The Girl

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About The Girl

  • Rank
    Advanced Member

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  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    US
  • Loss Type
    Loss of mother
  • Angel Date
    2-9-17

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  • First Name
    Jill

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  1. I've had to take time off from responding as well. Sometimes you need to talk, sometimes you just need your space. I'm sorry to hear your trip home took a lot out of you. It's totally understandable if you need time to recover from that. Downtime is necessary. Mentally you have to process everything, and emotionally it's just draining. I ordered a journal to write my grief in...somewhere I can be completely self indulgent. My mom was an artist with a deep love of elephants, so I thought I found the right journal with a painted elephant on the a front but when it arrived it was too big to fit in my memory box of her. I was bummed...one little thing like the wrong journal really upset me. So I ordered a new one and basically hid from my thoughts, trying to catch up on work instead, until it came. It just arrived. It's sitting in my mailbox and I feel sad and anxious about starting that emotional endeavor. But I feel like keeping a journal will be helpful to get through those emotions and hopefully arrive at a place where I can cope better. I don't know if anyone else has tried that...if it's helped? I feel like when writing, it will kind of be like writing to her. Say all the things I've wanted to tell her since it happened.
  2. It's hard trying to juggle both sides of yourself - the one that's supposed to go on like everything is normal, and the one who needs time to grieve. I don't know what sort of work you do, but perhaps there's something you could do from home instead? I know that doesn't work out for everyone, so I apologize it it was way off. My mom passed almost 2 months ago. Up until then I was working towards creating my own business. I work from home and can lean on my fiance financially, but my extra income helps, and starting my own business has been a direction I've needed to take for some time. Then my mom passed and I gave up on it. Mentally I can't focus on something so huge. I do what's expected of me, and I do it quickly and during times I feel able to. If I didn't have a job that was that undemanding of my time, I'd have quit. Some day are going to be trying. But how can you predict that? 8 months isn't a lot of time considering the weight of your loss. It may be unlike you to quit, but what you're going through right now doesn't define your character. Bereavement days that you take off work really aren't enough time. Your life has changed and it's going to take a long while to adjust to it. It's not a mark against you. It's just you trying to deal with the grief. And I completely understand the burden of life going on around you when you're not ready to join it.
  3. None of this was your fault. I promise you that. I'm so sorry you had to go through this. A lot of what your mom had gone through is very similar to what my mom went through, whom I lost unexpectedly almost 2 months ago. My mom also had abdominal pain and refused to go to the hospital, saying she was fine, even when she went septic. She had had sepsis before and knew how it felt, but she insisted she was fine. This last time it started with gut abdominal pain (for her, it was a c-diff infection). B/c she was recovering from going into septic shock last year (it's a very long recovery), she was susceptible to it, and she knew this. My dad finally was able to rush her to the hospital when she was going into septic shock again, they did emergency surgery to remove her large intestine, but her blood pressure dropped during surgery and caused a massive stroke. We can't force grown adults to do anything they don't want to do, like go to the hospital. I think of it like, would I want to go for something I felt I'd recover from on my own? B/c that's usually the case...we don't tend to think it's something more serious. My dad has a lot of guilt for not forcing my mom to go sooner, but what could he have done...thrown her over his shoulder and toss her in the car? It can be especially difficult when you're trying to tell a parent what to do, since that doesn't always go over well. We all say idiot things to our parents at times. I don't think they hold it against us. If your mom trusted you blindly as you said, then she knew you loved her unconditionally, despite some stupid thing you said or did at whatever age you were. Her trust in you is knowing you love her enough to support her needs and do right by her. I badly wanted to be there when my mom passed, so she would know I was there. But it happened only a couple hours after I went home to get some sleep. It's painful wondering what they thought. Your mom probably wasn't thinking you abandoned her. To be honest, and I hope this doesn't come across as insensitive, if she had sepsis then she probably wasn't as coherent as she seemed. I've had entire conversations with my mom while she had sepsis and she never remembered a word of it. It's blood poisoning, it affects everything. When it's gets to be septic shock, and especially once it causes renal failure, it overwhelms the system. Sepsis and perforation of the bowel are two extremely serious conditions. This wasn't something you could have saved her from. The first time my mom went into septic shock, she was already in ICU at the Cleveland Clinic. That's a world class hospital, one of the best in the US. She was lucky to be in their care when it happened. She was also just plain lucky to have survived it, no matter where she was. Experts are now suggesting that sepsis may be one of the leading causes of death. Only recently is it starting to get more attention and more research. So really, I guarantee it's not your fault. Years from now they'll probably be more equipped to deal with septic shock. Our moms just got it too soon.
