Handprints on the Heart

Even in the ER, Heavy D had to have her hairspray and brush. 

Two years ago today my mother fell, one month later to the day, she was gone. Each moment, frozen in memory, two points of time, forever etched into my mind. A month filled with some of the most heartbreaking and most preciously poignant moments of my life.


I can still see the endless hospital corridors stretching before me as each morning I would come to sit with her at St. Vincent’s in the last days. I remember everything about the rooms, I remember the kindness of the nurses, the kindness of the many friends who reached out to offer comfort and support. I remember sleepless nights and the panic of failed hopes for hospice, and then the huge sigh of relief as St. Vincent’s suggested their Comfort Care program, allowing my mother to pass in quiet dignity and peace.


I still see her tears, her laughter, her fear, her courage. I hear her words of love, whispered at the very end, and instead of my heart breaking, I feel wrapped in her infinite embrace. She left handprints on my heart, indelible. A more precious gift I cannot imagine.


2 thoughts on “Handprints on the Heart

  1. Well Denise, you have me tearing up once again. But in a good way. I loved hearing all the adventures with your Mom that you shared with us while she was alive, and now your shared memories are a sweet reminder of what a beautiful bond the two of you had. No…make that “have”.
    I still think of Heavy D from time to time and smile. Isn’t that amazing when you think of it…how the internet has drawn people together who have not and probably never will meet in person? There’s so much negativity on here, but then there are also some really amazing opportunities for people to connect, too. Thank you for having the courage to share some of your life with us here. I’m sure it’s made many more than just me smile.

    1. Lynn, your message touched my heart more than I can say- thank you. I am grateful that I had kind people like you to share my mother with- it was such a joy for both Mom and me, and I’m so glad her big heart made people smile. Thinking of her reminds me every day to find the good and the positive in the world.

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