And so it ends…
Posted February 28, 2012on:
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I knew I would cry. The phone rang about twenty-minutes after I woke with an upset stomach to give us the sad? Comforting? Unavoidable? news, that she had passed. Not peacefully; but as she wanted, without pain medication or life-saving devices. Today we begin the long, arduous task of settling her financial affairs.
She was very well off. Years ago, an obscure great-aunt died without a will. She had been a very, very, VERY, wealthy lady. Well anyway, with the way estate laws work in the US, the heirs were not who they THOUGHT should be and my mother-in-law wound up being one of four obscure relatives that the money was divided between. Not bad; but it does make the settling of her estate, now, a difficult one. (Thank goodness my mother in law has a will!)
My husband and I are glad we can just sit back and wait. His eldest sister is the executrix and she will have the major headaches! There will be no division of property as her husband, my father in law, is still alive.
My husband’s last visit to his mum, a few hours before she died, was confused by an “incident”. (What the hospital calls it. The rest of the public might be a little more inclined to say “panic-stricken emergency” but that’s just us.)
He walked into the emergency ward, past the barriers to where his mother was SUPPOSED to be.
As he opens the door to the hall, and starts down, he notices a VERY LARGE policeman standing outside his mother’s door. (Isolation room). He slowed, hesitated and warily watched the policeman, who in turn, found my husband’s actions slightly suspicious and put his hand on his holster, unsnapping it. (You can almost see the cartoon!)
My husband is not a big man. He can hold his own in a struggle, but not against weapons. Nervously, keeping eye contact, my husband inched down the hall. All the time, going through his mind was, “What has dad done now?” (His dad must have bi-polar mixed with ‘some-timers’ because he can be the sweetest kitten or the meanest pole-cat, all in the space of a breath. My husband was worried that one of his brother’s had brought his dad to the hospital and his dad had been set off by something!)
He peeked in the room where his mum was. Confusion. “That’s not my mum.” Going back to the nurse’s station, leaving the police behind, (there were two officers guarding the hall and the room – the couple in the room had been the victims of either, a horrible home-invasion or beating.)
My husband’s mum had been moved to the hospice room. My husband said it was so freaky because he really believed his dad had flipped his lid. (He said what was running through his mind made him laugh because he could see them calling these huge men for his dad! (90+; still an unstooped 6’2″; frail though. He’s been losing weight the last few years.))
So, we, I say goodbye to my mother-in-law, a lady who I tried to get to know; tried to involve her in activities; and just simply tried to like. I loved her. I just didn’t like her very much. I am glad she gave up drinking and smoking. It did make the final twenty-years a little less stressful.
Goodbye ma’am. May you rest in peace.
PS: Everyone is asking, “What are you going to miss most?” I have to answer, “The annoying, pesky phone calls that interrupted every afternoon from when I got married, until she went to the hospital.” Be careful what you wish for, you don’t know what you have until it’s gone…