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Posted by Carol A on May 13, 2000 at 04:43:48:

In Reply to: No Treatment For Mom posted by Maggie C. on May 13, 2000 at 01:46:21:

Dear Maggie,
My mother developed severe senile dementia, and had a pre-directive to not use any tubes or artificial life support.
I understand the perplexing feelings this causes to the rest of us as we watch our loved one dwindle away.
I asked two church prayer chains to pray for my mother's healing and comforting by the Lord when she began having difficulty swallowing and eating.
The doctors wanted to put a feeding tube in her nose, and even did before asking us, but she pulled it out. When they told us she would need a shunt to her stomach to feed her, we had to say no, knowing her wishes. It was very hard to think of my mother starving to death. But she was 82, and we felt we had to trust God to either recover her or to take her. She did not want to live artificially.

I really felt prayer was answered when mom's blood pressure dropped quite quickly, she went to sleep and just slipped away. It was totally painless. Mom's brain could not remember how to eat anymore. She did not know who her loved ones were any more. She worried over children she knew she had and did not know where they were. But now she is at peace from her sufferring.

Yes, it is so painful to go through death. Your mom is acknowledging that we are all going to die, and she is dying. You can not avoid her dying, but you can join her in her process and be closer to her than you ever were, by talking with her about what she feels, what you feel, taking her somewhere she wants to see one last time, and so on.

I used to be involved with hospice care, and the process of death can be a beautiful experience, though it is so heart-breaking.
I don't know what faith you are of if any, but mine is in Jesus.
I really felt prayer was answered when mom had such a quick and easy passing. Now we her children are going about the task of adjusting to her really being gone.
I do understand the confusing and conflicting feelings that go with what you are facing.

PLease feel free to pst and express yourself and get support from us here.

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