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.