Oh, what a fabulous show on Netflix. It brought me joy and heartache and sadness. It made me long to be pregnant again and dream of the days of breastfeeding and how much I loved it. And how much I love and miss my mom.
This last third season had a number of moments that made me think of my mom. A few episodes in, there was a new mother who was nervous to deliver her child because her mother had always promised to be there with her, but her mother had passed away. And I had the memory of setting out my mom’s picture in the hospital room when we were welcoming Arrine into this world. And how that was the time I felt I needed my mom the most.
But the last episode was unsettling for me. (Spoiler alert – don’t continue reading if you want to watch the final episode with fresh eyes.) One of the younger midwives learns that her mother is very ill and dying. In her last days, her mother mentioned how much she wished to have a manicure. The midwife eventually chose to do this for her mother after encouragement from one of the nuns, because she was hesitant due to their strained relationship. But once she began, she knew it was what she should be doing for her mother. And it made me think of the beauty routine I performed almost every day for my mom. Doing her lotion and brushing her hair and then on special days, giving her a manicure and pedicure.
And in the last few minutes of her mother’s life, one of the other midwives encouraged her to get into bed with her mother. And she did. She curled up next to her mother and cried. And it took me back to so many times when I scrunched myself up to get into bed with mom and just cuddle her. And breath her in. So deeply as I never wanted to forget what she smelled like. And while I watched the show, I let out good tears for missing my mom.
So when you watch this last episode, take it for more than fabulous writing on a television show. Take it for the reality of those last weeks, days, moments, I had with my mom.