I have always taken good care of and helped my mom. In addition, she stayed with me and my family for months at a time after each of five hospitalizations--2 knee replacements, 2 hip replacements, and a calcium overdose. At her request, I visited assisted living facilities all over our area with her and without her because she lived in a second floor apartment and was having trouble with the stairs.
I chose not to move my mom into our home because I had just finished taking care of my dad with dementia for two years in a nursing home with no help from my other four siblings, and I just felt I couldn't. Also after the hospitalizations, I started getting stressed and snippy with my mom, who could be difficult and judgmental. I was now stressed from the two years with my dad, and felt I couldn't do it at that time--especially with no help from anyone else. We ultimately got her into an assisted living and retired about six months later, just as COVID was becoming known.
My husband and I had been planning to retire out of state, and after settling my mom in her assisted living for about six months, we moved. Before making the move, I checked with my brother who lives in the area and who did her grocery shopping to make sure it was okay to leave, and also my adult daughter assured me she would help her grandma so I should go.
When I was settled for about a month, I started asking my mom to allow me to move her near me, but she kept saying no. Ultimately, she got COVID in the fall of last year and died.
It's been six months and I am struggling and feeling lost without her. I feel so much guilt for not moving her into my home. I was so beaten down by the years with my dad and her, and I was also pulling away from her emotionally and I know she could feel it--I was there when my dad died and the pain was too much. I needed time and thought I would have time to "fix" it all. How do I deal with this pain and guilt?