Same book, new chapter

I’m very grateful to all who’ve offered thoughts and advice in here during the past years of being connected to the forum. I’m not sure this is a closing post really, more an update and a stock take of sorts as ‘mom’ died at the end of last month at a great age of 91. A heart condition took her in the end, sudden and no discomfort.

So a new chapter is being written now after caring for 15 years. Maintaining dignity, carrying out her living wishes and keeping control where she could are all now historic experiences.

Siblings seem to be behaving oddly though. Having estranged themselves for the last 4 years of moms life, now, they’re responding oddly to me when they ask how I feel about things. Dealing with heart failure (stent operation in the same week as moms funeral) and a death and prepping to sell the house - I wonder how I should be feeling. Previously absent and now over bearing siblings have suddenly become pat/maternal towards me and incredibly patronising, I’m 54 for heavens sake!

I suspect they’re the wrong people to talk to about how I feel. In some ways I feel as isolated now as I did before, only this time they#re trying to sound supportive but fialing when they verbally attack me when I reply.

Life doesn’t offer an instruction book as such but having seen first hand how families tick and implode like this one has, how a death can trigger further bile and resentment, I’m mindful of writing some kind of survival pack for middle or early old age, to counter what I call “relative cruelty”.

There’s a different kind of caring going on now involving me. Takes some adjusting to though and probably best NOT discussed with those who didn’t care before - if it wasn’ there then why think it should be present now? Adjust expectations and be guarded against selfish behaviours and comments “are you afraif we’ll renege on what we said about the sale of the house?” kind of comments, even before mom is in the ground.

You couldn’t make it up, nor could you develop a training course ahead of hearing such bile, but like writing a book, new chapters can lead to some interesting and different places. I’m looking forward to the journey ahead, on my own but not alone.

I lost my mum about three years ago. I’ve now disowned all the relatives because of what they have said and done. Now mum has gone, I never have to be nice to them again.
My eldest son has been burning for years to tell my younger brother where to go. So far I’ve restrained him, but I know it’s only a matter of time……

You do NOT have to deal with them any more. Put your answerphone on, and leave it on, so you can do what is needed in your own time. Sorting out the possessions is full of emotions, part of the real “goodbye” to a loved one.

If you can, go away and stay somewhere healing for a few days, just to get away from it all. I often gravitate to East Devon where I spent every summer holiday with my grandmother. It has a very calming influence on me, where I can eat, sleep, walk, and read without interruption.

Think of the next few months as “treading water” as your brain processes all that happens. There are no awards for getting everything done in record time.

Hello Tea
Am so sorry to hear of Mums passing. No matter how long it may have been expected or thought about, the reality is always different.
Reading between the lines I think you are sensible to be wary of relatives who suddenly profess an interest where there was none before. Thery are probably driven by guilt or financial reasons.

And you are right there is no way someone who hasn’t practically cared for someone can understand the emotions and ups and downs bereavement finally brings. That’s why the forum is as open to past carers as to current ones. Not only have you lost a loved one but a way of life and a job (albeit unpaid ), and it sounds like youve had health problems too.

So the prescription is “self-kindness by the bucket load”. Look after yourself first, mentally, physically, financially, emotionally. Avoid anyone negative or hurtful. Do nice things for you. Treat yourself daily and just take time to recover.
And keep,posting here!