The phone buzzed at 5:33 am this morning. I was in a deep sleep and only heard it just as it stopped buzzing. I knew someone was dead, I just didn't know who it was, Dad or Momom. I rolled over, wrenched to phone from the crappiest charger cord ever invented and fumbled with the key lock button. The missed call was from my Mom.
Momom. Its Momom.
I called Mom back immediately. She very matter of factly told me that Momom had passed just after 5 am. She had been at Hospice for only 9 hours. Mom was with her all night, and was with her when she died. She passed away in her sleep - the very best way to do it. But, my brother and I weren't given the chance to be there. Mom must have known at some point - otherwise, why would she have stayed all night? The hospice nurse said she thought Momom had at least a couple days left, but you can't predict death.
Momom had called me from her cell phone on Thursday to tell me that she was thinking about me, and that she loved me, and that she was sorry I was going through all I was going through with my dad. She said that the next week was going to be the hardest week of my life. I found out today that she told my brother the exact same thing. I wonder if she already knew that she was going to check out soon? It was definitely out of character for her to use her phone for outbound calls and I was touched that while she was slowly dying, she would be worrying about me. No need to worry about me though - I was in Clark's buying comfortable shoes. I drove to the nursing home afterwards to visit. I showed her my new shoes, demonstrated how cushy they were, re-programmed her tv remote, ate some oreos and left.
The last time I saw my grandmother was on Friday. She was markedly worse than she had been the day before. She was having trouble breathing. Her arms and hands were shaking when she tried to do anything. She wanted ice chips, which I got for her. We watched the Balloon Boy land on CNN. I told her it was bullshit. She agreed. But perhaps she just lacked the strength to argue with my commentary on the current state of the 24-hour media.
I didn’t see her this weekend because she was in such bad shape. I wanted to wait for her to have a good day; problem was, she didn’t have any good days left.
She came to the hospice at 8pm last night. She slept all night, and passed away in her sleep. My mom was with her. I wish I had gotten the opportunity to see her one last time. But, she knew I loved her. She was ready to go. She was tired of living. Tired of fighting to breathe. Just tired.
I'm overwhelmed by her death, and the impending death of my father, and my mother's emotional needs, and my emotional needs (which I am pretending don't exist). Momom was right. This is going to be the most difficult week of my life.