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I think my mum is dying

(70 Posts)
LazySusan11 Tue 10-Jan-17 17:30:22

Even writing the title seems so surreal, she's been told she has amongst other issues ovarian cancer but has not been told how long she might have. She could have surgery but due to her other issues they aren't certain she would survive the major operation they have proposed or what exactly they will find should she be strong enough for surgery.

She's lost so much weight in the 5 weeks she was taken into hospital she looks frail and pale. She sleeps a lot has little appetite and no longer likes water which she has always loved to drink. She has had a few sips of ginger ale but that's it. She has a morphine patch and oramorph the dr says this is all 'normal' given her illness.

I don't know how long I have her, I don't know what to expect. The dr asked if she would like a McMillan nurse to see her but she said not yet.

I'm terrified of her being in pain or dying alone in a horrible way. Is there anywhere I can get any sort of information to help prepare myself? Thank you.

OP’s posts: |
mintthins Tue 10-Jan-17 17:32:46

I'm so sorry you are facing this. Please do accept the offer of McMillan help if it is offered. They give amazing support not just in a physical way. Best wishes.

Brittanyspears Tue 10-Jan-17 17:32:55

Don't want to read and run. I found Marie Curie and Macmillian websites useful in a similar situation. I hope you get some answers soon.

picklemepopcorn Tue 10-Jan-17 17:35:08

You should be able to talk to the doctor/specialist nurse. My DF has a recent diagnosis and I wasn't able to be there when he was told- my DSis was. I rang and spoke to someone and the information I got was fuller because I was able to ask more questions as I was a bit more prepared than they were in the meeting. She did know I had been in previous meetings though, which may explain why she was able to talk.

Truckingalong Tue 10-Jan-17 17:37:25

Is there a kind nurse or doctor who would take you through the dying process? If you've never seen it before, it can be a big shock and being gently talked through it can help to understand what might happen. This is just one facet to all this of course and you not feel resilient enough to face it right now but it's worth considering. It can happen very suddenly and you're then plunged into a situation that is very hard to comprehend. I can share what happened with my mum and dad if you think it would be helpful.

Stilllivinginazoo Tue 10-Jan-17 17:38:05

Sending partners mum passed away sept of pancreatic cancer,originally they thought ovarian.she was fine til late august and was admit hospital beg sept,died on 24th.she stop want eat or drink and we were very frustrated as we felt she needed wasn't until the end we discovered its normal to stop want to as it adds stress to an already struggling body.I'm so sorry my love.I truly hope she picks up for you.if she stops drink much and isn't given fluids it takes around 10days fir body to our experience it was peaceful and McMillan were wonderful,they're great at putting things in easy to understand terms and supporting you all.sending big hugs at this difficult time.xx

LazySusan11 Tue 10-Jan-17 17:51:36

Thank you, I've looked at Macmillan website which is good but I'm also looking for info on how she will look and how I will know if she's nearing the end. Sounds morbid. I panic a little every time I see her asleep i just don't know what to expect.

OP’s posts: |
Truckingalong Tue 10-Jan-17 18:15:43

It's terrifying. You have no idea what to expect. You are just plunged into a world that you have no way of coping in. That said, you do and you will cope. You are stronger than you know and you will get through it. My parents deaths were both very different. My mums was relatively peaceful, my dads wasn't. Try and get as much help as possible now. Get district nurses, McMillan, doctors you trust, hospices all in place. That support network is crucial.

KindDogsTail Tue 10-Jan-17 18:18:34

I am so sorry flowers. reading the Macmillan website would help a lot.
The most important thing is to be with her as much as you can.

You can keep her mouth moist at least with little sponges on sticks dipped in water.

Sipperskipper Tue 10-Jan-17 18:24:59

Sorry you are going through a tough time. I'm a Macmillan Nurse based in hospital - it sounds like it would be a really, really good idea for your mum to see one. It might be worth finding out why mum doesn't want to - lots of people are terrified we are miserable, grim reaper type characters! You could just explain it would be to check her pain relief is just right, and to see if there's anything they can do to make her feel more comfortable.

If she really doesnt want to, you can ask for a referral for support for you & your family, they don't have to see mum.

MummaGiles Tue 10-Jan-17 18:25:42

You can talk to Macmillan even if your mum doesn't. I'm so sorry you're going through this.

