Today marks one year since my mother passed away. I’ve thought a little about it. I supposed it is summed up by what my daughter said when she was here last weekend to help me after a long hospitalization: “You’re so much better now that she’s gone.” A sad commentary for a daughter and granddaughter to have to make.
My daughter made no mention of missing her, or anything else. She did love her grandma and had a very cordial relationship, but they were not close. At the end of my mother’s life my daughter could clearly see what I’d always tried to tell her about my mother’s behavior and treatment of me. Finally, an ally beside my father.
Knowing yourself and what you’re feeling
I saw a post on upsi’s blog feed that stood out to me. I need to go back and read it. It’s entitled “doubting ourselves and our perceptions.”
When I first started learning about narcissism, I doubted myself. Only journaling made me able to fully perceive the truth with respect to my mother, my brother and the former friend H.
My mother could be a good person. Yes, she really could. But it was so garbled up with her pathology that it was difficult to separate out what was real and what was fake. Even she did not know her own mind, though she adamantly believed she did.
Anyway, I did love her but I’m very very glad she’s gone. I finally have a chance at a happy life, what’s left of it now that I’m in the final third of life. I can feel myself changing in subtle and profound ways.
I was in the hospital for 13 days until last Friday afternoon. I was felled by a lung issue including extreme scar tissue encasing my right lung resulting from lifelong illnesses… also fluid around the outside of the lung (kill.me.now you NEVER want that kind of pain), and some kind of fungus in the lung that the infectious disease doctor thinks I may have brought to where I currently live from where I lived for 7 years previous. Yet one more reason why I’m so damn glad to be away from there — an almost universally perceived gorgeous part of the country.
My daughter came out to help me, even though I kept telling her not to spend the money. She insisted, so out she came. Now I realize how important it was that she was here because many of my friends are working or otherwise unable (or unwilling-ugh) to be on deck. She said, “you were always there for me and supported me and I wanna be there for you.”
The surgery was supposed to be minimally invasive, called a “VATS” procedure, but the surgery went from 2 to 4 hours and they dumped the vid scope for a bigger incision and using the hands to do a “lung peel” — yeah gross.
Surgery knocks you for a freaking loop. My home health people say it’s the anesthesia, which takes about two weeks to fully wear off. I sure hope so. The sooner the better. Feeling like a truck hit me and it’s worse than the incision pain and the holes from the chest tubes inserted for drainage.
It’s also all the opiates they dope you up with to keep you comfortable. We have Dr. Jack Kevorkian to thank for more liberal access to pain meds. That wasn’t the case back in the early 1990’s and before. (This is in addition to his fine work campaigning doggedly and fearlessly for access to a peaceful, painless death — currently Oregon and Washington only.)
The surgery room was like a sci-fi movie set. The ICU was not as intense as I’d always conceived in my mind. Just a one on one nurse — one good one, one not so good one. The surgeon is from India and he is Ram incarnate. As in Rama and Krishna. What an interesting guy. I have great respect for people who deal with the grossity of illness in the human body.
On The Mend
I’m finally on the mend and might be back amongst the living by the end of the week. Getting a bit barn sour, but basically content. Enjoying little things like the cool of dawn, the singing birds, my houseplants, my cat (puppy is still boarded-wah), my music, the TV, the computer, good books and magazines, good food (hospital’s wasn’t bad though).
A man I met recently at the dog park has been watching out for me, several times a day by phone and once a day in person. He happens to be a retired nurse. He asked me the other day what we were doing together and I said “that’s for us to discover.”
All I know is… long-term friends or those who you thought were friends will let you down, while strangers will jump in and surprise and gratify the hell out of you. And literally save the day.
You can bet I’ll be there for him should the need ever arise.
Talk about a NON-narcissist. By my own standards I must say life’s pretty good.
Will Probably Never Stop Being Baffled by Some People
I took care of my mother for over a year, assisting with everything and anything she needed within my power (I lived an hour away). I did that because it was the right thing to do, and because no one else could or would step up, until I was so debilitated that I had to bow out.
Yet my upstairs neighbor, during my two-week absence, wouldn’t answer my 2 calls or even my 2 texts, even though she was feeding my cat and watering my plants. My daughter tried to excuse her because of her current deep depression and dissatisfaction with her life. Yeah, I guess so… maybe. Get over yourself and think about someone else for a change, it just might change your dynamic a little bit, and raise your spirits.
People are strange, and my new man friend said: don’t even give them space in your mind.” That should be easier and easier to do, with practice.
Gratitude For My Wonderful Daughter And Our Relationship
The fact that my daughter came out and we spent some quality time together watching lame silly romantic comedies in bed for hours, and just relaxing together was really precious. Good God, Sex and the City 2 is BAD BAD BAD! How I made it through the entire movie I’ll never know!
After all I’ve been through, what a blessing. My daughter and I agreed that at some point we gotta live in the same city or at least closer to each other.