Stepmothers prediction


Some of you may remember the situation I have with my stepmom. She is 93 years old, in excellent physical shape, but starting to fade mentally. She lives alone and will not accept any help from anyone.

Tony and I took her to dinner last night. She seemed more confused than ever. In the middle of dinner she announced her time is coming soon. I was stunned. I asked why she thought that. She said, she is really, really tired, and done.

I was sort of at a loss for words. Remember physically she's perfect, for a 93 year old.

Do you think people can foresee the end when they are getting close? Or do you just think it was just age related depression talking?
After riding ambulance for so long, I say definitely. I've had several patients who have done that too me. You ask them, "Why did you call the ambulance today?" and their reply is, "Because I think I'm going to die."
Every once in a while you save one and they seem very confused.
I think it may be just one of those weird occurances in this wacky world.

Maybe since you say she's starting to fade a bit mentally that she's wrong in her prediction!!
I totally believe that people know. I have seen it too many times to doubt it.
However important our physical health may be to life and longevity, I think that the mental part plays a big role too.

Now, there are those that are dramatic, and say stuff like this frequently - like crying wolf. But if this is not the case with your MIL, I would give serious consideration to her.
She is SO not a drama queen. She also has been reluctant to discuss legal matters with me, but last night said she wants to set up an appointment with her lawyer and me. Which is a great idea. It would have been a great idea years ago!

What do I do for her? What do I say to comfort her? Or do you think she doesn't need comforting. It was all very matter of fact.
She may be right, just based on her own decision that she is done. I think at a certain age people do just get tired and they're ready to move on. Sad It's sad for all of their loved ones left behind, but it's a fact of life. She did have a nice long life though. Just enjoy the time with her that you can.

My grandma is one of my favorite people and she is in her 80's. She also has no health problems, but does seem more withdrawn and tired when I see her. It makes me so sad and I told her she has to live another 50 years. Sad But the truth is they can't stay around forever so we should just value each moment with them that we can.
I do think that people know when their time has come. I don't think they "predict" their death, they can just feel their life is ebbing away. The being tired is a clear sign. There isn't anything magical to say--just tell her what she's meant in your life (if it's positive) and that you'll miss her. You'll know what to say.

I can't tell you how many times someone has said to me "I'm going to die today" and has!
I would just talk with her, and help her make the plans that she wants to. Being supportive and understanding will make her feel a lot better.

Todd's grandma "knew" she was going to die too, and did a wonderful job getting her effects in order. It gave her a sense of control in a situation that otherwise didn't.

Tasker's Mom wrote:

I can't tell you how many times someone has said to me "I'm going to die today" and has!
How many times have they said that and not?

Ron wrote:

Tasker's Mom wrote:

I can't tell you how many times someone has said to me "I'm going to die today" and has!
How many times have they said that and not?

A few times, but the "did dies" far outweigh the "didn'ts"

Now keep in mind saying I'm "going to die" is a whole different matter than "I wish I would die". I've heard lots of older people who WISH they could die but when someone looks at you clarity and calmness and says I'm going to die, BELIEVE THEM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
For about the lasts 2 years, Bernice has said repeatedly, its not a blessing to get this old. I'm ready to die. BUT! Never before, last night, has she said that is coming. That she is so tired, and she knows its near.
I know what you mean Deb. My Dad has been saying for years that he was "ready" to die. I am always careful to listen to him for that switch form "I'm ready to" to "I'm going to"!!!

There is some blessing to be found in the "premonition" of dying. With so many deaths unanticipated and unprepared for it is a good thing to know that your time is coming to an end and having the opportunity to bring closure. Death of a loved one is always sad but it is a fact of life and affords us the opportunity to celebrate the life that was.

I'm sure it's hard for you but how wonderful to have this time now, in anticipate of death, to bring closure!
Yes- I believe people - most notedly the elderly- have a sense that their time is near. John's Dad told us yesterday that "This gig is just about up". I think he is drained physically and emotionally and it is empacting his will to get up each day. That alone makes a difference.
I also believe people can will themselves a little more time. After my Grandma had a heartattack- she was so tired. On the day she died- she had talked to all of her children- with the exception of my Uncle. He had told her he would call at 5:00. Mom said all afternoon she asked what time it was--- 2-3-4.... My Uncle called at 5:00 on the dot. They talked for 15 minutes, and she died at 5:30. She hung on for that call.

Hugs Deb---My thoughts are with you!
Hopefully she is not correct. But at least she wants to make sure everything is taken care of. I think that if one of my loved ones said that to me I would humor them, so if it was true I would know that they had peace of mind at the end. Group hug
At a Mother's Day Dinner, when I was 7 yrs old, my Dad asked my Grandfather what he planned on planting that year in his garden. My Grandfather told my Dad that he wasn't going to plant a garden this year because he wouldn't be around. My Dad said what do you mean? My Grandfather said because he was going to die. I believe this started an argument. Rolling Eyes
My Grandfather died less than a week later of a massive heart attack.

So, I do believe that people know.
I am certain that my grandmother knew she was going to die--in fact, I was afraid that my presence in the hospital (I lived a couple of hundred miles away) would confirm it although in fact, the visit home had been planned for that time for months. It was just a coincidence that she was so ill when I was actually there. But we said goodbye without actually saying it--it would have upset other people, but we each knew and understood.

My mother suffered from dementia for a long time prior to her death; the last time I saw her before her final hosptitalization, she had had a very, very tough winter with some hospitalizations. We thought we would lose her then but she wasn't ready to go and was adamant about that. But that last time I saw her, I knew she was getting ready to go, and she did, a few weeks later.

My Dad seemed to know his time was short even before his diagnosis of leukemia on top of COPD, just after my mother's funeral. He took great pains to let us all know how his estate was arranged, etc. My sisters were horrified--he did this the day of Mom's burial, but the truth was he was much sicker than we realized and I think he knew it. The last time I saw him (I live more than 500 miles away) before he was too sick to talk, I had taken my son down to visit and was going to be back in only 3 weeks, for my third or fourth visit of that summer. I was sure he'd still be there, although I knew he didn't have very long. Sadly, he wasn't, and when I saw him next he was in the hosptital. His wife told me she was sure he knew it was the last time he would see me.

If I could, I'd go back in time and spend a lot more time with my parents. They died 9 weeks apart. There were a lot of difficult times and situations in my family and plenty of disagreements, but believe me when I say that in the end, all that matters is that you love each other. Never, ever miss an opportunity to say it, to show it.
This year will be 3yrs since my father died on Christmas Day. My FIL told us months ago that he was going to die on Christmas Eve, he has been going downhill fast...
Oh my...
Since Bernice told me that, each time I talk to her she sounds weaker and weaker. She even called to say she didn't think she could come for Thanksgiving. But I told her, my son will pick her up and take her home whenever she was ready to leave. So, she agreed to be there.

I really want her to be there. And I really want to make it nice for her.

I have a feeling, this will be her last Thanksgiving.
I know it's hard Deb, but stay strong. Give her as much love and support as you can in the coming days. As much as you will miss her remember that dying is as much a part of life as living. The support you give her now will give you comfort in the years ahead and will help her through this passage.

I have worked with Hospice throughout the years and while many people get all excited about watching babies being born I feel it is a far greater honor to be there when someone dies. Especially when you can contribute to allowing that person to meet the end of their life in they way they would want.

In church part of the litany is the prayer "...for a peaceful ending to our lives, without pain or suffering..." sounds like this might happen. Ginny has offered wonderful advice, so no need to add more. Just get her to the attorney sooner rather than later. Let her know she is loved, has contributed greatly to your family and she will be missed.



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