Sunday, 13 July 2014

The Woman With Nine Lives.....

 

 
 
I've grown up to believe my Mum has super human powers. Those of you who dispute the fact that Super Heroes exists, are deluding yourselves, I can prove it, she's called My Mum.
 
I knew from a very early age that my mums life hadn't been the easiest. We were an open family, no secrets, as it should be.....would you like to hear about her nine lives?
 
 
Her first life was used up, at the age of thirteen when her, (very much loved), father died suddenly. Now her dad, by all accounts was one of the best husbands, fathers, friends, solider you could ever wish to meet. Her mother literally fell to pieces, and was never the same again. At this young age she took on the role of mother to her baby sister, housekeeper, and carer to her own mum. Money was very tight and she learnt very quickly how to produce delicious meals out of almost nothing.
 
 
Personally I don't think she ever really got over the loss of her dad, she would talk about him as I was growing up, I wish I had met him.
 
 
Her second life was used up, when as a young woman, her heart was broken. She trusted her heart to a lying, cheating man, and consequently she was left, pregnant, unmarried, and abandoned by her family and friends. Outcast and alone, she fought and won, to keep her baby girl. No mean feat in the 1940s, and I am so, so proud of her for being able to do this. I'm not sure I could have been so strong. I don't know if she ever heard from him again, he was much older, with a family......perhaps she was looking for a father figure?
 
 
With a young baby to care for, and no social security to rely on, mum soon became very vulnerable and got jobs where she could. I know at one point she was surviving on an egg and an orange a day, so her daughter could eat. Mum became very undernourished, and during the 1950s had not one, but two bouts of TB. Luckily by this time her family had stepped up to the mark and were supporting her, I'm not sure what would have happened to my Big Sis otherwise.
 
 
Now how many lives is that? Four.
 
 
When she had recovered from her bouts of TB, mum got herself a great job and financially supported her daughter and mum. They settled in to a pattern. Life was ok, lots of good memories and my Big Sis didn't go without. She then met and married my dad.....and two more little girls joined the family! And he loved us all the same.
 
 
Over the next few years, as I was growing up there was a couple of near the knuckle events for mum, a burst appendix and an anaphylactic shock, but she survived.....yep a super hero by any accounts!
 
 
 
Now my mum, as you can tell, has worked hard all her life. When we were growing up we had a little shop. Mum worked from 8am to 10pm (9pm on Sundays!) EVERY DAY.....no holidays, no Christmases, just work, work, work. During their marriage my mum also had her father-in-law, and her own mum live with us.
 
 
 
In 1987, when I married they decided to retire. They got a little council flat and their pension and the world was there oyster. The sense of freedom for her was huge, she joined the over 50s club, yay....a life at last! Within the year she almost died again, with bowel cancer. Now how many lives.....seven.
 
 
Mum survived, and as always made the most of her life. When dad died she still carried on, getting out and about....holidaying with family and friends. She broke her hip, not a near death experience, that one just slowed her down and left her with a hobble!
 
 
Then a couple of years later, she got bowel cancer again, at the age of 81 she had her bowel removed, and had to learn how to live with a stoma. Very difficult, but she did it.....inspirational mum! And a couple of years later, Alzheimer's struck, and the mum we knew left.
 
 
A couple of days ago we learnt that mum has an infection that is causing her flesh to die. Her toes and foot are turning black. Hospital treatment isn't really an option, with her advanced dementia, an operation to remove the dead flesh wouldn't be done. She's on strong antibiotics and after my insistence, pain relief.
 
 
Now you know me for my positivity and my don't ask why, because it's a pointless question....but I am asking why, I'm screaming WHY, WHY, WHY! Why should a woman, who's gone through so much in her life, who's ALWAYS put others before herself, end her life in this way?
 
 
Everyday someone will be with her, I want to fill her room with love....and flowers, she loves flowers....and chocolate when she wants. She's on her last life, and we all know this one will get her, eventually.
 
But I also know My Mum, my Super Hero won't go without a fight. It's been a difficult couple of days for her. I rang this morning to see how she was, she's had a good nights sleep and woke perky.....PERKY! God, I love that woman!
 
 
 
She's the woman who called me.....
 
