Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Friday, January 29, 2010


The last few days have been extraordinary. Mom had four of her five children with her. Skype enabled her to see and speak to her fifth and youngest son, as well as all her grandkids. On Tuesday, we thought we were going to lose her very quickly. She was barely conscious and couldn't talk much. But Wednesday and Thursday, she was awake and alert and talking and I got some very special moments with her while the rest of the kids went out to eat.

She looked up at me and said, "I'm ready to go, but the good Lord isn't taking me yet, and I'm mad." I laughed and said, "For someone who took such charge of her life all the time, that must be really frustrating. But it's His time, not ours. We can't control it. We can just keep you comfortable."

"It still makes me mad," she said. We laughed. Then she couldn't fall asleep, so I began singing to her. The most peaceful, beautiful smile appeared and soon she was snoring. When she woke up, she sang along with me. Music is one of our connections.

Then, yesterday, after three days of eating nothing and only having sips of water, she was hungry and thirsty. She ate a part of a blueberry muffin (one of her faves) and some coffee. The doctor said that can happen--the fluctuation between seeming to get nearer to death, and seeming more alive. There is no way to know how long this process will take, but the time with her is so very precious.

Missing you all. Thanks so much for your loving thoughts.



L. Diane Wolfe said...

Those were wise words you spoke to her, Karen. You are in my prayers.

Cyndi said...

It is priceless to know that she is at peace, other than her frustration at not being in control of when of course. :) She sounds like an intelligent spunky lovely woman who will be dearly missed. Still thinking of you.

Joanne said...

What a touching, bittersweet time. I'm glad you're spending this time with her.

Elspeth Antonelli said...

I'm so glad she's in a place of contentment. I continue to think of you daily and wish you nothing but peace.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

She's handling her dying so gracefully...and so are you! What a comfort you must be for her.


Simona44 said...

Bless you Karen, you and Gary are in my thoughts.

Patricia Stoltey said...

I wish you comfort, and I hope your mom stays peaceful and content. It's such a blessing for you to be by your mom's side at this time.

Mason Canyon said...

These moments you get with her will be precious in the days to come. May you have many of them.

Tabitha Bird said...

Oh, that is so lovely that you sang to her. What a gift. I pray you enjoy those last moments together.

Sharon Lippincott said...

Omigosh, I've been out of town and away from all but the most urgent email and web surfing and what a stunning situation to tune back into! Each person in this continuing story is an inspiration. Blessings!

Anonymous said...

Karen, thanks for sharing this event with us. Our hearts and prayers are with you all during this time.

Stephen Tremp

The Old Silly said...

So wonderful you can be with your mother as she transitions from this plane to the next. I can only pray to be so furtunate to have loved one(s) with me as I prepare to go.

Marvin D Wilson

Helen Ginger said...

Karen, you have my thoughts and prayers. And what a wonderful blessing it is that you have this time with her.

Straight From Hel

Jennifer Major said...

Those are great memories I am sure you will cherish always and especially now. How helpful it is to have that time with someone so a part of who we are. Thank you Skype. Bless you. And, your mom.