Never in my wildest imagination did I imagine that in less than seven weeks of my moving back to Texas, I would be saying goodbye to my mom.
When we learned of Jess' pregnancy last year, we began making preliminary plans to move back to Texas by Christmas 2014 (by the time Corrie was 2), but the exact moment that the doctor uttered those two awful words "pancreatic cancer" last October, we knew the time to come back was NOW.
I remember thinking about WHEN I could feasibly move. The green card process was underway for Mads, so it was just a matter of my coming on to Texas before him.... and for weeks and weeks I grappled with the guilt of leaving my jobs in Denmark in the middle of the school year without fulfilling my commitments.
Well, as the person who waited until May 9 to finally board that plane to Texas, I have three words of advice for any of you who have loved ones with terminal illnesses...
DO NOT WAIT.
I know that we all live all over this great big world, but whatever you have to do to get back to your family, DO IT.
You think you have all the time in the world, but you don't.
Fortunately I have no regrets regarding the relationship that I had with my mom. She and I were cut from the same cloth and she was one of the few people who actually GOT me.... so I look back on my 43 years with her and I smile. We always said what needed to be said to each other and we always made sure the other knew of our unconditional love for her.
But I URGE YOU to put your family BEFORE your job.
ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS.
When planning your time and your future, think about those CLOSEST to you and what you need to do FOR and WITH them. Jobs can come and go, but you can NEVER get back those moments with your parents and your kids and your grandparents that you sacrifice because of your job.
I am a wife, a mother, a daughter, a grandma, a sister.
And then after all that, I am an educator.
Check your list and make sure you have things in the right order. It will be the greatest thing you ever do for your family...and actually for yourself as well.