Mom is dying and I am supposed to go to Japan next week.

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I am the main caregiver, along with the long term memory care center she is in. After a year of caring for a pressure ulcer on her foot that grew into a huge wound, seeing a wound specialist every 6 weeks, and treating the wound every other day, 3 new wounds have opened up almost overnight and the home health care nurse called and said it was time for hospice. She said mom's body is breaking down. She made that suggestion with the knowledge of some bad congestion in mom's respiratory system too, as well as lack of alertness or responsiveness. I respect this person's opinions so that is what we are going to do. However, I have had this trip planned for a while along with some impossible to get reservations at a couple of restaurants in Tokyo that are once in a lifetime experiences. It was not a simple trip to plan. What I am saying is, the timing is horrible. I have everything planned out for after mom passes. No funeral or burial will be immediate, as that will happen in another state at another time. Brother and sister are on standby to come down at a moment's notice. Cremation is set up and ready to do it's thing. I have been caring for mom for 8 years by myself, with the facilities she has been in, but right at the moment I am supposed to take this very special trip, it looks as if mom is going to die. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but within the next couple of weeks. I would hate to not be there for her in her final moments, but this is the kind of trip, you cannot just cancel and rebook. Believe me. The nuances and details of the reservations, bookings, connections, how it was paid for etc etc are unlike anything I have done before and I really want to go. Some of you might think that is selfish or cruel to leave my mother just as she is dying and I might agree with you, except that I have been the least selfish of any of my family for 8 straight years. Only those who are charged with taking care of every part of their loved one's life (medical, insurance, financial, POA, etc etc) on a day to day basis understands. I have moved across the country, was let go from my job and have had to live in a town I despise, all to be close to mom and take care of her needs. I do not regret a moment of it, but this has been my worst fear. That she will die just as I am about to embark on a major trip. I have another one coming up in November, that is even more complicated, which I will go on, no matter what, but i guess I am just looking for reassurance and support. I was at my father's side when he died. And I have been at my mother's side almost daily for 8 years and I am trying to separate to get some semblance of my life back, and taking these trips is part of my healing process. And yes, I will have all the time in the world to take these trips after mom passes, I agree, but the ones coming up cannot easily be repeated and it all likelihood, will not be. So my choice to is be there for my mother, for the moment of death, and then oversee the cremation, notify the organizations mom is affiliated with, such as doctors, pharmacies, insurance, banking etc, but that all can be done on email or calls after I get back as it is only 5 days. Is it horrible of me to want mom to die in the next few days so I can do both? Take care of her needs and after death responsibilities as well as go on my trip, with my nephew who also is very conflicted about this?

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A big virtual hug to you - when do you leave on your trip? Enjoy yourself and know that your mom would want you to go after all you've done for her.
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Again, thank you for your comments. Mom has been prescribed morphine and Adivan as needed now through hospice. My brother is the only one judging me if I decide to get on a plane and I am told mom has hours to live. But my guilt is all but gone knowing how much I have done. I am also exhausted beyond belief and need a break. I will be getting one in November for my 60th birthday with a much longer trip, but for now, I just wish everything would end. My emotions are going every which way and it is all I can do to get myself out the door much less anything else. I appreciate all your support.
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Go to Japan. My father passed away at home last Nov 13. I was gone for a long weekend to another state when he passed. I spoke with him on the phone 1/2 before he died and told him if he was ready to go than let go. He did. My mom and brother and his family was with him. We can't stop living our lives. Your mom could live yrs or days. Nobody really knows how long any of us have.
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The fact that your mom is "hospice eligible" means very little. My mom has been hospice eligible for two years now. We've all taken vacations in that time.
Just go.
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Go and enjoy, and your mom will likely still be here when you get back! Hospice does not mean "death in a few days " anymore. I have a friend who came to stay with us when she had to put her mom on hospice.. all doom and gloom and "its gonna happen tomorrow" 6 months later her mom is still hanging there! It happens when it happens, and no one can predict the time. She would want you to enjoy your trip. and have a drink for her while you are there.
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All great advice -- go with your heart.
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Go. Your siblings can take care of the cremation. When you get back you can have a memorial or just get family together at
a nice restaurant and celebrate her life. I had a friend who planned a trip to Hawaii. She asked the same question and was told the funeral could be held when she came back. Her Dad is still with us.
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Thank you so much for all of your answers. There were little gems of advise and wisdom in each and every one. I am male, for the person who thought I was female, just as a matter of clarification. As for travel insurance, I have been in the airline business (now retired) for 21 years and I did not get insurance. I don't need travel insurance to be refunded anything. As I stated, my situation is very unique compared to most travelers and it would take quite the post to explain how I got to this point of being able to do what I do, go where I go and how I do it all. Trust me, it is way more than the average person can even fathom. And no, I am not on any airline pass. I pay for my own tickets always. But that is neither here nor there. What I heard most from people is that I have done my job and then some, for over 8 years and it is high time my siblings stepped in. Which they are ready to do. Although they have virtually done NOTHING for 8 years, they acknowledge how much I have done and they will be fine to be with mom in the end. Yes, it is guilt that is overcoming me. It is like I have built this wonder full monument, designed it, commissioned it, built it and missed the unveiling. My mother has been my work, and my joy to take care of her all this time and at the most important time when she leaves this world, I just say, sorry, can't make that. So it is very difficult for me to leave, kiss her goodbye and know it may be the last time I see her.To the person who said, I may be enjoying a fine meal in Japan while she dies, yes, that is just horrible for me to bear. But everyone else is right too. I have done more than my job and it has taken over my life. My mother would want me to go and if I say my goodbyes with all sincerity I can go, but it does not mean I still won't feel guilty. I will force myself to see it as a celebration of all of my care and love to mom. Anyway, thank you again for those who have commented. It has given me some more peace to make my decision.
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It is time to call brother and sister to come down now and stay near Mom on her last days. It is more important, in my opinion, to see her while she is alive still---as in more important than the funeral if they have to choose.
There should be no judgment or self recriminations when you leave next week on vacation. Take a good look at the advice from Countrymouse, because she is very wise.
Only you know yourself best.
Added later:
Mom's life is more about her life, her death when it comes.  You may need to let go in advance.
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"...but that all can be done on email or calls after I get back as it is only 5 days."

Yes, it can be. Take your trip, as planned. Maybe all your "what ifs" will happen. Maybe not.

You have done a fantastic job of being the detail-and-paperwork person for the past 8 years. Because you excel at this level of organization, it's difficult to let go for a little while.

But it's important to let go for a little while. The trip to Japan will be good for you. Go!

There will be "mom work" of one form or another when you get back. Take it as it comes.
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