Aug 11 2011 in The Unit Known As Shandi's blog by The Unit Known as Shandi
I’m sorry that I haven’t posted since Mom died. To say that it’s been overwhelming would be an understatement. The graveside services were Thursday the 4th. It was a beautiful sunny day, and things went as well as they could have under the circumstances. It was tough. My 7-year-old grandson sobbed in my arms through the ceremony. That was heart-breaking, and yet, I find comfort in the fact that he knew his great-grandma so well and mourned her loss. So many times in our society, great-grandchildren don’t have that kind of connection. This little guy knew her every routine, tucked her into bed for the first five years of his life, and learned to help guide her walker when he was three.
After the graveside service, my husband and I left for four days of camping. My amazing brother set it all up. We are normally tent campers, but he wanted me not to have to do anything but rest and recharge my batteries. He pulled his camper up the mountains, and we camped in a primitive campsite but with toilet, shower…all the comforts of home. I had time away to grieve and to heal.
The last few days, I’ve been planning for the memorial service coming up this Sunday. We’re expecting about 200 people (there were almost 50 at the graveside service). It will be a Southern-themed celebration of Mom. I figured out today how to Skype the service to her brother and sisters, and cousins, down South. I love the fact that they can be involved.
During the day, I think I’m doing okay. Tears come frequently, and little things set them off. I haven’t been back into Mom’s house since she died, I just haven’t been ready for that. My biggest issue is not sleeping at night. For the past two years, I’ve slept with a monitor beside my bed, listening for her breathing because of her CPap machine and her inability to remove it if necessary. I’ve talked to several other people that have had this problem after losing someone that they slept near or with. It’s tough. My head knows she’s gone, but my subconscious doesn’t believe it yet. I wake up, and have to remind myself all over again.
The amount of support that our friends and family showed during Mom’s illness continues. It’s been absolutely amazing, and I don’t know how I would have gotten through this without it.
My sister is having a hip replaced two days after the Memorial Service. Mom’s caregiver is driving to pick my sister up in Mom’s (now my sister’s) wheel chair van for the service, as well as our cousin and Mom’s other caregiver. My mother-in-law is also not doing well, and we’ve been trying to deal with that situation and looking into assisted living places for her.
Sorry this is my first post since July 30th, and I’m sorry it’s negative in ways, but it is where I am right now. I should probably move over to aftergiving.com, and yet you all know me here AND I’m still caregiving for my sister and mother-in-law.
We continue to work well together as a family. I’m so thankful for the family I was born into. So many people have commented on this, and the legacy Mom left us. I’m happy that we haven’t pulled apart, and that we don’t want to. My niece has already made reservations for Christmas at a rental home that our family has stayed at several times, and used to belong to our great-aunt. It’s a place with happy memories for us, and a new venue.
I think everything will be okay, it’s just such a tough time. Our house issues continue. I have a conference call with the geotechnical engineer and the health department inspector. Our septic design was denied. The septic inspector wants the house further back on the lot than what the geotech will allow. Battles and red tape, and our time is running out. We have to have the house moved, or vacate it, by Nov. 1st. Pretty sure we’ll have to rent, at least for a while. On top of that, we only have 30 days to clean Mom’s house out completely before the bank takes possession (because of the reverse mortgage).
Okay, after writing this, I guess it’s not surprising that I am not sleeping!