LazySusan11 Tue 10-Jan-17 18:58:37

She's at home now and has carers come in 3 times a day and the district nurse once a day. In the last 5 weeks I have been through a range of emotions but today after the dr had left I felt utterly shell shocked. I got home to dh and sobbed the prospect of my mum dying like this is awful the pain I feel today is so acute it's taken me completely by surprise as I thought I was over the shock of bad news.

It feels so surreal like this cannot be happening to my mum. I have no idea how to cope.

OP’s posts: |
Truckingalong Tue 10-Jan-17 19:33:18

It will feel surreal. There is no graceful acceptance of this. You're just catapulted into this awful and strange world. Take every second to sit with your mum, hold her hand, stroke her hair and tell her how much you love her. You will never get this moment back. Have a stiff drink, gather your strength and be brave. My heart goes out to you.

LazySusan11 Tue 10-Jan-17 21:26:48

Thank you flowers

OP’s posts: |
thatdearoctopus Tue 10-Jan-17 21:37:26

LazySusan, I don't know what to say except I know. My mother has just been given a few months (if we're lucky) to live. She has secondary brain and lymph-node cancer.

We've known for about three weeks and I still can't really process it, because to speak to, she still seems the same as ever. It runs up and hits me at odd times, but the rest of the time I feel totally numb, as if I'm watching this play out to someone else.

Anyway, don't want to hijack your thread, but flowers for you.

LazySusan11 Tue 10-Jan-17 21:47:13

Thank you That, I can relate to the speaking to her, mum has moments of confusion and has begun to repeat herself a lot but she also has moments when she's my mum, just my lovely lovely mum that I adore. I am so sorry for your news, I will keep you in my thoughts flowers

OP’s posts: |
Truckingalong Tue 10-Jan-17 22:04:52

Oromorph did that my mum.

Truckingalong Tue 10-Jan-17 22:10:54

#Did that to my mum

user1475439961 Tue 10-Jan-17 22:12:06

I'm so sorry to hear your news. My friend recently went through this with her mum & found the McMillan nurses invaluable. Take all the love, support & care that you both need & be gentle with yourself. flowers

Baylisiana Tue 10-Jan-17 22:40:07

I don't have any advice to add but just wanted to say I am so very sorry Susan, and Octopus and anyone else going through this. It's a coal face we all come to and I have no idea what you do other than just get through it minute by minute. My heart goes out to you all so much flowers

BigFatBollocks Thu 12-Jan-17 09:24:43

I'm sorry to hear about your mum. With my dad I googled it and found the info easily and it was spot on. However, the medical people never saw it coming though I don't think they like to say as it's so different for everyone.

maddon Sun 15-Jan-17 06:32:25

Maggies Centres are good at emotional support for families. Usually near cancer treatment centres. So sorry OP flowers Know the surreal 'normailty' and pre-grief hitting like a truck.

I've been up half the night worrying at what seems to be a sudden deterioration and where that will go at what pace. It's terrifying, exhausting, the hardest thing i've ever done. Fucking bastard cancer. I can't imagine my life without my mum. It feels so bleak to contemplate. I don't know how to manage or cope. I don't want to think about it.

LazySusan11 Thu 19-Jan-17 12:27:36

I feel a mixture of fear and panic, the waiting for the next step and then realising I already can't remember stuff about her, I don't have any photos as she never liked them being taken of her.

She's already so different to the Mum I knew and I'm struggling to remember what she was like..I'm so frightened of her dying.

Is this normal??

OP’s posts: |
usernamealreadytaken Thu 19-Jan-17 12:32:25

I'm so sorry to hear your news. I don't really have any advice to offer, but wanted to send you flowers

My mum died fairly young, before I had DCs, and I missed having her to ask about things that only occurred to me after having my own DCs. Try to take some photos of her now, although they will be tinged with sadness at least you will have some to look back on (I have very few of my mum, we never had cameras when I was younger so very few pics of any of us).

Hugs to you x

Baylisiana Thu 19-Jan-17 14:13:30


It is normal. flowers

Sorry I don't have anything helpful to say, other than just looking after yourself as best you can during this horrendous time, no expectations for yourself other than just taking each day/hour as it comes.

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