My mother passed on December 23rd. She was walking to the door of her own home and fell, sustaining a brain bleed. We rushed her to the hospital and they found she also had congestive heart failure. It had been harder for her to swallow in recent weeks and now we understood more. Her brain would not stop bleeding in ICU and they wanted to put in a feeding tube. That was when I realized that I must carry out my mother's advance medical directive. If her quality of life would not return to her former state (which we were told it would not), then she wanted no feeding tube and nothing to prolong her death. The doctor agreed. We took her home with hospice help but had no idea what that entailed. We stood vigil and gave her comfort care (morphine and other meds) as she slept peacefully until she was gone. It was terrifying. She only opened her eyes for moments in the first days at the hospital, and once at home. But in those moments I sang to her and assured her we were following her wishes. We had to call the nurse in the morning of the 23rd because we did not know if she was still sleeping or if she had passed. Thankfully she passed quickly.
Now I have unbearable grief and loss. I have never experienced anything so overwhelming. I can hardly do anything at all. But I wanted to do this.
I want to thank those of you (you know who you are) that helped me establish boundaries with my brother when my mother was diagnosed with dementia. (My thread was on Grey Rock) Through that process, my brother and I became a team to care for her. We both cared for her until the end. Now I can care for him without becoming enmeshed. It is all good. Bless you all who supported me. xxx