The Difficulty of Leaving

I had a very challenging time, leaving Indianapolis knowing that my grandma was in hospice. In going back to Chicago, it felt like a selfishness – me declaring to the world that my own activities and my own interests were more important. More important than staying.

It’s been difficult watching my grandma’s breathing. At times, her breathing seemed strained – and then it would settle and slow. During the periods where she slept, there was a constant movement between these two poles – moments of greater labor, moments of slower calm.

When I was in the room and thinking about leaving, I’d wonder “But what if something happened?” My grandmother is in hospice, and … something will happen. It’s simply a matter of time. And it’s simply a matter of ensuring she is comfortable until that time arrives.

With her being a bit more awake, I felt that returning to Chicago made sense. She had just returned to the nursing home, and settled back into her old room. And if things took a downward turn, I’d only be a few hours away.

Leaving really is a choice. It’s just that in some instances, like now, it feels like abandonment.

Grandma Phoebe in the Hospital
Grandma Phoebe Update

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