My mom suffered from Alzheimer’s disease for 10 years. She was bedbound for the last two months of her life.
By that time, I found myself wishing the end would come so she would not have to suffer any longer.
Honestly, there were many times during her 10-year battle I wished the end would come so she would not have to suffer any longer.
Alzheimer’s is a horrific disease. The last two months of my mom’s life were absolutely brutal.
In some ways, I thought my mom’s death would come as a relief and in some ways, it did. But it was also a soul-crushing, life-changing, devastating blow.
Grief mixed with peace.
Sadness mixed with relief.
The duality of the human heart.
I miss my mom so much, but I’m so glad she’s no longer suffering.
I no longer have to wait and wonder when the end will come. Where will I be? How will it happen?
I no longer have to make sure the ringer on my phone is turned up all the way before I go to bed, worried it might ring with bad news in the middle of the night. Although, I still do that out of habit I guess.
I no longer have to picture my mom sitting at home in her wheelchair or lying in the hospital bed in her living room while I’m out for a run or having lunch with friends.
It has been six months now since she passed. The loss has left a gaping hole in my life.
I am struggling to find myself or at least rediscover who I was before she got sick. Her death has brought immense pain and sadness. It has caused me to question every fiber of my being and every aspect of this life.
But it has also brought a sense of peace, a sense of relief that my mom is no longer suffering.
She no longer has to stumble through her days, lost and confused. She no longer has to rely on someone else for all her needs, basic and otherwise. She no longer has to suffer the hopeless fate of a disease for which there is no treatment and no cure.
I miss my mom so much, but I would never want her back the way she left us. That was no life for her. She deserved so much more.
In the last two months of her life, I spent countless hours by my mom’s bedside, assuring her it was OK to let go.
“I will be sad and I will miss you, but I’m going to be OK. We all are.”
I whispered those very words in my mom’s ear, day in and day out, for over two months.
And I meant them.
If you truly love someone, you have to be willing to let them go. That’s the most selfless act of love that exists on this earth.
I am sad and I miss her, but I am glad she’s no longer suffering.
And I’m going to be OK.
My mom will make sure of it.