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posted Apr 27, 2015, 8:03 PM by Mary Lazzaro-Bach
My mother died yesterday. 

This is the only day I can write those words and have them be true. 

My mother died yesterday.

Tomorrow, and for every day afterwards, as we go hurtling along through linear time, she will fly farther and farther away from this life.  

It was a peaceful death, finally, at the end.  Having lived with Alzheimer's Disease the past dozen years, my mom finally did something for herself, she left.

My dear friend Richard e-mailed me today, sharing this wisdom: When you are born, you cry, everyone rejoices. When you die, you rejoice, everyone cries.

I have been saying goodbye to Mommy, grieving her loss, for many years now.  When both her grandchildren were on stage during a local production of Madame Butterfly, I knew Mom would  have LOVED it! She would have been so happy, so proud of them.  Then, when Josef was accepted to college, and Maryellen was accepted for her study abroad program, I wanted so much to tell her.  She would have LOVED it!  

Yet Alzheimer's was also a sort of gift to us as well,  For a couple of years there we enjoyed each others' company. She knew who I was, but had forgotten her dislike for me.  Every time I saw her, she hugged me, kissed me, and told me that she loved me. She still slapped me, of course, for Mom used backhands as punctuation. Often, we visited her little sister Josephine for lunch. One afternoon, she thanked me for giving her grandchildren.

We even went shopping. My father sent us off with the task of finding a dress for her up-comig birthday party.  "Why are we here anyway?" she asked me. "We're getting a dress for you to wear to your birthday party." I answered.  Her eyes lit up. "My birthday! How old am I?"  "82" I told her.  "82!" she exclaimed, "No wonder my feet hurt!"

Shortly after she chased a health care aid through the house, waving her shoe, screaming, "I'm going to beat you to DEATH!", she stopped walking.  Then she stopped eating, Mom refused medications and treatments. She had a bladder infection, and days later, another. 

Saturday night, I was working on her eulogy when my father called to tell me she was being taken to the ICU unit.

Her heart was racing but her blood pressure stayed low. She was dehydrated, her body unable to absorb tube fed nutrients. Her breathing was almost frantic. Her muscles ached from lack of nutrition, yet her bowel was impacted. Her fever reached 103.

Thankfully, my father opted for CMO; Comfort Measures Only.


my mom died yesterday,

and I am so very happy for her.