Update to Life Happens

First off, we want to say that we are so overwhelmed with the love, support, thoughts, prayers, words of encouragement and hugs we have received from all of you. We haven’t been able to read our blog over the last two days so what a surprise to find tonight. Thank you just doesn’t seem enough to express our appreciation for it all.

Monday’s results couldn’t have been any worst. After my sisters arrived and had time to spend with mom, we joined the doctor in the conference room. You always know when they want to go to the conference room that it can’t be good. The doctor told us that she had in fact had a stroke. In fact she had not one but two blood clots on both sides of her brain in the back. At this point, these clots were keeping her from being about to do anything on her own. They had also blinded her and taken away her ability to speak. We also found out that she has a complete blockage in her heart, which was keeping her heart from beating correctly.

Options weren’t very good. No matter what they wanted to do for the stroke, the heart issue would get in the way. And no matter what they wanted to do for the heart issue, the stroke got in the way. Add to that challenge, the fact that fluid was now gathering around the lining of her brain, we were at a major crossroads.

It was finally the point that we had to ask, “Is this it, or is there a possibility that she could improve even with the blood clots.” The answer we received told us volumes. The reply from the doctor was, “No, at this point, this will be the best that she will ever be.”

With that said, we knew what we needed to do.

Today (Tuesday), we spent the day preparing. We spent time with her, cried together and made calls to make arrangements.

Tomorrow, they are going to pull all the monitors and tubes out, except her IV and make her as comfortable as possible. Then when we are ready, tomorrow morning they are going to turn off her pacemaker. Her heart should still beat on its own, but just slower. At some point it should go into arrhythmia and then stop on its own. We aren’t sure how long this will take, but we will be there together with her. We will talk with her and hold her hands and help her go to sleep peacefully.

This has to be the hardest decision we have ever had to make. But we know it is what she wanted. To keep her here for our own selfish wants would be a disservice to her. We are ready (I hope). We pray that it will be quick and painless. But most of all we hope she will finally find peace.

We are going to miss her. It saddens me to know that when we open Belle Grove, she won’t be able to be there to enjoy it with us. I know that she will be there in spirit and will be so proud of me. She had told me so many times how proud she was we were pursuing this dream.

And even through this day, my wonderful husband still kept us on course. We have now submitted the preliminary site plan to the Zoning department for approval. We should be on track for at least a soft opening on March 16th (James Madison’s Birthday) and fully open by April 1st.

Life really does happen, but we march on, even though the tough decisions. But one thing that I have learned from this is that we aren’t alone in those times. We endure them with the help of our loved ones and friends, whether here with us or in cyber space.

Thank you


265 thoughts on “Update to Life Happens

  1. Candace says:

    I’m very sorry for what you’re going through.

  2. I’m so sorry to read about your difficult decision and wish you much strength to cope in the weeks and months ahead. Be good to yourselves. (Thanks very much for liking my Apricot Mousse post.)

  3. G.S.Feet says:

    My sympathies with you at this incredibly difficult season of your life. As an only child and grandchild caring for a declining mother AND grandmother simultaneously, I can say with feeling to cherish your siblings since they alone truly know EXACTLY what you are dealing with since it’s their mother too. I earnestly hope your mother has a comfortable and peaceful transition from this life to what lies ahead.

    • Thank you so much. I don’t know how you are handling two! It was hard enough with one. My heart goes out to you! But we have found a peace with her passing. I would rather give her up than to see her suffer as she had.

  4. joyannaadams says:

    Oh my…my heart is SO sad for you…I know what you’re going through, both my parents had massives strokes, my mother like yours couldn’t talk, and I took care of them both at home. It was four years of my life.

    It is so hard to see your love ones suffer. God it seems, has given you a wonderful husband to help you through this rough time in your life.

    I remember my mother’s last day. I was exhausted from being up all night with her, trying to suction mucus out of her throat. Once she fell asleep I collapsed on the floor. I got up at 5 am and ran to the all night Walgreens to get her some antibiotics. That morning I just knew she was going to die, because it was the most beautiful sunset I had ever seen. And it was the 22nd.

    When I came home, she was sleepiing, and I fell asleep on the floor by the side of her bed. I had been up for three days straight. She died that morning…while I slept by her side on the floor…the 22nd of December, 2001.

    She had suffered…and it was her time.

    May god be with you–, and you know you’re mother will always be by your side, and if she was anything like mine, she will send you a sign. Mine did.

    And she SHOULD be proud…Hey, I’M proud of you and I don’t even know you!

    The birds will sing a little sweeter…..and I truly am sorry to hear of your loss.

