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My grandmother is dying, and I am not coping very well.


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My grandma and grandpa raised me after my mom was murdered when I was 7. 

Now, my grandma is dying at 83. Partially her lifestyle and refusal to get aid from doctors, and partially from just the ailments of being that old with health issues. 

I'm not coping well. I called them today and she can't even talk without coughing. Grandpa answers the phone. I haven't heard my grandma's laugh in weeks and it hit me today that I might never hear it again. And I'm sad. Uncontrollably sad about it. 

We used to have hours-long conversations full of jokes and laughter and weird insights into the world. 

What's weird is that she was abusive to me growing up, and has some serious issues even now with how she sees the world and treats people. But for some reason I can ignore all of that because she's going to be gone soon and dammit I'm going to miss her. She's grown so much since I graduated high school and moved away, and I can see that she regrets her behavior when inwas a child. I get mad at her rudeness sometimes, but for some reason when I'm sad about her dying I can't be mad at her anymore. I'm just sad. 

I'm a former correctional officer, I've been in fights, I've been homeless (yay slumlords!). I've worked for shitty people and even been beaten up a couple times. And as I mentioned earlier, I was abused by my grandma, physically and verbally. I am even a CSA survivor. I know pain and suffering, and have walked off things that scare others.

But all of that pales in comparison to the pain I feel in my chest and throat right now, at the thought of never hearing her laugh or seeing her smile again. 

I reached out to a local hospice group for anticipatory grief counseling, but I haven't gone. I want to. But I see the Zoom link in my email and I just can't bear the thought of balling my eyes out to strangers on camera. 

I've done every thing I can do to try and make my grandparent's lives easier, but they won't accept outside help like PRN nurse or a weekly visit for chores and the like. They don't trust anyone outside of me, and I work full time and can't do as much as I'd like. 

I've installed railings and updated the greenhouse, installed efficiency and convenience gadgets and appliances, installed running boards and sprinkler systems, done laundry and house cleaning... Everything. But there's nothing more I can do and it's killing me. 

I'm watching her die of untreated skin cancer, diabetes, heart failure, and pulmonary hypertension. My grandfather has poor eyesight and the early symptoms of dimensia, as well as a cancer treatment that lowers his immunity and testosterone, which makes him weaker. They won't accept outside help, and I'm falling apart. 

I don't know if this forum will help. But maybe talking to people who have been dealing with the same things might at least help me understand what I'm feeling and why. 

If you read this far, thanks. It means a lot that you took the time. I tend to get a little rambly. 

Stay well. 

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Dear Willow,

It's hard caring for parents and grandparents. We all struggle seeing loved ones in this stage of life. 

I wished I had more support too. I found this website Aging Care after my dad passed. There is so much support and good information about caregiving and options for senior care. I hope it will help you.

Please know we are with you and thinking of you.

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