Since my mom died. I’ve wanted to ignore the fact that Mother’s Day is coming this week. But my grief counselor suggested that rather than ignore it (which won’t really work anyway)that I find a way to honor it. I’ve been thinking about what to do. She was cremated and her ashes scattered in San Francisco Bay. There is no grave to go to. I thought about going down to the Bay but Sausilito on a nice Sunday afternoon will be crazy busy. I am going to send an email to the members of my grief group and see how they were planning on honoring the day since all but one had lost their mom, and of those, this will be the first Mother’s Day without our mom’s. But I learned today that the brick that I purchased to honor my mom at our city hall has been installed. It was a place where she spent a lot of time as a volunteer and advocate, and I will go there and leave a flower. I am also going to make a rubbing of the brick, and one for my brother, to have with me always, particularly since my brother no longer lives here. Then I realized doing a rubbing for my brother to give him is exactly like something my mom would do—give things to others that were important to her and she hoped were important to them. I just had a good cry. I’ve got a major migraine today, but I feel like I’ve found a way to mark the day on Sunday. 2 weeks ago
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My sil posted this on FB today—it had me crying out loud. It so sums up the last few years of my life. For some reason I feel badly because I wasn’t always the best daughter, I was impatient and frustrated and sometimes overwhelmed. But then I know that I did the best I could, and I took care of her with love. The last few years I would take her hand as we walked and she would say “Remember when you were a little girl I would take your hand, now the roles are reversed and you are taking mine.” She would drive me crazy and I wouldn’t see her or call her as often although I was always keeping tabs on her, especially this year.
LETTER FROM A MOTHER TO A DAUGHTER:
“My dear girl, the day you see I’m getting old, I ask you to please be patient, but most of all, try to understand what I’m
If when we talk, I repeat the same thing a thousand times, don’t interrupt to say: “You said the same thing a minute ago”… Just listen, please. Try to remember the times when you were little and I would read the same story night after night until you would fall asleep.
When I don’t want to take a bath, don’t be mad and don’t embarrass me. Remember when I had to run after you making excuses and trying to get you to take a shower when you were just a girl?
When you see how ignorant I am when it comes to new technology, give me the time to learn and don’t look at me that way… remember, honey, I patiently taught you how to do many things like eating appropriately, getting dressed, combing your hair and dealing with life’s issues every day… the day you see I’m getting old, I ask you to please be patient, but most of all, try to understand what I’m going through.
If I occasionally lose track of what we’re talking about, give me the time to remember, and if I can’t, don’t be nervous, impatient or arrogant. Just know in your heart that the most important thing for me is to be with you.
And when my old, tired legs don’t let me move as quickly as before, give me your hand the same way that I offered mine to you when you first walked.
When those days come, don’t feel sad… just be with me, and understand me while I get to the end of my life with love.
I’ll cherish and thank you for the gift of time and joy we shared. With a big smile and the huge love I’ve always had for you, I just want to say, I love you… my darling daughter.”
- Unknown 6 months ago
Since my mom died. I have bad days, I have so-so days. I have all of the this time off and I’m not enjoying it. I get through the days. I know when I work out I feel so much better. Went to the gym yesterday, have a meeting with my trainer in an hour. The small inheritance that I will get will give me a few more months of cushion. I’m feeling particularly despondent about no action on the job front (but then I haven’t put anything into it). mrrad thinks it will be next spring before I find something and it will be good. He’s probably right.
We had a lovely service for her. On 19 Oct we took a boat out into San Francisco Bay and spread her ashes near the Golden Gate Bridge. As we were letting her ashes go, a large sea bird came and circled the site (we could see the flowers still bobbing on the water) and headed out to the Gate, almost as if it came to show her the way to the bridge and accompany her on her journey. In the afternoon we had a service, which was pretty well attended given that she was an old lady when she moved here and she was almost 93. My brother and I shared our memories of her. We are 13 years apart and have always joked that we were both only children. I also made a video of pictures of her life and put together with music. I was told that it was lovely and well done. Then a nice afternoon tea. It was exactly as I wanted for her. Last week a friend of mine, who had come to the service, told me that she thought she was going to support me (to give the gift of love and support) and said that she was the one that came away with the gift. That the story of my mom’s life, who she was and what her spirit was about was inspiration. And she told me that I had her amazing spirit. I can only hope. And I’ve been told by so many how much I look like my mom, once they see a picture of her in her younger years. I think the older I get, the more I look like her. That makes me feel good.
I’ve called to inquire about grief counseling. I know that talking about it is good. Mrrad has been wonderfully supportive, although this has really taken a told on him too. We’ve been together for almost 25 years, so my mom was a big part of his life too. I think my brother is really missing me and wants us to come for the holidays, but I just don’t see it happening. We just had a big bill to replace our hot water heater this week—that would have been the money we could have used to go for Christmas.
This journey called grief S@#KS! 6 months ago
my phone rang and it was the paramedics telling me my mom had fallen and “dislocated” her hip. It was the beginning of the end. I try not to think about what I coulda, shoulda, woulda done. I know that I did the best the I could and sometimes the best just wasn’t good enough. My mom, in the last few years, was reviewing her life and feeling like she wasn’t a good mother. I had forgiven her a long time ago for not being perfect, and I tried to tell her that she has nothing to regret, she did the best she could, she was human. She would talk to my husband about it, not necessarily to me. Last Friday would have been her 93rd birthday. It was a hard day. Yesterday was mrrad’s 60th birthday and we had a good day. Today, not so much. Grief is such a strange thing. I can’t even put a logical reason on why I feel the way I do. My greatest fear right now is falling into a deep depression and not being able to find my way out (been there, done that). In the last three months I’ve lost my job and my mom. That is a lot to deal with. My home life is not peaceful because of my nasty neighbors so I don’t really get to enjoy being at home because of them. Finanically we are OK, but will not be for long. As bad as I feel, I don’t feel like I’m a victim right now (although that would be easy but not at all productive or useful) There is too much anger that comes from being a victim and I just don’t got it.
