I wanted to express my condolences here to Sandy and her family, in her Mom went home to be with Jesus on January 13th. I do not mean to intrude but wanted to share what Sandy wrote in part, to let her know she is not alone as others have aging parents and honestly are caught between a rock and a hard place.
I hear every so often from elderly people how much they envy my mother in having us around.
I am learning to be the adult as the years progress with Mom in making decisions and having to keep on top of things I never dreamed I would be doing. Mom thinks she can live eating like a bird and drinking like a camel. So of course she became dehydrated last summer and fainted in front of me. That later involved the remedy of a large half gallon container of water, with instructions to make sure that was consumed by night.
I have to watch her as she thinks citrus sodas are a food group.
I get very loud with her as that is all that gets through to her. It has finally soaked into her stubborn head that she is going to listen, after numerous accusations at me about "ruining all her fun".
That is something children of parents have to learn, in good intentions are not welcome, any more than 8 year olds appreciate the wisdom of parents.
Mom is a personality which would make a mule cry in being stubborn and she does think she is smarter than she as children do, and I catch her. Most times I let things slide, but as it builds up she gets a lecture on I am not blonde nor stupid in I know the chit she is pulling and it will stop.
You do not know this but as I was typing this I heared, "Oh gawl!!!!" from her bedroom and a thud, to which thankfully the "always something" from her was a box falling which was piled quite high. That taken care of, she is now in bed and all is well again.
My mother passed on January 13th. I have a lump in my throat and a hole in my heart, but I know that she's not suffering anymore. She never wanted to be in a nursing home and she was in one for 6 six years. It was torture to me for her to be there because I felt so guilty for not having her here. I couldn't lift her when she lost the use of her limbs and before that, I couldn't leave her here alone- she was mobile enough to be at risk. My kids tell me that she would not have wanted me to do all that was necessary to take care of her , but to me that's probably exactly why I should have. 💔
We were able to be with her in her last hours...we held her hands and prayed and spoke to her and thanked her for all that she was and did...for teaching us to love Jesus.
Mother hated funeral homes, morticians, and didn't want to be embalmed(I feel the same way )... so my daughter and daughter in law dressed mom in her favorite color- a red sweater and jeans, and my son in law picked her up and placed her in the pine casket that chad built, then we took her to the country and buried her next to my Dad on the family farm. Mother's grandsons, grandson in law, Chad and her great grandsons were the pallbearers. It was the way she'd have wanted it.
I wish you could have known her. She was amazing.
I know Sandy's Mom because I know Sandy in she is a remarkable Spirit. She can decorate better than Martha Stewart. She has the kindest of hearts and is a very strong Lady.
Children do the best for their parents and that is what Sandy did. She has had a problem like Mom had this past month in sciatic nerve problems. Mom bent over and did something which I examined to make sure it was not a broken bone. I invested week lifting her as she is a little gal, but if she was a large woman I never could have handled that as my days of lifting baby calves is over too.
I have an Aunt who is hobbling around now from an injury in a nursing home in lifting a patient. It is the balance of we do things we can for our parents, but when it comes to a point of needing additional care, that is what care facilities are for, as most of us are not Nancy Reagan in being rich enough to hire it done for our Mother or Husband.
It is a point that my siblings are the shits. The girls are card senders pretending things, but they would be the first to throw Mom into an institution, not because she belongs in one, but because they do not want to have to deal with caring for her. I do not want to make it sound like it is some big chore, but it is something I have to watch her like you do a pet. I have to pay attention to things so problems do not arise.
Things like no going outside alone, hanging onto me when we walk in the store and always making sure no falls ever happen.
Again she was footing it around last week in the store, got a card, went to the pick up and we got groceries. It is just the point that I fill in now just like she used to when I was in short pants.
I was touched most by Sandy's funeral for her Mom. I saw something like this on PBS in people caring for their loved ones in doing the dressing, lifting, coffin and burial transport. It reminded me of this old rancher in South Dakota who helped build his coffin and put his brand on it. That was intimate and the family dealt so much better with the passing when they were involved. That is what we discussed and if I ever croak I would like to have that happen. I honestly want them to get a back hoe, put me next to the rock pile where I dragged dead bulls out to decompose. My horse is about a stone throw away in some trees I planted. I don't want to be like other people. I just want to be stuck under the sod where people who would care enough to know where I was buried could visit and after that, at 6 foot under people could just forget as no one is going to dig that deep as I will be in Heaven.
I know Sandy's Mom would never have wanted Sandy injured in caring for her and Sandy did the right thing. We do what we can for those we love as long as we can, and that is why we all need help at times to fill in. When Mom broke her hip I did help with therapy, but that was a time in physical therapy. My Aunt stayed in assisted care for almost 6 months until she recovered. I have several women I know who like being in assisted living. The aides are good people and they do care.
Our old neighbor passed on last year and the aide was with her a few hours before her death, and she said to her, "Edna it is ok to let go. You can go and be with your husband". She relaxed after that and in a few hours she went to Heaven.
Few of us get what we want out of life or death. Things are the way they are, but they are the way God intends and it all works out. Sandy's Mom was cared for and that is what is important. Her family was always there for her and was there with her in passing.
Of course we feel guilt as that is what loving people is about. We always want something better or think we could do better, but we do the best we can and those we love understand.
When my Beloved Uncle was dying, I did the simplest of things in helping him set up and getting him some water. He appreciated that immensely and just be being there for a visit. People should not suffer, but sometimes they hang on for us in the things we have to learn about ourselves, so they are not suffering but part of our growth in teaching us things that God intends. They have to learn things about themselves too in God's Plan for them. Never a moment is wasted as we are all here as intended to our last moment.
I would like to be so loved as Sandy's Mom is. To have here family around her, to have them build a coffin, to dress them, to move them and to bury them. That is real family and what a special gift Sandy is to her Mom.
I will apologize to Sandy if I did something wrong here, but I wanted her to know she was not alone, and I wanted her to know how special she is as a Daughter and how wonderful her Mom is, as I do know her Mom as I know Sandy.