Strange experience last night.

Started by

Last night after a lethargic day, my mother who is 91 told me at bedtime that she thought she was going to die that night. Understand this - she is one of those mothers who has Narcissistic Personality problems and I haven't really liked her as a person for many year, she was never appreciative of the fact that my husband and I have no life because she lives with me. She always talks about seeing Jesus and being with my Dad and other family members, like that will be so much preferable then being with the family she has here on earth, so I glibly answered her with "That will be a good thing, right?". I was trying to get her to go to bed and give me a few moments of solitude, and kind of brushed off the whole thing - at first. Then she said, "I just don't want to go through it". This hit me. It made me think about how I would feel facing death, and feeling all alone and being scare to "go through it". Instead of being cold and trying to rush her into bed I had this sudden empathetic feeling come over me, and I didn't want her to die alone and scared. I held her, told she was a good mother and grandmother (I kind of stretched this one but thought she needed to be comforted with that and she did the best she could) and that I loved her. She told me she tried hard to be a good mother. She said that I was a good daughter and took such good care of her and that she loved me more than I'll ever know. I was surprised at my reaction. We sobbed holding onto each other and I continued to cry in another room for about an hour. I am crying now just retelling the story.

I don't know if she is still alive at this point or not. It is just 7 a.m., but if she is, what a good way to end the time together and I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to say those things. If she wakes up today, I hope I can remember how sad I felt last night when we were saying those things to each other and thinking that was the last time I would talk to her.

Just thought I'd share that with you. I have been one of those who have been going off the wall with the "burden" of caregiving. I probably still will if she is still with me, but this experience hopefully will give a new perspective on things.

Have a good day, everyone.


I believe you got a very special gift from her. Try to hold on to that when things get trying. I know that's hard, but you will always remember last night. I think many people wrap themselves in protective armor, to make themselves less vulnerable, not saying this is the case.
God bless you both.
gsw, what a heartwarming experience. I am hoping your mother wakes this morning and you two will get to know each other in a new way. That would be nice.
This is so sweet, it made me cry. Your mom is vulnerable after all and I'm sure you were shocked to hear it. I'm so happy for you to have been able to let go of your feelings to share the time with your mom.
I would give anything if my mother just once had admitted anything and hugged me.
Wow. That's a gift from spirit. Narcissists are actually weak, fearful people. They feed off of Our strength. It is good to remember that as a psychological boost when you are feeling put upon. It is humbling, yet it reaffirms who you are and should help to buffer her disregard and lack of expressing her appreciation. Really, who knows how and what the N mothers think about? Pretty shallow has been my experience. So shallow, I yawn recalling it.
At least you had the heartfelt moment. If she is still alive, I am sure the next whammy will bring you all back to reality. No disrespect intended, just my cynicism :) xo
Thanks, everyone. She just woke up and I hear her in the bathroom. We'll see if that expereince changed either one of us. I'm thankful for it and I am glad it happened.
Really, it is a nice thing that happened. I hope it does change the dynamics, and that you'll let us know:) Blessings xo
Well, yesterday was somewhat different. She said "thank you" after each thing I did for her. I can see a steady decline in her, but since she wants no further treatment, has a DNR and home health nurse that checks on her once a week, I think I am just watching her slowly pass from this earth. Maybe not, but that's what it seems like. I had the same feelings when she got up, "Oh, no, Mom's up" that I always get. it seems I have so much energy and zest for life when I get up at 5 a.m. and then it all dissipates when I hear her get out of bed. She does great for someone her age, with really no major physical health problems, but dementia and other mental things going on. I'll keep you posted. She was subdued, yesterday, like "Why am I still here?" kind of thing. She just may be depressed. That is why we have a home health nurse, she is a Psychiatric nurse. Thanks everyone.
gsw: I'm hoping for you. Before my Mother progressed to advanced stages, one day she admitted " she did some things wrong." She seemed to have real remorse and had a look on her face of consternation.
It did not, however, stop her from long-ingrained passive aggressive behavior which causes, me to this day, to remain on guard. I must be that way with my sister, too. I cannot be the "real me" around her. I hate that. I hate ever having to be something that I am not. Narcissists steal our souls. Maybe that sounds dramatic, but so much of my life has been wasted trying to get it right.
Know that I am with you in spirit to support you. xo
Yes, I know exactly what you mean, ChristinaW. They do, but I am learning little by little to not let it bother me so much. Mom got mad at me today because I suggested she might want to take a shower before the physical therapist came. She said, "do you mean I didn't take one today, yet?" and I said, "No, you haven't had one since Thursday. She huffed off and went and took one. Lol.
Oh my, gsw that is truly a beautiful thing that happened to the both of you. God must be working on her heart. It doesn't mean that she will be suddenly wonderful of course, but perhaps she will try harder. What a blessing, you definitely deserve it. I want you to know, prayers done, for both of you. God Bless.

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

Please enter your Comment

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support