|Mom and I visited the Belair Mansion in 2010|
Rob's Mom: Part 1: Rob's Mom Suffers Massive Stroke
On Sunday, December 22, not 15 minutes after I (Rob) talked with my mom (who lives 400 miles away), and 2 minutes before my brother Doug talked with her on the phone to tell her he'd be right over to take her to dinner, she had a massive stroke. Doug found her doors unlocked and found her on the floor, unresponsive. He called 911 and she was transported quickly to the local hospital, then after a while transported to Massachusetts General Hospital.
Doug and his wife were met by my other brother Steve and his wife at the hospital. They called me several times and told me that she was basically non- responsive. The stroke happened on the left side of mom's brain, preventing communications, language and recognition. She would be paralyzed and unable to communicate. She would be on a feeding tube for the rest of her life. It was devastating and sudden.
Since my dad passed on August 8, 2008, mom has been on the decline. Her dementia has made her quick to anger, bitter, and depressed. She was never happy. We'll never know why the stroke happened when it did. Perhaps she wasn't taking her medication. She did live alone in the house I grew up in, though. She was still able to drive, cut down trees, garden, grocery shop and cook, right up until Sunday.
|Mom in a space capsule at the NASA visitor's center|
Monday afternoon brought the decision to take her off the ventilator. That was a tough decision as it is with anyone. But our mother is feisty, independent and a fighter. She always said she never would go to a nursing home and be helpless. My brothers and sisters-in-law were there when it happened. Steve again dialed me in so I could tell her what was happening and that Tom and I were there with her (via phone). I reiterated that she needs to let go, and be at peace. Our dad is waiting for her with our family dogs, Gigi and Penny. Ruthie confirmed that.
TOMORROW'S BLOG: Seeing Mom for the last time