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Wow, so this is the alternative?

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Well, mom's medicine was doubled earlier in the week and she now sleeps all of the time. We go in to ask if she needs to go to the bathroom and she mumbles something unclear. She just does it in her bed. Is she overmedicated? I remember Theresa saying this could be an overdosage sign. She is not in pain, but she is out of it. Is this the alternative?

Sorry to be whining so early this morning, but I crumble when I have to see her like this. I crumble when I see her in pain. I want my healthy young mom back. I want my kids to romp on the floor with their nana-it's been so long since I've seen my mom in her glory. She has fought and fought to be here for us, yet cancer has stripped her of all of her dignity and life.

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Oh Lori,

I am so sorry. This seems to happen a lot, that there can't be a happy medium where someone can be pain free and lucid too. Maybe you should ask hospice if there is a way to adjust the meds so she can be more aware. I hope you get some good time yet.


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I'm so sorry this is happening. I pray for peace for your Mom and your family.

My mother in law was on strong pain meds her last few weeks, I "assumed" that it meant she was pain free.

Speak to hospice. They truly understand everything you're going through.

Prayers for all.


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The questions at this stage are absolutely gut-wreching... Is it the drugs? Is it the disease? Is it 'the process?' We asked and asked our nurses and never got a clear answer, and I *still* don't know if what we did was right as far as Mom's meds went....

It is terrible. Its like having a theif come in and steal all of your very most precious possessions and not being able to do anything but having to watch--but worse--because it's your Mom laying there and you know waht a vibrant person she was.... and all you see is this shell.

Lori--whether you are able to work with the nurses and find a happy medium with the meds so your Mom is more alert, or not... even if this is the disease or 'the process' look for every little shred of Mom spunk. Even in the tiniest things. Treasure them up. You will need them now. You will need them later.

Praying so hard for you all.


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The hospice nurse came to put in a catheter and it was uneventful. She did not arouse for even that. She will not arouse. When she does, her eyes are half open, staring. She had another one of the facial seizures like in the hospital, but it only lasted about a minute, not 15 thank God. She does not respond to us. I bet we will need liquid meds tonight, she won't be able to take a pill. She did wake up and eat strawberries and cream at about 1, but then kept sucking on my and her fingers. I hate to share these details with you guys. It just feels good to write it all out. Maybe I need a journal!!

Please pray that she is not suffering and that she does not realize this is happening. I love her so much.

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I'm so sorry you are going thru this, I know first hand how awful it is, so helpless. I had asked you this before, but I'm wondering why are they still giving your mom medication by mouth, wouldn't it be easier if she had a pump ( for her pain med), that way if her dosage needed to be changed it would be very simple for the hospice nurse to do. I know that was easier when my dad had one.

I remember it was a year ago this weekend, we were going thru almost the same exact thing with my dad that you are with your mom. He was so out of it. It was fast, considering 24-48 hrs before he was aware and talking with us.

Lori, the best advice I can give is to make sure that your mom has enough medication. I know you probably have, but have in place the "what if" sinerio. What can you give her, if something happens in the middle of the night, what do you need to do.

Just like birth no one can give you what will actually happen. I hope I don't come across as being crass, I don't want to. Lori, I know the pain, I'm crying as I'm writing this. I remember I didn't want my dad to go, but I didn't want to see him living and suffering like he did.

...I'm here for you if you need me.


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Dear Lori

I understand well what you are going through. Mum was very confused and cognitively altered in her last several weeks, and then almost completely unresponsive in the last few days due to the medication. The few times when she did rouse she was in so much pain, that it was unbearable to watch.

Val is so wise - take her advice and look for every single 'mom moment' you can find. They will help to sustain you later on.

This is such a heart-wrenching part of the journey - know that you are not walking it alone.

