Janet Gardner Percy 3/13/1937-1/9/2015

So…my little lady passed away yesterday. My feisty mamma. She held on for days and days, but finally found her way about 6:30 yesterday morning. My oldest brother, Peter, and sister-in-law, Sue, were by her side. Such a sad day for my family. My brothers, sister and I are parentless which is so hard to believe. I am far too young to have no living mom or dad. Let me tell you a few things about her: stubborn as all hell, terrified of losing power, major anxiety all her life, never went on a plane, smoked menthol Kools for about 50 years, was afraid to die, chewed gum 24/7, did the best she knew how, loved her kids, ADORED my boys, made a best friend at the nursing home (I hear they would hold hands), was loved by all her nurses, had a love with my dad that was shatterproof, amazing and almost unbelievable. I look like her which I never thought until these pictures surfaced the last few days.

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I wish I had popped in to see her that last morning I was there. I was there while Seamus was at school, but we waited in the dining room. The nurses thought that maybe she was holding on while we were in the room and would let go if we left. Nope. Didn’t happen. Should’ve given her one last squeeze, kiss on the cheek.

Newfield House is amazing. I’m so glad she was there these last few months. Cranberry Hospice is equally amazing. The care they provide is top notch. Every aspect of life is part of the program (physical, mental, emotional, social, spiritual) and every person involved is cared for. My mom died comfortably and with love and dignity (COPD can be an awful, painful, very scary way to die).

Things I’ve been reminded of:
•life is too damn short
•love big
•give hugs
•don’t fight over stupid crap
•family is important
•friends are the family you choose (I have done well I must say) ☺️

My sister was telling me that she has been told my family has a way of rallying during times of well, great sorrow. We don’t see each other all the time, but when something like this happens (this has happened far too many times in my short life) we seem to ooze out of the walls. Everyone comes and goes and we interact like we see each other everyday. This will go on for a while now too. We’ll see each other more often than usual.

A gentle reminder to try and spend time with your parents/grandparents. I know sometimes it can be tough and not what you always want to be doing, but some elderly are so lonely. Even a quick call can make their day. I did a better job when my mom could come to me. I never minded when she was here puttering around, playing with kids, helping me with laundry and dishes all the time. I saw her everyday almost. Since she was at the home, not so much. Lots of reasons (excuses): my kiddos all together overwhelmed her (really?! How is that possible?), we are so busy with sports, someone is always sick. Anyways, I’m just sayin I wish I saw her more at the end.

So, sending you all a big hug and a reminder that if you smoke, PLEASE STOP. You have no idea the suffering you and your families will endure. It’s tough, but you can do it! You have to.

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I adore this picture of my mama. It was only a few short weeks ago. She looks so happy (even without her teeth…remember they got misplaced by the nursing home) and so cute. I love it. ❤️

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