I feel guilty because my mother's death is not so devestating.

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My mother started going downhill about 9 years ago. She is a very talented person, could sing, cook, quilt, sew, knit, crochet, garden and she was a very intelligent woman. Then she began losing her abiltiy to do these things. She had to walk with a cane, then two canes, then she was in a wheelchair. She couldn't drive, couldn't quilt or garden. She loved to read but in time couldn't see. She couldn't have a conversation because she couldn't hear. She couldn't watch TV. She started on a knitting project that she couldn't finish because she couldn't see and became frustrated. There wasn't really anything she could do. It was very difficult to see these pleasure in her life taken away and see her in a lot of pain getting weaker and weaker. It was hard to see her taken away to a hospital and then a nursing home. I knew she was near the end of her life. She had moved in on me--her decision and I was afraid when she died it would be time for me to go a nursing home. I thought she'd live to be 100. The last few months it was obvious she wasn't going to live long. When I visited her in the nursing home the last time I don't think she knew who I was. She kept screaming at everyone. A week ago I got a phone call telling me she had died. Of course I was shocked and I was at work and immediately went home and stayed off a week to make arrangements but once the shock wore off her death wasn't that devestating to me--it was seeing her regress that was so hard for me. I believe in life after death and I also believe that there are animals in heaven and she's got a lot of animal friends.

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Earthquake be careful. I am not sure when you lost your Mum but it was 18 months after my Dad passed that the grief struck. 18 months where i had supported everyone else and then wham .... and it hit me hard very very very hard. So please just be careful for grief can strike at any time, to anyone xxxxx
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Castymiss, my Mom was also 98 when she passed, and it was a peaceful death. She had a wonderful life. Mom was in a coma state for 3 days and never woke up. But she did wait until her favorite movie was over before taking that last breathe, which I think helped me with the processing of her passing.

