Saturday, August 2, 2008

A Week Full of Emotions/Catch up

Saturday, July 26- It was Aly's birthday.  Happy 1st Birthday Aly!!  To celebrate we went to Lagoon; oh wait, Aly went to my sister's house while the rest of us went to Lagoon:)  It was Brett's work party and they paid for us to go.  We wanted the kids to enjoy so we left Aly behind.  It was fun and the kids had a good time.

On the way home Josh called to inform me that the hospice nurse decided to take my mom off her steroids completely and that Saturday might be the last day she would be able to communicate with us.  Brett dropped me off and I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening with her.  
She was acting really strange all day.  She slept most of the time but then she'd wake up only to be surprised that she was still here.  She kept talking to people that weren't there.  When she looked at me it was as if she was looking through me.  It was really strange.  It made me scared.  I cried a lot this day.  It was the first day that I wanted to leave.
I said the family prayer, told my dad I would take the early shift Sunday morning to help him, gave my mom a hug and told her I loved her.  She said it back:)  I left.

Sunday, July 27-I got a call at 5:30 in the morning.  "She's gone!"  That is all my dad said.  I grabbed a few things and ran out the door.  
When I got there she was still sitting in her wheel chair.  The oxygen compressor was still going.  But there was no life left in her.  She was gone.  The body sitting there was just a shell for my mom's spirit.  My mom was somewhere else.
I took off her oxygen tube and we turned off the machine.  We waited for everyone to arrive.  It was weird.  One minute tears, the next complete shock.  Then anger, then fear.  I felt all of those emotions in a 10 minute period.
After everyone got to the house the men lifted her out of her chair to lay her on the bed.  She hadn't been able to lay down for over 3 months.  We wanted to see her laying down.  Finally at peace.
The hospice nurse came, cleaned her up and changed her clothes.  The mortician got there at about 9:00 and prepared us to take her.  We all said good-bye.  It was an empty feeling to say good-bye to a body.  It was not my mom.  She wasn't there.  I looked around the room as if I'd see her somewhere else because she definitely was not in that body.  Then they took her away.

Immediately Jenn, Scott, and I cleaned up her room.  My dad didn't want any evidence of cancer.  No more pills, oxygen tubes, ice cups, foot lotions, head rests, wheel chairs.  He wanted it out.  So we changed their bed, cleaned the carpet, vacuumed the room and got it back to the way it was 3 months ago.  It was our way of coping.  Stay busy.
We went to sacrament meeting with dad. And the rest of the day was a blur.  It was hard to go home that night.  I didn't want it to be real.  I wanted it all to go away. 

Monday, July 28-It was exactly 3 months ago today that she was diagnosed.  3 months!!!  What in the heck just happened to our family?  This wasn't supposed to happen.  I am way too young to lose a mom.
I woke up to 2 angels who dropped everything and drove all the way from Colorado to be here with me.  Erica and Ashley came to my rescue.  They stayed at my house and took care of everything at home so I could be with my family.  They will never know how much this meant to me.
We began planning the funeral.  Obviously we knew this day was coming so many of the plans had already been made.  Dawn, Megan, Josh, Adam, and I chose the flowers for the funeral.  We bought new temple clothes to bury her in because we divided her old temple clothes for each of us to have a piece.  Then we met my dad, Ashley, Jenn, and Scott at the cemetery to pick out a headstone.  
Is this really happening?

Tuesday, July 29-Jenn, Dawn, Ashley, Megan, and I met at the mortuary to dress my mom.  Too personal to record here but I will say it was neat and I am glad I did it.  I spent the whole day thinking about my talk and feeling so overwhelmed.  
That night I got a blessing from Brett to help me find the words for my words came.  I was up until 1:00 am and woke up at 5:00 am.  Somehow it came together.

Wednesday, July 30-I helped Dawn set up for the viewing at the church.  She put together old pictures of mom when she was a young girl, a teenager, a young mother, and a grandma.  She gathered many of the blankets our mom made as well as all our baptism dresses.  It was beautiful.  It looked wonderful.
I came home to get ready and then went back to prepare for the viewing.  It began at 6:00 and went until about 9:30.  So many people came.  The line was very long for most of the night.  I was touched at how many of my friends came.  I have felt so loved during this crappy time.  
But I must say I didn't want to be there at all.  I didn't want to socialize.  I was numb and I wanted to be anywhere else but there.
My dad held up very well and was very touched by all their loved ones who showed their support.

Thursday, July 31-The funeral.  Today was a very hard day.  But we were busy so it went by fast.  We had a viewing before the funeral.  Then it came time to close the casket.  Again, that isn't my mom but it is the last tangible part of her.  It was hard to say good-bye.  
This was the first time my kids were there.  For the last 2 weeks they have been home with babysitters.  I was wondering how they would handle seeing grandma.  Tobe was so cute.  He kept saying that she was asleep.  He'd reach in and touch her hand.  When I'd put him down he'd say, "I want to see Grandma again."  But it came out, "I see Grandma again?"  I kept saying, "Yes you will see Grandma again."
When they wheeled the casket out he said, "Bye Bye Grandma!"  And waved good-bye.  

The funeral program:
Song-"Each Life That Touches Ours For Good"
Prayer -Scott Allen
Obituary reading-Aaron Hall
Speaker-Jenn Allen
Speaker-Dawn Hall
Song-grandchildren and girls
"Teach Me to Walk in the Light"
"I Am a Child of God"
"Families Can Be Together Forever"
Speaker-Ashley Marsee
Speaker-Amanda Hatch
Song-Josh and Adam Dorius
"Keep My Kids Still"
written by Adam while in Peru
Speaker-Josh Dorius
Speaker-Adam Dorius
Remarks-Bishop Ziser
Song-"God Be With You til we Meet Again"
Prayer-Brett Hatch

As you can see we all got the opportunity to talk.  This was extremely hard for me.  There are no words to describe how much I loved my mom.

Jenn, Dawn, Amanda, Ashley, and Megan
Megan is Josh's sweet wife.  She is an angel.  My mom adored her.

Our family

Hayden and Tobe .  They looked so handsome.

We put our LiveStrong bracelets on the casket.  We're DONE with cancer.  Cancer sucks!!!

Friday, August 1-Today was lonely.  I felt empty all day.  My sweet mother-in-law came to be with me and tend the kids during the funeral.  She has been such a help.  I was with her all day but I still felt alone.  My mom left me with such a void.  I don't think anyone will ever be able to fill the hole she left.

Saturday, August 2-Brett and I went to the temple.  It was peaceful.  I didn't expect to see my mom or feel her.  I just wanted to feel peace and I did.  I was calm for the first time in 3 months.

Now what??  I don't even know where to begin.  I don't know how to heal.  I don't know how to feel.  I want to call my mom so bad and ask her what I do now.  She would know.  But she's not here.  Everyone who has been through this has warned me that the hard times are still ahead so I want to be prepared when they come, but I don't know how.
The only way to describe how I feel is empty...


UT Halls said...

I feel the same - EMPTY!

I know we have each other. Each one of us is a piece of the Dorius puzzle. But Mom's piece is missing and therefore the picture/puzzle is not complete. It never will be. How do we go on??

I feel confused and dazed.

I do know that I love each one of my family members and love to be with you all. Somehow it helps to just be in the same room. Being together will get us through. Even if it is just one minute at a time.

Lauren said...

Amanda... it's Lauren, your sis in law Ashley's friend...I'm so sorry to hear about your mom. I'm so grateful that Ashley and Erica were able to help you in this difficult time. I wish that I could help you, too. Hang in there and know that I am praying for you and your family. Loves...

Jamie Densley Fieber said...

Read your post.... want to help any way I can. I know that we have usually only seen each other at huge family gatherings and such but Brooke and I are always there, whenever you need. Sometimes I still feel lost and want to ask my mom for advice on how to cope and she lets me know little things in special ways. Call whenever, seriously it doesn't matter the time:). 801-310-1606

Debbie said...

You just have to keep going and try to find the joy in little things. This will be the hardest thing you ever do, I think. You can call anytime you want. All her friends are feeling it too.

Kelli said...

It sounds like it was a beautiful service. I'd love to read your talk sometime, if you wouldn't mind. That's really neat that all of you were able to speak and pay tribute to your mom.

All of this probably still seems surreal to you. Going full force for 3 months, doing every thing you could for your mom, hanging on to every day you had with her, and now... I can't even imagine how hard this must be.

I think if you could call and talk to her, she would thank you for being such a devoted, loving daughter and for all the sacrifices you & your family have made over the past few months. Then I think she would tell you that it's okay to be sad, that she loves you and will miss you too, and that she's always watching over you. I think she would want you to feel like you can focus more on yourself and your little family again and to give the kids extra hugs for her. :)

I hope to talk to you soon when you are feeling up to it. Tell Aly "Happy B'day" for us. Try to get some rest if you can.

Shauna said...

Amanda, We are so very sorry for the loss of you mom. The funeral was so special. We talked about how each of you spoke about the different, amazing sides of your mother and the fact that you all felt like her favorite. Jenn, about her nurturing side and how it has helped in her mothering. Dawn, about her style and grace, her likes and dislikes. Ash, about her sense of humor and warmth. Your talk was so moving and you could tell it was difficult to get through. So touching. Josh, about his personal struggles and how your mom helped him through and in the end he helped her so much. And Adam sharing how the gospel was such a big part of her life and how it helped your family in these last months. It was such a tribute to your mom and very touching.

Marti said...

I don't know what to say. I just want to say that I love you and I think about you everyday and pray for you every night. I dido the comment that cancer SUCKS!

