So, I’ve literally shut-down in order to deal and cope with being home and dealing with all the drama surrounding my grandma’s care. This has been an interesting journey, one that I’ve been on for a year now. Somehow, I always thought it would be more devastating, but I don’t know if it’s because I’ve already been to hell and back or if I’m just so amazing at compartmentalizing to the point that I’ve been able to shut-off every ounce of emotion I have to get through this experience. Although I’ve had my moments here and there when I’m alone, but essentially, I feel nothing. I’m all business and pushing my agenda with the family to get them to make the “right” decision for my grandmother. But really, there’s no “right” decision in this instance. It’s all bad, and it all sucks! No outcome is good, but what the doctor said was, “Ask yourself how you will look back on this decision 5-10 years from now. Will you be okay with the decision make now or will you regret it?” That was a good way to phrase it. Sometimes, we don’t look at how our decisions will affect us in the future. We tend to make decisions in a vacuum and only look at the consequences and ramifications in the here and now and not in the longer term. I will never be able to live with myself if I don’t wholeheartedly advocate and support comfort-care / hospice for my grandmother. She’s in so much pain and it’s so hard to see her barely lucid and confined to a bed with all sorts of tubes coming out of her body. She can’t see or talk anymore and we don’t even know if she can hear us either. Sometimes she can hear us, while other times, she cannot. The family is divided on her care and everybody has an opinion. She has expressed that she wants to live at cost, but at what cost is she really willing to live in? Now that she can’t talk, we can’t really know if she still really wants to live at all cost. She is illiterate, so it’s not like she can write anything on a piece of paper to tell us what she wants either. Sometimes, we don’t even know if she can hear us or is cognizant. At times, she’s trying to talk but nothing comes out and she grows frustrated. But, one thing I know for sure is that she is in pain, physically, mentally, and emotionally. Anytime she is alert and aware, she is in tears. The tears well around her eyes and she looks so scared and frightened. Everytime I look at her, all I see is pain, frustration, fear, and sadness. It’s like her soul is trying to escape her body. It’s like her soul is banging on the door to be let out of her body. I want whatever decision brings my grandmother peace in her last days, and I can’t accept that she is at peace in her current situation when all she does is cry and looks so scared, like she is trapped inside her own body. Although I spend all day with her at the hospital, it’s hard to sit by her bedside for long periods of time. On Wednesday, when I went to hold her hand and tell her I was leaving to go back to my parents house, I completely lost it and was sobbing hysterically over her body. I had gone to the bathroom earlier, and I could feel all the emotions rushing in, but I was able to fight it back. But when I went to say goodbye for the day, it all came rushing out of me like the water rushing out when the dam breaks.
I’ve seen death in two of the most extreme forms in the last year. My grandmother has been deteriorating in the slowest and most painful way possible while you went so quickly that I didn’t even have time to grab our life before it shattered right in front of my face. In my grandmother’s instance, I felt like I’ve been saying goodbye to her for almost a year now while I never got to say goodbye to you at all. Let me tell you that both ways suck. Each with their own pros and cons, but both SUCK no matter how you cut it!! I always thought you would be here to help me get through this grief and pain of my grandmother, but you’ve been missing for two of the most darkest periods in my life. I can get mad at you for not being here to support me and carry me through the fire, but at the end of the day, the only person I would hurt with all this anger is myself. And, as you know, that would be very unbecoming of me.
It also occurred to me the other day that you’ve been carrying me through the fire whenever I can’t get through myself. (You know how much it pains me to admit that right?! That I, Ms. Independent, actually needed you for something!!) But, most of the time when you’re carrying me through the fire, I’m usually kicking and screaming and telling you that I don’t need your help. But, of course you know me better than I know myself, so you pick me up anyways even when I fight you all the way through. You let me kick and scream in your arms as you are fighting me and the fire all at the same time! I know, I make it so hard for you at times (okay, most of the time)!!! How do you even put up with me for over 14 years and still love me to no depth!!
A grieving widow who is trying to find meaning and purpose from her tragic event.