 
 
Ada Bea :) xxx
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

68 comments:

  1. Oh Ada, your mum is an inspirational lady. Thinking of you and sending love, Bee xxx

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  2. Your mums life makes me fell very humble. What a woman hey, so bloody cruel to get this infection, but it sounds as if she'll be in charge of it. These days aren't going to be easy are they, but you're her daughter and she's given you that Determination to roll your sleeves up, face all and get on. Much love to you my lovely x

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  3. Your Mum must have a truly amazing spirit to have overcome all that has come her way. Hugs to you. xx

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  4. Thinking of you at this tough time Ada.
    I loved reading your mums story, what an inspirational person she is.
    Jacquie x

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  5. There is nothing I can say Ada Bea, except I'm thinking of you and your amazing Mum x

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    1. I completely agree with Kylie and can't find the words.......your mum is amazing, and so are you.
      Take care of yourself too.
      xx

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  6. Ada my prayers are being said as I write this for you and Mum, such a moving blog you have shared with us, sorry I have been away so catching up on all I missed. She sounds an amazing lady and she has made you what you are today, spend as much time with her as you can, chatting about the good old days I found was what Mum wanted to do, what you said to her 5 minutes beforehand she forgot but long term memory is usually better. And yes make sure they give her all she needs to keep the pain away. God bless you both

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  7. Your post has moved me to tears truly inspirational ,love and hugs to you both.

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  8. What an amazing woman and your pride for her shines through. Thinking of you both. x

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  9. Your mum sounds like a wonderful mother, one thats always put her kids first. Your mums lifes story shows me a woman who's determined. Im so sorry she is unwell now. Hope she is kept comfortable and she will have all the love she needs from you ♡

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  10. I can't word what I want to say but I am very humbled. x

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  11. and what a tribute to her.....not just your words, but YOU!!!

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  12. Dear Ada Bea
    The circumstances sound very similar to that of a very dear friend of mine who I lost a couple of months ago. She had Alzheimer's and went into hospital with a broken hip. She wasn't treated well there but that is a different story. She got a similar infection due to lack of blood supply and yes her toes and foot turned black. Operating was likewise not an option. I was told that it was an extremely painful condition and morphene was given. Please be insistent on the pain relief. Alzheimer's patients often can't tell you about pain. My friend always said she had none, but if you asked her if she was comfortable, sometimes she said no, sometimes also there would be some restlessness. I sometimes got her pain relief topped up and afterwards it was evident she felt much better. Mostly though the levels of medication for pain were good and she was relaxed and peaceful. The diagnosis and lack of treatment is a shocking one I know. It's hard to take in.

    This lady suffered a lot in hospital - in our view unnecessarily, and due to the hip operation and lack of understanding of Alzheimer's. However, her pain was well managed because she had a good doctor (the nurses were almost all absolutely horrible - rude, impatient and uncaring and completely ignorant of Alzheimer's - terrible really). From diagnosis of the infection she lived about 3 weeks. The hospital was a horrible place but she was moved just before she died into an ordinary care home which was so much better, and for that we were grateful. She did die peacefully and well cared for in the end. Her family was not much in evidence but her friends and neighbours had enabled her to be cared for at home for two years and we continued to be there.

    It's important to speak out for your mother, Alzheimer's is not treated very well or understood. Always remember the person as hospital staff tend not to. My friend was a lovely special lady who I will always remember. She was strong in spirit and we could always see her character even in the depths of her confusion which was great. I miss her very much but I am so much the better for having known her and I will remember what I learnt from her through her patient journey through her illness. She always had her dignity, it was not possible to take it from her.

    I wish you well, love is always recognised. I know your mother will feel it when you visit her and know your presence even if she can't tell you. I do just have to say that music was hugely important and made her happy and responsive when she was unresponsive to much else. She also liked to look at pictures especially the things that meant a lot to her, like flowers and birds.

    Thinking off you.
    Sara xx

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  13. My thoughts are with you. What an amazing lady your Mum sounds. Life is so unfair at times. xx

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  14. What an incredible woman - such resilience and spirit. Thank you for sharing her story. You are both fortunate to have each other.

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  15. Ada Bea your mum must be an extraodinary lady and i really love to read her story. When i was in trouble , stressed by work or other stuff i start to think about my mother, that lost her father when she was a teenager, and to my grandmother that grew up 4 children alone with a herd of sheeps and i realize that I can work it out. They are super hero and give us a bit of super powers! Hugs:::Silvia

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  16. Be kind to yourself as well as others.....keep the good memories to the front

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  17. I send you and your Mum and your sisters love and hugs and all best thoughts for things to go as well as they can do. Your Mum sounds like an amazing woman who had an amazing daughter in you. xxxxxxxx

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  18. What a beautiful piece Ada, wishing you all strength!

