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I've been thinking about this question since my Mom died, 8 months ago. I've come on this site now and then since Mom's death. I'm still very grief stricken, missing her so much every day. I see things written about the problems, the frustrations, the anguish that caregiving entails. I recall my own previous posts, asking for input on this, that, and the other. Hindsight is always an eye opener. I wish I would've done this better, and that better, been less impatient, had told Mom more often about what a great Mom she was to me, etc. etc. It goes on and on. Even though I mostly lovingly cared for Mom as best I could, I know now I could've done better. But at the time, going through the daily routine of caregiving, I was in the moment...just not aware of how suddenly it would come to a screeching halt (which happened in my scenario), and I would never get the chance for a "do-over." The finality is horrible. I want to grab her back. What would you think you would feel when your person is gone? Will it be relief? Freedom? Emptiness? Sadness? What do you think you may wish you could've/would've done differently? Maybe you could be lucky enough to do some of those things now, while you can, instead of thinking sadly, "if only I had her back for a little while longer."

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For me, it was all of the above. The feelings of grief start building during the years of memory loss prior to the parent's passing.

I learned that it was not healthy for me to deny the grief, or try to pretend it wasn't important.

The best advice I found was from the booklet "Experiencing Grief" by H. Norman Wright. In the middle of the booklet he drew a simple illustration of what happens when a person is in "denial" of the grief in their heart. All sorts of bad feelings sprout from that person's denial, and it can end up hurting the people around them.
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My mother died in 1962 when I was ten. I felt cheated for a long time, but when I see the postings here, I know I was spared the long goodbye. In my mind she is still 37 and very beautiful.
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I can't stop the inevitable... I will certainly feel a great loss as I have with the death of other loved ones..

BUT I have no regrets regarding my caregiving.. Mom is loved and respected by me and I KNOW I am doing my best...

It's my siblings who will have to answer to their conscious!!
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I will probably feel lost and depressed for a while, but will keep going on. I think about Arnold's words in the movie "Torch Song Trilogy" after his partner Alan died. "It is easy to speak good of the dead. They do so little wrong." It is such a true statement, and we see it so often here on the site. When we think back on caring for our loved ones, we remember the times when we weren't perfect, but forget the special things we did for them. We caregivers are like that. With the stress we face each day, being more perfect is probably unrealistic. Braida, I have the feeling you did a super job as a caregiver. Perhaps you could have been more angelic, but we are only human.

I hope that soon you will have nothing but good thoughts about your mother and you at an earlier time of life. Hugs hugs and more hugs.
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Some of us are lucky enough to have had parents who were kind and tender. Some of us were physically, sexually, and emotionally abused instead. I've been told my parents would both have been in jail for what they did to my brother (deceased now) and me, even back in the old times when justice in family matters was less. I watch after my mother in her ALF because I feel it is my duty. When she passes away, I hope it's a peaceful death. I will work to ensure a proper funeral in her home town. My duty will be complete. I have no anticipatory grief regarding her. As for my father who passed away several years ago, I do not grieve for him. I miss my dog more. It's just how it is.
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I think I'll feel sad and a little lost because it will be the end of a long era, losing someone who has been in my life without pause since the very beginning. It's hard to really even imagine her being gone. I can't say I love my mother or even like her much, but she's been a major presence in my life for my entire life. I think I'll have regrets no matter what I do. Not the kind of grief I feel about losing friends I dearly loved, but more a sense of unreality, as if the whole world is turning upside down. I didn't feel that way when my father died, but we were not very close and I wasn't his caregiver. It will be hard to go on, although moving on from this stage of my life has been my major goal since it started. Whether I treat my mother badly or well, it will still be really weird when she's not here.
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Same way I felt when my dad passed. Relieved I don't have to worry about them physically anymore and maybe a bit sad I could not get through to either of them on spiritual things, though I still have some time with mom. Hope that makes sense.
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My father passed a few weeks ago. I have had many mixed emotions regarding his passing, and I just let them flow over me and not judge. I live with my parents and dad actually started declining after he got a pacemaker/defibulator (sp?). So I really miss the man he was before he got sick. I feel relief, that he is no longer suffering. Dad was diagnosed with colon cancer and was supposed to have surgery. as surgery date drew nearer he told my mother he just didn't have the energy to go through it. Mom supported him and he was transferred onto a hospice floor but passed even before actual hospice services began. I think he was an incredibly brave man to choose not to have the surgery. but I remember feeling rage (at the situation not him) when he made the decision. I know there are things Mom and I could have done better but we were really overwhelmed for the last 6 months he was ill. I am also a grad student so we were really bombarded. Please don't beat yourself for "not doing things better." My mother and I learned as we went along and we just did the best we can. we were like you, "in the moment" because there is no time to analyze what you are doing. My condolences on your mother's passing. What a wonderful gift you gave her in her final years.
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I will miss Mom, but I know I will have a tremendous sense of relief. I find myself thinking sometimes about how quickly I will be able to get her things out of my house after she passes, not because I'll be glad she's gone, but because I'll be so anxious to start a life for me. I have learned and continue to learn a lot during this caregiving experience. I think it's made me a better person in some ways and I'm glad I could do it for Mom. It's made me realize that growing old is hard not only for the person but also for family.
You never know what you have until it's gone and the one thing caregiving does is take away your freedom. I look forward to having my freedom. To come and go as I please with no more worry. Yes, I will miss Mom, but I look forward to a new day for me.
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Well, I felt some relief when my mother died for her suffering was over, she had lived her life and I have my own life. From early childhood on, when she abandoned my dad, my mom wanted to absorb me into herself and not let me have a separate identity which my dad called her desire to raise me on a pink pillow which was polar opposite of his view of how to raise me. Even in my pre-teen and teen years, my mother was extremely intrusive into my life, but lost more and more control as I went to college which my dad paid for.

I do think that I will miss my dad more since we have a better relationship than my mother and I had. My dad always wanted me to an all American boy.
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