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Author Topic: Caring for Elderly Parents  (Read 344232 times)
browneyedgirl
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« Reply #1050 on: May 01, 2012, 11:49:17 AM »

My mom got really sick 2 weeks ago (sorry to be vague but it's rare so it might 'out' me).  She's still in the hospital and seems to be SLOWLY recovering.  I am in the middle of data analysis (of my dissertation) so obviously this has slowed me down, but I am trying to make some time each week to work.

She's only 60 so I didn't expect to deal with any kind of situation like this this early and being an only child (and my mom is single) I feel a huge burden.  I feel guilty for thinking that but it's just been really hard.  All I want is for her to feel better and for me to do my work. 

Thanks for letting me vent here. 
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compdoc
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« Reply #1051 on: May 01, 2012, 12:25:31 PM »

browneyedgirl, I am not an only child. My mother was married. And I still felt that way when she got sick at 61.
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #1052 on: May 01, 2012, 2:05:18 PM »

My mom got really sick 2 weeks ago (sorry to be vague but it's rare so it might 'out' me).  She's still in the hospital and seems to be SLOWLY recovering.  I am in the middle of data analysis (of my dissertation) so obviously this has slowed me down, but I am trying to make some time each week to work.

She's only 60 so I didn't expect to deal with any kind of situation like this this early and being an only child (and my mom is single) I feel a huge burden.  I feel guilty for thinking that but it's just been really hard.  All I want is for her to feel better and for me to do my work. 

Thanks for letting me vent here. 

BEG, check your PMs when you get a chance.
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #1053 on: May 01, 2012, 8:37:25 PM »

Me again. Nice, quiet day at home with Mom. She scared me a little with a few coughing fits - they are related to another, much less serious condition she has going on.

When we called her surgeon to check in, he told us that they don't yet know what kind of cancer it is. They need to do more work with the slides.

I try my hardest every day not to panic, but I am panicking now. My mom is my most important person and such a fantastic force at her college, in her community, and in the world. I can deal with surgery. I do not know if I can deal with worse news than we've gotten already. I don't know what to do, except hide.
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Quote from: usukprof
I think we have three of them, but the smallest one seems to be the leader.
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Who needs real life when Sandra Bullock is around?
Quote from: systeme_d_
You are all my people, and I love you.
mntwins
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« Reply #1054 on: May 01, 2012, 9:44:20 PM »

Hugs to you TZ. 
I know the waiting for information is so hard.
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bibliothecula
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« Reply #1055 on: May 02, 2012, 1:44:58 PM »

Hugs, tz. I hope you get more news soon.
Is there a close friend you can talk to, or maybe a counselor? It might help to talk through everything face to face with someone.
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #1056 on: May 02, 2012, 1:56:56 PM »

Thanks, both of you - and a special hug for mntwins.

I'll have lots of friends to talk to when I get home - but actually, I'm finding that I don't really like talking about this -- it's much easier to write. I feel like I'm telling the same story a gajillion times.

I also don't know what to do with the "it will be okay" comments. I understand that they are coming from a caring place, and I am trying to be optimistic, but they ring kind of false to me sometimes. Nobody knows if it will be okay. The doctors don't know enough yet.

I'm angry and scared, and nothing feels right.
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Quote from: usukprof
I think we have three of them, but the smallest one seems to be the leader.
Quote from: dolljepopp
Who needs real life when Sandra Bullock is around?
Quote from: systeme_d_
You are all my people, and I love you.
westcoastgirl
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« Reply #1057 on: May 04, 2012, 11:47:07 PM »

Thinking of you guys. I hope you are all well.
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compdoc
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« Reply #1058 on: May 06, 2012, 5:49:26 PM »

tinyzombie, I find it incredibly irritating when someone says it will be okay. They don't know that. They're just trying to be nice, as you mentioned.

So I can also see how writing it down might be easier. You don't have to say it a billion times and hopefully none of us are being overly clueless about it.

I actually sent an email to most of my close friends about my mom. Then I posted on Facebook so everyone else could know.

Hide while you can. Enjoy the time with your mother. If at all possible, try not to think about the possibilities but live in the moment.

browneyedgirl, I hope your mother is continuing to recover, even if it does seem glacially slow.

mntwins, I hope your time with your mother continues to be blessed with good days.
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mntwins
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« Reply #1059 on: May 07, 2012, 1:45:23 PM »

Update:  My mom has not been awake at all for the last couple of days.  I still talk to her hoping she can hear me.  She responds when the nurses swab her mouth but we can't get her to take in any other liquids since the pain meds keep her pretty drowsy. 
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bibliothecula
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like Bunnicula, only with books


« Reply #1060 on: May 07, 2012, 2:51:27 PM »

Mntwins, I'm so sorry. I hope she has a peaceful passing.
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amlithist
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« Reply #1061 on: May 07, 2012, 3:36:17 PM »

Update:  My mom has not been awake at all for the last couple of days.  I still talk to her hoping she can hear me.  She responds when the nurses swab her mouth but we can't get her to take in any other liquids since the pain meds keep her pretty drowsy. 

Keep talking to her, and hold her hand.  Peace to you both.
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llanfair
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« Reply #1062 on: May 07, 2012, 4:14:32 PM »

Thinking of you, MNTwins, and your mother.
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mntwins
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« Reply #1063 on: May 08, 2012, 11:41:12 AM »

Thank you all.  The support on this board means a lot to me.
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paultuttle
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« Reply #1064 on: May 08, 2012, 12:49:29 PM »

I'm thinking of all of you as my own mother is slowly but surely recovering from her recent spine surgery. I feel very lucky--as she does, too--because she was in fact able to recover.

I haven't yet had to face the imminent death of an immediate family member, mntwins, but I imagine that in addition to what people have said on this thread, I might try to think back--while sitting there at the person's bedside, holding their hand--to wonderful things that person did for me, remembering their caring and gentleness. I might remember their successes, or the ways they bounced back from hardship or struggles. I might remember their strength, their humor, their resilience, their warmth, their impact on my life. And I might use the time to tuck those memories into a special place in my heart--for pulling out later to mull over, whenever I wanted to or felt the need.

Tinyzombie, sometimes not knowing is worse than knowing and facing that knowledge. I think what well-intentioned people mean by "it'll be OK" is "I know you have the strength to deal with this." Or "whatever happens, we'll be here for you." Or "you'll soon know, and with that knowledge will come the power and ability to deal with it, whatever it is." So maybe it'll help to think of them saying those kinds of things instead of the vapid "it'll be OK" that's all they can think of to say, in an attempt to comfort you as you look into the void wondering what will appear.

Browneyedgirl, you're doing what you can. Allow yourself to rest and relax enough to handle both enormous stresses in your life. Find at least a few moments every day to think about something OTHER than the dissertation or your mother's health. That way, you'll have had the necessary disengagement that will enable you to come back to those two challenges refreshed and ready to fight again.

I hope these are helpful. Keep in mind that I'm merely repeating what others have said to me, in times when I was challenged by immense stresses and confronted by seemingly impossible tasks. My best to you and to all the others who are dealing with similar issues, including those who have posted on this thread.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2012, 12:54:04 PM by paultuttle » Logged

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