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Mum passed away Tuesday. Devastated and lost

(19 Posts)
starshine1926 Fri 25-Nov-16 19:13:23

My beautiful, brave mum passed away this week, 5 months after finding the first sign of vulva cancer.

The last 2 years have been hell - mum went from being an independent 87 year old woman who went shopping, to a shell of a person dependent on carers.

The rollercoaster started in 2014 when she was knocked down in a supermarket car park. The driver was an off duty policewoman!! The compensation case is still ongoing.

Mum broke her leg and recovered well but went to recuperate in a local geriatric hospital. There she contracted a bladder infection which was neglected. She became confused, fell and broke her hip. The hip was fixed but obviously compromised her mobility. When she returned home, she fell and broke the other hip.

Whilst all this was happening, she lost the sight in one eye due to a clot and also had glaucoma in both eyes. She also had cataract surgery. Her vision deteriorated a lot in the past few months.

The icing on the cake was the cancer diagnosis after finding a lump in june. A biopsy and CT scan confirmed cancer had spread to one lymph node. My mum couldn't have an operation because she was too frail to survive such a brutal procedure. Just sitting, standing and going to the loo were agony. She was due to have palliative radiotherapy last Thursday but was in too much pain to actually get onto the radiotherapy bed. We were advised that she could try again after getting the pain under control in hospital.

She entered a local hospice last week for palliative pain relief as she was sleepy and confused. They changed the meds and she was eating and speaking on Saturday. But on Sunday, she was put on a syringe driver as frequent injections were causing pain. After that she slept a lot and deteriorated quickly. I missed her death by 10 mins.

I am so totally devastated. I am crying as I think of all her suffering and so angry at the woman who caused the accident. The doctor told me that the events of the past 2 years had weakened her too much. She was so frail.

I stayed at my partner's house for 5 days but had to return to her house (now my house). It is so painful seeing her possessions and enduring the awful silence.

I have the consolation that she did not die on a grotty hospital ward but in a lovely hospice. The nurse praised me for being a caring daughter who had done everything beyond the call of duty. I took her out a month ago for a last meal on her 90th birthday.

Mum and I were very close because my father was a drunken bully. I have no siblings, kids or other close family so feel it is the end of an era. Mum was always so mentally sharp and young in attitude and appearance. I can't bear the thought that I will never speak to her again. I keep occupied in the day but cry every night. Every morning the first thought is 'She's not here' Dreading the funeral next week.

My partner thinks I'll be okay in a few months and has already asked what I'm going to do about selling my mother's house.

I am worn out physically and emotionally. I am also self employed in business with my partner and he is already fed up of shouldering the workload during mum's final illness.

Really sorry for the long post.

QOD Fri 25-Nov-16 19:15:26

I'm so sorry for your loss 💐

Isitjustmeorisiteveryoneelse Fri 25-Nov-16 19:31:19

I too am sorry, for you, for your loss. But, wow, 90 years of a what sounds like an amazing, loving, vibrant and caring mother! Grief is an awful, long drawn out, process, and you may need to seek help with coping with the 'stages' but trying to keep remembering the good times, every day, does help. You have to be kind to yourself now, try if you can, to put your DP/ business partners atttiude out of your mental space - you don't have room - and concentrate on the funeral. When Dear Step Granma (DSGM) died, three years ago, my DSM was in a position like you are now. DSGM also died in a lovely hospice though, the staff were amazing and it really helped DSM to invite them to the service. They were so lovely and, I can't really explain quite how, but it really helped DSM get through the day. Could/would you do something like that? I also have to say that DSGM passing caused DSM so many MH issues, and she took time to get through those, she had to, she didn't/couldn't care about what others thought. Though all the extended family were supportive in her case so that probably helped. One thing she did do was take early retirement. Literally MH wise, no choice, are you in a position to do that? Or maybe take on someone else short term to take over your role in your business?

Blossomdeary Fri 25-Nov-16 19:45:43

It is so hard and my heart goes out to you. Both my mother and my father suffered prolonged deterioration before they died and it is a painful process to watch. I can only offer the consolation that now, some years later, I am able to just remember the good bits and not allow that tainted end to their lives to dominate my thinking. At the time of their deaths it truly did feel like a release from the misery they had been suffering as well as a painful loss.

Take comfort from the fact that she had good care at the end and that you were able to do all you could to support her.

I expect your OH is looking at it from the point of view that she was suffering and is now at peace; and that life just goes on, however unlikely that might feel at present. Do not allow the fact that he is approaching this in a slightly different way come between you - I am sure that is the last thing your mum would have wanted. Sometimes it is a relief when someone dies, however loved they were. flowers

catsnickedallmypens Fri 25-Nov-16 21:41:21

So sorry to hear this starshine. I have no words of wisdom to share but just wanted to acknowledge your post and say that I'm thinking of you.

RooDaisy Sat 26-Nov-16 00:13:36

I'm so sorry for your loss flowers

DramaAlpaca Sat 26-Nov-16 00:16:24

I'm very sorry for your loss starshine flowers

And a big unMumsnetty <<hug>> for you as well.

Whatabloodyidiot1 Tue 29-Nov-16 11:40:13

My mum died one week before yours. I don't really know how I'm feeling tbh. Her death was very sudden and unexpected (sepsis) I received a phone call last Monday evening, I travelled to the hospital and stayed with her until she died Tuesday morning. Being with her at the end has so far given me NO comfort whatsoever, maybe in time it will but all its left me with is horrendous memories of her final breaths and her face in her last moments.
I can't begin to understand it, how im going to ever get over it, she was 61, we were so close and I feel cheated and robbed and angry, and that my children have missed out on the worlds most magical nanny makes me feel complete and utter despair.
I don't know what's 'normal' so soon after a death so I don't know how I'm doing. Mainly it feels surreal, I know she died, I was there after all but I can't really really believe it and I don't know if I ever will.

beelover Tue 29-Nov-16 17:14:11

So very sorry for your losses xx flowers

OohhThatsMe Tue 29-Nov-16 17:21:29

I'm so sorry. Your poor mum had such a lot to go through and it must have been awful for you to watch her go through it.

