Twitter is not the first venue most would pick to capture their beloved mother's last days. After all, how can one describe a life and the deepest of relationships at such a painful time in dispatches of 140 characters?
But that's what NPR's Saturday Weekend Edition host Scott Simon did. Simon's tweets helped him pass time and gain comfort at the hospital in July 2013 while his mother, Patricia Lyons Simon Newman, rested. The tweets also allowed her to communicate with the world as she prepared to leave it — her 'digital ovation," Simon called it in an essay he wrote recently for The New York Times' Opinionator.
Here are just a few of the moments that Simon tweeted from the hospital before her death:
"My mother & I just sang Que Sera Sera 3 times. God bless you Doris Day for giving us such a great theme song."
"I know end might be near as this is only day of my adulthood I've seen my mother and she hasn't asked, 'Why that shirt?'"
(MORE: A Mother's Death: Tweet By Tweet)
"I love holding my mother's hand. Haven't held it like this since I was 9. Why did I stop? I thought it unmanly? What crap."
"Mother asks, 'Will this go on forever?' She means pain, dread. 'No.' She says, 'But we'll go on forever. You & me.' Yes."
Now Simon has taken those funny and moving moments shared with his 1.25 million followers and used them as the basis for a memoir, Unforgettable: A Son, A Mother, and the Lessons of a Lifetime. Simon talked about the book, his mother and their relationship on NPR's Morning Edition. Listen to it here: