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Hepatitis C – The Long Goodbye

Hepatitis C – The Long Goodbye

The long goodbye is often used to describe the drawn out fading of a person’s mind, who is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

But for my Mom, it was because of Hepatitis C.

Hepatitis C - The Long Goodbye

My Mom worked as a hospital lab technician for most of her career. She remembered accidentally sticking her hand, with the contaminated needle of a sick patient.

Hep B and A were well-known and treatable. But forty years ago no one knew Hepatitis C existed. It took 20 years for the disease to rear its ugly head. They were finally able to properly diagnose her.

Hepatitis C is a chronic infection of the liver, that leads to scarring, cirrhosis, liver failure and eventually liver cancer.

She fought a brave fight. She endured two rounds of interferon and riboveron treatment, requiring self injecting toxins, directly into her stomach.

For a time after that, she seemed better. We all breathed a sigh of relief and prayed it was gone.

Hepatitis C - The Long Goodbye

Before she became ill. She flew me to attend the U.S. Open with her.

She called me one day from her back yard in New Mexico. Luckily she had a cell phone with her. She’d fallen down and couldn’t get up. Not because she was weak. Because of the ascites associated with her advanced Hepatitis C. Because her liver wasn’t filtering out toxins, her abdomen was filling with excess fluid. She looked ready to deliver triplets! She told me she felt like a turtle, stuck on her back. I phoned a cab to come and take her straight to hospital, then flew down.

She began another course of interferon and riboveron. Sadly, it was too late. Her doctor failed to check her liver enzymes and she’d already developed cirrhosis. By injecting herself with this hopeful cure, it put her into liver failure.

Her only hope now was to get a liver transplant. That meant she needed a patient advocate to navigate the process with her.

A nasty side effect of Hepatitis C is encephalopathy. Her doctor told me she wouldn’t know she had it, but we would. It causes confused thinking, poor judgement, mental fogginess, forgetfulness, personality and behavioral changes. My Mom got ALL of these and more.

Since my brothers both lived in Canada, the solution was for her to live near me in California. I would be her medical advocate.

Her insurance company was so happy to get rid of her, they paid for an ambulance jet to fly Mom, me and one nurse directly to UCSF, in San Francisco.

Then we began the long process of trying to get her a liver.

Hepatitis C - The Long Goodbye

She was so delighted to be here for my daughters graduation party!

Every week I drove her to both UC Davis, and UCSF, to meet with their transplant teams. There were a battery of medical tests, she needed to pass, to be eligible.

The last test was a mammogram. When the results came back positive, she didn’t realize the significance it would play on her liver transplant. I did.

Her enemy never became breast cancer, it was always her liver disease. She had a lumpectomy and radiation for the breast cancer.

Then we went for a follow-up at UCSF.

As we sat in the doctor’s private office, he danced circles around my Mom’s condition. He said, “Well, if you can remain cancer free for 5 years, we can put you back on the transplant list”.

Mom was surprised, but encouraged. She didn’t understand. The encephalopathy didn’t allow her to understand. This bright, capable woman could no longer reason or think clearly.

I got furious. I demanded (politely) the doctor be honest. He looked at me askance. I said, “My mother won’t survive 5 years without a functioning liver. And you know it! You must tell her the truth. She deserves to know the truth and won’t believe it from me.”

He just stared at me. By this point I was standing at the front of his desk. The interns behind his chair began backing up.

I said, “You’re being cruel to not be honest with my mom”. I wasn’t yelling, but I was close. I felt like lunging across his desk and choking the truth out of him.

We waited. And waited.

He finally told her she would not live 5 years and would never get a liver transplant. I thanked him and helped my mom get to the car.

Our  drive home was quiet. She said she understood, and she may have, but I couldn’t be sure.

She moved to be near my oldest brother, soon after I’d had her driver’s licence removed. She’d already had 6 minor car accidents, and I knew she shouldn’t be driving. I couldn’t live with myself if she injured or killed someone. Her doctor agreed. To say she was furious, would be an understatement. She called to tell me I was no longer her daughter and she was cutting me out of her will. She packed her stuff (we all helped) and moved to Canada. She wanted to live near my oldest brother.

Within 2 months I got a call. Mom had been found unconscious and taken to the hospital. She was in an hepatic coma. She was never coming out of it.

My brothers, Dad and I began to sit vigil. We spent everyday with her. Telling her it was OK to let go. We were all fine, we loved her and she could be at peace.

After 6 days I asked my Dad, why she wasn’t leaving. What was she waiting for? He looked in my eyes and said, the lesson here was for us, not her.

Another day went by. I finally suggested we get a minister to come in. Maybe that was what she was waiting for.

After the minister left, my older brother headed home to start dinner. My dad went out for a cigarette. I went to the cafeteria for a cup of tea.

My other brother, who had been estranged from my Mom for 20 years, sat with her.

As I adding sugar to my tea, it just exploded all over my hand. I knew it was a sign.
I raced back upstairs and she was gone. She chose to leave when only one of us was with her. The one she obviously needed to be with.

Happy Mother’s Day Mom!

You loved us all, and were loved, fiercely.

I’m sorry I lost you… so many years before you died.

 

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94 Comments

  1. Bette Daw
    October 28, 2016 / 5:29 am

    I have been reading your blog for quite some time and just happened to see and promptly read this heart breaking post. I am so very sorry for your loss. My only sister passed away from breast cancer that had mestastized to her liver. She too had ascites, mental confusion and personality changes. Her oncologist told her that she could live for seven years if the treatment worked. I knew the cancer had progressed to the final stages (as did her doctor) it was clear she was very close to the end. I was furious with her doctor in giving her false hope. Our parents were elderly and needed to be with her but she didn’t understand the need for them to travel. After all, she had seven more years. And believe me as confused as she was, she held on to the hope she had been given. She lived one month to the day of her visit with the oncologist that gave her false hope. In her mind, I became her enemy. At the end of her life, she wanted me and only me to be with her. And I was there. As she took her last breath, I knew she was going to a better place where she would be free of this devastating disease. Thank you for sharing your most personal experience and also for this vehicle that has allowed me to share mine. God bless you.

    • Jennifer
      October 28, 2016 / 1:26 pm

      Thank you for sharing your story Bette. I’m so sorry to read about your sister. What a horrible tragedy! Sadly, I can imagine the pain you went through during this terrible time. Thank heavens you were there for her. God bless you!! XX

  2. November 6, 2015 / 6:44 pm

    Such a painful story. I hope you heart has healed, as best it can.

    • Jennifer
      November 8, 2015 / 1:06 am

      It was a brutal time but wounds do heal and I remember the wonderful times with her.

  3. Peggy Bryant
    May 19, 2015 / 4:38 am

    I am so sorry for your loss. You never quite get over losing your mom, I would like to say more but can’t, My tears for both your mom and mine are making it impossible to write. Prayers for your family. Hugs, Peggy

  4. May 16, 2015 / 10:15 am

    Jennifer, So sad to read what your mom had to endure. It’s terrible to lose a mother and I don’t know how you got through it all. You were there for her and did all a good daughter would. She was lucky to have such a loving daughter. I still think about my mom and the circumstances around how she died all the time. I guess you never get over that. Sending hugs. xo Kim

  5. karen on bainbridge island
    May 14, 2015 / 7:56 am

    You were a good daughter…but you already know this. That is the greatest comfort you can have after the loss of a parent.

    • Jennifer
      May 14, 2015 / 8:02 pm

      Knowing I did all I could for her is comforting, by I still second guess what more I could have done.

      • Alishia
        March 12, 2017 / 10:56 am

        I know the feeling my dad was all of a sudden acting confused and had ascities when I called his dr and asked him why he wasn’t being told to go to the hospital…. I was told to take him right in, however my dad refused he said tomorrow and so I agreed. When tomorrow came and we were getting in the car he said”you know I won’t be coming back home right?” I told him that was silly turned out he was right. My dad was brought in in November and after developing a pulimnary embolism that traveled to his lungs he started to deteriorate. He was confused he developed a urinary tract infection and then bed sores and never spoke after this we communicated by his moaning at me it was him swearing at me prior. Then before I knew it my whole life turned dark I have never loved anyone the way I love my dad and he was gone due to my descions. Could I have saved him? The what ifs? The maybes? The
        long hours and times I went home instead of sitting by him? The videos I forgot to take and the trust he put in me to save him and he died it is hard to get past that guilt I miss my dad so much he left dec 23, 2015 and my life is so empty without him!! I’m sorry for ur loss of your mom as well????

        • Jennifer
          March 12, 2017 / 11:14 am

          I’m so sorry, Alishia. Please don’t blame yourself. Hepatitis killed your dad and you did all you could for him. Don’t worry, he knows you did your very best and is in a better place now. Would of, could of should have, never helps anyone. Nothing you could have done would have saved your Dads life! Be kind to yourself and focus on the positive memories.

  6. May 13, 2015 / 8:27 am

    Jennifer, what a lovely tribute to your mom. It is both heartfelt and heart wrenching. It took me a few days to read your post because I know the long goodbye of Hep C’s as well. We lost my brother Mark to the disease 11 years ago. Yesterday would have been his 56th birthday. It is a dreadful disease!

    Thank you for sharing your story.

    • Jennifer
      May 13, 2015 / 11:39 pm

      I’m so sorry for you and your brother Mark! He was so young! It is a brutal, unforgiving disease that robs its victims of their dignity.

  7. Priscilla
    May 13, 2015 / 8:20 am

    I am so sorry. We never know what some people’s trials in life have been. A lovely tribute of love from you to your mom and a lesson on why we should always be kind to people. We never know the path that people are on.

    • Jennifer
      May 13, 2015 / 11:37 pm

      Thanks Priscilla ! We can’t tell from the outside, and need to give people the benefit of the doubt.

  8. Linda S.
    May 12, 2015 / 9:06 pm

    Hi Jennifer,

    I’m a little late commenting here, but wanted to acknowledge the beautiful piece you wrote.

    I’m very sorry that your Mom had to endure all of that, how tragic that this happened to her. It sounds like you were right there by her side through it all.

    I can sympathize a little, however my Mom had mental health issues, suffering from depression and anxiety. She had a major depression episode in her mid 50’s (when I was in high school) and then it resurfaced when she was 67 and she never really shook it. All the while undergoing countless Electroshock Therapy treatments and hospitalizations. It was so difficult to see her suffer from this. Finally her liver gave out, (I believe it was possibly from all the meds she was on over the years) and she passed away when she was 79. My sister and I didn’t make in time either, she died when we were en route.

    I recently came across a photo of my Mom that was in an email from a relative, taken probably a few years before she passed away. You could just see how miserable she was. I sat here at the computer bawling my eyes out. I would have done anything back then to make her feel better.

    Thanks for sharing your Mom’s story…I’m sure it was difficult to write but such a very loving tribute and I’m sure she was proud having you as her daughter.

    Linda

    • Jennifer
      May 13, 2015 / 11:31 pm

      Thank you Linda. Your Mom’s story sounds very tortured and painful. I’m so sorry she, and you, suffered so much. We daughters do what we can, with what we have available, at the time. And it still hurts when we judge it to be not enough. You sound like a loving daughter who did her best. I’m sure somewhere, in you Mom’s mind, she knew how much you loved her.

  9. May 12, 2015 / 12:38 pm

    Jennifer, you paint such a vivid picture of your mother and your family – it shines through poignantly in this beautifully written piece – a heartfelt tribute to a very special lady.

    • Jennifer
      May 14, 2015 / 8:00 pm

      Thank you Kate. My mother was the bravest, strongest women I’ve ever met. She was very special.

  10. May 11, 2015 / 10:31 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Jennifer. It’s tragic she broke relations with you out of anger but as you say, she wasn’t able to think clearly. What a terrible health issue to deal with. You sound like a loving and devoted daughter until the end. The photos are beautiful and you’ve written this beautifully.

    • Jennifer
      May 14, 2015 / 7:59 pm

      Thank you Lisa. I remind myself that it wasn’t her speaking, it was the disease.

  11. GetFresh
    May 11, 2015 / 3:51 pm

    Jennifer I read often and comment seldom, but had to over this gut wrenchingly real remembrance, so lovingly told. Know that there is a circle of people that recognize what your mother and you came through, as people and a family. Mostly, thank you for sharing your singular story. You make your mother proud.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:20 pm

      Thank you! And at that comment, I’m crying again! I certainly hope she was proud. She was an amzingly strong woman who fought a horrible desease with as much dignity, as it would allow her.

  12. May 11, 2015 / 2:18 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing that story – very generous of you. You look like your mother. How hard to go through her anger and rejection when you took her driver’s license away. Tough call. Very moving story Thank you again….

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:16 pm

      Thanks Georgia! Yes, the loss of drivers license signaled her loss of freedom and independence. She was furious!

  13. May 11, 2015 / 12:05 pm

    Jen dear, I’m taken with the likenesses between you, your mom and your daughter. What lovely ladies with bright smiles. Your story is poignant, raw and real. I’m sorry of the loss of your mom in such a difficult way. I know that you are a caretaker at heart, and a brave one at that. Your mom was lucky to have you by her side. Thank you for sharing this powerful story.
    Hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day in Napa Valley…bliss!
    xx, Heather

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:13 pm

      Thanks dear Heather. As I reflect, I am a caretaker, I was my Dad’s patient advocate as well as my brother in law’s. I better recover from writing this one before I try to write those ones! xoxo

  14. Jen
    May 11, 2015 / 11:42 am

    I’m so sorry your mom went through this. What a lovely tribute. Happy Mother’s Day.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:10 pm

      Thanks Jen. I hope yours was wonderful!

  15. May 11, 2015 / 9:36 am

    What a powerful story and tribute to your mom, thank you so much for sharing. My father dealt with heart issues and was given similar advice that he did not fully understand. It was hard those last few months, and he decided to pass at the one moment when my mom, sister and I were not with him but all together. When my sister got in the car with me and my mom to take a much-needed meal outside the hospital we all felt… something. We called the hospital and found he had passed. I love and can so relate to your last sentence in this post. Much love to you!

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:10 pm

      Thank you Alison. Isn’t uncanny how they choose when to go, and we “feel” when it happens??I’m glad you had the support of your mom and sister. xoxo

  16. allan dunfield
    May 11, 2015 / 9:23 am

    Wow , I feel the emotion Jen. Your memory is sharp. Those are tough memories. I missed her yesterday as I usually go and sit on her bench with flowers and have a chat. I can’t drive because I am recovering slowly from my shoulder surgery. I didn’t want to ask anyone for a ride, as it is a private thing for me. She is, and always will be with us all. Please don’t think you lost her before she passed. She mentioned you often, and in her state of mind at the end, to mention you, meant you where deeply ingrained in her soul. You are so brave to write this mothers day tribute. We all miss her. I love you sis

    allan

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:07 pm

      I Love you Al! I’m so glad we all had each other’s support through this. And we did, because she intentionally connected us all in a loving family.
      Hope your shoulder heals quickly.xoxo

  17. May 11, 2015 / 7:01 am

    Dear Jennifer you have been through so much as has your lovely Mother, (she looks so stylish)! You are the perfect example of looking at people and really knowing nothing about what life brings them to deal with. Bless your belated Mother, she is in good hands now.

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena
    Bunnies by Hunt Slonem

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:05 pm

      That’s very kind of you Karen. Thank you so much! xoxo

  18. French Basketeer
    May 10, 2015 / 7:17 pm

    omg what a story…my heart goes to you….but I love how vibrant and lovely and strong you are now….and how much you loved your Mom…calling you in the am…XXOO

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 9:04 pm

      Mother’s and daughters are a powerful force. Say Hi to your mom for me:) xoxo

  19. May 10, 2015 / 5:42 pm

    It’ s so very hard to watch our parents disappear right before our very eyes. So sorry you had to go through that.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:59 pm

      Thank you Rena. It’s a drawn out pain.

  20. Maggie Fieger
    May 10, 2015 / 4:30 pm

    You were such an amazing daughter! this such a great tribute

  21. Louise K.
    May 10, 2015 / 4:10 pm

    Thank you for that…it brought back memories. My mother also contracted Hep C, which over decades progressed to cirrhosis. (She donated a blood product, and tainted equipment infected her.) She suffered the symptoms you described and passed away in a similar manner. Hep C is a terrible disease.
    I’m glad your mother and brother were able to reconcile.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:57 pm

      I’m so sorry for you and your Mom! You do know exactly how cruel this desease is. I wish there was more education about it.

  22. Wendy
    May 10, 2015 / 11:00 am

    Beautiful post. The tragedy of having a loved one taken from us bit by bit is cruel and frustrating. Hep c is so brutal, isn’t it? Your mom was a beauty, just like you and your daughter. I find these “parent” days hard when you no longer have a parent. Much love!

