Amanda's Journey -- Week 27

Read All of Amandas Journey

Entry 24

4/27/03

This has been an indescribable week. On Tuesday, April 22nd, Emilee and I came downstairs to find that my Mother-in-Law had passed away in her sleep. It was a huge shock to us all. There was no warning, no time to say goodbye. Jim took it so hard that morning.

I will never forget the look on his face when he came down and saw her.
I will never forget the look of her sitting there.
I will never forget looking over to see Emilee standing there, see more then her little eyes should ever see.
I will never forget the anguish in my Brother-in-Law's voice once I told him his mother was gone.

I think this week will be burned into my memory forever.

A short explanation of that morning...

  • At 5:30 am, Jim came home from working the nightshift. Mother-in-law was awake and just said that she was sick. Her stomach was upset. She told Jim that she was fine and headed onto bed.
  • Em woke up around 8:30 am and we cuddled and watched TV until around 9:30 am. That is when we got up to go downstairs. Once I got downstairs I didn't even realize she was gone. I thought she was just sleeping. Once I realized she wasn't breathing I tried to wake her. I started to panic, and told Em to get upstairs. I rushed passed her to get to Jim. I told him to get up and that I thought his Mom was gone.
  • Next I ran downstairs and called 911. That is when I first saw Jim walk into the room. That look of pure pain on his face will never leave me. I yelled for him to get Emilee down to my Mom's (next door). The 911 operator asked if I thought I could try CPR. I had Jim help me get her on the floor, and then he got out with Em.
  • The next few minutes were the worst of my life. Being there alone with her, trying to bring her back to us. The Police got there and I helped them all I could. This whole time Jim was out on the deck, a complete wreck.
  • The paramedics arrived and hooked her up to the monitors. Because she was down for so long they weren't able to revive her. I couldn't hold back tears.
  • That was cut short when I had to start answering questions. Nothing bad, just the normal ones of what happened, when we found her, how we found her etc, etc.

Things moved so fast. I had to make arrangements for a funeral home to come pick her up. I had to find my brother-in-law’s work number. I had to call mother-in-law’s work and so on.

Because she was under a doctor’s care, an autopsy was not needed. So, we will never know the cause for sure. Her doctors are pretty sure though that it was a heart attack. We found out this week that nausea is a symptom of a heart attack. We kept thinking back to things going on that week. All the "what ifs…"

We went that afternoon to the funeral home to make arrangements for her. We decided on a simple memorial service. She didn't really want anything, but the boys thought a simple service would be good for the people mourning her.

As the week passed, we were doing anything we could to help out my brother-in-law. He is lost. He never lived on his own. He stayed at home to help take care of her because she didn't drive. We are not sure what his future plans are but we hope to stay close and be there to support him.

Thursday night I finally took my time to grieve. I was holding everything in for 2 days. I needed to be strong for Jim and my brother-in-law. Well, I just couldn't do it anymore. I started to cry and I couldn't seem to stop. Jim just held me and comforted me. The tears had been held in and held in, nothing was stopping them anymore. I grieved for the loss of my mother-in-law; for the loss that my husband has suffered; for the loss of my daughter’s grandmother; the loss of an amazing woman. We had our problems at times but in the past few months’ things had changed. I will miss her forever and Emilee will know that she has another Angel watching over her, taking care of her brother she never knew.

This was a week of many tears.