A few weeks ago I made a journey to my hometown, Amboy, MN, for the burial of my aunt's ashes. (Aunt Brenda died in Dec. 07.) It was an opportunity to see my cousin and meet his children (ages 14 & 10) for the first time. It was also a time to see my Grandma as she was just recovering from heart surgery.
As I was nearing Amboy, I remembered my high school friend Jeri as I passed her former residence. I was only going to be in town from 8 p.m. on Friday til noon on Saturday, but I thought I would see if we could get together for a few minutes.
I called her from the road.
"Hi Jeri, This is Mary Beth. How are you?"
"Not very well. My mom just went into hospice today."
Wow. Now I knew that I really needed to see her. I got the boys settled at my Grandma's house with my aunt, uncle, cousin, and his children, and then I took off for the nursing home in Mapleton, 11 miles away.
Being with Jeri at this time brought back memories from 22 years ago when her dad was dying right at the end of our senior year. A few of us got permission from our parents and principal to drive into Mankato to be with Jeri in the hospital at that time.
There were a couple of relatives and friends in the hospice area. Jeri's mom was already in an unconscious state. After awhile I asked them if it would be o.k. for me to pray with them and their mom. I just put my hands on Jeri and her mom and prayed for her mom.
I was at the cemetery when I called Jeri the next morning. She said her mom had passed away shortly after midnight. She was just 64 years old. My sympathy goes out to the Cox children who have now lost both of their parents.
I thank God for the prompting to call Jeri. I hadn't had any idea that her mom was ill, much less terminal. It was a blessing to be with Jeri at this significant moment in her life, especially as I am usually so remote from the happenings in the lives of my high school classmates.