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Many of us, myself included, come from a dysfunctional family which adds a lot of weight to the challenges of caregiving. I have read stores on various threads on other topics and decided it would be good to have a thread just for this topic for people to share, vent and discuss.

The idea for this thread originated on the thread named "The Caregiver....How are YOU doing today?"

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More musings...

The death of a loved one brings many emotions, They come and go like autumn leaves falling or snow flakes drifting to the ground - each unique. Grief has its own agenda. I don't fight it. I know it is part of the process of living. 

It was a complicated relationship which covered the territory from great example to dreadful dysfunction. To say it stretched me, is a vast understatement. Despite having Borderline Personality Disorder, mother accomplished many valuable things in her life and I am proud of what she did. However, I am glad her journey is finally over. She was tired.

And now a new journey begins for me.
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Thx Fraz -getting some decent rest now and I feel OK.

Thx Riverdale. I was concerned that she night hang on as so much of her was still in good shape, but she went pretty quickly and easily. My father gave me the same gift of peace though his body fought a bit. Both of them were at peace and I hope to give the same gift to my children.
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That is such a lovely final message golden. I have followed your story here this past week. You of course were at this for such a long time. I can't imagine coping for so long but I am glad the end went well and your mother came from such a strong sort of stock. I am glad there was such peace at the end for you both. I often wonder how it will end with my mother and find it hard to imagine.
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Just musing here.

The Final Gift.

Mother was immobile except for her eyes. I held her hand but there was no response., I stroked her cheek, and again, no response, I gently kissed her forehead. The only response was from her blue eyes. which were focused on mine, There was no fear, no uncertainty, no pain, no worry in those clear blue eyes. She was at peace and that was a gift to me.
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Oh no, Golden, what a pain! I don't blame you for not taking any chances though. I hope you're able to relax now and get some rest after all that.
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Fire alarm. I am on the 4th floor so, half asleep, I tore down 4 flights of stairs wondering where everyone else was. False alarm. Oh well. I got some exercise. After the fire two years ago, I don't make any assumptions.
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Golden, I’m glad they packed up for you. It would be a great help. Get rest now, I’m sure you still have to do.
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We were given more lee way when my mom passed. I think it was after the memorial service. I can’t complain. We packed up pictures and other items we wanted to keep and donated her furniture to a women’s shelter which they came to picked up. There was a bit of a rush to do it as they had someone who wanted the room.

The rented hospital bed, wheel chair was all removed the same day by hospice. They don’t mess around wanting their items back. Luckily my mom passed in the morning.
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Gershun - we had that when we moved mother from her ALF to the NH and then they called me back about an item that was actually theirs. But the NH said I had a few days and weren't pushy about it. In both moves there were missing items. This time mother's nice bedspread disappeared too. I gained some clothing and lost others. I hear you about the principle. Personally I can't let it bother me. I have too much to do now as executor.

cwillie - yes, it is extra planning and work. Thankfully the worst part of that is over. R will bring what I have kept up to Fort Mc in January when he has to come up anyway. I still have a little to sort through.

Right now I have to rest. The obit is done, everyone is informed, Pretty well everything I can do for now been done. At least I slept some yesterday and last night. Watching "First Knight" (Camelot) for diversion.
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We have to clear the room within 24 hours here too, it wasn't a big deal for me since mom shared her room and there was little more than her clothes but it has to be an added burden at a stressful time for those who actually must move furniture.
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Golden, I am happy for you that the nursing home staff were so nice When my Mom died we received a call the day after informing us that we had 24 hours to clear out her room or else they would need to store it. There were quite a few missing items too. A beautiful bedspread I had picked out for her, some nice fluffy pillows my sis had bought, some skin cream, etc. I sure hope whoever took them enjoyed.

I know I had no use for the items but its the whole principle of the thing that bothers me.
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It was an enormous help, Glad and so kind. Staff on her floor are very kind. I must send some acknowledgement to them for their great care of mother.

I haven't slept much again. I guess eventually the adrenaline rush will stop and I will crash.

