My mom has decided to let my dad go on Tuesday or Wednesday. We meet with hospice tomorrow to discuss it and how to let him pass peacefully.
She is just bewildered and a bit befuddled. How to live on one’s own after 47 years of marriage to a man who did it all for her? She doesn’t even pay the bills and doesn’t know the online username and password. I figured it out last week but she didn’t write it down and now I can’t re-create it.
We were holding off Christmas until dad got home but now that wont happen. So we sadly opened up gifts. It was the most half-hearted effort, and just made me sob inwardly the whole time while trying to keep a cheerful face. Christmas is my mom’s favorite time of year. She decorates to the nines and loves to surprise people. To see her grimly go through the motions today was so heartbreaking for us all.
The worst was the last gift of dad’s. Most of his stuff can be used by someone, so we doled it out around the group. But the last was a classic dad gift. For weeks he has been harping on nothing but the Sharp automatic steam mop. Every year dad does this. Gets on a roll about some item or other, then when he opens it, it is like heaven has rained down its’ blessings on him. Garin opened it and I started to sob. Garin had to leave and the rest of the night was strained and quiet. We left after a dinner that no one wanted to eat.
I think the worst for my mom will be the memories that will now replace her love of Christmas. I hope this isn’t true but she is so brokenhearted. She has asked us to just come and take down all the decorations as she can’t face them right now. Understandable.
Christmas has been our family’s highlight. Now I fear that for some time it will become a painful reminder of the last few agonizing weeks. I hope that we will remember dad’s love of Christmas and his enthusiasm over surprises. I hope we remember how he loved to host dinner and tell stories afterward. I hope the hole in my heart will grow a little smaller. Someday.