Mom died 5/26. Hospice for a week in the hospital - I was blessed they put us in a private room and let me stay with her 24/7 until the end. She died with me holding her. For several years before her death, I moved her in with me and took care of her - sometimes full-time, sometimes with care-giving help. The last few months of her life I feel like I let her down and failed in my duties due to my refusal to admit she was dying and admit how weak, fragile she wasbroken neck, broken back. She suffered severe osteoporosis, CHF. stroke, cancer twice, auto-immune hepatitis, etc. After a January hospitalization and short rehab stint, instead of just bringing her home in hospice as the rehab facility recommended, I listened to her PCP and my own hopes and encouraged her to try more rehab month-by-month in a Restorative Care Assisted Living facility...she didn't want to come back home as a 2 person assist, and we both believed with more strength and rehab , she could be a one-person like she was before the hospital. The first month and a half she was making progress - PT/OT 5x a week 2x a day - made friends, eating better, participating in life...I visited daily and was so happy with her progress. Then COVID and quarantine changed everything. She still had her therapists, etc. and wanted to stay despite my begging her to come home. I so regret I did not just take her out and MAKE her come home with me. Her decline started - started taking naps, eating less, getting weaker...she still kept trying the therapy (loved her therapists)...she was probably starting to die - she told my aunt that she ready to go see "Pop" ( my Dad)...but she did not share this with me...Mom wanted to die ever since my Dad died 5 years ago - and I battled to keep her alive on many levels...she told me I would have to start to learn to let her go ... and still I did not listen - just "pooh-poohed" her...after days of begging her to please let me bring her home - she said we would discuss at the end of the month -before paying next month's rent. It never came - she went to the ER - her glucose crashed - liver was starting to fail ...w/o a feeding tube, doctor said she would die in less than 2 weeks - CHF, cachexia, failure to thrive, effects of stroke/heart attack...this time, when she said hospice, I supported her and stayed with her the week and a half before she died..
I so regret not just bringing her home - first after her brief rehab in Feb/ then then COVID hit ( I listened to her PCP who said she was medically safe there and cared for - better than I could do at home during a pandemic)...I think we were both wrong. Despite dropping food and surprises off, talking to her 3x a day, etc. I could not get her to come home or hold on ...and after all those years of caring for her, I feel as if I let her down those last 2.5 months when she needed me most...the pain is breaking my heart.