In terms of grieving, I am not feeling it much, but judging from past experiences it will kick in in a month or two. Now I am focusing on the business end of things. I really want to get home and back to my normal environment. If I have to come back to finish up the estate I will. Much can be done by email, I think,

I have picked out some of mother's clothing and not so much to wear but to hang in a closet until I am ready to let it go. It is part of my process, She bought very good quality clothing and had a distinctive style. There is one new, hardly used winter coat that I may "adopt".

My sis is being unusually cooperative which I attribute to her new husband. He, as a retired clergyman, has dealt with many families going through loss, and knows how to do it right. They even asked how I am and are wanting to send me flowers!!!!! I am shocked, but pleasantly. However, I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

As others have remarked about their own circumstances, it has all happened so quickly - here today, gone tomorrow, You never know what a new day will bring,

Take care of you no matter what happens.
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Golden, what a great help for staff to have mom's things packed up for you!
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Thx Duck.

We got mother's room emptied out today and made arrangements for cremation. I was amazed to see that the staff had bagged all her clothing and filled containers like laundry baskets with items so we didn't have any packing up to do, just moving things to the rental van. One of the staff came in to see us and told us that they do that to help. I was touched. We brought the bagged clothing etc to the hotel room and I have gone through it all, It was sort of a good bye ritual. I have kept a very nice wool lap throw that mother used a lot, two sofa cushions, and some other things. Tomorrow we will take the other items to a thrift shop, I will be glad to have this out of the way. Monday I have an appointment with the lawyer re the will and I plan on flying back home that evening,

So far, so good, Nite all. Maybe I will sleep better tonight.
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Golden my prayers and thoughts are with you. (((((HUGS)))))).
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Thanks everyone for the kind thoughts and prayers.

The support system they have is awesome. My aunt, lives in the next building where she kept my grandmothers old apartment. She has 3 bedrooms and has often kept one or two of the kids between the dysfunction between her and Sham. She is very much like my sister and we really were not on good terms because of things she said about my grieving over my grandmother as well as calling me too many "bitc&&s" in one sentence :)! Same spirit, as twisted, and I chose to have no contact. Even now in the midst of all this loss. She was like we need stop this not speaking. I love her, we both hugged, kissed and cried and mourned together. We're discussing plans for the funeral, and I mentioned taking the kids ice skating at rockefella center which is a big deal in NYC as the famous tree is there also. Just to take their minds off things for a moment. She said we should make it a family thing and that is even better. My son when he was here did a lot of things in his home for family unity and she was always there and of course he and Sham were very tight.
Anyways I am glad we are reconnected although it will never be the same and I have no hard feelings. She is a narcissist like my sister and that speaks for itself.

As for my twisted, I know she was on phone with her at hospital. I know Sham said the neither my twisted nor my nephew answer her calls. My sister for the first time ever that I knew of shocked me once when Sham first had cancer and was stopping there everyday after work helping with the kids. I told twisted that it was the first I had ever know her turns out she was borrowing money from sham and didn't pay back one time and they ended up not speaking for a long time.

To top it all off. My nephew has been sweeping through the house. When I left for an appointment one day he must have come in right after me. Because I realized I left my phone and he was there. When I left he was sweeping.

The day Sham died, he was there sweeping again. WTF!!!!! LoL. I didn't say anything, I was exhausted and just wanted to lay down for a few minutes before I left back out to go to work. I asked him if he had seen the black bag I'd left on the table. My lunch bag. He was cordial enough. But I am tired of feeling grateful or happy just because someone treated me with decency or finally did something that they should have been doing.. I got enough of that with my mother.

I do know that I dont know what in the world I will do if my mother passes on and I live to see it.

I sat there in the hospital as the family talked. The oldest daughter was crying I dont have a mother anymore and Sham's sister says I know how it feels, I lost my mother too. Sham's mother was my mother's middle sister. They were very very close. I can briefly imagine the pain, I just dont ever want to experience it.

I do know that I feel some happiness for Sham. I just keep feeling she is not in pain or suffering and also seeing the awesome support system for the family from friends and the church. I know she is at peace especially knowing her children will be well care for and supported.
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Golden and Duck, my thoughts and prayers are with you both. Take care of yourselves as well as you can during this time, and know you did a wonderful job.
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Thank you all for your expressions of support.. You are part of my extended cyber family and it means a lot to me.

