Losing my mother in Phillipsburg, KS

by Dawn
(Phillipsburg, Kansas)

My mother was a strong person. She came up during the depression and was a very fair and hardworking person. Her mother developed MS at the age of 35 and my mother, her sister and brother all had to help with the household. Mom was no stranger to responsibility and yet was so open, honest and spontaneous.

Mom developed Parkinson's in 2000 and had heart stents put in during 2002. She was in a motorized wheelchair since 2002 but her spirit was not diminished. My father was diagnosed with Alzheimers in early 2006 and I moved from Houston, TX to live with them and help out when my mother called and voiced her concerns about being able to handle dad on her own.

My parents worked hard for everything they had and I still marvel at the work ethic their generation had.

I was extremely lucky as I was adopted into this family and got a wonderful pair of parents. I still look at them opening their home and taking me in and think that I never really realized the gift that they gave me - a loving home and a wonderful base with which to launch the rest of my life.

I was with mom when she passed. She didn't have to go to a nursing home which I am grateful for...she wouldn't have liked it at all (unfortunately my father is in a nursing home and has been there close to a year at this writing).

In March of this year I found her in her wheelchair when she did not answer me and she was in what is termed "agonal breathing" at that point. Although I called 911 right away and the medical personnel came, mom didn't make it. She did come to for a little while and looked at me and tried to speak but couldn't form words.

I feel anger now. I feel angry at the SRS because my father has been in the nursing home since August of 2010 and they still have not picked up any of the costs. At this writing we owe more than $50,000 for care. The reason I bring this up is that that mom was very upset the Thurs. before she passed...She died on the next Monday. Mom was upset because we had just received another bill from the nursing home. Mom's generation was very, very proud and to have a bill of that scale outstanding was very upsetting to her. Mom had many medical problems that I mentioned above but Atrial Fibrillation was also in the mix. I feel that if this issue had been settled, mom would have lived a little longer.

To date the SRS has promised to settle dad's account on three separate occasions but has never followed through. Even with our attorney pitching in we haven't been able to close this issue. I don't know how much longer my mother would have had; maybe it would have been a week or a month or two but to have had that time with her with this issue out of the way and complete would have been the best thing for us. To have had this nursing home quandary out of the way so Mom could have had a little piece of mind will haunt me for the rest of my life. The bill is still outstanding and although I have complained to our attorney and to the Ombudsman, absolutely nothing is getting done.

I guess I would be angry anyway since my mother is gone and I miss her so very much but with the SRS not doing their part, I still have to deal with this on a weekly basis. I cannot let go of the anger I have toward the SRS and the blame that I hold of their actions with regard to my mother's passing. I think it is a shame that a governmental agency doesn't have some type of watchdog agency or some type of rules in place to prevent this agency from placing emotional hardships on families. We are flesh and blood...not just forms and so much paperwork to file away each night.

My life just seems to have stopped in this timeframe. I am still dealing with all the issues I was dealing with and I cannot seem to move forward. I am having an especially hard time with decision making and memory problems and have lost my job, greatly in part to these maladies.

I just hope these things resolve themselves soon. I feel like I am loosing my mind sometimes...almost like screaming underwater where no one can hear. I just want to get on with my life and get to a place where I can remember my mother fondly and forget this living nightmare. I am sure that I have it much easier than some others and I hope I am not being too much of a baby about things but I really am in almost over my head.

I just try to function every day and be there for my daughter who is now 18; oh yes, I pray everyday for there to be a good resolution for our problems. Now that I read the blogs here I will also pray for all of you too and that somehow somewhere my mother is at peace. I hope I can be half the mom to my daughter as my mother was to me. That would make me very happy.

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