Just wonder if anyone deals with pre-death anxiety of a loved one? - AgingCare.com

Just wonder if anyone deals with pre-death anxiety of a loved one?

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My mom's health has been declining for sometime now with lung disease. I'm thinking she may have 6 months or a year left, maybe, I mean God only knows, I'm just wondering if anyone else has worried a lot on how to deal with missing them and grief afterward? I'm just close with my mom, and lived together last ten years also so I wonder if I should get a new home or feel closer to her staying in same place? So odd how so many issues come to mind when you "try" to prepare yourself for a death of a close loved one. Thanks and God bless.

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Dear Kelly,

I am so sorry to hear about your mom's condition. I have to agree with meallen, I don't think any of us can ever really prepare for that final moment when our parent's pass. I know I was in denial myself. I never thought my dad would die. Even before his decline we had bought a burial plot, prepared a will and I had handled some other paperwork for him. When he had a stroke, I still thought I could fix him and he would get better and return to his old life. He suffered another heart attack and the doctor told me he had 6 months but he ended up passing 3 days later. It was the worst day of my life. I didn't know how raw I would be, I just didn't. It wasn't real till that moment the doctor told me and I still didn't want to believe it.

One year after his passing, I am struggling the decision to keep the house or buy a new home and start over. Quite honestly most days I don't feel like doing much, so maybe I need more time to make that decision.

I hope you will cherish this time with your mom. And do what you can for her. And maybe try to settle some of the details, but in the end, I really feel there is no preparation for that moment.
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I agree with others that we're never ready for this, with my sympathies to you with everything you're going through.
You're jumping in to a set of unknowns in the future and most are out of your control. At this moment you can't estimate how you will feel once she passes.
Some issues you do have some control over is what others have said - talk with her now of her wishes for her burial, and does she wish for a service, and what kind?
- if I could suggest attempting to write her obituary or at least notes to go from, now--
- if you are in charge of paperwork, as in the necessary places that will need contact after like banks, pensions etc
HARSH, yes but it may help for your peace of mind afterward-- not searching for papers, or being upset while you have to review her life on paper for the notice.
For now, I found that this time is for sharing your love for them, with them. The time for laughing about the old stories. Playing her favourite music for her. Contacting her friends for a phone call or an actual visit. Asking and telling her everything you can... have found no matter how much time I had with my Mom, the week after her death I have so many questions. We spent so much time together over many years and I've found since her passing I still have questions I know will be forever unanswered. Stuff like which Aunt in England sent her those beautiful doilies decades ago? What was her parents' favourite saying?
I'm sorry your Mom also has dementia... I guess its what questions she'll still have answers to...
Its so hard. So very, very hard.
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I don't think we call really prepare, but there are a few things that might help. If you mother wants to and you can prepare what she wants done with her remains, what sort of service, memorial, etc she wants, you will at least not be trying to guess what do you in your first grief. The question about where to live may not be clear until after you are alone. If you can, take time--trying living somewhere else for a day or two--a friend's empty apartment, a bed and breakfast, whatever you can manage and see how you feel there a year or so after her death. There will be a huge void--the the time you spent with her. You might want to look into ways of filling that--and doing something like volunteering, joining a class, taking up a hobby won't mean that you aren't grieving or trying to forget her, just that your life will keep going as it does for all of us. I hope this helps.
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I'm sorry to hear of your mom's decline. I can't imagine how hard it is to prepare for that kind of loss. I have been trying to deal with my cousin's decline and thought that I had some time ago, but, her recent decline has awakened new anxiety about her fate. I thought I was prepared, but, not really. I've mourned the loss of who she was, since that left some time ago, but, her body is still there. Dementia is so cruel.

