Senior Veteran (female)
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: brockton, ma, usa
The Loss Of My Mom
I lost my 84 year old mom recently and I'm just crushed. Dealing with her death would have been much easier if family members didn't take her from my life.
For my whole life, I remember her words to me "don't ever take me off life support, even if the Dr's say theres no hope" My mom believed in miracles and knew that science was always coming up with new things to save lives.
My mom was very ill for a very long time. She was being fed by a feeding tube and antibiotics for multiple infections. She had a gangerous gallbladder but removing it may have killed her because she was just so weak. So we waited but she only became weaker with time.
I talked to my Dad and we discussed taking our chances with the surgery, if she was going to die anyway. He called me back, a 1/2 hour later and flatly stated he was taking my mom of all extreme measures and he told the Dr to let her go. Oh my god, I was just crushed!! And shocked that he wouldn't at least talk to her children before making this decision.
I got up early the next morning and went to my mom. I thought if I could ask her what she wanted, if it could be her decision, I would be ok with that. Though she was able to speak the day prior, she was unable to communicate this last day. Only at one point, she opened her eyes and mouthed to me "I love You" one last time.
The Dr came in, he had been waiting for the family to arrive. He said he hadn't gone ahead with removing everything because he remembered me telling him my moms wishes. He was a very compassionate man and spent an hour with me and my brother considering her options.
In the end, he agreed to see if a Boston hospital would accept her. He said they are far more qualified in treating the severely ill. And they would have much better technology and knowledge there. I thought it was big of him to admit there were greater hospitals than where she was.
In a short time, he came back and said Brigham's and Woman's has agreed to evaluate my mom. They have a bed and her ride is on the way. She would be leaving in just a few minutes. He put his thumbs up and said "maybe a new set of eyes will be what she needs" I had hope again!!
Then my father and 2 sisters arrived and spoke to the Dr in the hall. They all walked in the room, angry that my moms plans were changed. The relationships I have with these 3 people are not good and they took this into that room that day. My heart was beating so hard because I knew I would lose this battle for my moms life. I made the comment that my moms wishes should be honored. My sister said "remember there were kittens that were suffering Dad, and mom told you to put them down? She didnt want them to suffer." I couldn't believe these people!! How could they compare my mom to a stray cat? Just days before, my father looked at me and said "cindy, years ago, if I knew a dog was suffering, I'd put a bullet to its head"
This was crazy!! This was my mom, my best friend, who I loved so deaply. Then my other sister spoke and said "to keep her like this, it is Selfish, selfish, selfish. It was so cold, the Dr was out of words, my mom lay next to me, hearing all of this. I stood up and walked out. I didn't want my mom to see this circus.
I went out to the parking lot and just cried. I knew I lost the battle for my mom. The whole day, I sat there fighting for her and they were having a get together at the house with their bar friends (mind you, they frequent the same dive nightly)
My aunt came to the car and talked to me. She then called my father and asked if he would just wait a couple days to make this decision. I waited with hope. After about 15 minutes, they all left, without a bit of sorrow on their faces. They had another party to get to at their "bar"
I went back to my mom, they were taking everything off her. It was then I named those 3 the "decision Makers" I spent a few more hours with my mom. At one point, she opened her eyes and tried to smile. I kissed her goodbye for the last time. 8 am the next morning, she was gone.
I had made the decision that I would not honor my moms death by the decision makers side. My wonderful husband backed me and arranged for a private viewing with just a small few, my children included. I did not attend the services with everyone else. And I am good with this.
My mom wanted a closed casket and they didn't honor that either. They didn't know her at all. Or if they did, they just didn't care to do it her way. She was beautiful and colorful in life. She loved bright colors, pink lipstick, that kind of thing. They dressed her in a navy suit jacket. Everything they did to disrespect her angered me. I wrote a poem for my mom with a beautiful picture of her, and placed it on her lap and left.
Everyone is saying I was wrong but I knew what I did, was right for me. The next day, I didn't go into the funeral parlor, but sat in the car and waited for my moms casket to be carried out. I wanted my rightful place following the hearse to the cemetary. I watched from the car as everyone stood by her grave. Within minutes, they all left and headed to their "bar" again.
I got out with a framed poem and beautiful brightly colored roses and placed them on my moms casket. And I made a vow that my moms death has freed me from those decision makers.
I keep hearing I was wrong in how I did things but I believe I did it right and I have peace with that. But it has changed me so. A few years ago, i was diagnosed with a rare brain disorder. For my health, I decided that I was not going to feed on others negativity. And Only focus on the good things I have in life. But I am feeling so much hatred and anger. I cry all the time and I know I'm isolating myself. I just don't want to be around people. I'm not sure if this is normal or not. But I'm sure in time, I can focus more on my happy memories with my mom. Because there have been so many. In the meantime, does anyone have any advice on how to cope? Just please don't advice I make peace with the decision makers. I don't want them in my life.
Thanks for letting me vent out my story to everyone