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:56 pm

      Thanks Wendy. This has been my toughest one since she died.xox

  23. May 10, 2015 / 10:35 am

    Hepatitis and breast cancer… What a long journey for all of you. I know you read my blog this weekend. We both know what it’s like to lose our mother before she dies.
    XOXOXO,
    Brenda

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:55 pm

      We do and it’s a tough time.
      xo

  24. Sally
    May 10, 2015 / 7:55 am

    I lost my mother to alzheimer’s, July 4, 2000. She came from Arkansas at a very young age, in the back of a horse-drawn wagon. She worked hard all of her life on a farm, raised my sister and me, and touched a lot of lives in a positive way. I think all women who love their children are special mothers.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:55 pm

      They are Sally!

  25. May 10, 2015 / 3:47 am

    A brave & brilliant piece you have written about your beloved mom. When a parent is dying it is like a part of us is dying too. It’s a tough road to go down when we see them fail and become someone we don’t recognize. I still find it hard today, after 5 years, to come to term with. You see so much of you and your daughter in your mom. I guess that’s how our mom’s live on, and that alone brings comfort. Happy Mother’s Day Jennifer and thanks for sharing your mother’s story with us all. xox

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:54 pm

      Thank you Deborah. Writing this was tough, very tough. But it has helped me look at the whole experience from a different perspective.
      xoxo

  26. Lan
    May 9, 2015 / 9:24 pm

    Thank you for sharing what are deeply personal, emotional feelings on this Mother’s Day. This must not have been an easy post to write.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:51 pm

      It wasn’t easy, and still isn’t.Thanks Lan

  27. TexasAggieMom
    May 9, 2015 / 7:59 pm

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful and personal tribute to your mother. Mine was just diagnosed with Alzheimer’s last week, and we are heading down a similar road, so this is particularly timely for me. She won’t believe that she has it and is already angry with me for trying to help. Hoping that your good memories of your mother will help fill the empty places she leaves behind. Happy Mothers’ Day!

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:49 pm

      I’m so sorry to hear of your Mom’s diagnosis!! You have a tough road ahead of you. It’s taken a while for the warm memories to come back. Be strong. sending lovexoxo

  28. Tayrina
    May 9, 2015 / 7:35 pm

    Beautiful words and pictures. There is no better thing than to remember the great moments spent in life with those we love most. Thanks for sharing such an inspiring post. Blessings to you!!!

    W/Love,
    Tayrina from TGAWrites

  29. Susie
    May 9, 2015 / 7:20 pm

    So beautifully written. I am sorry for all that your Mom, you and your family went through. The photo with you, your daughter, and your Mom is wonderful. Your Mom had a beautiful smile. I could see how happy she was to be there with you and your daughter the day the photo was taken.

    Have a lovely Mother’s Day.

    Susie Donahue

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:47 pm

      Thank you Susie. My Mom was so delighted to be there and celebrate with my daughter!! It was priceless.

  30. May 9, 2015 / 5:02 pm

    Oh, my dear, I am in awe of your courage and strength. We said a long goodbye to my mom, whose dementia crept and tiptoed and then snowballed her downhill… So many times my sister and I had to remind each other that the dementia was speaking, not our mom.

    I found your story moving and painful.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:46 pm

      That is a hard thing to remember when hurtful things are said. I’m glad your sister and you could support each other!

  31. Vanessa
    May 9, 2015 / 3:25 pm

    What a beautiful post, mom! I love you.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:44 pm

      Love you sweetie!!

  32. May 9, 2015 / 3:04 pm

    What a very beautiful and poignant story. I am so lucky to still have my mother here with me and who is happy and healthy and still lives on her own at 84!

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:43 pm

      Thanks Mileah. Hug her!

  33. jeannine nye
    May 9, 2015 / 12:48 pm

    A truly touching and heartfelt tribute to your darling mother. What a huge difference it makes when they leave us. You did however, despite her battles have her for longer than a lot of people and she shared in all that you had going.. I was sorry to see that she passed away, but how marvellous she had someone with her. A touching loving tribute, thank you so much for sharing… j I can see where you got your looks from, that picture is wonderful.. hugs from across the pond.. J

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:43 pm

      Thank you Jeannine, My Mom was an amazing woman!