Love Karen

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I am just so sorry. There are no easy answers. I think it is very difficult to find that "place" where Mom is pain-free but lucid. Just know that I am praying for your peace as well as hers... My Dad was very much like your Mom the last week or so of his life, although it was difficult to see him like that, it also gave me comfort to know that he was not aware of what was going on around him... Does that make any sense?? Much Love, Sharon

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I, too, know all too well what you're going through right now. Daddy's last hours were like that. He wasn't able to swallow the pills and was on liquid morphine every two hours. It's so painful to watch. I'm sorry you're having to go through this with your mother. Love her and tell her that without stopping. (((hugs)))


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I'm so very sorry Lori. My heart is breaking for the anguish you feel. (((Hugs))). Your Mom's unresponsiveness does seem to coincide with the medication increase. Do you think she has more time Lori? Since you question if she might be overmedicated, could the hospice people perhaps cut back a bit, or maybe even change the medications, see if the pain might be controlled with a lesser amount or different drugs that would also allow her to be more alert?

Just as a side note, we've recently began working with a symptom management nurse and the first thing she did was change my Dad's meds from the Oxycontin/percocet combination, which were no longer effective for him and which the nurse, in any case, just doesn't like for a number of reasons, to hydromorp contin and dilaudid for breakthrough. These meds quickly got the pain back under control and although they are much stronger drugs, my Dad tolerates them much better. He said yesterday that he has saliva in his mouth for the first time in months.

I will keep your Mom, you and your family in my prayers. God Bless.


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I think everyone worries about whether they are doing it "right," esp. with the very difficult dilemma of pain versus sedation.

Your idea of writing a journal is a good one.

And do check with the hospice nurse in case there is something else to try, but don't be disappointed if not, because this is what often happens.

I know that doesn't make it easier, but please do not worry about whether you are doing the best for your Mom. No one in the world could do better.

- Teresa

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I read your post and i am truly sorry. My sister just passed (1 month ago yesterday) and i know exactly what you are going through. The hospice nurses all told us that the last thing to go is their hearing. My sister was basically unconcious at the end, no longer eating, drinking, on liquid meds, but they told us to talk to her and tell her how much we love her and they told us sometimes they need to hear that it is okay to go that you and everyone will be all right. I truly believe it.

Praying for all of you


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Thanks for all of the replies. Well, my mama is dying. What more can I say? This is it. None of us want to accept it selfishly, but she is and she will be without pain. NO MORE PAIN. NO MORE SUFFERING.

Mom has been in her coma since yesterday or the day before and she looks very comfortable. She is not struggling for breath. She is swelling up around her right eye, but the tumor is growing so rapdily, it is probably pushing things farther that way.

I know we are doing the right thing. My house was surrounded with people who love her today, to say goodbye and tell her how much they love her.

I know I have done the right thing. My family's life has been put on hold for months for her and none of us have an ounce of regret because of it. I feel honored to have cared for her and about her, as she has my entire life.

I feel a huge void already, as she cannot respond to me, but her last words were "I love you" yesterday and those were spoken to me. I know she loves me deep in her soul and my love stretches farther than one could know. She has always had my back and I've had hers. There has never been even a bit of doubt about this for either of us.

Thanks to everyone here who has offered up medical advice, unconditional love and support whether I was sharing a "woohoo-mom and God amaze me" moment or an "I can't believe this" moment.

You are all my LC family and bc it has so deeply touched my life, in my fine mama's honor, I send my love to each and every one of you through all of the days of your lives.

Prayers and love a plenty for us all.

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Lori, you have touched our hearts in so many ways during your mom's long illness. You are such a blessing and Iam honored to know you, not only through this forum but I feel that you are family. We have laughed and cried together.

You are a very brave young lady who absolutely loves her mom so unconditonally. How lucky she is to have you by her side. She would never have lasted as long as she has without your help.

You are an angel here on earth and I want you to know that your mom is so proud of you.

We are here for you honey, and will do anything we can to help your through this.

I am just so sorry it is time. I know how difficult this is as I have been there.

I have strong shoulders, you can lean on me anytime.

With love and tears,


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