The Longest Goodbye

On this, my 100th post, I’m baring my soul.  This time last year my mum went into hospital for what should have been a straight forward operation to remove a tumor on her brain.  Although the operation went well complications arose during her recovery.  She ended up back in hospital and contracted an infection.  To cut a long and painful story short the infection and two major surgeries changed her forever.

From the operation to today I’ve seen her suffer and decline, from a strong fit independent woman living on her own, who taught me so much, to one needing 24/7 care.  She can no longer walk or talk or feed herself, though we think she has moments of lucidity and understanding.  Which makes it all the more heartbreaking.

She’s now in a facility not far away from where we live and she’s well cared for.  I visit her as often as I can, initially it was every day, now it’s two or three times a week.    I sit and tell her stories, I read to her and show her photos.  Sometimes I just hold her hand.  Like today.  She fell asleep in bed and I sat with her.  And remembered.  All the happy times, coming home with the kids for the weekend, the way she’d hug us tight.  Her smiles and laughter, her amazing cooking, her kind heart and the warm welcome she gave everyone who came into her home.

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I let the tears flow. Unguarded.  The past year has been an emotional roller coaster ride with a constant weight on my heart.  From sadness, anger and grief to slowly coming to acceptance.  I’ll never understand but I can accept.  She doesn’t know it but even in her fragile state she’s still teaching me lessons.

Of humility and patience, of accepting change, however hard and learning to live in the moment. Appreciating each day as best I can.   Of choosing to be happy and not feeling guilty about enjoying life with my family, as I know that’s what she’d want.  She’d want me to make the most of each day.

On this, my 100th post, I pay tribute to my beautiful mum.  I feel like we’re living the longest goodbye.  But really, aren’t we all?

Wishing you peace and happiness and a mindfulness to make the most of each and every moment with the ones you love.

Thank you for reading my posts and following me on my journey.


170 thoughts on “The Longest Goodbye

  1. Dear Miriam I am so sorry that your mum is going through all this and you with her…there are things in life that we have no answers beside accepting things that we cannot change! It is very sad, but you are doing good to her more than you think, she feel, and in a strange way I am sure she knows when you’re there with her holding her hand. Your tribute to your beautiful mum is very touching to me because I am away from mine since she is in Italy and I am here in California. I wish you peace in your soul and heart and enjoy every moment in anything you do! Much love to you ❤

    Carolina

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Carolina, you’re so right, there are many things in life we have no answers for and all we can do is accept. Some days are harder than others. At a time when I’m feeling particularly low your words are a great comfort to me. Thank you again. xox

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It wasn’t easy, Justin, and I debated whether or not to put it out there as it’s so personal but I’ve realised that this is her story so why hide it. Thanks for reading.

      Like

  2. We just said the final goodbye to my mother in law in January. Even though we knew she would not want to live as she was, her death was (is) still a great loss. For the last year or so, we learned to just sit and be with her, and we grieved the loss of her throughout that time. Looking back on the time of her death, I feel mostly gratitude: for her life, her gifts to us, and for the community we had around us, holding us up (I wrote a post about it here https://kennedystreet.wordpress.com/2016/01/21/the-village-around/). I hope that you too are surrounded by love and care, and I wish you strength and grace for your journey. Thank you for reminding me again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lynne, I just read your post and cried all the way through. I felt your loss but also all the love and gratitude and it brought back all my emotions at this time. Thank you so much for sharing your story and for your very kind wishes. xo

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I am so sorry to hear the story of your mum’s decline but at the same time happy because you had this wonderful woman in your life for as long as you did and she continues to teach you now. The situation sucks, but your attitude will get you through this.

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  4. This was beautiful, Miriam. My heart goes out to you, at the same time I’m inspired by your strength and wisdom. Especially in your realization that your mom would want you to enjoy life without guilt – as should we all. Thank you for sharing this. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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