I lost my mother on October 6, 2007. I was living with her because she had asked me to move in wiith her because she said she felt safer with me there. So, I sold my home and moved in with her. She had had a stroke in 2005 and was getting around o.k. with her walker and we still went to lunch on Saturdays after her beauty shop appointment, then church and lunch on Sundays. We were close all of my life - shopping together, eating together, going on trips together. I loved her so much. My father had passed away when he was only 51 so she was a widow for a long time. One day I came home from work and she was sitting on the living room floor. She had fallen from her walker and broken her wrist. This happened in August 2007. She had to have surgery on her hand. After that, she was never the same. She quit calling me at work at 8 a.m. like she had done for years, she seemed depressed. She had such a big cast on that she couldn't push herself out of a chair into her walker. I had to get home health care for her for during the day while I was at work and then, when I just couldn't do it alone, had to get home health care on weekends. One of the aides was able to get her up and use her walker again for a short time, but mostly she used a wheelchair and always just wanted to go to bed. She didn't want to talk to any of her friends - she said she didn't want anyone to feel sorry for her. I couldn't get her into the car anymore so we didn't go anywhere after that except to her doctor's appointments for her wrist and I had to have help getting her into the car. I just kept thinking that after she got her cast off, she would be back like she was before and we would start going out again on weekends, but that never happened. One night, on October 4, she started crying for help - I didn't know what was wrong with her, I thought she was having a bad dream. More things happened and that morning she had to go to the emergency room because her legs were cold and she had no feeling in them. When we got to the emergency room and they X-rayed her legs, they found a blood clot in her leg. The doctor told me that they would just remove the clot and she would be fine. She was in tremendous pain and was given a pain killer through her IV and was totally out of it. The doctor told me, early that evening that I could go home. That night a doctor from the hospital called me and told me that it was more serious than they first thought - that she had blood clots going from her heart to her legs and that they would have to do surgery to remove them. I got dressed and went to the hospital and was able to see her before she went into surgery and told her I loved her. I stayed in the waiting room during her surgery and finally at 1 a.m., the surgeon came out and told me that the surgery went o.k. but he couldn't assure me that she would make it. I went home and tried to sleep. The next morning I got more phone calls from the hospital. One was a doctor who told me that she was doing fine and not to rush coming out, just take my time. Then, a nurse called me to ask my permission to put a line in her neck to give her medicine because her blood pressure was dropping. Then, another doctor called me and told me that he didn't think she was going to make it and to come right away. When I got to her room she was on a breathing machine and sort of in a coma. I don't think she was aware of anything or anyone. I called for the surgeon and a chaplain. We sat by her side for about four hours and the surgeon told me that by leaving her on the breathing tube I was just delaying her death, that she was not going to live and if she did, she would be brain damaged because she had had another stroke and a heart attack during the surgery and he would have to amputate one of her legs. I knew that she would not want to live that way. I have two brothers but they live out of town and since everything happened so quickly I wasn't able to call them to come in. So, finally, after a lot of thinking and prayer, I made the decision to take her off of the breathing tube and she died immediately. After awhile I went home and called my oldest brother and asked him to call my other brother and tell him. I won't go into anymore details about what happened after that - it was just all a blur - my brother came in and we made all of the arrangements, we had the funeral, etc. To this day, I cannot sleep more than a few hours every night. I live in her house - it is mine now and except for giving some things to the Salvation Army, the house still looks the same as it did when she was there. If it weren't for my loving dog, I don't think I would make it at all. I am still extremely depressed, am seeing a sleep specialist and wondering if I'll ever get better. Tomorrow is her birthday and she would have been 84. I will take new flowers to her and my father's graves which are side by side. If anyone has any suggestions about what I can do to get over my grief and be normal and sleep again, I would appreciate it.

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