    I was wondering where my “Like” lady was. I MISSED you.

    • Thank you so much for all your words of encouragement and telling me of your life. It sounds like you too are a very strong person. But we have found a peace with mom’s passing. I would rather lose her than to see her suffer so long. Don’t worry, I am back to “Like” you again! 😉

  5. swozy says:

    I know what you’re going through. We had to make the same decision for my Dad after he suffered three heart attacks in the one year. The last one caused a lot of damage to major organs and therefore his quality of life would have been very poor.

    I feel it’s a measure of the love we have for them that we don’t want them to suffer any more.

    My thoughts are with you and your family.

  6. May you find peace, and tomorrow on Thanksgiving know that you truly had someone to be thankful for – your mother. And, in her lifetime, it’s clear she has had you. May you find warmth in your memories and connections among family this holiday season.

  7. I am sorry you have to wittness this.

  8. mmmarzipan says:

    Sending warm wishes your way

  9. mfullington says:

    My heart goes out to you and your family during this extremely difficult time.

  10. Maxi says:

    No one knows your pain and suffering, but I do have some sense of your agony. Fifteen months ago I had to make the decision to put my husband in hospice. The pain is still with me every day.
    Your mother is blessed to have family that did what was best for her.
    Blessings ~ Maxi

  11. I cannot imagine what an emotional time this has been for you. I’m so sorry. It’s not the kind of decision that anyone is prepared to make until you have to make it. I know that she must have been so proud of you and of all the work you have put into the plantation — because your readers are.

    • Thank you so much! It wasn’t easy but I don’t think we made the wrong decision. She was pretty clear on what she wanted. I like to think she was proud of me and the work that we are doing. Thank you!

  12. Nativegrl77 says:

    My heart goes out to you as well. I come from a huge family and when it came to the death of our mom&dad the conflicts were big … I commend you for doing exactly what she wanted! She is proud!

  13. caroljacoby says:

    I am so sorry for what you have gone through. It takes a lot of courage to allow a loved one’s suffering to end. I was fortunate that my father had made his wishes very clear, so we knew we were doing the right thing to let him go. You, too, know you did the right thing.

  14. oarubioTony says:

    Following through on the belief that we must respect the right to life up to a natural death is so difficult. You did everything you could. Be assured that I will remember you and your mother in my prayers.

  15. Marisa says:

    sending you peace, strength and more peace.

  16. msalis1 says:

    Best wishes to you and yours at this trying and difficult time.

    “After the storm, comes flowers.” I use this to get through the rough patches.

  17. Life and life that passes through us with the passing of a loved one makes us all treasure time we have been able to spend together. May you find comfort in the good memories of happy days and times. Thank you for the like and I wish you comfort, stability and love in abundance in the coming days, weeks, months and years ahead.

  18. jackcurtis says:

    A son becomes a man when his father dies… That gained meaning only after it happened. We assume (or have thrust upon us) new life roles after life events, each a step closer to our own end. And that is encouragement to make the most of each place we occupy while remembering our predecessor’s occupation before us…is that not so?.

  19. edgar62 says:

    Thank you for taking the time to read my poor posts. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  20. One of Life’s hardest decisions. To lose your mother and know that you are no longer anyone’s child is the loneliest feeling in the world. hank you for liking my blog I wish you comfort.

  21. God bless you for what you’re doing for your mother and abiding by her wishes. She must have been so happy that you followed your heart and are pursuing your dream. Thinking of you and wishing you peace and wonderful memories of your mother.

  22. Pamela Hodgdon says:

    I am so very sorry that you are all going through this. I work in a cardiac unit and I have worked in the ICU. I know what you are facing. Just know that you are doing the right thing. Hold her hand and let her spirit go, so she can be with you at Belle Grove. My thoughts are with you.

  23. zorro42 says:

    thank you,i had passed with the same awkward situation last year on october when my own mother was died at hospital,i have felt the same sadness and till now. may god will be with you.

  24. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  25. I am so soory to hear about your mom. My mom had 4 heart attacks and 2 strokes this summer, but somehow is going to be OK. I can’t imagine losing her, but I know faith would sustain me. As I know it will sustain you. I’m so glad you found my post! You and your family are in my prayers.

    • Thank you so much for your support and words of encouragement. It really means a lot to me through this first holiday season! I can’t believe 4 heart attacks and 2 storkes! She must be a very strong lady! My prayers are with you and your mom!

  26. bowearrow says:

    My brothers and I made the same tough decision. I understand what you are going through

  27. denvergalea says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this sad news. My thoughts are with you and your family in this difficult time.

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