The blog formerly known as   Fake Plastic Fish
February 28, 2011

The Cruellest Month

February 2011 has been a wicked bitch, to put it bluntly.  I spent most of this month in bed, sick as a dog.   Then finally, with my own good health just around the corner, I got the phone call that my mom had finally passed away.  She died at home last week, surrounded by most of our family, and while I didn’t get to be with her in her final hours, I’m grateful that I was able to visit last month and spend time with her.  We are all sad but also relieved that she is finally free of that cruel Alzheimer’s disease.

I didn’t have energy to blog last week, and I probably won’t blog this week.  But I’m grateful for my online family and the support that I’ve received so far on Facebook and via email from those who knew the situation.   If you are inclined to show a gesture of support, my family asks that donations be made to the Hospice of the Chesapeake, the organization that was such a comfort in the last days of my mom’s life.

Hospice of the Chesapeake
8724 Jericho City Drive
Landover, MD 20785
phone: 301.499.4500

Thank you for your understanding and patience. My mother’s passing has impressed upon me just how short our time here is and for me, how important it is to be present to my life each and every day. There’s so much mystery… so much that’s incomprehensible. And all any of us can do is ride out the adventure and see what happens. That’s what I’m doing. And I’ll be back here blogging about plastic again when the time is right.


51 Responses to “The Cruellest Month”

  1. Cyndi says:

    I am so sorry for your loss.

  2. Georgette Howington says:

    Dear Beth,

    May you and your family find peace in loving memories of your Mom.

    God bless you,

    Georgette Howingotn

  3. Kate E. says:

    I am so sorry for your loss.
    You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  4. I’m terribly sorry about this.. This is the second time I visited your blog and then I read this. My deepest condolence. Prayers from me to you.

  5. Katy says:

    I’ve been thinking of you, Beth, since I heard about this. WIshing you health, first of all, and then healing for your family.

    take good care, my dear, and all the time you need,


  6. Jenn says:

    Beth – I’m so sorry for your loss – my condolences to you and your family.

  7. Jeanne says:


    I’m so sorry for your loss. Please take the time you need. I’m sending warm thoughts your way at this difficult time.


  8. Marleen says:

    “Zij die wij liefhebben en die van ons zijn heengegaan, zijn niet meer waar zij waren, maar altijd waar wij zijn.”

    Translates to: Those who we love and who have gone away from us, are no longer where they were, but always where we are.

    Beth, so sorry for your loss. Love, warmth and strength for you and your family. I hope you find solace in this Dutch epitaph.

  9. Jen says:

    Beth I am so sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathies.

  10. Katie says:

    So sorry to hear about your mom, Beth. I’ll be thinking of you.

  11. Rob says:

    I am very sorry Beth. Condolences to you and the Terry Family.

  12. Michelle says:

    Sorry to hear this Beth. Take care of yourself, thinking of you.

  13. Eve Stavros says:

    May she live on in your memories as she will in your heart!

  14. Dmarie says:

    So sorry for your loss. Hope life is extremely gentle with you as you continue to grieve.

  15. I am sad for you but happy for her. That is a nasty disease indeed. It will leave a void in your life but the best times can also be remembered.

    And get yourself better!!!

    viv in nz

  16. Erin says:

    Our condolences, I agree that life is a an adventure and incomprehensible. Take time to cherish all the old photo’s, cry, and try to smile at your good memories.

  17. One big hug from all of us at GD!!

  18. Rosa says:

    I’m so sorry, Beth, and thank you for letting us know.

  19. EcoCatLady says:

    Hang in there Beth, we’re all pullin’ for you. Please take care of yourself and know that you are in my thoughts.

  20. Kim says:

    Beth- So sorry to hear about your mom. I hope you and your family find peace with her passing.

  21. sui says:

    Sending you love. ♥

  22. Erika says:

    I’m so sorry to hear that. It’s such a tragedy when a relative has a long, terrible illness… I lost a stepmother and a grandmother to that kind of thing, and it’s always so sad to lose them, but also such a relief.

    A lot of people don’t understand that if they haven’t been there, but I totally do.

  23. I’m sorry to hear of your mother’s passing but as you said, she is finally free of a very cruel disease. Take your time recovering from everything. Sometimes life can be a relentless bitch and we all understand how that works.

    I think March 2011 is going to be nothing like February, just a hunch.

  24. Clif says:

    Beth, I was fortunate – my mother was active (though in a nursing home) until she died in her sleep of heart failure. My dad simply keeled over at dinner one evening of a heart attack. She was 73, he was 75

    For too many, they end up on life support, kept going by technology with absolutely no quality of life. So when anyone dies of old age – we have to ask ourselves what will we do when we are in that situation?