  34. May 9, 2015 / 12:47 pm

    I am so sorry for all that you and your beloved mother went through during her long decline. You have written a lovely tribute to her, and I’m wishing for you peace and love on this Mother’s Day weekend <3.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:41 pm

      Thanks so much Lori!

  35. May 9, 2015 / 11:33 am

    I love your Dad’s words. “The lesson is for us, not her”.

    Sounds as if we had similar journeys. Yours in the physical realm. Mine in the mental. I can truly empathize with your feelings.

    Beautifully written.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:41 pm

      Thanks so much Margaret!

  36. Janice
    May 9, 2015 / 10:42 am

    My mother snuck out on me also, turned my back and she was gone. That was the way she had said she wanted to go, no pleas, begging, or otherwise embarrassing commotion.

    Miss her daily, but she always pops up when I need her, moms are like that.

    Beautiful pictures to hold onto.

    Janice

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:40 pm

      Thanks Janice. They really do choose their time. It’s rather uncanny, the way it happens.

  37. Peter Dunfield
    May 9, 2015 / 10:31 am

    Thank you for this Jen. I just lost my s#*t at the end.
    But what a wonderful description of the final months of our Mom’s life. So tragic that this disease – hep c took her vibrancy and life at such a young age of 72.
    May all those who have this disease and their families get the treatments to save them Mom’s fate.
    Happy Mother’s Day.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:39 pm

      Love you Pete. I’m so glad we were all together, to support each other. I’m still trying to pull myself together after writing this.
      xoxoox

  38. May 9, 2015 / 10:08 am

    What a heartfelt post. Indeed very moving and well told. You had a beautiful mother and I’m sure she lives inside your beautiful daughter. Poignant Mothers Day post.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:38 pm

      My daughter resembles her a lot! She just commented on it when she saw this photo of her Granny!

  39. May 9, 2015 / 9:39 am

    What a terribly sad and poignant story.

    bisous
    Suzanne

  40. May 9, 2015 / 9:31 am

    So sorry your family went through this…..must have been hard to have her so mad at you over the driving situation….sometimes the hardest thing to do is the right thing. You took the high road.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:37 pm

      That was really tough Bryce. For her, it meant losing her independence. It was very hard to do, but my conscience wouldn’t let me do otherwise.

  41. May 9, 2015 / 9:22 am

    Bravo Jennifer, So bravely and movingly told, often we shy away from difficult subjects like illness and death, well written and well said. Happy Mothers Day to you! Kind regards, Alison

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:35 pm

      I didn’t plan to write this post. My fingers just couldn’t stop. I guess I really needed to tell it. Thanks Alison

  42. May 9, 2015 / 9:11 am

    What a terrible and heartbreaking story. Will think of you and your mom this mother’s day.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:34 pm

      Thanks Carol! It was a tough one.

  43. Sheila
    May 9, 2015 / 9:02 am

    What a loveing story about your mother. It touched me deeply. Peace be wih you this Mother’s Day.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:33 pm

      Thank you Sheila!

  44. Karen H.
    May 9, 2015 / 9:02 am

    Long good byes are so hard. I had one with my mom when she suffered from dementia 10 years before she passed. Such a sad but loving tribute to your mom. You were a good and loving daughter and wonderful advocate for her. Have a wonderful Mother’ Day Jennifer! xx Karen

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:33 pm

      Thank you Karen. Being a patient advocate is tough, especially when you love the person! xo

  45. May 9, 2015 / 8:19 am

    I cried. That is all I can say at this moment. I’m with you.
    Kimberly XO

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:32 pm

      I’m still crying and having a hard time commenting. Thanks xoxo

  46. May 9, 2015 / 8:02 am

    Lovely words and lovely photos. In life and in dying we learn and we grieve and we go on.

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:31 pm

      Thanks Beth.

  47. Marguerite
    May 9, 2015 / 7:32 am

    oh Jennifer, what a moving remembrance story. To be an advocate for someone, is a true and precious labor of love. Happy Mother’s Day!

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:31 pm

      Thank you Marguerite!

  48. May 9, 2015 / 7:20 am

    what a beautifully written tribute to your mom! she had to endure so much!!! i have not walked down that road yet (thank God), so don’t know what it feels like. i know she must have loved you so much!!!! happy mother’s day to you, jennifer!!!!! xoxo

    • Jennifer
      May 11, 2015 / 8:30 pm

      Thank you Cathy. This post is still making me cry!

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