Saturday, August 18, 2012

Losing a Mother

We are having a season of sadness in our family right now.  My husband's mother, who is in her 90's, has taken a turn for the worse with her health in the past several weeks and her quality of life has pretty much disappeared. 

Less than 2 months ago my husband and his sister travelled to Mom's city to move her from her independent living suite to a smaller assisted living residence. She was only in the suite for a couple of weeks before a health crisis landed her in hospital where she has been ever since.  In the past 2 weeks her health has deteriorated to the point where it is now obvious she will not be returning to her residence.  The paperwork is underway to have her moved into a nursing home in the next couple of months, but we are not certain she is going to rally sufficiently to make that move.  For my husband and his sister the looming loss of the strong, incredibly capable, hard working, independent woman they called their mother is intensely difficult.  Those life long qualities have been lost so quickly and we know that she would suffer greatly to have to live long in her current state, but it makes it no less painful to realize a huge part of their lives is coming to an end.

So we are all on our way to see her and spend as much time with her as we can.  Grandson is flying out next week as well so the whole family will be with her.  All her belongings must be moved out of her suite as she will not be returning and dealing with them will give us something to focus on and get some physical activity going to counter the sadness of the emotions.  Her elderly boyfriend is distraught to be losing his best friend and needs support from the family as well.

Our holiday is over before it started but what an amazing way the details have worked out to be at mom's at this time when she most needs us.  My husband all ready had the time off for holidays and once he gets teaching in Sept. there is no way he could go out to mom's and move furniture etc. until Reading NOVEMBER!  My son has just returned from school in the States and can take a few days to visit his grandmother before he returns to work.  I was able to find a hotel there that had a cancellation for the very days we need a hotel on short notice for one of the last of the summer weekends.  My husband's sister discovered that the guest suites at mom's building are free for us to rent for the days immediately after our hotel reservation ends.  The incredibly helpful senior citizens' moving man is available and knows where we can store mom's furniture until we can decide what to do with it all.  Everything is working out to take care of mom's needs and her "stuff".  

So much to be grateful for during a most difficult family time. 

Last night I found out my own father is having a health issue that is rendering him incapable of walking very much.  It may or may not be solveable and we are waiting on x-rays next week.  Another possible parental health crisis or a problem solved with healing time and therapy?  Mom is running herself ragged taking care of him.  They are in their middle 80's and while they have done very well with their health, incredibly well actually, are we looking at 2 more seniors needing to change their lifestyle in the next year?

It is that season in our lives that we have been afraid to face but are now having to do so.  If we have fears for our parents,  how much more debilitating are THEIR fears as they face the realities of aging?

The next year is going to be a tough one for us all.............

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