Monday, October 11, 2010

Lesson Learned

My ex called me today while I was picking up my son. It had been an exhausting day by my grandmas bed.

My aunt went nuts and decided to call hospice and say that she thinks my uncle will try to assist my grandma in suicide. So now, they are really watching him.

I had to go through and document and destroy all the meds with the nurse. She had to have me sign that I had witnessed this and helped her dispose of everything and put it all in coffee grounds. We had to account for everything.

She can't swallow anymore so these are all things she can not use anymore. Usually they don't do this until someone dies, but since my aunt called, she thought we should do it then while we were both there.

I could not believe my aunt did this to my uncle.

He's been there 24-7 for weeks, if not months, and today is probably the last day. He broke down several times. My uncle looks like the Brawny Man, and apart from when his dog died, I don't remember ever seeing him cry.

I had to sit there and defend him and remind everyone that the bottom line was she didn't want to be like this and she wanted to die over a week ago.

After she left, I looked at the sexy Glamour Shot of her on the wall and thought, that wasn’t so long ago. You would never know she was the same person, laying there, completely unaware, bald, with her mouth wide open, gargling.

It is one of the worst things I have ever witnessed to see my Nana like this. It's not like my other grandparents, who were in their nineties. She still had life yet.

I had sent our Associate Pastor a picture of her several weeks ago, with her hat to cover her baldness. (She did not want any religious visits, but the women in my church have been continually praying for her.) Then I realized that it did not really show her who she was praying for, so I sent another one of her from a few years ago. She thanked me and said it helped her really recognize our loss.

So there were three people in that room with me - the beautiful grandma I have grown up with, the warrior cancer patient who rose to the occasion, and the corpse lying there half-dead.

I tried to sing every comforting, non-religious song I could think of and pulled up the “For the Dying” poem which my sister had read to my other grandma just prior to her passing. I kept thinking it would be anytime, but she did not pass in my presense.

By the time my ex called, I wasn't in the mood to hear what he had the nerve to say to me.

He said he knows just what I'm going through because he's done this before. He seems to completely forget that I've known him nearly 10 years and I know he's never done this.

I wanted to tell him he was full of shit and had nothing to compare this to, but I sucked in my breathe.

I sent a text to my sister venting, or so I thought. I sent it to him instead.

"Really funny!! HaHa I have watched many people that I love die from cancer in the last 10 years! Maybe, you should call whoever you sent that to next time you need any help?!"

I told him I didn’t want to get into it with him and that I was sorry I sent it to him. I told him, “You have not been a caregiver day after day for weeks or months. So I don't think you have any idea what I am going through.”

His response: Fuck you!

So next time, I will not hold back. I will speak my mind.

And here is some of what is on my mind.

When my grandpa was dying of cancer, 3 years ago, he was no where to be found. It was a terrible and difficult time and he made it 50 times worse by being a complete prick.

It is harder now for me to lose this grandma like this, because she is so damned young and I blame the alcoholics in her life for shortening her life.

One of the biggest reasons I finally left him is because she never had that option for herself, and she told me that many times.

Even though this is a harder death to deal with on that level, it is easier being a single woman without the support of a "husband" than it was to have a supposed husband who was so completely non-supportive of that loss.

I am stronger now, because I have to be.

While he may have visited his aunt or his grandpa a few times during their illness, he never cared for them. Not one day. And with all the money that family has, the way his aunt died in particular is completely disgraceful.

While my family may have its issues, we don't leave our own to die alone.

One of the reasons I think my grandma died so young is that continual sucking in that I just did this afternoon.

I really don't want to ever do that again.

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