    I’m horrified by what I see taking place with so many elderly sitting in nursing homes staring blankly at a TV. While I understand the concern over euthanasia, because of the abuse any kind a law about it would invite, I want to be in a position to end my own life before I am in no condition to do so.

    The greatest challenge in this is to leave others, particularly family members, at peace – with the understanding that they had nothing to do with one’s demise. It seems to me the only way to approach this is to let my children know far ahead of time what I have in mind and why – to end life with dignity while one still has command of the mind. This also would put them in a good position to know what to do in the event of an accident where they would be the ones to make a decision for me.

    Many are going through hell for a long time to keep a body alive that has long since departed – a living body with the beloved person long gone. This is a “gift” of modern medicine and technology, but it’s inhuman and as far from “natural” as can be – while estates get swallowed up by the medical establishment and public monies follow (Medicare). The public is not responsible for me extending my life indefinitely at their expense.

    We aren’t always on the trail like the native-American elderly of pre-modern days who could simply drop out at the time of their choice. But I think we have to, in effect, do the same.

  25. Reenie says:

    Dear Beth, Much love and Light to you, and gratitude to your dear parents for creating such an inspiring young woman who is encouraging so many to live a healthy, green life.

  26. LF says:

    So sorry to hear the news Beth – please know we are thinking of you and your family.

  27. Tanya says:

    My deepest condolences to you and your family, Beth.

  28. Beth, my heart aches for you but am relieved that your mom is in a better place. Alzheimer’s is such a cruel disease. Take all the time you need. My thoughts are with you.

  29. Dear Beth,

    I am really sorry for what you have been through. I send you my heartfelt sympathies for the passing of your mom… My mom passed away 19 years ago and I still feel the void. Moms are so unique and special. It sounds like she is now in a better place. My thoughts are with you.

    – Chantal

  30. Lydia says:

    I’m so sorry.

  31. Sarah S says:

    My thoughts are with you…take care of yourself…

  32. Kel says:

    Light and love to you and your family.

  33. I’m so glad you posted, Beth. I was thinking about you very strongly yesterday and today, wondering how you were doing as I hadn’t heard anything since you left for Maryland.

    A break is good, and your thoughts are powerful.

    Again, my condolences.

  34. Marisa says:

    Beth, I’m sorry to hear the sad news. I’ll thinking of you.

  35. Benne' Rockett says:

    You, my dear, are an amazing woman! In a sad moment, perhaps one of the saddest, you have managed to be an inspiration. A loving hand, from the Third Coast, is holding yours. Need anything, and I mean anything, just ask. – Benne’

  36. SusanB says:

    Beth, my deepest sympathies to you and your family.

  37. britt says:

    I have read your blog for quite awhile, though I don’t comment often. I hope you have the time you need to grieve. Alzheimer’s is not an easy disease, losing a parent is not an easy process and I hope you have the time and support necessary at this time.

  38. Sue Kania Betts says:

    Dear Beth,
    I just became familiar with your website, and you were so kind to help me out in the midst of your loss. Heartfelt sympathy to you and yours again.

  39. Sabrina says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. I too know the feeling of both heartache for the loss of a mother and relief that the suffering has ended. Take it easy on yourself.

  40. Madz says:

    I’m a sorry to hear about your mother’s passing Beth. May you and your family be there for each other and take as much time as you need. Love to you all.

    Ma te kaihanga koutou te whanau pani e manaaki (may the creator guide and take care of you and your family in your grief) xox

  41. Pheas says:

    Wishing you health, peace, and comfort.

  42. Katherine says:

    Sending thoughts of comfort your way.

  43. Elizabeth B says:

    Beth, I’m very sorry for your loss. My condolences to you and your family.

  44. Sharon Genovese says:

    I am sorry to hear the sad news. My thoughts are with you Beth, take care.

  45. yaga says:

    Dear Beth, I’m really sorry to hear that, my condolences! Take care of yourself, we’re thinking of you!!

  46. Molly de Vries says:

    much love to you beth. I will be thinking of you.

  47. Kiyomi says:

    Oh, Beth…. I am so sorry to hear the sad news.
    Thinking of you.

  48. Darris says:

    I’m sorry for the loss of your mother Beth . . . take good care of yourself and return when it’s best for you . . . we’ll all be here when you come back . . .

  49. Amy Korst says:

    Thoughts are with you. I hope you can find peace.

  50. Joke says:

    I’m sorry Beth. I don’t know what to say, but I know how you’re feeling. Take good care of yourself and your family, we’re all supporting you. Hug!

  51. Take as much time as you need. These times are never easy. Rest up brave one.