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  19. She sounds like a very special lady

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  20. Your love for your dear Mum is so clearly evident Ada. And I'm sure she survived all these lives because of her love for her family. I don't believe there's any other stronger force. This is a cruel way to end, but you being there for her is what she will want the most. You're right to demand continuous pain killers if that will help make her comfortable now. Take care my dear friend. Lots of hugs and love sent your way. Wendy xox

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  21. May your Mums days pass as peacefully as they can. May your love and support help her and may your memories of such an inspirational woman help you adjust to life without her . Love Linda

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  22. sending you a big hug Ada, your mum sounds like such a positive woman!

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  23. Sending you and your mum all my best wishes.

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  24. Oh Ada what a wonderful story and how very hard it must be for you to know your poor and amazing Mum has had to endure so much in one lifetime. It just doesn't seem fair!!! I pray that by some minor miracle the infections clears and I am sending you so much love. You are so fortunate to have had the pleasure to share a life with someone as special and courageous as your Mum. Fill her room with as much love as you can my dear xoxo

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  25. Ada you have moved me so much as i read this!
    what a wonderful daughter you are, you obviously get it from having such a wonderful Mum as a role model.
    My heart and best wishes are all for you today and of course your amazing mother, what more is there to say at this very hard time...life can be cruel and unfair but its always good because its life, hearing your story makes me appreciate mine and all the little moments too...lots of love to you and yours especially your Mum
    daisy j xxxxxx

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  26. What a beautiful mother! Wish you , your mother and all the people who are with you the best!
    Greets Françoise

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  27. your Mum's amazing, sending you lots of love. X

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  28. Sorry, but no words come to mind, but a feeling of sadness and fear for your lovely mum ....
    God Bless Her .........xx

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  29. Heartfelt hugs to you, Ada. I am lost for words and so very humble.

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  30. I don't comment often but I found this post incredibly moving.
    What an incredible story and what a special lady your mum must be..
    Don't know what to say, except that I am sending lots of love your way..

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  31. What beautiful words to describe a super mum.

    I greatly feel with you the same big feelings (my mum is 78, she has been in hospital for the last 3 months, she got home last week, next week she will be a guest in our home because she doesn't know how to look after herself very well)

    Lots of strength for you!
    Bless your dear mum!

    Brigitte
    from Belgium

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  32. Resilience is a word tossed around a lot these days. It is not something that can be taught but it is something that we learn through experience. Your mother is heroic in the everyday way that so many of her generation were, you just rolled up your sleeves and got on with it. Her life was full of work and setbacks and grief but she showed you what love and resilience looks like and her love was a great treasure for you and your family. To pass surrounded by that love is all we can ever wish for and it sounds like you are giving that love and resilience back to her as she becomes more frail. People like you mum are the stories we need to hear, thank you for your loving tribute, your mum will live on in the love you have.

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  33. Your Mum is a truly inspirational and amazing lady! Obviously she has passed her amazing spirit onto you too!
    Wishing you both love in your difficult times xx

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  34. In tears... a woman in a million for sure... I send you all my love Cass x

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  35. Super woman and what a legacy to leave to you. Thinking of you all at this difficult time.
    Best wishes
    Jenny

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  36. This story made me realize that my suffering is nothing compare to your mom's , thank you so much. My story published in a magazine.

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  37. Super woman is an understatement my lovely Ada, what an incredibly beautifully strong spirited woman your mum is. Thank you for sharing this with us, wow! Sending love and comfort and prayers to you and your mum and family xox Penny

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  38. Your mum really has been a wonderful woman through all her life, and your tribute to her is very touching.
    Thinking of you and sending love.
    Helen xox

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  39. What an inspiration. Life really can be so very hard to understand. Thinking of you dear lovely Ada Bea and sending my love xxx

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  40. You and your Mum added to the prayer list.

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  41. No words, just sending ***hugs*** & prayers

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  42. My thoughts are with you. What a lovely brave woman.

