When It’s Over, It’s Over

This is probably the most vulnerable and transparent thing I have ever said on this platform, so please be kind.

When I was at my deepest, darkest, lowest point of my mom’s journey with Alzheimer’s, I would actually get a little bit jealous when someone else’s loved one passed away.

Not because I didn’t love my mom.

Not because I wanted her to die.

But because I wanted so badly for the journey to be over.

I wanted so badly for our suffering to end.

I would get especially jealous if that person’s loved one had been diagnosed after my mom.

I remember thinking to myself, “What?! That’s not fair! How come they get to be done with this already and we have to continue suffering for so long?!”

It’s not lovely, but it’s true.

I was bitter, jealous, and extremely resentful of anyone who didn’t have to suffer as much or for as long as my family did. I wanted everyone to be punished as much as I felt like my family was being punished.

I wanted everyone to be as miserable and depressed as I was.

What I failed to realize at the time was that their suffering didn’t end when their loved one died. It just became a different kind of suffering. A much more permanent kind.

As time went on, I started to look at things differently. Whenever I heard the news that someone else’s loved one had passed away, I felt relieved that my mom was still with us. I felt dread at the thought that one day we would be the family with the bad news.

As horrific as this disease is, as much as you can’t wait for this journey to be over, there’s something about seeing the light at the end of the tunnel that makes you want to turn around and claw your way back into the darkness.

The thing is your loved one will not survive this journey. You will not emerge from this dark tunnel triumphantly with your loved one by your side.

Instead, you will emerge on your own. You will stumble out of this darkness beaten and bruised, wounded and scarred, and all the more worse for the wear.

In time, you will find a way to stand strong on your own, but I can almost guarantee you will wish you could go back into that tunnel.

It’s hard. I know. I get it.

But when it’s over, it’s over.

Please remind yourself of this when you find yourself desperately wishing for the end.

Because when it comes, that’s it. It’s done.

And there is no going back.

When it’s over, it’s over.

8 thoughts on “When It’s Over, It’s Over

  1. I understand completely. Still on the journey with my husband of 32+ years after a traumatic brain injury over 3 years ago, which exacerbated his mild cognitive impairment to moderate to severe Alzheimer’s . I keep asking “how long must we suffer”….. especially now when he’s being held captive by the memory care facility he’s in and I can’t be by his side. I was with him almost everyday before this started. I’ve adapted the motto that “life’s a bitch and then you die”. I know when it’s finally over I’ll be wishing for our life back, but not the way it is now. He has no quality of life so when it’s over I hope we’ll both have some peace. May you continue to find peace also.

    1. Thank you so much for reading! I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I completely understand your feelings. I miss my mom so much, but I wouldn’t want her back the way she left us. She had no quality of life. I’m glad she’s no longer suffering, but some days I do wish I could go back. Sending love and hugs!

  2. I feel the same way. My mom has Alzheimer’s and it is slowly torturing her mind that she is all alone. You can’t reason with someone who has this dreadful disease. At times I just want it to end but then I know I’ll miss her so much. I guess we just have to try and get some joy out of the small amounts of good times we have left.

  3. Thank you so much for this post. We are currently dealing with it with my step-father and I know that I have days that I wish that it was over but I also know that he won’t be there when it is. This disease sure hurts so many people.

  4. I feel your pain, my mother passed in’99. While the grief isn’t as accute as before I still miss her everyday. It will get easier but you can’t put a time on how long the accute grief will last. Hang in there!

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