I don't think I am posting for replys, (maybe I am) more just to vent...
My mother passed away Tue, May 11 2010. She was 82, and by no means was in the best of health. She had suffered with uncontrollable high blood pressure for years, and a failed hip replacement (the hip was recalled--go figure) in 2000 that left her unable to ambulate without a walker and very weak.
I am the last of seven children, of which six are still surviving. My daddy passed away in 1991.
Seven months ago when my sister retired, she moved in with mom to help care for her. She was thinking that mom had a stroke on Tue, and called for an ambulance and the family.
I beat the ambulance, and the other family members to the hospital. The ER doc said he heard a "rattle" in mom's chest, and suspeced either Pneumonia (not so bad, right?), or perhaps congestive heart failure...and she had never had any problems with her heart (so in my mind I dismissed this!) The ER doc called a Cardio specialist in to do an Echo, and the first test was fine, and was unremarkable.
The whole time my sister was with mom...and eventually they started letting two at a time go back. By this time mom was talking to the ER physician answering questions.
By the time I made my way to see her, she was "sleeping", but she was really struggling to breathe, eventhough she was on oxygen. It was very reminiscent of when they removed the life support from my dad, and he struggled for 10 hours for every breath.
It distressed me, and I went outside to collect my thoughts, without waking mom. I thought I would let someone else come in and see her. I was gone a total of 10 minutes tops, and during that time, one of my neices and my brother were in to see her, and one of them tried to wake her and couldn't and they called the ER doc in, as they were concerend.
While the ER doc was there, mom had a massive heart attack and passed away.
I know she did not suffer, and for that I am thankful! I know that she is reunited with my daddy, and for that I am thankful.
But I am feeling so much guilt for not being there because I couldn't handle what was going on. I feel bad that I didn't wake her because I wanted here to rest! I feel bad that I didn't tell her one more time how much I love her and what a fabulous mom and a special lady she was.
She had so many bone on bone/joint issues and had so much pain on a daily basis, and logically I know that now she is free. But when does letting her go get easier??
To me the logical progression would have been 1) go to ER,2) Get Put in ICU, and then if she didn't get better she would pass away.
She left us in a little less than one hour, and most of that time no one was allowed back to see her because the ER personnell was "working on her" getting IV tubes, etc put in.
It's just a struggle for me now. I would not have wanted her to suffer, but the selfish me would have liked a little more time with her, ya know??
Sorry for the rant and long post!
Peace to anyone else who is greiving.