I'm concerned that your partner isn't the person to support you through this time. His questions about selling your family home are really out of order. I appreciate he's fed up with shouldering the burden, but he really shouldn't have let you know that.

Do you have other friends who can be by your side as you go through this awful time?

MrsGosling71 Tue 29-Nov-16 17:31:44

Sorry for your loss and yours Whata. I lost my dad last year six days after my mother in law. Me and hubby run a business and it's really really hard when you work for yourself. Be kind to yourself and take each day at a time it really is horrible losing someone you love at any age xx

MrsGosling71 Tue 29-Nov-16 17:33:07

Also Cruse are good for practical and emotional support xx

Yawnyawnallday Tue 29-Nov-16 17:35:58

Very sorry op.flowers
My Mum died from cancer a few weeks ago. It's shit.
At some point you will remember her not as a suffering person but as a live wire that she clearly was. Please see if you can find someone to talk to. You are bloody right to be angry about the accident by the way.
Grieve in a way that works for you but keep a light on for the person you were before things took such a ghastly turn.

starshine1926 Wed 30-Nov-16 18:46:53

Thank you all for your kind messages of support.

I have been keeping busy and trying to blot out reality by not handling mum's possessions. I cried every day last week quite a lot but that has slowed down this week and I'm wondering if it is normal? What I do feel is this ghastly blanket of sadness.

I wake up every morning and mum's absence is the first thought in my head. The funeral is on Friday and I went to see her in the chapel of rest. She looked so small and pale in the coffin. It was unreal, she looked like a waxwork! I half expected her to open her eyes. I realised that the figure lying there is just a shell. It was a bizarre experience but I needed to say a final goodbye and I placed some yellow roses in the coffin and cut a small piece of hair. Mum was highly unusual in that she still had 90% natural colour in her hair. Apparently her grandfather was the same.

I wrote the funeral address yesterday and that made me smile and I am proud of what she achieved in her life. The dreaded Xmas is approaching and that makes me so upset. The first Xmas I will never speak to her. I felt quite upset returning from the shops.

I feel cheated because mum had a hard life with my father and now I cannot spoil her anymore. Can't take her for a meal, buy her flowers, take her on holiday. I know I was lucky to have her for so long but that is no consolation because our relationship had longer to deepen and there is more to miss. I also spent the last two years looking after her.

Yes, I do have friends and there is counselling if I need it but I just don't like this new world I have entered. I wanted to shout in the street today "My mum is dead" because it is such a bombshell but the world just carries on!

The problem is that no one else will care about me the way she did. The foundation has gone. I feel like an orphan and I don't have the consolation of other close family. I will have to force myself back to work but it all seems pointless. I can't really concentrate and feel quite short tempered. How do you close the massive hole in your life when your mother dies?

Yawnyawnallday Wed 30-Nov-16 19:00:20

You don't close it. Slowly you get better at it. That's how it worked with my dad's death. How could the world not know, I kept asking. And then a couple of weeks ago, when mum died, it felt like a path I had been down. A horrible path.

Ditsy4 Wed 30-Nov-16 19:02:36

So sorry. It is really hard to lose a mum?

Ditsy4 Wed 30-Nov-16 19:03:24

Full stop not?

starshine1926 Wed 14-Dec-16 16:23:55

Thank you all for your support. I got through the funeral ok but was angry and heartbroken at the low turnout. Only 4 people - 2 friends of mine, my cousin and husband. I organised a lovely service, spent time writing the eulogy, mum's favourite flowers and hardly anyone there!
I am so angry. There was a notice in the paper and I called mum's friends and everyone who knew her well. Mum was popular and well liked and knew hundreds of people. Her friends didn't turn up. Her oldest friend whom she knew from age 12 left me a telephone message to say she had missed the bus ffs!! And no cards or flowers!!

On top of that my partner says he doesn'want to discuss my mum anymore. Says he is fed up of working harder than me. That he would be better off financially if I hadn't spent so much of the last two years looking after DM. Says I am ok because I inherited. The day of the funeral was telling me what furniture I had to get rid of from DM's house (now mine).

We don't live together but do have joint business interests. I am now living in DM house alone and feel in no rush to sell. Bloody partner is moaning he has no money to buy his adult children Xmas pressies, moaning that xmas is ruined, no one cares about him etc and how he suffered the last two years because of my DM.

Three weeks since she died ffs! And I have had to work the last two part time. I thought I was doing ok. Didn't cry at the funeral but seemed to have got worse. Swing between feeling positive for the future and crying every day this past week. I keep replaying the final awful week of DM life. It is terrible to realize that I will never have that unconditional love again. I have friends but no kids or siblings. This is so hard, horrible and I hate walking every morning to remember that DM is dead.

Redhound Thu 15-Dec-16 23:00:32

So sorry starshine. I have been there too when I lost my Mum whom I adored and I can relate to everything you are saying. After my Mum died I ended up completely alone in her house too, as I split from my abusive ex. Thank god I had good friends instead of family.
I would be upset about the poor funeral attendance too. Your partner sounds horrid by the way, very much like my ex whom I dumped. Which is a hint..

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