Duck - my deepest condolences on the loss of your cousin. I know it is affecting you deeply and you will miss her. It is good she is not in pain any more.

Spazzy - you are right about family, I am not clear as to why your aunt can have you evicted. You must be renting from her. Cm asks the central question - What is she going to do for your dad? Has this aunt always been a little different (difficult)? Meanwhile you have my sympathy.

Thankfully the weather looks better today. I have a van arranged for us to pick up and dispose of mother's things. I will finalize cremation etc arrangements this afternoon. They are already on the job. I have an appointment with mother's lawyer for Monday and plan to fly back that day. The cousins and mother's financial adviser have been notified. My sis and I are negotiating times for the service next year. I would like it in the fall as the colouring down there is gorgeous and neither of us have seen it for years. She seems comfortable enough about me deciding against a funeral here in town. I have been checking out urns on line. It has to be something that can travel safely so wood or metal.

I think that's about all I can do for now. Needless to say I haven't slept well but that will come.
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Duck, sending prayers of healing comfort for your loss. It sounds like you were close with cousin and have good memories of her. Treasure the memories.
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Spazzy I've just read your profile.

What's this about your facing eviction?
What arrangements is your aunt now making for your father's care?

How old is your Dad?
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No one f#@!s you like family that's for sure. I'm on the verge of eviction cause my aunt says it's my fault I chose to move my dad in and even though I've sacrificed so much and she says she cares for his well-being thinks I'm irresponsible. Not doing good at all. Never thought doing the right thing and improving a loved ones health would be flipped around. My aunt is truly a fu@#!n sadist.
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I'm so sorry, Golden.

Thinking that she was already a little schoolgirl at the end of the Great War: her passing is disorienting, even to outsiders. We will not see her like again.

Take extra care of yourself.
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Sorry for your loss, heaven's gain.
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Ahh, Golden

I'm imagining her Norwegian blue eyes and know that you are Viking strong too

bra gjort
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Golden, my deepest sympathy. For whatever reason, you were not meant to be there.

You gave your mother the best care possible. Her life force lives on in you - albeit with a different temperament. 🧡

(((biggest hugs)))
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Dear Golden,
I think it definitely makes a big difference when we say goodbye to someone we love knowing that they had the opportunity to live a full long life, were able to fulfill dreams and also fight the many fights life presents us with; and when the time comes when we see them suffering, we truly feel a sense of peace when the suffering ends.

I know it is your mom, and a mom means so many things! Hence words are never adequate nor enough, but I hope that after you are done with all you still have ahead of you, you’re able to find peace in recognizing all you did for her, all she KNEW you did for her, and how much of a blessing you were in her life and she in yours! Your mom and you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Dear Duck,

Very sorry for the loss of your cousin. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers as well.
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Golden and Duck so sorry for your losses.
You are both in my prayers.
Much love Dear Friends.
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Golden, I am so sorry for the loss of your mom. She lived a good long life and helped so many for many years. You have done an excellent job caring for her for so long. Soon it is time for you to rest and do nothing but care for yourself. Start now. Great that the family is not feeling strongly about a service now. What you are planning makes sense. And she must have had quite the welcoming committee!

Duck sorry for the loss of your Sham. She is at rest now.
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DDuck, so Sorry to hear about your Dear Cousin Shams passing. Such a shame to lose someone so young. I know that the coming days and weeks ahead will be sad ones for you, but do take solace that she is in a better place, Heaven.

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family in the days ahead. Take Care and HUGS, Stacey B ❤❤❤
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Golden my Dear Friend, I am sorry for your loss, but as you said, she was ready and lived a good life. I am so glad that you got to see her one last time, and that she didn't linger on or suffer.

I will be keeping you in my prayers in coming weeks ahead, and hoping that you make a conscious effort to stay healthy while you make plans for your Mother's memorials.

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. HUGS, Love Stacey ❤❤❤
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