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What do you do when someone you love is leaving…
Friday, January 10th, 2020

Let’s frame this, just so you see where I’m at in this “process”.

In 2018, after many months, off and on, of personal care by myself and my daughter, my grandmother passed away.

In 2019, after months of in-home care, my father passed away.

Now, my mother’s life is leaving her body. She’s at home where she wanted to be. We’re caring for her with the help of hospice staff that provides baths, checkups, and the supplies and meds we need.

I’m not a depressed person. I don’t cry. I do. But when there’s something I can’t fix, I get quiet. I look for outlets to provide me peace.

While she was in the hospital over the holidays, before they released her to come home to die, I cut and folded pieces of watercolor paper and banded them together with a rubber band. Then I sat down over several days and applied blotches of paint to the paper. When she came home, I began doodling in the times between I had to rise and give her food or water or meds. She was very demanding—not that I minded, because she and I knew what was coming. When she griped too much, I soothed or prodded her into laughter.

Now, she’s not eating. She’s barely drinking. I give her meds for her anxiety and the pain as her organs slowly give up.

And when it’s quiet, I sit and doodle.

I do this for her, because, guess what? She was a true artist. Her paintings and sketches are all over the house. I can barely draw, but putting color and scratches on a piece of paper is soothing for me. And I know she would have loved what I’m producing.

Here’s the cover…

And some of the pages. I’m not finished, yet. I hope there’s still some time…

I don’t mean for this post to be a downer. I’m generally a happy person. I laugh a lot. Still do. Even standing in my mother’s room with family, listening to her labored breathing, we find funny stories to tell about her. It’s at night, after I’ve checked on her, given her comfort, that I walk across the hall to her office and begin doodling, because I’m not ready for sleep.

13 comments to “What do you do when someone you love is leaving…”

  1. Ellen Wulf
    · January 10th, 2020 at 11:19 am · Link

    It’s not easy. Nor does it get easier. It becomes manageable. Give yourself permission to feel what YOU feel. You will never be a downer to us friends, cause we know you and understand the process. My parent have been looking down on me for over 30 years. In my mind, they’re up there jitterbugging and watching me go through life. They visit regularly through the guise of wildlife in my yard. My heart is with you in the coming time….I’m here if you need anything I can help with.

  2. Pansy Petal
    · January 10th, 2020 at 3:02 pm · Link

    *tight hug* I think you are doing well. What a beautiful way to honor your mother in this trying time.

  3. Katherine Smits
    · January 10th, 2020 at 3:24 pm · Link

    Beautiful, touching, and poignant.

  4. Diana Cosby
    · January 10th, 2020 at 3:51 pm · Link

    Delilah, you’re an amazing person with such a huge heart. Your drawings are a beautiful, heartfelt and soul-touching tribute to your mom. Take care, and I’m on this end if ever you need to talk. *Hugs*

  5. flchen1
    · January 10th, 2020 at 4:53 pm · Link

    Hugs for you and your mom and your family, Delilah. I’m thankful you can be there for her, and you have this time together. Love your artistic outlets!

  6. Ani
    · January 10th, 2020 at 5:24 pm · Link

    Virtual Hug and praying for you

  7. Pamela Reveal
    · January 10th, 2020 at 8:05 pm · Link

    Lost my Dad Dec 20. Doing what you are doing takibg care of him. I found a app where you can paint. I kniw its just clicking one color or another in to a spot but the colors is what comfort me. So I happy you are doing somethibg tgat will be able to bring comfort to others when they need a little color, oeace, comfort in their lives
    Sending prayers

  8. Elizabeth Andrews
    · January 10th, 2020 at 9:32 pm · Link


  9. Leslie P Garcia
    · January 10th, 2020 at 11:39 pm · Link

    Hugs and love. Your blog touched me. May your Mom find peace. I know she’ll be with you always.

  10. ButtonsMom2003
    · January 11th, 2020 at 1:53 am · Link

    I’m sorry you are having to go through this again and so soon. You are too hard on yourself – you ARE an artist. You paint with words but you also create amazing things when you craft.

    One of the hardest things I’ve found about getting older, especially living in an over 55 community, is dealing with the loss of friends. It doesn’t really get easier but I try to remember the fun times we had together instead of dwelling on the loss.

    Sending virtual hugs. <3

  11. Sue Payton
    · January 11th, 2020 at 6:56 am · Link

    It takes a lot out of you. My mom wasn’t at home, she wa in a nursing home, which my sister put her in. She had emphysema. She was diagnosed in 87. She died in 2018. She just wasted away and it was aweful to watch. But I went to see her and we talked. She loved search a word puzzles and chocolate. We just talked about what she used to be able to do. That’s all she used to talk about. She used to be an active person. It’s not a good pic, but the last one I got was of her and me together at the nursing home. I really miss her and love her.

  12. Heather
    · January 11th, 2020 at 6:27 pm · Link

    That’s beautiful and I’m sorry. I know how you feel.

    I don’t pray but I will send you positive energy.


  13. Delilah
    · January 16th, 2020 at 11:43 am · Link

    Pamela and Sue, so sorry for your losses. Loss is something we will all share at some point in our lives.

    Thanks to everyone for your “hugs”.

Comments are closed.