Logan and Ashley said...

Oh Amanda I am so sorry. I hate that you have to go through this and that you are so sad. I want to take all of the pain from you!! I love that you are a part of our family and for me this process has been such a learning experience. You are so amazing and so strong. I can't even comprehend what you are going through... I wish I could do more. I have heard that time will heal you. I am sure it doesn't mean that you will ever forget your mom or have your moments of longing, but I am sure you will find happiness again. With the way you describe your mom, I know she would want you to be happy. I do know also that people need to mourn. Take your moments to remember her and be sad. It is the only way you will be able to move on... You are so right that no one will be able to fill her shoes. That is okay. You had a great mother and a great relationship with her. Someday it will be a joyous reunion and all of those feelings of having her here will come flooding back. I know that families are eternal and that some day you will get to be with her again. It will seem like forever, but it will happen. Don't wish the days away, but live each day moving forward. Looking forward to that day. I talk like I know so much about this... I don't, but I know that trials come to us for a reason. Sometimes just because they have to happen, it is part of life, and sometimes because we need them. You may never know why this had to happen to your family at this time in this life, but some day it will make sense and you will be better for your strength through it all. Please know that I love you. I think about you all the time and pray for your comfort. I can't say that Heavenly Father owes me anything, but I hope that with my little faith I can pray to my Father and He will comfort you. Be strong, cry and cry, it is okay to be sad and call if you need anything!! I can listen or I can try to take your mind off of things. Whatever you need, I will do it!! :0)

Jenna said...

What a week! I am so sorry that you have to go through this. The funeral service was amazing and your talk was a wonderful tribute to your mom. Your mom had so many amazing qualities and sounded like a great mom. She has inspired me to be better.

Kami said...

I am in tears. I cried through the whole funeral even the part when Adam said that "he is his best friend's mother". ;) My mom cried tonight at Becky's house. We want to tend again, so call me. I am glad that you updated the blog even just to record this time. I can't even imagine the range of emotions you are going through. We love you guys.

Tina said...

Amanda you are much stronger than you realize. Tina and I have been checking in on you guys through the blog which has seemed to be a great way for you to communicate your feelings. We just lost a very close family friend in November, who wnet from a picture of perfect health to gone in 6 weeks. It is still hard sometimes to think that you are not going to see that person in the usual routine from here on out. However, they are always with you, remember who your Mom was prior to the cancer, remember what she has inspired you to do, who she has inspired you to be. You are a great mother and her legacy will live through you. You have handled this trial with poise and dignity and have been such an example to us and others. We love and miss you!!!

Ben and Tina

Becky, yep said...

oh! It so hard...Ash said it's just RUDE!
Your Mom is such a special person and I know you'll see her around here before you join her again up above!
We sure love your family and LOVED the funeral...she was represented by each of you so perfectly!
I hope your heart can heal soon!

Becky, yep said...

Happy Birthday to Aly! She is so sweet!

Heather @ A Boy, A Girl, A Pug said...

Oh sweetie. This was so hard for me to read. I am so sorry. I can't stop the tears. Please know that your are in my thoughts and prayers.

And I agree: Cancer SUCKS!!!

Anners said...

You all paid such a beautiful tribute to your mom. What a tough day for all of you. Those friends that drove down to watch over your kids and home so you could attend to your family. I'm so glad you shared that. Someday I WILL do that for someone & I'm not sure I would've thought to do something like that before you mentioned it. I think a lot of us have learned things from you and what you have shared on this blog. Thanks for opening up here. There are a lot of prayers and support from even us "blurkers". Take care.

Staci said...

Amanda, I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your sweet mom. It seems like the only thing that helps heal a broken heart is time. I hope we have some real good answers on why we have to go through such difficult things as losing a loved one. Thanks for sharing all your thoughts and feelings. I will keep you in my prayers.

Becca said...

such a whirlwind of emotions and so unreal~i'm sure it's just so hard to know what to do now. your family is wonderful and i'm glad you have each other at this time. and the photos from the funeral are beautiful. hope to see you thursday.

Brooke said...

Empty is the word. It's is sadly ironic that the person you need the most at these times is the person that is gone. I hate that feeling. I wish I had some good advice for you, but I don't how I did it either. I just got through each day. I know it's hard to get back to "real life" when you are still feeling like some huge part of you left with your mother. I remember thinking it was so weird that people out in the world were just living their lives when my world was shattered and sort of frozen in time. I felt like I was walking around with this gaping wound that no one could see. I can tell you that it will get better and you will find a way to get through. As always, I'm thinking of you and your family.

estanworth said...

I'm not sure what else I can say, everyone else has said such nice and wonderful words to you. Just know that a day doesn't pass without me thinking and praying for you. Always remember that your mom is with you, remember the tender moments when she reminds you of that. You have a great family and really good friends who live close. They will help you- lean on them for help and support. Lots of Love!!!