I want to believe that I am OK, but there is a part of me that thinks that I don’t even understand the depth of my loss. I guess time will tell. I dread the holidays this year but feel unable to make any plans for those days (not only have I lot my mom, my brother and his entire family have moved to TX—for the last 15 years we spent the holidays all together)
I can only talk about it and experience it—this too shall pass. 7 months ago
I am waiting for the Salvation Army to come to collect my mother’s furniture. All of the small stuff has been donated to Goodwill. I am going to watch the last of my childhood memories be taken off or others to use. It has been two weeks since she died. I feel like the wind has been knocked out of me. This room that she lived in for the last 21 months was her final home. At least she had her things around her. I took one piece of furniture home, but the rest, things that I know we have had in the family or at least 40 years, will move on. This is the room where my mother fell and broke her hip. It’s a nice room. It was as safe a place as we could have for her. She could have fallen anywhere.
Some of the intensity of grief is easing. But I am still unfocused and absent minded. And the anxiety and exhaustion is bad. There is no way out, only through. 7 months ago
Wow, this is hard! Grief is brutal. There is something very strong about the mother-child bond. I had another anxiety attack this morning, and then remembered that my mom’s body was being cremated this morning. I know she isn’t attached to it, but it is one more step in the road to letting go of her. I’ve spent the last two days at her apartment cleaning out her belongings. Today it was her clothes, yesterday her bathroom. My brother is coming this weekend to help with the rest of it.
There is so much to do but it is all an act of love. 8 months ago
My mother left this world. We were watching the pink painted sky of sunset and holding her hand when she peacefully passed. It was a gentle crossing. 8 months ago
My mom fell and broker her hiP and shoulder on Sunday. As she was leaving the facility with the paramedics she told the nursing director “my daughter is going to be so mad at me!”. When I saw her in the emergency rooms she apologized profusely.
Monday night she had surgery on her hip because I wanted to be sure she had the opportunity to get better and not be confined to bed. Tuesday evening she was sitting up and eating. She has talked a little bit. Yesterday she still hadn’t gotten out of bed. Last night she took a turn for the worse and they moved her to ICU. This morning as I was pulling into the hospital parking lot I received a call from the case manager telling me that she had been moved and the critical care specialist wanted to talk to me.
She is dying. Her organs are shutting down and per her directive she does not want any intervention. They have withdrawn all support except for pain management/comfort care. I am sitting with her listening to her gentle snore. It may be the last night I hear it. I came into this world listening to her breathing and heartbeat and I will be with her as she goes out of this world with her last breath
This feels sureal. This is not what I expected today.
I wish for her a gentle crossing, a peaceful passing. She is comfortable now and seems peaceful.
I have no regrets. I hope she does not. She is almost 93 years old. That is a long full life. She has given me so much. My strength of character, my love of reading, my curiosity, my work ethic, my sense of citizenship for volunteerism. I have been blessed to have her as a mother and I am honored to be with her for here transition. 8 months ago
I am beside myself. I have had the worst anxiety over the last three days and I didn’t know where it was coming from (I thought it was about the nasty neighbors) But now I know what it was. She is in the hospital now, and they are trying to decide what to do. She is in horrible pain, confused, and frightened. I have come home to just have a few hours and hopefuly some sleep before I go back to deal with tomorrow. Her blood pressure is so low that they may not operate. Even if they do operate, who knows how the recovery will go. The statistics aren’t good. The end of her life will be in pain in a skilled nursing facility. I want for her a peaceful, easy transition, not this. I want to go to sleep and wake up like this is all a bad dream. 8 months ago
But I now am more involved in my mom’s care. She has been in an assisted living facility for a year and half. It was not an easy transition and she was very unhappy with having to move. But now she sees the wisdom of it. She has deteriorated a lot in the last six months. For the last 3-4 months she hasn’t wanted to go on Thursdays for her usual outings. She was getting to the point that she only wanted lay in bed all day. She stopped going down to the dining hall (its a long walk and she was feeling fearful). She also wasn’t eating. A few weeks ago I took her out to get her blood drawn and she could barely walk to my care or back to her room. I became very concerned so I contacted her doctor and had her order a wheelchair (she has a walker and a cane but has refused to use them). I took her for a psych evaluation and I am meeting with palliative care this week to just understand the process. I think she is in the last year of her life. I also met with her caregivers and worked up a plan to get her more assistance while keeping the additional costs as low as possible. So we agreed that she would have someone come and take her to and from the dining room in her wheelchair (or her walker), have someone help her change her clothes everyday (which she wasn’t doing), and have them empty her trash daily. So the day after we started this, I went over to get her to take her to get her blood drawn and she was up, alert, changed, smiling, lucid, and cracking jokes. It was my old mom! Amazing what regular nutrition and getting out of her room will do for her. I’m not so naive to think that she is going to be all better now, but I so enjoyed that day to see her like that. I’m hoping that a regular structure will be beneficial for her.
And I feel like I did the right thing for her. The director at the assisted living facility told me that I was doing the right thing by having her checked out, even though what I was seeing was a fairly normal process. I will know that I did the best that I could for her.
The photo is from last Christmas. She doesn’t look that great anymore. 9 months ago