Author Topic: My first loss ever and it's my mom.  (Read 1599 times)

inga730

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My first loss ever and it's my mom.
« on: February 15, 2016, 11:50:07 PM »
I don't even know where to begin. There's so many facets to this story that bring on so many different emotions, I can't even begin to expect anybody to understand… but I decided to start up an account with a forum in order to write it all out, I suppose for my sake mostly.. and to open the doors for advice and shared experiences. 

I can't help but notice that as I'm sitting here, writing this in a foreign country, far away from home as I deal with this sudden death, I smell a smell I only used to smell as a kid, in my moms office at her work - she ran an equine facility in pennsylvania. I so desperately wanted to go with her to work all the time - what little girl doesn't love horses? She never wanted me to go, because she hid the fact that she smoked cigarettes from me - and that was the easiest place to do so.  But thinking your children are always ignorant is rather ignorant in itself - I knew, and I remember the smell of horse sweat, dirt, fresh air and lingering marlboro reds. Never been one to believe in much paranormal activity, but it's such a specific smell… how could it be anything else?

My mom struggled with alcoholism since the age of 14. An adopted child into a relatively rich family in western pennsylvania, she grew up without worry or care - only boredom to cure. Her parents were alcoholics in their own ways - her mother the reserved, card playing, golf champion image crafting bourbon drinker with a relatively cold approach to child rearing - and her father, a cartoonist with a fun loving attitude but with some bad habits. Unfortunately I never knew him.  They adopted my mother as an infant - her mother died at birth and wasn't married.  My mom had an adopted brother as well- unrelated until adoption. They were raised with money, booze, options and opportunity.

Fast forward 26 years and my mom was in California going to school, where she met my father and got married in 1986. My mom was extremely intelligent. She had read thousands of books over her lifetime, and spoke at least 4 languages fluently… and dabbled in some others. She majored in linguistics and minored in political science (I didn't inherit that from her, for sure). My dad is an immigrant from iceland, who lived paycheck to paycheck and made his own living modestly. His family was poor from day one and my dad always had an appreciation for hard work, and a knack for pinching pennies. What two different worlds they came from. Well, somehow they met and decided to merge.. and fast forward 4 more years and I was born. 16 months later, my brother. Only we had moved back to western pennsylvania to be with my moms dying father.

After my brother, and my moms father's passing, my parents began having problems. My mom had always drank, but always seemed to have it under control.  But it got heavier. It got harder for my dad to cope with.  My mom became angry, irritable, bitchy. She started cheating on my dad and called for a divorce.  She started getting distant from my brother and I, and when it finally came down to an ultimatum, my dad wouldn't sign the divorce papers unless we all moved back to California. Best thing he could have done, I think. 

We moved back and my parents got separate homes.  I had to go back and forth every two weeks as per california law, 50/50 split.  I packed up my room and moved every two weeks. It started getting to the point however, that I dreaded going to my moms and always got excited to go to my dads. My mom would yell, scream, drink, throw things at me.. hit me.. tell me to get out and never come back. call the police on me for no reason. tell me I'm worthless. Lock me in my room. It became somewhat abusive for a while, as the drinking got more intense. I was a teenager and the more I'd tell people, the more they'd blow it off as a typical tumultuous mother daughter teenage relationship and it would pass.  But she put me in danger. She'd drink entire bottles of vodka and come knock in my door and scream and cry and hit me for no reason. She'd drink a bottle and drive me to something I needed to go to and blast through red lights and almost get us in accidents. She'd embarrass me at every single event we had to go to together.  She started to get jealous that I had friends and she didn't, and she'd scream at them and call them "bitches" or "cunts" and make them not want to come over anymore.  She'd tell me to be home by midnight then call the cops at 9 when I wasn't home and try to make me seem like a runaway child. She threw a place at my face like a frisbee over something I can't even remember anymore. Then one day finally when I was 15, she drank a whole bottle of vodka, came to pick me up from school (an hour and a half late) and called me a little bitch when I got in the car. I got upset and punched her in the arm and she reacted by driving us off a small cliff and into a tree. She admitted to trying to kill me and subsequently got a DUI and felony child endangerment charge, and I had to go to court about 7 times to settle it before she went to jail.

