I told her everything would be fine. I thought it would be. I told her that I’d see her as soon as she was out of the hospital, as soon as her surgery and procedure were done. It seemed like an ordinary day when I told her I loved her and left her in the doctor’s care. Before leaving, I told her again that everything would be ok, that everything would be fine, just like she had told me my entire life. I had no idea what was coming. I had no idea how wrong I would be.
Things wouldn’t be fine. In fact, things would never be fine again.
There wouldn’t be a goodbye. There wouldn’t be a plan for recovery, healing, or rehabilitation. There wouldn’t be an after surgery or after the hospital. There would only be a call to tell us things didn’t go as planned. There would only be a call to tell us she was “gone”. I learned that day, and in that moment, “gone” is the word they use to tell you someone you love is dead.
We thought she would be leaving the hospital and going to a facility to help her heal, instead she would leave that hospital to be buried. A reality that still hasn’t been processed, even though it has been lived with for months and months.
I told her everything would be fine and it wasn’t. She never lived to see another day.
I told her that I loved her and that everything would be ok. I thought it would be and it wasn’t. So now I live with the regret of never getting the chance to say ‘goodbye’ and the harsh pain of all of the ‘never agains’ that I’m left with.
I told my mother that everything would be ok and it was a lie.
As if my reality isn’t devastating enough, each night, when I’m lucky enough for sleep to come, I’m consumed with dreams. I constantly relive the worst day of my life, over and over again. Each dream, slightly different, usually holding more dramatic views of the truth, always horrific enough to wake me in a cold sweat and consequential tears.
Each time the same ending.
I never make it to her fast enough.
I never save her.
I never change her fate.
Each time the same words whispered.
I love you.
Everything will be ok.
I love you.
Everything will be fine.
My words, spoken with so much hope, though so viciously wrong. Things were and are not ok or fine. I’m stranded here in this life, without my mother, and all I can do is wish and hope and regret and worry, and it all changes nothing.
I replay the words in my head daily, “Everything will be fine”– words I haven’t spoken again since that day. Words I’ll never speak again. I no longer tell people things will be ok. I no longer say that everything will be fine. I no longer lie when I don’t know the outcome.
I told my mother everything would be ok and it wasn’t.
Everything was not ok.
Everything was not fine.
And I’m not sure it ever will be again.
A wife, mother and educator who has Indiana roots and a passionate spirit. Chelsea is a sappy romantic, coffee junkie, book collector, and person who wears her heart on her sleeve. She’s sarcastic, full of jokes, full of tears, and enjoys writing most when life gets messy or complicated. In 2017, Chelsea's mother passed away. Through her grief journey, she decided to take her mother’s advice and share her writing with the world. One day she gained the courage to honor her mother's wishes and write. It turned out to be one of the best decisions she's ever made.