We all grieve differently. I was raised that death is part of the life cycle, and we need to go on. My sig other can't figure out why I wasn't a basket case after Mom's death like he was after both his parents and other relatives had passed many years ago and he still grieves like it was yesterday.
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Casty, thanks for sharing your story. It was very touching and well spoken.
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I can totally relate to you. I moved out of my house, (rented it out) and moved in with my mother 5 years ago to help her out. She was 93 at the time. She was able to cook light meals, walk around and did all her own care. She would read the paper, go out in the garden and we were able to have nice talks. As the years went by she was unable to do many things for herself. I had to hire a 24 hour live in caretaker at her home. I also stayed in her house. I watched my once active and vibrant mom slowly decline. She needed a walker, would get angry when I would not allow her to do certain things due to her fall risks. She forgot and her memory got worse and worse. She was unable to really carry on a conversation. The last year of her life she was in a wheelchair. She was wearing diapers and needed almost constant care. I was so tired even though the caregiver was there. It was emotionally difficult for me to watch my mom slowly die. She would cry and say, "why do people live this long". I paid all her bills, took care of all the household chores and did all the grocery shopping. The last 5 weeks of her life I took off work. I am an RN and saw that death was coming. She had to be fed and finally she no longer wanted to even eat. I did not force food on her. She was unable to even turn over by herself in the bed. I asked her once at this point if she knew what was going on. Her answer was, "I am dying and it is OK". She was unable to eat or drink fluids and on day 8 of this I started Morphine with Hospice there at her home for 4 days and nights straight. I told her I loved her, she told me in a whisper she loved me and we had said everything we needed to say to each other. I told her I would be there till the end holding her hand. It was HORRIBLE to watch her die. After I started the Morphine she never woke up again but stayed alive for 5 more days. I prayed she would go peacefully. It was worse for me just watching this. She was totally sedated and out and this is how she went. The most peaceful death I have ever seen with me holding her hand. Right at her death I started crying. I think I was missing the mom she used to be but I have to say I was not devastated at her death. I was relieved she was no longer suffering. Almost 9 months have passed. I am back at my home and I also feel I never really felt horrible grief that she died. I would ask myself why? Why wasn't I so distraught at her death? Maybe due to it being a blessing she went so peaceful at age 98....Maybe because I had already grieved her death the past 2 years of taking care of her. .Maybe because we were able to talk and say what we wanted to each other at the end.....I just know I miss her....but she is in a better place now.
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I understand you're not feeling devastated at the loss of your mom after a prolonged period of decline and care taking. It takes a lot out of you, ALOT! You are probably exhausted, mentally, physically and emotionally. As the daughter in town, I have been the overseer of my moms care for the past seven years since my dad died. My two sisters live out of town and are spared the grueling phone calls from the senior residence that mom has once again gone to the hospital and needs yet another procedure (pacemaker) on yet another holiday where plans have had to be canceled, etc. But they also missed the nice weekly Saturday breakfast visits that I have enjoyed. I guess things are tradeoffs....but it seems they always get off scottfree. Sometimes as much as I love mom, I find I also feel disdain...maybe because I fear and know I will probably be the same way someday and I truly don't want my daughters to have to go through this! My mother is an alcoholic, who hasn't been the mama I truly loved and remembered for many years. Shes a sweet, very passive woman who is almost 91 and tells me she plans on living another ten years. She's serious! Some days, I want to get in my car and drive away and never come back! So,yes, I understand you're not feeling devastated. Care taking is Hard, Hard work. Hopefully, with time and rest, you and I will both begin the healing process to remember the good times...best wishes to you! With all of our resources, There really should be a better way than this!!!!
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Earthquake: I was touched by your memories of different times in Juneau. Holidays, bowling, fun times as a family. I have similar memories. My son does too and so does my granddaughter. Those of us who are lucky, have those memories. It's something to cherish and it's sad when time and years go by and they change. We can feel alone. The thing is that it can't be helped. We all grow older, people die and our youth is left in the history of our families. It's time for you to make new traditions, even if it's just lighting a candle in memory of those memories. But you need to get back into the living. That's your task and your way to find a place in the "meaningful" future. Life isn't over for you. A new life can come your way. Be open to it and grieve along the way.

Best wishes and stay in touch. Cattails.
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As caregivers, we loose our loved ones twice... watching them loose any quality of life, then the final goodbye, until we meet again... and everyone grieves different, it just shows how much you loved and still love her, that she is finally happy and whole means more to you than if she were still here suffering...that's how I felt about my lady Ruth.... I really believe that knowing she was whole and happy again... that meant more to me than anything... we have our memories, cherish those, as it seems you do.... it's ok, this is simply a testament to the awesome daughter she raised... hugs to you... and angles to carry messages...
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I miss a lot of times I had--especially when I was young and we lived in Juneau. I remember watching them going bowling and Christmas get-togethers. I've done a lot of grieving over watching her lose her abilities but when she died I didn't find that so devestating.
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Earthquake: I've read some of your other questions and responded. At some point, you may be able to grieve for your mom. Can't say for sure. My dad lives under our roof. For the previous 6 1/2 years he and my mom lived next door to us. We moved them next to us when we retired. My mom died 3 years ago. My dad had a major stroke last July and so he is with us now, in our MBR and can only feed himself. The rest is up to us.

I don't think I will grieve my dad's passing. His quality of life is so very limited right now that I can't say he will miss being alive or I will miss taking care of this body that has failed him.

What I will miss is seeing him taking his daily walks down our private road and talking to the neighbors. I will miss seeing him on the riding mower, leaving a patch work quilt on the grass, but loving the chance to be driving again.

Maybe you can something about your mom that brings a good memory back and you can miss that in this world of the living. I agree that your mom will be in a better place, surrounded by love ones and animals. That the hope that I have for myself and I know just the dogs I want to meet up with again.

Love and compassion to you. My heart goes out to you. Cattails.
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