Lessons learned

This week has been amazing, stressful, painful, filled with happiness and wistfulness…

And I learned:

  • It is urgently needed to meet colleagues more often face to face as the little chats during coffee breaks or dinner can tell you more than 8 hour meetings
  • Take care you have the best colleagues/friends around when your car decided to go on strike as this will turn a horrible situation into a life long lasting memory
  • Before you decide to damn a species because of the behavior of some you know give it enough chances to proof you might be wrong
  • If you fall over a scratch on your chin hurts less than a broken nose even if you think it looks a bit stupid, so learn to protect the important areas
  • Even if you think you have to hurry take the time to check your belongings before you move on
  • Before you murmur about something that’s gone, imagine what could have gone instead and be happy as it could have been worse (and again take care you have good colleagues/friends around)
  • It’s always worth to take second looks or give new chances as even in our age people can develop
  • Be grateful everyday about what you achieved. You might think you’re nothing but people from outside can see things you never thought of.

Thanks to everybody who joined, supported, entertained and hugged me during the last week. You have no idea what that means to me 😘

Day Zero

I’ve started a new journey – not one that I asked for, but life is not known as a walk in the park!

Many of us have experienced the loss of parents and actually I should be prepared a bit better. We have had so many conversations about how it should be, what she doesn’t want and what she would like. But in the end it catches me with my pants down and completely unexpected.

I am infinitely grateful that my mom was able to leave the world so quickly. And that she left on a day that by then was almost perfect. I was allowed to hold her hand, I could tell her how much I love her and that it is okay if she lets go. Unfortunately, I’m sure that she knows for sure that it was a lie when I said I could manage that mighty fine.
We just sat on the beach and planned our next vacation, we were happy to see how much easier it will be because she is now mobile on her own with her electric wheelchair. We terminated my hospital stay, which has now become necessary, draw up a shopping list of what she needs for sewing, what I should get for handicrafts. Clear mundane things …
Along the way we talked about emotional things, such as her fear of tripping hazards in the form of doorsteps or other people’s feet, about the stupid behavior of people who practice clan liabilty or only differ black and white. About the cautious steps as a single who has needs, about men in general, about her and my companions in life and those who pretend they want it to be …
Just about everything that a woman talks about with the one person who means everything to her and whom she blindly trusts (who is usually the BFF, we agree).

We bathe our feet in the cold Baltic Sea and enjoy how the feet dig into the sand and the biting feeling subsides, take pictures and she moans at me that I should kindly pull in the tiny rest of my belly …
At 3:25 pm she took the last photo of me, my cell phone tells me later.

Only a few minutes later I am alone with all the plans, lists and thoughts.
A few reflexes remain and the patient’s instructions, which are too old, cause the helpers to use all the rescue equipment and so I sit in the sand, hold her hand, talk to her and yet I know that her being will never come back, her soul already has left.

In the ambulance, on the way to the clinic, I keep catching myself thinking how she will shake her head or name people nuts when I later tell her about the idiots on the street who are unable to get their car out of the way when the siren sounds behind them.
My hope for a miracle is slowly fading, but I have 30 minutes up there on the front seat to remind myself that she disapeared out there in the sand and that it is only her body, forced to hang in until we reach the hospital.

At 5:45 pm the ICU doctor finally comes with the relieving words that it is over….
Ever since I’m going my way alone – of course not really, there are  many lovely people around, but…. Of course I keep talking to her and I think I’ll never stop, only that her answers will now come through my heart and not through my ears.

I will manage it Mum! Thank goodness there are enough idiots who annoy me, so much bureaucracy that makes me rotate and enough work, so I can’t feel long enough to let myself go. Whoever directs  this is so kind to put that amount of stones in my way that are needed to mobilize my reserves.
And eventually , when all these things are done, I have hopefully slightly learned that you will no longer be on the balcony when I come home or wait for my message when I drive somewhere, but still watch over me.

Actually I’m a person who can look back to many wonderful hours and who is grateful for everything that makes me who I am. So I’m not writing this because I’m looking for regret, but because I have to get it out – like every topic on my blog. And to reach out to others who experience it themselves.

But also to share the experience of what happens when you don’t have a patient provision. A current and valid one, Mums was unfortunately 2 years old!
Between the last picture and the moment the ICU doctor came to me there have been around 2 hours that Mum and I would have spared if we hadn’t postponed “writting it again” to “sufficient after vacation”. How many „please let her go“, „she does not want to depend on devices“ and similar sentences I could have saved after it was sure that she would never be the Brigitte again she wanted to be.
I trust that it was only her body and not her being that was there. The doctors assure me that she didn’t notice anything in the beach chair and I want to believe it, but the pictures of that 2 hours will certainly haunt me for a while and I can only recommend everyone to prevent this!

I like to thank those people who gave up their vacation day to help me. There were not only  rubber necks, there were actually strangers who immediately gave everything and apperantly sent by fate randomly to help me, so that I didn’t have to be alone on the roadside after I left the hospital. You’re right, it means something Kristina and I’m so grateful!
Even if it’s their job, I would like to thank the DLRG of Hohwacht! You pulled me away when it was necessary, looked after my Mum until the ambulance guys took over, you gave me all possible help and supported me beyond our drive off. People easily underestimate what you’re doing while they are enjoying themselves on the beach.

My heartfelt thank you, however, goes to several car drivers who thought that they don’t have to make room for an ambulance quickly and sufficiently that Sunday, September 3rd, 2017 around 4:15 pm to 4:45 pm between Hohwacht and Eutin! Without you, Mum might have arrived at the hospital so early that the resuscitation would have been successful and she would have been forced to hang on to equipment for a while!
I only regret that I prayed at the time instead of writing down car licenses – I would have loved to personally give probs to one or the other!