Those are some of the highlights of the abuse.  A few years and several rehabs later, I was 19 and she tried to reconcile with me.  She never truly apologized in the way that I wanted, but she tried in her way I suppose.  She tried to buy me things. She bought me a car. I was thankful but i knew she was just trying to buy my forgiveness.  It's sort of a strange feeling to accept something you want, such as a car, even though you know the person who is gifting you literally only knows how to show love in that one way - money and objects. Things. I tried to many times to talk to her, to tell me how she affected me, to tell me how much it hurt - and it always resulted in more fighting. Told me I was over dramatic and making stuff up. Told me I remembered things wrong and it was my melodrama that was coming out and that she never did anything wrong.

I resented the fuck out of her! She continued to buy me shit (and by shit i mean really nice things for sure) and I continued to accept them, but all I ever really wanted was for her to admit she let a shitty version of herself take over, and the good version of herself withered away.  These nasty encounters continued on here and there, further and further between because I distanced myself… Then finally, after two more DUIs and no more friends, she decided to move with her new codependent alcoholic boyfriend to deep south Mexico. 

I suppose the story is they were supposed to move down here to this retirement community and get sober together, start a new life and live happily ever after.  Well, it didn't happen. They continued drinking and drinking and she got sicker and sicker.  She had hepatitis C since she was in her 20s and she began to develop scirohssis of the liver.  From 2014-today, her cognition slipped so fast it was terrifying. She began to be loving toward me. She began to be nice.  She only smiled and said nice things to me.  She was more confused, could barely walk, malnourished and wouldn't eat - but she was nicer.  However nicer, she became more distant. I only saw her twice a year from 2012-today and i wish I would have visited more.

My attitude started to change the last two years. I began to forgive her. I really truly did. I began to understand her disease, and began to process that she did not really "have it out for me," it was her own demons coming out.  I began to not take it personally. I wanted to talk more and forgive her. I wanted to tell her all the mean things I said to her when I was hurt weren't how I really felt. I wanted to say so many things that I will now never get to tell her…. because her health got so bad that she just DIED on tuesday.  She had seen a doctor a week before, because she sat in a chair for 3 days and didn't get up because she physically couldn't - she shit and pissed herself for 3 days before getting taken in an ambulance - a blood panel showed that like 99.9% of the rest of the human population would have died weeks ago in her condition but somehow she was still here. They hooked her up to IVs and tried to get all her levels back up to normal. She hadn't eaten or drinken anything but alcohol for over a week, sitting in her chair with her enabling boyfriend at her side. Finally she went home from the hospital, and was sort of OK for two days. She could walk again. Then tuesday night she went to take a bath, got in, and died. Heart attack. Just gone. Nobody found her until wednesday. 

She hadn't answered my phone calls in 6 weeks.

Not because she was mad or anything but just because she was so weak, she couldn't.

But what the actual fucking fuck. You can prepare for over a decade, like I did, every single day expecting that phone call - it could have been anything - she died in an accident. she overdosed. she got killed in a mugging. she was so defenseless, so weak, so sad by the end. It killed me to see her.  But our relationship only conditioned me to treat her with anger and frustration whenever I had an interaction with her. I'll never get to tell her how sad I was that she looked so terribly unhealthy. It broke my heart. I remember telling her, if she continued this way, shed never get to meet her grandchildren. that was 7 weeks before she died this week. 

I had to fly down to a foreign country, identify a body that had decayed for 4 days, and deal with a codependent drunk "boyfriend" who is demanding tens of thousands of dollars from me, in a time of grief. Fuck this, and fuck him.  That's where I'm angry.

But what I'll never get out of my mind is staring at my mothers decaying body.  You guys, I've never seen a dead body before, but from anything I ever saw on TV - the very WORST crime show - DOESN'T EVEN COMPARE TO WHAT I HAD TO SEE AND SMELL. it was the most painful thing I've ever had to do, or ever will have to do.  To see your parents body essentially melting to a blue green … sludge. Face barely recognizable. Smell is mind bending. I wish i did not have to do that. and I did it all alone. I was alone in another country. I am in shock.


I am sorry for how jumpy and long the story is. I am drinking. Not a lot, but just a bit. It's late and I'm alone at this hotel in the lobby while my brother and my boyfriend are sleeping. I needed to write. Sorry for the life story.

inga730

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Re: My first loss ever and it's my mom.
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2016, 12:00:34 AM »
Just wanted to add that I am only 25. I feel like a child still. It's been a long time that I've been alone and independent (living wise, sine like 18) but I still feel like I want my mommy. No matter how bad, abusive, up and down.   I still want to be able to call her. I will miss her a lot.