most amazing personality of anyone I've ever met. Even nurses and doctors at the hospital who never got to hear her speak fell in love with Terri. I've been saying that usually when you meet someone, you can think in your mind or even say out loud, "You remind me of someone else I know." I can't imagine that anyone could have ever said that about Terri.
We girls got together again last night with Terri's mom - because we needed to. We all spoke at Terri's funeral on Saturday, and we gave her mom a binder with all our speeches, pictures of Terri (and us), and all the Facebook messages, condolences, etc. Her mom is so tired and just mentally exhausted - I can't imagine having to endure losing two children within three months of each other as she has. She can definitely use your prayers.
Going through this has reminded me how important it is to care for my friends and make sure they know how important they are. It can be hard sometimes with a family to take care of, and of course they must come first, but I should always have time to speak to my friends and get together with them whenever possible. I also see that as a way to teach my children how to be a true friend - by showing them! I'm trying to not have any regrets with all this, but I had gotten to the point where I was only seeing this close group of friends on the "big" occasions. In fact, the last time I spoke with Terri before this happened was at her brother's funeral, and that makes me very sad. I took it for granted that my friends would always be there, but now I know different.