I have had bad days. I have had bad weeks. Hell, occasionally I have had bad months. But this month....this month just sucks.
I am sitting here right now awaiting a phone call. A phone calling telling me that my mom has died. And I am having a really hard time trying to figure out how I feel exactly.
My relationship with my mom was always difficult. We tried, somewhat, both of us at different times. She would make an effort and I would avoid it, then I would make an effort and she would avoid it. It just never really seemed to work out.
Then seven years ago she had a stroke. About 3 years before her stroke she was diagnosed with MS. About a year before the stroke she had fallen at work and broken her back. That was the beginning of the end.
She has been in a nursing home for the past seven years. About four years ago she pretty much stopped communicating with everyone. She didn't recognize me on my trips back to Missouri and she just pretty much gave up all hope.
I have tried to make it back there at least once a year and spend time with her. I just got back.
Last Friday my brother called me to tell me that she was not getting any better. She had contracted pneumonia after having her feeding tube put in and the antibiotics were not helping. The doctor told him to contact the family and get them here.
So Dormouse and I packed up her car and headed up there. We drove all night and arrived the next morning. She made it through the night and everyone was amazed that she was getting better. Her breathing was starting to get better and she was finally able to cough which was necessary in helping to clear up her lungs. By Monday she was focusing on our faces and it seemed that, at least for now, she was gonna be okay. Her sister had flown in from California and we both needed to be getting back home so Wednesday afternoon I headed back and today her sister headed back to California.
She took a turn for the worse.
Her lungs started filling with fluid again and she couldn't breathe. Her oxygen levels dipped down into the low 80's and now her kidneys are starting to fail. It could happen at any time.
I know she has not had any kind of life for a very long time now. She doesn't talk, she doesn't really recognize anyone. She doesn't watch tv, she doesn't participate in anything. She sleeps. She wakes up and she naps again. Now that she has a feeding tube she doesn't even get to eat the pureed stuff they have been feeding her for the past few years. So even the pleasure of eating is gone. I know that it would probably be better for her....her body is worn out and is pretty much done but its really hard to let go...She's only 59 years old. I really thought that I would be relieved. I thought that it would be better for her...she's suffering so much and I know this. But there is a part of me...this part of me that has longed for a relationship with my mother like the one that I have with my daughters. I want to be able to call her and tell her what is going on. I want her to call me and tell me what is going on in her life. I want to be able to go shopping with her, go to the movies, have a holiday celebration. I want all of this and more.
I just want another chance to do it all again.