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Gathering good-bye gifts...

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Am so scared and frightened by all of this. I can't sleep. I hate seeing my independent, strong, stubborn mom deteriorate right in front of my eyes. Since the nurse told my mom she thinks mom only has a few weeks left (just as my mom was getting better! Not good news for the spirits) mom has gone downhill... last night I couldn't tell if she was still breathing. I touched her foot and it was stone cold. I was so scared. I shook her foot and she woke, confused at what I was doing. Today the little bit she was up and awake she wanted me to gather little presents to send off to her friends as a good bye. It was heart breaking. I tried to be strong for her.

But then I started to feel very bad... as here she was awake for just a short time devoting all her energy to friends that are not here with her 24/7 (they're not here at all - they're in other states), who don't sleep on the floor next to her to be there every moment she should need water, more air or help with toileting or to listen to her fears or to reassure her that she is doing well. No one else is here.

What really set me off and got me thinking about all this was she had a children's book she wanted me to wrap to send to her friend for her friend to give to her first grandchild. Her friend is not expecting any grandkids! Just as expected from an only child I thought: "What about me? Why don't you have a children's book to give to me for your own grandkid that you may have someday? Why a present for someone else's non-existent grandchild?"

Since this is my mom's wish and possibly her last few weeks or days :cry: I did not risk asking this question or breaking down in tears in front of her for fear of ruining her waking moment. As I want her to have some peace and happiness and feel supported by me. I'm just selfishly scared that she won't be able to take the time to say good bye to me or have anything for me to hold onto as a reminder of her love for me or anything for any kids I should have.

<> :cry:

Thanks for letting me babble. I just really needed to say something and be heard. Feel so scared and alone.

My warmest regards to everyone*


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KAte, Your Mom is so wonderful in thinking of others right now other than herself, its main me misty eyed this morning. MAke the most of every minute, that you can. cherish each day and say a payer for tomorrow. Tell mom you love her every chance you get.

just be with mom right now and support her as much as you can. SHe will always be wiht you no mater what happens down the road. Ty this link for a little insppirational suppor when you get chance. Tios is a fave poem of mine and has been for 18 m months now, since I was in the exact same spot you are in now;


Sending some positive toughts and Prayers for strength this morning. I do so hope the sun shines brightly on you and Mom and the whole Family this Morning!! :) Take care of yourself and Each other

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Maybe your mom feels secure that you know how much she loves you, she knows how you love her, and right now she's trying to make sure others remember her too. Maybe she feels she still has time with you and wants to reach out to a few others right now.

My heart goes out to you ...

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If your mom cannot bring herself to start a conversation about leaving you, then you need to do it. Don't have regrets later down that road about things you should have told her. Tell her how much you love her and will miss her.

I hope you had a conversation with the nurse about telling her she only had a few weeks--that wasn't necessary.

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Kate--I agree with Ry, and I agree from experience. The last few really lucid days I had with Mom, we had family visiting. She did her good-byes to them, said these beautiful special things... By the time she had slipped into a state of not being able to communicate, I felt like I'd been gipped out of my good-bye.

So... without bringing up your hurt over the gift (which I understand and validate, I do), if you can.... let your Mom know how much YOU love her. Start your end of things and maybe that will give her the chance to say the words she needs to say, and you need to hear.

((((hugs)))) to you.

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Your mom seems like a very caring person. She sees you and loves you as you are always there with her. Her friends maybe she just wants to do something before she feels it is too late since they are not close like you.

Talk to your mom. Let her know what you are feeling and how much you love her. Sometimes there is not enough communication between the caregives and the victims. It's like you're both too afraid to say anything about how you feel as it would make the other person feel uncomfortable and reality may set in.

Maybe I am way off base here but don't shut yourself off to protect her or yourself. She knows very well what is happening to her and hiding it will not make it go away. Be upfront and honest as you may not get a chance to say what you are feeling and may feel you should have. I hope this does not come accross as being harsh, I am saying it with love.

I am sending meditation prayers to both of you.


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Kate, I haven't the vaguest idea how a hospice nurse can tell you that your mom has only a few weeks left if her vitals are good - that's more than odd since it's pretty much all they have to go by.

Hang in there - I, too, am an only child and have experienced ALL of the emotions you have and many, many more.

It is excruciating to find yourself as the only person who lives, eats and breathes any real care for your parent and to have that parent focus loving closure for people who are going about their lives quite merrily with no more than a brief thought of your parent every few days in their lives.

My thoughts and prayers are with you right now - I know this is tough. :(

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Talk to your Mom......talk until you can't talk anymore. Tell your Mom EVERYTHING in your heart and especially how much she means to you. Try asking her how she would like to be remembered by her future grandchildren and you.

I'm flying to Washington tonite - my first visit since my Mom's diagnosis. I'm spending a week and plan on starting a journal while I'm there. A friend suggested the journal thing to me - maybe that would be helpful to you.

Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

Be Blessed,


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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you ALL so so so much for your advice and just taking the time to read and respond. It really helps!

Mom and I did have a brief talk now that the rushing to get gifts together and a good-bye e-mail to her friends has been completed. And she seemed to be doing a lot better, she even walked several feet upright and scooted herself around in the wheelchair without help from me!

When talking to her she admitted that she is very frightened by what the nurse said about dying in a few weeks (would be this week!) as she doesn't feel it is her time and she wishes she could just get better. Our regular nurse returned this week and says mom looks great and is not dying right now - in fact she wishes mom would see an oncologist and get a second opinion as she worries that the doctor just pushed mom off to hospice to die because mom looked so weak and doesn't have insurance. I keep trying to reassure my mom she is doing great and not to be so hard on herself and have mentioned a few times that the hospice nurse gave me a name of a good doctor to talk to if she wants to try to review some options for getting better.

Thanks again for your support! It is a better week - but we all have ups and downs (and really bad downs) don't we? What a rollercoaster ride!

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Oh forgot - you may have wondered what mom said to me.

She said: "You are my Yo Yo Ma, the celloist, who can get me to rise and face anything and enjoy life, even lead the orchestra - you are the love of my life." <>

On a side note she says the bath aide is a giant kettle drum that stomps in and disrupts everything for her... I laughed hard! And said we need to work on that so she is more comfortable.


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I'm sorry I'm late....

Did your Mom ever have a biopsy done? Maybe I missed something, but it sounds like a primary care doctor just looked at an x-ray and gave her a few months to live????

If that's the case, I would try and talk her into seeing an oncologist, for sure! There may be loads of stuff they can do to help her....

Like I mentioned, I may have missed some of your converstaion , so if she's already seen one, etc., then ignore me! :wink: I just hate to think of her not feeling well, when there may be help available. (Then she can boot the Aide that comes to help her bathe, right out the front door! :) )

Take care,


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I 'Second' Nova's motion and the 'Caring' nurse to see an oncologist. Not wanting to confuse your mom's decision to do nothing (that is always an option) but as Nova said:

"There may be loads of stuff they can do to help her.... ", like draining the effusion to help her breathing. I'm sure she is not the only cancer patient without health insurance that is being treated so there must be financial help out there.

Hospice has always been an option for my wife since the 'get go' 17 months ago and we are always reminded of it from the words of her oncologist.

We just have not decided to go there.

Peace - Chanwit

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