I got home from Ohio not too long ago. It's been quite a long week and I'm glad to be home. I went into work Tuesday morning (our first day back) for a half day and then headed to Ohio to be with Steve. I had toyed with the idea of working all day Tuesday and just getting up early Wednesday to drive down. I'm glad that I didn't, as I wouldn't have been there for Steve when he needed me the most.
I arrived in New Paris, OH around 4:30 on Tuesday and we headed to the hospital where his mom was. We got there and I met his cousins Rachel and Katie. We had just missed his dad and brother (they went home to sleep), we went to get dinner and came back around 6:45. Steve's aunt Precilla arrived and the five of us just sat there until his uncle Stan arrived. The family had hoped to take her home that day but there were some hold ups with getting all the right materials to ensure her comfort while at home. The doctor came and said that it just wasn't a good idea to have her go home. Steve's dad and brother were called and the doctor told them to come to the hospital. She said that she was surprised that Carolyn had been alive all day and she didn't see her making it through the night.
We decided to stay there with her until the morning where they were going to try to move her home. Steve had been exhausted from being up the night before and he had to sleep, so at 10:00 he went to the lounge and slept. I stayed in the room with the family until around 4:30 am and then her breathing got really heavy. They said to go wake Steve up and I did. Around 6am she took a breath and didn't take another... everyone got upset and started crying thinking that it was over and then she gasped for more air. This happened several times over the next few hours.
I thought that maybe I should leave and maybe she'd pass but that wasn't the case. At 8:30 Steve and his dad and I went downstairs to eat (we were all starving) and then started to head back up and Rachel called and said to get there immediately. We hurried and as Steve and his dad walked in, she was taking her last breath. It was around 9:20 when it happened and they all fell apart. It was the most difficult thing to watch. While we were gone she had been gasping for breath and her blood pressure and heart beat had dramatically fallen.
We stayed at the hospital for like three hours (she was gone) and they all just cried. Steve's older brother just wept like a baby and kept calling, "mama... mama" and it was awful. She was able to donate her cornea's to the organ and tissue donation organization of Indiana (we were in Indiana at the hospital).
We came home and family came over and it was just a long day. Thursday we went to the cemetary and got her grave-site picked out and then went to the funeral home to make those arrangements. We went to Wal-Mart (Steve and I did) to get some stuff to make dinner and ran into his grandma. The viewing was scheduled for Friday and then the funeral was yesterday.
It's all pretty much a blur... but my mom and dad came down to be with us for the viewing and the funeral (Steve was able to get them a free room with his Hilton Rewards points) and it meant a lot to both of us that they were there.
One good thing about all of it was that I met Steve's family and I was really worried at first, as his mom HATED me, I thought they'd have a negative image of me as painted by his mom, but they were really nice. They all said that they were sorry that I didn't get to know his mom when she was herself, and that for the last few years she's turned into a complete monster and hasn't been herself. Steve's dad said that I came into her life at a bad time and he was sorry that I never got to know the real Carolyn. I am too. He made me feel so welcome though and it was nice to be able to spend time with him and not feel uncomfortable.
Anyway-- Steve will be staying there until Tuesday. He just doesn't want to leave his dad just yet and I can't blame him. I left around 1:00 today and it was the most difficult thing to do. I just didn't want to leave him. I think it'll be good for them to have some time together without worrying about me.
I'm tired and I've got a ton of laundry to get started. I'll update ya later.
Open Adoption Bloggers Interview Project 2013
3 years ago