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The Waiting Stage

So you guys already know that my great-grandmother is battling cancer. Last spring she was actually diagnosed and recommended to Hospice. However, she’s still here and she’s suffering. My grandmother refused to put her in Hospice and opted to take care of her at home.Initially,  it was a bit much to move her from in and out of her bedroom because she’s gotten so weak. But the doctors ended up recommending that she stay in bed all day.

But I will admit that this situation is extremely hard to deal with. I’ve mentioned before how my great-grandmother has her good moments. Her good moments don’t necessarily come often and I can not take seeing her in her condition. It’s to the point when I go over her house I prefer to hang out in the living room. I have to force myself to go to her room to see her. The woman lying there is not the great-grandmother that I want to remember. The woman lying there is weak and suffering. That is not my great-grandmother. My great grandmother was always full of life. Last time I was home I forced myself to tell her bye as I was leaving. It’s nothing for me to give her a kiss. I’ve been kissing her on her forehead and cheeks all my life. I leaned down kissed her forehead and said I love you. I was so surprised when she whispered I love you too A bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck. That’s a family saying. And I was so happy that we were able to have a moment. Even in her weakest moments she was still able to show me that she was still my great grandma. Regardless of her physical state she was STILL my great-grandma.

Writing this is bringing tears to my eyes. Because I know one of these days I’m going to lose her. The Hospice nurse just told my grandmother that my great grandma was getting weaker. When my mom told me this I just kind of said but haven’t she been getting weaker all along. Even though I’m smart enough to realize that her getting weaker means death may be near. It’s still hard to accept. Last night, I had a breakdown and just cried knowing what’s to come. I mean this is the woman who babysat me pretty much my entire adolescence. My grandma worked so the majority of the time my babysitter was my great-grandma.

I vividly remember the summers over her house. She hated for us to go in and out. We either had to stay in or we had to stay out. She never wanted us to have any of her Frosted Flakes. She never wanted to give us change to go to the corner store. She made us go get our own switches. I still remember the tv schedule Price is Right at 11. Then we watched the news at 12. Then 12:30 we watched the stories. Then the tv was turned off until her other story came on 3. She didn’t want to be on the phone when her stories were on. Her favorite snack was to eat cornbread mixed with buttermilk. We couldn’t sit on her bed. Couldn’t ask no more than 2 questions at a time. She hated questions and she hated picture. Everytime you tried to take her picture she would make a face. We had rules for days.  One of my fondest memories is when my mom used to drop me off at her house before school while I was in the sixth grade. Every morning I would walk in the house and I would stand outside her room to make sure I could hear her snoring. Then I would go and lay down for another hour before she came and woke me up to get me ready for school. 

My granny/great grandma’s house is usually always my first stop once I get home because they always act so excited to see me. It didn’t matter if I was just there the weekend before I knew they were going to hit me with the oh 80’s I didn’t know you were coming home. My great-grandma would always act as if I was a great surprise. The funniest thing is she stayed inquiring about my dating life. She would always ask me so what does your frog look like. That’s the family name for beau. She would always say is he good looking. My response was always awww I don’t have no frog. And she would just get tickled to death. That’s probably the only thing. I wish she could have actually seen me with a frog. Now I know Aunt H was bold enough to say to me you ain’t funny is you…. Even though my great-grandma never asked me that I definitely don’t want her thinking that. lol

During the last year she would say the same thing over and over again. So sometimes when the conversation started  I would switch it up on her. She asked me where I worked. I told her I worked at the hospital. And then I proceeded to tell her  I was doctor. Oh, she fell out laughing and said now I ain’t drunk and I ain’t crazy…. I got the same response from her when I told her that my sister was a dancer. That just cracked me up.

Right now I’m just cherishing the memories. It’s really selfish of me but sometimes I wish people could live forever. Just like Henrietta’s cells are doing. And if I had my way I want my great grandma to be around forever but as her lively self. Her and Aunt Hattie. I really can’t explain the connection that I had with these women. Some of it was unspoken but it didn’t matter to us. I could just go and snuggle up under both of them or playfully go and sit on their laps and this was as a grown woman. LOL My heart just hurts knowing that pretty soon all of the physical is going to be gone. And I’m going to have to rely on the memories.

I talked to my mom the other day and she was saying that my grandma has her good days and her bad days. I can understand that but at the same time my grandmother is extremely blessed to still have her mother at the age of 71. All I know is this waiting stage sucks. I’ve been praying for years to give me strength to get through her passing whenever that time came but it’s unreal knowing that  it could be any day. It just hurts and makes me feel lonely.  I’ve never been the get lonely type. But I can honestly say these last past few months I have been filled with loneliness. I’m longing for these relationships that have been constant my entire life. And they’re not there. All of the things I took for granted. Hearing my great -grandma ask for snuff.  Or just seeing her sitting in her chair. I’m missing all of that.

Just keep my family in your prayers.

Dear God,

Thank you for allowing me to have my great-grandmother in my life for 27 years. Thank you for the memories that I have. Thank you for allowing me to be able to build a relationship with her and thank you for letting me know the importance of appreciating and cherishing her. Lord, I ask you that provide me with the strength during these tough times. I ask that you do your will. I ask that you remove all of her pain. I ask that you remove her suffering. Lord, I ask that you also watch over my grandmother during this time. I ask that you provide her with strength as well. I ask that you resolve all disagreements and conflicts with the family before they even surface. Lord, I just ask that you be our rock. I ask that you provide us with comfort knowing that this transistion should be a joyous occassion. Lord, thank you for the blessings that you have already bestowed up on my family. Thank you for allowing my great grandmother to see 95 years. And in Jesus name I pray…. Amen

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Sunny
    February 4, 2010 at 9:12 am

    80s, this post warmed my heart. I am sorry for what you are feeling right now- and can’t even recommend what to do or what to say in empathy…. You already know allf of the Godly things (ie: pray, be faithful, etc.)

    I feel about my granny how you do about your great gran (I don’t know mine), so I cannot imagine what you are going through right now, but I hear in time, it all will get easier.

    *** e hugs ***

  2. ms80sbaby
    February 4, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    Thanks Sunny!!!!!!! I know they say time in gets easier in time….But it’s still just kind of overwhelming right now….This waiting process just sucks. And I no longer want her to suffer. It’s a reason God is still keeping her here. Maybe for all of us knowing that we’re still grieving over Aunt Hattie. Who knows?? I just hate seeing her suffer in this state. I WANT MY GREAT GRANDMA BACK!!!!!!!!!

  3. Sunny
    February 4, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    No problem girl. I nkow it’s taking a toll on you, and I know your great grandma is Holy filled, so she’s leaning on Him right now and at is at peace with it. It’s harder from you, on the outside looking in because I know you just want to help, but I know she knows you are there and loves you so much for that!

    Grieving two at once is hard….

  1. February 8, 2010 at 9:32 am

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