Dementia is the Longest Goodbye

With all of the information I’m getting regarding my Mum, and the events of the last 48-hours, I’m finding my head and heart are at odds.

I’m committed to caring for my Mum and seeing her through to her last breath, attending to her every need to the last, I just want to make sure I’m doing what’s right for her, too. Just as a Mother or Father will question whether their choices are right for their children, I question if my choices are right for my Mum.

I am leaning toward the hospice option, specifically because I’m aware that my Mum’s needs will soon exceed what I am able to provide. I’m also realizing that my Mum needs me more than ever as her daughter and not her primary nurse. I need to be able to love and comfort her through her passage to the Summerlands, and grieve for her properly through these phases leading to her passing.

I know that I am losing my Mum. I’ve been losing my Mum since her diagnosis of early onset dementia with lewy bodies at the end of 2010. I’ve watched her slipping away since she moved in with us on March 27, 2013. I’ve seen rapid and sharp declines that took more and more of who she was away, followed by a plateauing and lull that gave us time to adjust. Over this past year I witnessed my dear Mum lose her ability to walk, and not 6-months ago she lost her ability to swallow efficiently. It was 4-months ago she spoke her last sentence to me. Very slowly, on New Year’s Day, she said: “You… are… so… amazing.”

My Mum is the reason I love to read and do crafts. I’m so glad my Mum was my Mum. I love her so very much, there are not sufficient words to describe it.

It’s so bittersweet and heart-wrenching, and all we have is love. Nothing else makes any real difference. Love is all that really matters. Dementia is the longest goodbye.

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4 thoughts on “Dementia is the Longest Goodbye

  1. maedez says:

    I’m so, so sorry about your mother. My beloved grandfather died as a result of dementia last May (although at the advanced age of 87). It was a 3 or 4 year downhill slide. So painful to endure! We were lucky enough to be able to afford in-home care for him, but during his last few weeks it was just too much for my grandmother to handle, even with help. He passed away, quite peacefully, with my grandmother at his side, at the hospice. Deciding to put him in the hospice was really hard for us, but it freed us to be there for him in a more connected and, dare I say, relaxed way. When you love someone, as you so obviously do your mom, there’s no right or wrong, though. Being there for them is all that matters. And you’ll feel a bit of guilt no matter what, truth be told. Hugs to you!

    Liked by 1 person

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