Son's loving goodbye to his dying mother will make you cry

We know that death is a part of life, but knowing that does not make the dying of our loved ones any easier on us. Scott Simon, the host of Weekend Edition Saturday on National Public Radio chronicled the last moments he shared with his  84-year-old mother Patricia Lyons Simon Newman Gilband on Twitter. As she lay dying, Scott sat by her side in a Chicago hospital and told us their story.

I guess you could say he live-tweeted his mother's death. The tweets have gone viral and garnered much support for Simon as well as criticism from those who believe he would have better served himself and his mother by being in the moment instead of taking moments out to tweet the experience. I think that we should give the man credit for doing what he had to do during such a difficult time. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt, shall we?


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I realize that social media is a relatively new thing and many people feel that sharing something as intimate as your mother dying while it is happening is over-sharing, but you know what else is a relatively new thing? Acting like death is such a private matter. This is a hugely universal experience. Death escapes NO ONE.

I for one, am touched by the loving tweets that Scott Simon wrote about his mother as he was by her side knowing that she would die, but not knowing exactly when that would happen. He wrote on Twitter:

I tell my mother, "You'll never stop teaching me." She said, "Well don't blame me for everything."

As well as:

Mother asks, "Will this go on forever?" She means pain, dread. "No." She says, "But we'll go on forever. You & me." Yes.


I see dawn coming in sky and want to hold it back to keep my mother from what's ahead--to keep my mother, period.

No, sharing such a profoundly personal experience on Twitter is not for everyone, but Scott Simon is not everyone, he is a man who is comfortable sharing in public and is no stranger to social media. I for one think that it takes courage to be so open and I think it is a way to ask for support from fellow humans. I also believe and trust that unlike what some critics assume, he did not spend his time tied to his phone in order to update his status. Perhaps he just turned to the public in moments when he needed to be held or comforted much like he was holding and comforting his mother.

My condolences to Scott Simon. Simon, please know that have not wept alone for the loss of your mother. Thank you for sharing her story so that I too could come to know her just a tiny bit through your love.

If my mother was dying right before my eyes, I would need the support of the entire world to get through it.

Image via Twitter

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