Denial is a most real state of mind for care givers of loved ones in a care facility.
From experience and review of hindsight I am certain of Denial’s insulating, protective, and comforting ways FOR the caregiver (s).
Month’s before my mother’s transition, she would wake from dreams, wherein her mother was coming for her, to take her home. With what seemed a childlike voice she spoke with such simple confidence of that fact not yet in the physical.
Then there were the statements. “I don’t want to leave you.” and “I will miss you.” and the intensely fervent:
” I love you so much.”
She wanted to go home with us. Begging, repeating, deep longing in her voice, she wanted to go home with us.
The last week, I did not realize to be the ‘Last Week’. She screamed in an intense pain. The medicines, and the rules and regulations, and medical knowledges and ignorances could not/ would not ease.
She was moved to another room (by the ‘staff’) so as to not ‘disturb’ the other residents. ( I believe this was a low and deep blow that wounded her more deeply than we can fully know, thank you Lord.)
Hospice was called in and the pain was ‘conquered’. She was in a deep, deep sleep, but aware and she would respond with a smile to someone’s words of Love.
THE DAY: I was with her all day. I fully expected she would wake and recover as she had done many times before.
DENIAL. Insulating, protecting, guardian DENIAL.
We left, my beloved and I, took the more restful and beautiful and pleasant drive to our shopping destination. There was an ease to our conversation, and our shopping.
An item I had determinedly searched for some several minutes, pushing and pulling aside each and every piece with no success, SUDDENLY appeared at my hand.
My cell phone rang. (as it had two minutes before, unheard by me). With our beloved sister’s assigned ring tone.The same beloved sister who was staying in the room with our mother, when we had left twenty minutes earlier.
Sister’s voice was sobbing, heaving even.
“Mom’s gone.” She said.
“You are joking.” I said. So great was my denial.
Even now, almost six months later, I still can’t believe she’s gone.