Your profile says that she has dementia. Are you caring for her in her home? Do you have help?
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My mom has been so out of it for so many years now and truly never talked much about herself anyway. She always had a hard time with the simplest of decision making, and I've had to make nearly all simple and major decisions for her since dad died in 2003. I'm tired. My hair is more grey than hers is, and I'm told often how much I look like her, which to me is not a compliment, lol. She truly has never acknowledged the Alzheimer's. I know she loves me, but as the oldest child, I can remember clear back to childhood always feeling burdened concerning my mom. I will miss her when she's gone, but any anxiety I feel right now is in regard to dealing with her paperwork and finances, even with having a lawyer in place. I thank God nightly she's in a decent nursing home. I anticipate feeling mostly relief after she passes, sad to say, and that I will no longer feel in limbo and maybe can take a little vacation. So not anxiety, really more sadness and regret that I've never been able to get to know her well.
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I am sorry to hear of your Mother's decline. My Mother passed away two weeks ago. I tried to be prepared as she was in memory care for the last three+ years. But one week she was up and walking with assistance and the next week gone. Let me just say as others have, you will not be prepared. One thing that has really helped me was having prearranged final arrangements a while ago. Have a funeral home selected, draft an obit, burial plot, etc. Because when she passes you will be in a fog. Having these things predetermined has helped me more that I can tell you. My suggestion is to not plan on making any major life changes until after she passes and you have time to grieve. Don't add more stress to your life at this point. I hope this information helps you. I wish for you and your Mother a swift and peaceful ending. Warmest blessing to you during this process.
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I read on this forum once that “there is no pain greater than to grieve the loss of a person who is still alive.” Those words spoke to my heart. Prayers for you and your Mom.
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Kelly -- You will be glad if you follow through on your thought of needing more time to make a decision about whether to keep the house or buy a new home. I suggest living in the house for a while after your mother passes until you get a strong feeling of whether you want to continue living there. In the short run, it offers the advantage of not having to run back and forth to go through the contents of the house and settle the estate. Since you think she may have only six months left, call hospice and find out whether your mother is eligible for home hospice if you want to continue caring for her at home, or if she she is eligible for living in a hospice facility. I say this based on my experience with the deaths of my parents and husbands. I found hospice very supportive in all areas and especially in preparing for grief. After my second parent died, it hit me hard to come to terms with being an orphan. Those who responded here before me gave you excellent advice. Read through it again. Peace.
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What beautiful and heartfelt responses to this question. When reading the answer from cdnreader,, I sat at my computer and cried. It's as though this beautiful woman melted within every emotional cord of my body. Pre-death anxiety of a loved one grips us and never seems to let go. My husband has Alzheimer's for 11 years. His decline had been gradual over the years, however, recently he has taken a sudden and expected turn for the worst. I, too, don't know what to do. I walk around most days in a fog only doing what needs done. Dishes piled in the sink, clothes hamper full, bills paid, but paid the last day when due---nothing seems important. The closest relative lives 8 hours away. I keep telling myself even after 11 years my husband will be okay. I toss and turn all night worrying, wondering what the next day will bring. Even though we have a Will, I shun contacting an attorney for upgrades. I can't let go. The world goes by each day like a spinning top unaware of the suffering and hoping. Nothing seems final, there is no hope, only unrealistic expectations that will never be. I sit in the nursing home every day holding my husband's hand, looking at his face, searching for answers, even excuses---waiting if I will be fortunate to catch a glimpse of a smile, an acknowledgment of any sort. I play Big Band music, the songs of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Nat King Cole, Tony Bennett and others very softly knowing how much he loved to listen to the songs of the 50's. Anything, everything. Kelly, all I can say is visit your mom and love her with all your heart. God calls all of us home some day. It's those that are left behind that must live with their memories, their conscience knowing we have done all we could do. As far as purchasing a new home...I wouldn't advise it. Please don't run from memories. There will hopefully come a time in your life when acceptance will allow for emotional healing. A time when viable and less stressful decisions can be made. God bless you, God bless all caregivers and loved ones. The hidden and emotional paths we travel are so difficult. There are days we can't even find the path we are to be on....
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My mother died two years ago at 98, three weeks after suffering a stroke. She was in Nursing Care, but I was with her every day. What helped me the most at the time of her death was the feeling that I had done everything I possibly could have for her, but beyond that, I had all her final wishes, important papers, list of what I needed to do ( get Death Certificate copies, notify banks and her insurance, etc.) so I had a plan and a purpose for the empty days immediately following her death. Her cremation expenses had been prepaid, everything was pretty much arranged. I took comfort in knowing that I could fulfill these last tasks for her just as she wished. The dying teach us that life is for living and it is precious. When a loved one passes, there is an opportunity to begin your own life anew and do many things that caring for, and worrying about them made difficult. If you think about it, this is what your loved one would want you to do: go forward with a happy and meaningful life!
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