My mothers' final days
I lost my mother on August 9th 2011. She had passed away during the night and the hospital called us in the morning to let us know. The pain I felt in that moment turned me into a wailing, shocked heap of grief. The fact that I would never see her was inconceivable for me. She had always been there, my entire life (I am in my 40ies now) and the nearly two months when she was ill were not enough to help me deal with the fact that there was no hope left for her.
It all started at the end of May, the same year, when, all of a sudden she began to feel ill. She used to have back pain occasionally and digestive problems from time to time, so we were not terribly worried, but nothing could have shocked us more than the doctors’ diagnosis of metastasized bowl cancer. How could this have happened, how could it be that such a strong woman, with all her plans for the future (she was 69), all her joy of life, disappear in two short months?
It was devastating for us, for me especially since I was her only child.
Even now, all those terrifying days spent in the hospital (she was operated five times in a desperate attempt to save her life) are crystal clear in my mind. And the one and only outburst of despair I ever heard from her is still ringing in my ears as if it happened yesterday: “I so wish to be home and healthy again.”
It nearly destroys me to think that I wasn’t able to help her. I try to function as good as I can, I don’t want to upset my husband, my father, my friends, but the pain is constant, present all the time, and she is always in my thoughts. It is very hard for me when my father insists we go through her things to sort and give them away, everywhere I turn in my parents house I expect to see her coming from another room. And sometimes I wonder how she managed to cope when her mother died? Because for me, it’s like missing a limb and the pain is ever present.
Everybody tells me that the pain will ease, that time will heal the wounds. But every day that passes seems to me like another step away from her, away from her gentle hands, her comforting words, from her love…
And truly, I am not sure I can cope with that.