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  43. Oh Ada Bea, no words just tears, humble tears and prayers for this woman you call MOM!!! SUPER MOM!!! Thinking of you and your family!!!!
    Love
    AMarie xxx

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  44. I lost my own superhero 8 years ago, and not a day goes by when I don't think about her - taken far too young at 67. I hope that you and your family get through this as best you can. My thoughts and hugs are with you xx

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  45. Thank you for this beautiful post, Ada Bea, such a tribute to a life courageously and fully lived, even still! She is a lucky woman to have you - probably why she still fights to hang on, just to see what flowers you have brought her today. Love to you and a huge hug to her, Chrissie xxx

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  46. What a wonderful woman Ada! It's just not fair, chuck ... thinking of you all xxxx

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  47. Dear Ada Bea.
    Hello. I've come to this blog via Bobo Bun and later than everyone else who has commented and though I don't know if you'll read right to the very end I had to leave a comment.
    My mum was my hero too. Sadly she died way too young, just had her 50th birthday. Growing up your mum is just there isn't she, you tend not to always pay attention to her life, to the life your parents have, being too busy in a selfish way, getting on with your own. But I realised as a girl in my late teens that my mum had a raw deal when it came to marriage and my dad. She deserved much better, she deserved more love and tenderness and respect and kindness than he showed her... he couldn't/wouldn't show it to anyone. I tried to make up for it and loved her with my heart and soul. I know I let her down a time or two, but bless her, she never showed it, she loved me as a mum should, unconditionally, warts and all as they say. She had no warts, an ex-boyfriend I am still in contact with fifty years down the line almost, remembers her with such affection. It is forty years since she died next year, I miss her still, it hurts still. She went mad, literally, at the very end with a brain tumour, and didn't know me. That was incredibly hard to cope with, as was watching her suffer. Nobody deserves to suffer like my mum, like yours.
    I send you hugs, even though I don't know you, because sometimes a virtual hug from a stranger can be comforting. I hope mine is, and will think of you through these hard, sometimes dark, times.

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  48. Ada, your mum sounds like a truly remarkable woman, a fighter and a survivor, full of love. I'm a bit in awe of her. It's not fair, what she's been through, what she's going through now, and I don't have any answers, but just know that I'm thinking of you and your family. xx

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  49. I've just shed a tear at your mums incredible life. I've learnt alot about dementia and altziemers through family members over the last few years. Every now and then you might just get a glimpse or sentence that shows their true character. Your Mother was made of strong stuff it sounds like a cliché but "they don't make them like that any more" I wish you both all my love and strength for wherever this awful infection takes youbboth xxxx

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  50. What a beautiful post, I love hearing about inspirational women, and your Mum has touched my heart. I'm certain with love and courage you will be by your Mums side as her situation develops, and those memories you've mentioned will be with you always. Much love x

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  51. I'm so sorry to hear about what you and your Mum are having to go through right now. Your Mum has created a legacy of strength for you to follow. My hugs and prayers go out to you and your family <3
    -DianeM

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  52. Much love, thought and prayers with you and all the family x

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  53. A wonderful woman , Ada , a super hero indeed. Thankyou for sharing her life,you wrote it beautifully. so very touching .I dont know what to say, but biggest of hugs and love to you and your family. Love julieXxxxxx

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  54. Thinking of you and your Mum x

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  55. Clearly yours is a family of incredible women. I'm so sorry to be reading that one of those women is nearing the end of her story. And that you are in the middle of such a difficult chapter of yours. I will be thinking of you all x

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  56. Thinking of you and your mum, hope the break does you both good x

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  57. I am at a loss for words as I wipe a tear away. Take care of yourself Ada. You must keep yourself healthy to stay strong enough to continue to hold up everyone else. <3

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  58. Tears in my eyes,don't know what to say.HUGE HUGS,thinking of you.xxxx

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  59. Oh Ada ... I am so sorry. She really is a super hero and it is just so sad that after all she has been through it has now come to this. I feel for you and your family, I really do. I hope you continue to find the strength you need for as long as it takes. M xx

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  60. So sorry to hear about your mum Ada. Alzheimer's is no way to end her remarkable life. You and your family are in my thoughts xxx

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  61. What a lovely post, your mum sounds amazing, just reading it has bought tears to my eyes and also made me think of my lovely mum who died suddenly when she was 70, 12 years ago now but still hurts like hell. lots of love Christine xxx

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  62. Ada I have missed your last couple of posts - so this post took me by surprise. My thoughts and prayers are with your mum, with you and your family. I loved reading your mums story - fantastic determination! She must be such a character! Thinking of you all xx

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  63. I am sending huge buckets of love and strength to you, I imagine this must be incredibly tough. I love how you have written about your MUm in these last few posts, she sounds wonderful. But then you are too. Take it gently..
    Lx

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  64. What an inspirational woman, I can feel every ounce of love you all have for her. I hope her ninth life will be her legacy- this kind, fabulous woman who will be so proud of you all. I'm so moved by your post! She's one heck of a lady and so are you xxx

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