Back in 1970, Edwarda O'Bara was a 16-year-old high school student who had diabetes and was on insulin. One morning she woke up feeling very ill and was rushed to the hospital. Edwarda said to her mom, Kaye, "Promise you won't leave me, will you, Mommy?" Mom Kaye said, "Of course not, I would never leave you, darling, I promise. And a promise is a promise!" Shortly after, Edwarda lost consciousness and slipped into a diabetic coma. Her mom kept her promise and stayed with her daughter, never institutionalizing her. She took care of her in her Miami Gardens home, 24-hours a day, with two hour breaks, sleeping just 90 minutes at a time.
Mom died before Edwarda did. Kaye passed away in 2008, but Edwarda wasn't left alone or put in a home. Edwarda's younger sister, Colleen, stepped in to take care of her. But now after being comatose for 42 years, Edwarda passed away.
She was 59 years old. Forty-two years in a diabetic coma.
Colleen says on the website edwardaobara.com that just before her sister died, Edwarda looked over at her and gave her the biggest smile she has ever seen.
It was reported on CBS Miami News that mom Kaye felt the spirit of the Virgin Mary in Edwarda's room.
Family. That is what we should all be thankful for. Even friends. People who are by your side no matter what, who make sacrifices to help you, take care of you, be there when you need them most. Even in the most challenging of circumstances. Kaye did that for her daughter for 38 years. I cannot imagine how hard that was for a mother to see her daughter in that state. Every day hoping for a miracle. That is the ultimate display of a mother's love. And Colleen stepping in when mom passed away is also a beautiful way to keep her mom's promise and to take care of her sister, according to her wishes when she was just a teen. What a beautiful family and I wish them peace.
This shows how in this life we should always surround ourselves with people who love us -- no need to waste time with those who don't show us respect and kindness. Because you never know.
Be thankful for the ones you love and who love you. Show them love and kindness always. The O'Bara family is a beautiful example of that.
Doesn't this story make you want to hug and cherish your family even more?
Image via samcaplat/Flickr