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Think my Mum might actually be dying this time...

(22 Posts)
theresnoonequitelikegrandma Wed 12-Aug-15 22:25:30

I have been lurking on MN for years now, but suddenly discovered this forum so finally registered and this is my very first post...please be gentle!

My Mum is 90, has vascular dementia and has been living in a local care home for the last 6 years. In May last year, she was very poorly and her doctors told us that there was nothing more that could be done. We all said our goodbyes (my siblings all live far away so came over specially) and she took to her bed. After several weeks of eating and drinking very little and talking about 'being ready to go', one day she suddenly started eating, got out of bed and demanded that I took her out shopping!

Every day that followed, she got stronger and in no time at all, she was back to 'normal' and then we had to start planning the special birthday we weren't expecting her to see! So, the whole family (and grandchildren/ great-grandchildren) had an afternoon tea at her request last Friday for her 90th birthday and it was a great day although she was very tired when it was all over.

Since then, she has been refusing food, drink and meds again and saying that her time has come. One of my sisters (who lives in the States) is here until the end of the week and Mum has had some ice-cream and milkshake when she sits with her, so we all thought that this was another episode like last time and that she might have another 'miraculous' recovery once she was getting more attention. I don't want to sound mean, but the dementia has made her very self-centred and attention-seeking (the Mum I know has long since vanished).

Anyway (sorry for this long post) today she seemed much worse - not really able to speak much, still in her nightie, no interest in anything so now I think she may actually be dying and I don't know how I feel or what I should do.

Thank you for reading this.

holeinmyheart Thu 13-Aug-15 06:38:08

I utterly sympathise as we are in the same boat. My MIL has been dying, recovering, accusing us all of poisoning her, dying again etc for eight whole agonising months.
It might seem hard hearted but her life is so wretched with catheter in, Catheter out, urine infections, totally demented periods, etc that I just wish it was over. Both for her and my DH who is shredded with guilt and grief.
We live hundreds of miles away and are camping in her house.

There is nothing that you can do noone it just has to be sucked up and put up with. I went through it with my Father as well.
Don't get me wrong, I have every sympathy with my MIL. I just hope that I snuff it quickly.
Hugs and xxxx as you need it, it is sooooo stressful.

Allgunsblazing Thu 13-Aug-15 06:46:08

Hugs, OP, it can't be easy!
Just spend time with her and talk to her. If you can't talk, you could read to her, just be there.

theresnoonequitelikegrandma Thu 13-Aug-15 20:35:33

Today was awful but now she has a syringe driver in place and is asleep at last. No-one can tell us how long this will go on for, but the doctor said it is 'a one-way journey.' Can't help hoping it's sooner rather than later, but it was such a relief to see her relaxed and sleeping after hours of thrashing around and only groaning or saying 'Oh Lord'.

Thank you for your support and love to all in this horrible situation.

holeinmyheart Thu 13-Aug-15 21:04:10

OMG how awful. I hope the end comes quickly as it will be such a relief.
My MIl says she has had enough but antibiotics keep her alive until the next infection.
My Father asked the nurses to kill him, but of course they couldn't do that.
I feel for you, you poor thing.

theresnoonequitelikegrandma Fri 14-Aug-15 04:00:29

My Mum has passed away. Can't quite believe it yet but I know she's at peace now.

Saddest thing is that I feel like I lost her years ago.

AcrossthePond55 Fri 14-Aug-15 04:19:10

Dementia is a cruel monster. It takes those we love and turns them into someone we don't know. I can see my own Mum's memory slowly erasing backwards and it hurts to know that the day will come when she no longer knows who we are. Just allow yourself to grieve, not only her death, but the unfairness of dementia and the toll it takes.

I wish you peace and wonderful memories of your mother.

marriednotdead Fri 14-Aug-15 04:21:03

So sorry for your loss, yet I totally understand your relief at the closure of the suffering this awful disease puts upon families flowers

I hope that memories of happier times will give you comfort in the days and weeks ahead.

Sending you a gentle (hug) and wishing you well flowers

BettyCatKitten Fri 14-Aug-15 04:30:54

Sorry that your mum has passedflowers
This helped me when my dad died.
"Memories we cherished from the past, will live forever within my heart"
All the best to you and your family.

Funinthesun15 Fri 14-Aug-15 04:50:05

Saddest thing is that I feel like I lost her years ago

My dad felt like this when my nan died. Like your mum she was close to going many times over about 7 years but rallied and got better, but the mum he knew had gone years before. One day she just said I want to go now and did that night.

flowers for you OP and your family.

Arkengarthdale Fri 14-Aug-15 05:41:39

Sorry for your loss

Penfold007 Fri 14-Aug-15 05:43:50

Sorry for your loss.

SilverNightFairy Fri 14-Aug-15 05:53:52

I'm wishing you peace and strength at the passing of your mum. Be gentle to yourself. flowers

Allgunsblazing Fri 14-Aug-15 06:31:35

So sorry for your lossflowers

holeinmyheart Fri 14-Aug-15 07:47:53

So sorry that you are suffering. At least she is at Peace now. Hugs

theresnoonequitelikegrandma Fri 14-Aug-15 22:38:16

Thank you for all your kind messages.

Struggling now. Even though I couldn't bear to see her suffering, I just can't believe that I won't ever see her again. I want to tell her that however irritated I got with her (mostly with the bastard disease that changed her from being the gentle, caring Mum I knew to a confused, unhappy, complaining old woman) I really did love her and I miss her so much already.

I thought this would feel like some kind of relief but I just feel so terribly sad.

SilverNightFairy Fri 14-Aug-15 23:06:49

It's been 15 years since my beloved Dad died. I will miss him every day of my life. I promise you, your grief will grow less sharp with time. The many many lovely memories you have of your mum will become clearer. I hope you are surrounded with people who love you and loved her. I am thinking about you..xx

mineofuselessinformation Fri 14-Aug-15 23:13:33

Dementia is a very cruel illness. It takes away the person that you know and love, and replaces them with someone you don't really know, and who doesn't really know you.
But, you loved your DM. And, if she were able to, she would have expressed her love for you.
Sorry for your loss, and sending you strength.

PenelopePitstops Fri 14-Aug-15 23:17:40

flowers sorry for your loss. I know the feeling of "she went years ago". Dementia is so cruel and takes away the person without taking the body.

I hope you find strength and comfort somewhere. The relief comes in odd waves I found.

Thinking of you x

AuraofDora Fri 14-Aug-15 23:18:44

I can feel your pain. Its the most bitter psinful and twisted disease. Your Mum rests in peace, and i hope you can find some peace too and remember her and all good quirky funny times together, the good memories are yours to have and keep. Stay strong. Take it a little at a time, bit by bit. flowers wine x

Capewrath Fri 14-Aug-15 23:20:26

I'm so sorry.

When you can , remember her as she was as you describe her, which is how she would like to be remembered. And that she made her 90th. And your sister had not gone back. And you did your utmost.

Her love and your love is not list, you have passed it on. It grows and is not wasted.

I speak because my DM died last year after some awful years and a bad last few months, but surrounded by family and love.

ishouldcocoa Fri 14-Aug-15 23:28:42

My DF a is battling with Dementia and has been for 5 years or so. I totally get the fact that your grieving starts when they're alive, but changed beyond all recognition as time passes.

Be gentle on yourself. I already do a fair bit towards raising funds for the Altzheimers Society, as I feel I need to do something positive in the face of so much negativity. Maybe, in time, it could be something you could do.

However, everyones different. (((((Hugs)))))

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