A Guide to Saying Goodbye to Your Mom
My mom passed away last year after a 10 plus year battle with Alzheimers. A side affect of this shitty disease is the victims often never know they have it. Weird as that sounds, my mom was one of those who couldn't remember she had the disease so we never talked about it. Whenever I'd ask her about how she was doing she would say, "fine, I'm fine, there is nothing wrong with me, but you know your uncle..."
We never openly discussed the progression of her illness, the obvious things like memory, continence, walking, taking, and eating. She eventually made her way to a memory care facility after home care got complicated. After she moved in she never acknowledged that her entire surroundings had changed, the bed she slept in, the people who cared for her, the Elvis impersonator who amused her. It was mind boggling to image, but true.
In the end though, the biggest tragedy of all this is that we never said goodbye to each other. Sure, the day she passed I told her I loved her, but we never shared a goodbye, a hug, a thank you for all she'd sacrificed for me. We never sat and talked about all the wonderful family memories that we created.
So, if I could have one chance, a do over, it would have been to find the time early on in her disease to talk about the fact that one day we won't be able to communicate and that day will be too late. So let's sit down and do it now, when we can share a hug and a cry together.
This is your guide to saying goodbye to your mom.