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The Art of Dying

Posts: 66
Joined: May 2013

Hello Everyone,

It has been a few months since I last wrote. I hope everyone is as best as they can be. Today the hospice nurse came to the house and informed us (in the nicest way possible) that my beloved mother has about a week to live. They took all the unnecessary medications and left the morphine and xanax. The spiritual advisor came by to minister. There was this immense sadness that someone so full of life and love is just lying on the bed, not moving, not drinking, sedated.

My father, who is devoted to her can't wrap his mind as to why she can't eat or drink. Although I think it will hit him like a ton of bricks when the realization creeps in. I pray he finds comfort and happiness after she passes.

What I have learned about the end of life process during the three years my mom has had colon cancer is:

No one really knows when it's your time to go. Only the person being affected. I was told she was ready to pass so many times in the past that I learned to live with death as an unwanted friend.

The true nature of people feelings, perception, and caring come through. Who shows up/who does not, that friends are sometimes stronger than family ties, and that strangers reveal themselves as angels.

It's ok to cry and throw comet in the tub, just not in front of guests at Thanksgiving.

That people who battle this disease are true warriors. Going to battle every day with an enemy you can not see, but continually rise above defeat every minute/hour.

That in my mother's final months she has taught me the valuable gift of unconditional love, compassion, and that in the most dire situations to find my moment of happiness.

I pray I can be a living testament to her strength, courage, and love.

Warmest Regards

The Biggest Huggies and well wishes,






Posts: 1736
Joined: Jul 2007

SO sorry you are having to go through this, but i have to say, reading your post brought tears to my eyes, not just because of the horribly sad situation but the beauty in your words rang so loud and clear, your mother must be just the most awesome person, and wonderful mother to have taught you so much, your words will never leave me.  God Bless you and your family as you go through this terrible time, i hope and pray you all find peace and comfort in the following days.



Trubrit's picture
Posts: 5422
Joined: Jan 2013

I am sorry that your mother has reached this point in her journey. I always say, mothers should never die. Even though my mum was in her 80's when she passed, I couldn't help looking around and thinking how unfair it was.

May you mother pass in peace. She certainly knows that you love her, and what a wonderful blessing that must be to her at this time. 

May you also find peace. And those who love your mum. 


Sue - Trubrit

Posts: 56
Joined: Dec 2014

My heart is heavy for you.  I pray for peace for you and your Dad and the rest of your loved ones.  I can't imagine losing my mother but know it will happen one day.  It sounds like you have a wonderful relationship and surely she can feel how much you love her.  May God give you strength.



Posts: 503
Joined: Apr 2013

You have some awesome insight into the end of life "process".  My husband passed away in a hospice facility after 11 days there, his last 7+ days he was totally unresponsive.  I was amazed he could continue to stay with us without eating or drinking for about 9 days and no IV.  He only had the pain pump and another pump for haldol and ativan.  He had no more pain after we took him to the hospice facility.  I could not have cared for him in that state at home.  Home hospice here was not so great, basically not available at night.  It was a hard decision to move him, but I think even he knew it was time.  I wish I had known some of the items you listed that you have learned.  A book one of his hospice nurses wrote had some excellent advice.  They said dying was like being born, there is a vigil, it is hopefully peaceful, and then it is over.  As soon as my husband passed, I felt his spiirit leave his body and his strength came right into me.  His body was no longer "him" so I was fine when the funeral home came to take him.  While there is no way for any of us to prepare for the grief that follows, just be aware that your pain may get worse after your mother passes.  I think a parent may be different than a spouse, but no less important.

Thank you for sharing your insight


Trubrit's picture
Posts: 5422
Joined: Jan 2013

Thank you, too, for your insight. Your words have touched my heart. 

Sue - Trubrit

Akroger's picture
Posts: 88
Joined: Mar 2013

I am so sorry Nellie, for the past three years of grief and worry that you have passed, and for the greater sorrow that is ahead. What you have learned during this time, and what your mother gave to you in all your years together before, is what will give you the ability to be exactly the living testament to her that you hope to be. Your mother will always be with you to give you strength just as you have given her so much with your support, not just during her battle with cancer but throughout your whole life, as her child.

annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

Your poor mom has been through so much, and it breaks my heart.  For all of you.

Hugs and love and hope for peace coming your way~AA

Easyflip's picture
Posts: 588
Joined: May 2013

sorry to hear about your mom. I believe she'll be in a better pain free place. Her legacy is in you and everyone that loved her. I give you my support in these upcoming sad times. Be strong and know your mother would want you to celebrate her life and not dwell on her passing.


lilpep1972's picture
Posts: 80
Joined: Dec 2014

Hello I'm kinda new here and just read your post. I've never met your mom but she sounds like an incredible women with a huge heart and love for all. I could only strive to be like that and I know that the good lord has a very special place for her amongst other angels in heaven. may God bless her and your family and may the next few nights be filled with peace And strength. 

fatbob2010's picture
Posts: 467
Joined: May 2012


Thank you for sharing these observations and feelings with us.  There is no reality, IMHO, when one is told that this is not difficult or criticize one for showing emotion.  

Peace to you and your loved ones through this challenging time.


tanstaafl's picture
Posts: 1299
Joined: Oct 2010

Hope you have her favorite, soothing music playing in the background, for both of you.  They say hearing is the last sense to go  and is a major basis of (rare?) vivid out of body experiences at the brink.  

herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

I'm so sorry to hear about your mother, I'm glad though that you had time talk with each other, that she leaves you with her imparted wisdom and that you have time for hugs, dying of cancer isn't so bad in the way that we have time to run and do the things we want to before we pass, that we know when our time is coming up so family and friends can gather and goodbyes and hugs can be said and felt.

No matter how one loses their mother, it is a bad time, because Mom is Mom and has always been there.  My Mom has been gone for a few years now, and at Christmas I still want to call her up and ask here what the ingredients were AGAIN for her molasses gingerbread man cookies (she never made the "Ginger" part, always molasses) you never get over that loss completely, I won't lie to you, it hurts bad, my Mom was 90 when she passed and the thing I keep having to remind myself was that she lived a long incredible adventurous life and she was ready to go, we're just not ready to ever say goodbye to them, never ready to let go, they are our Moms who have always been with us throughout all our trials and tribulations.

My heart is with you.

Winter Marie

Posts: 509
Joined: Sep 2012

How incredibly insightful you are to understand this process.  It is comforting for her, no doubt, to have you with her and knowing you understand her needs so well.  So many don't during this time .. it somehow becomes about them.  Hospice can be a wonderful place for this transition on so many levels. 

I wish your Mom, yourself and family peace during this time.  

Warm hugs

DD3's picture
Posts: 134
Joined: May 2013

nothing that I can say that the others on here haven't already said.  So, I will leave you with this Nellie.  I wish/pray you and your family find peace and comfort in the coming days ahead. 

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