Due to my husband’s spinal cord surgery, I was unable to make my yearly visit to Ohio to see my mother in June for her birthday. My sister and I usually take her on an overnight trip to West Virginia to the casino. All 104 years of her loves to play the slots. On a good year, I’d be preparing for my second visit about this time and indeed had my flight plans and reservations for Mom time scheduled for the first weekend of November. A short visit, as Hubby still needs someone with him nearly 24/7.
My mother has six “children” ranging from 59 – 81 (with a ten-year gap between sets of three), 21 grandchildren, 40+ greats and one great, great. She is and always has been a joy. As a child, quite often people mistook my parents for our grandparents. I am the fifth. My mother was always the favorite of my brothers and my friends. All the kids hung out at our house and there were always extras at dinner or staying the night. She has always been not only my mother but my best friend, my heart.
My mother, myself and two or three of my sisters have had many adventures over the years. The “girls” would come to Florida to visit every winter, or sometimes just Mama. I always loved the quality time with her. Now when I go home to visit, she shows me around her room pointing out any new treasures she’s accumulated since I saw her last. I could go on forever about her. Suffice it too say she’s the best mother/grandmother et al anyone could hope to have.
I’ve been so looking forward to my visit with her, to refresh and renew my spirit just by the aura she emotes, her laughing, crinkling eyes and her running me ragged! She’s had a couple minor ailments the last couple months, nothing major but cumulatively have worn her out.
Yesterday I received a call from my older sister as we were on the road looking at a new community to move to with our impending park closing. My sister spoke as I felt the racking sobs would not end The visiting nurse, who has been with her for a decade, recommends hospice.
Hospice!!!! She has bounced back from some really rough things over the past decade; she’s the energizer bunny. Now, hospice? Even worse she is deteriorating so rapidly that she may not be alert by the first of November. I immediately rescheduled to leave Tuesday. Arranged for a home health aide to come live in with hubby. She’s coming tomorrow so I can meet her and show her the routine. I’ve cancelled all his appointments for next week.
I need to have what may very well be my last couple days with Mama. I want to stay with her, I need to be in both places at once. Here for hubby and there with Mama. Right now I feel as if my heart is being ripped out of my chest. Yes, we have been very blessed to have her so long and so active. But I need her. It’s not fair. Not now. It’s still too soon.
I’m lost, I can’t get my bearings. My world will never be the same.