  4. I'm very sorry about your loss. I lost my mom unexpectedly almost 2 months ago and it's been exceptionally difficult to accept those feelings and adjust to the finality of it. I'm only throwing this out there, b/c I'm certainly not in the right to tell you how to handle anything, but could you and your mom grieve together? Everyone has different needs and a different process, so I can only speak for myself. I've found this forum helpful b/c everyone is going through the same thing. I avoid talking to anyone who hasn't gone through a significant loss, but at the same time, it helps to talk. If you think your mom would be open to it, maybe offer your shoulder for her to cry on. The link missionblue shared makes some good points. When I'm having an emotional day I try to hide out in bed with just tissues and my thoughts, and maybe the keepsakes box I made for my mom. It can be hard finding enough alone time to really grieve...I personally hate when people ask me if I'm okay, when clearly I have no reason to be. But I'm finding that by saying I need some space, I tend to get some privacy.
  5. My mom passed unexpectedly almost 2 months ago and I have regular dreams where she's dying and it's the last time I'll see her. It's upsetting even to write about, but you know what...it's always nice to see her in the dreams. Even when I first wake up from them, it's kind of nice to have seen her. It leads into a hard day, but I try to focus on the part where I finally felt normal again. If you haven't really deeply grieved, that may help. It may bring upon more dreams for awhile, but it may also help you adjust to those feelings and the reality of it. I've been struggling with that even though it's all still so new to me...letting myself really feel it while I'm not ready to accept it. But I feel in the long run it'll be beneficial. I'm sorry to hear family made it difficult for you. When all those raw emotions are sitting right on the surface, it's like any drama can steal the spotlight. There was (unrelated but distracting) family drama going on during my mom's passing that made me push some people away. Sometimes it's just not the time for it. And it's totally okay to put yourself first in those situations and agree that it's not anything you need to deal with.
  6. Eliz, it's uncanny the clients you've had surrounding all this. I can see how the strength to get through those sessions and your resolution in treating them would trickle down into your own recovery. I mean, words have to be taken to heart or they don't mean anything at all. Your clients or your own. Or this forum, for that matter. I like that you said your mom is the person you had the longest relationship, b/c that's an excellent point. Our parents were a constant in our lives. Never knowing life w/o them, even after becoming independent adults, and then they're plucked away. Culture shock. My mom would lay guilt trips on me as well. She was more playful about it, but I knew she meant it. We had a lot of fun together. Art projects (she was an artist with a huge collection of supplies and knowledge of fun techniques), shopping trips, or just sitting around her kitchen table chatting about everything. But when I read through old messages from the years I lived only a mile away from her, there were so many times I said I was coming over only to put it off. I thought nothing of it at the time, but she probably wanted the company. Life happens. I do wish I had spent more time over there, and I was over a lot anyway. Now that I have to live a life w/o her, I can't imagine any amount of time would have been enough though.
  7. My phone apparently doesn't let comment along with a quote, so I have to make a separate response to go with that. It's hard to imagine death as a reality to anyone important to you. The finality of death is mystifying and unacceptable. But it doesn't mean you refuse to believe death exists at all. It's just too much to lose someone so close. While my mom was sick, we all wondered why her when her younger brother, a long-term alcoholic doesn't share these maladies. My mom even openly questioned it. I mean, here she was losing her livelihood from pancreatitis, a disease that normally afflicts drinkers, and yet my drunk uncle is still getting up every day and cracking a beer. My mom who could barely tolerate half a beer, dying of an alcoholic's disease. It was so unfair. I wondered why not my uncle, it should be my uncle. He's not even a good person, unlike my mom who cared so deeply and was always there for everyone. I have no guilt about feeling that way. But I do think I felt it b/c he would have been easier to lose. I could accept that. There'd be tears but life would go on.
  8. MissionBlue, I considered sphincter of oddi, but my mom kept insisting everything she was going through was normal. She was depressed and frustrated by that point and off and on giving up on finding solutions. I don't know if her Drs ever talked to her about it. It was like I'd research one thing and then something else would happen to draw my attention to a new symptom or ailment. I finally called my dad today. I've been off in my own little world the past couple days. Doing a lot of fake shopping, filling online wish lists with crap I'll never buy as a distraction. My brain needed to power down for awhile. I've been feeling almost dead inside lately and I know the next wave of grief is never far off, so I just hid out for awhile. But I needed to call my dad and check in. I hadn't talked to him since I went home after the funeral. Even talking to him about my mom, it felt like she was just back at the hospital and none of this happened again. Not looking forward to when it hits again.
  9. I haven't talked about it much with my dad. He's not the emotional type and my family tends to internalize their grief...cry on the inside while silently suffering. I understand having a hard time talking to you mom. I haven't called my dad since after the funeral, but need to soon. Crying can be oddly therapeutic. It's just emotions that have to come out eventually. There will always be triggers, and sad, miserable days just b/c. It just won't be this constantly devastating forever.
  10. Eliz, I remember when my friend's dad died when we were 15, and when another friend lost her mom a few years ago. Especially when I was 15, when that was the first close death I ever dealt with, I know I handled it awkwardly w/o grace or really much sensitivity. And that was with my oldest and closest friend at the time. I was also incredibly close with my friend who more recently lost her mom, and still don't feel I showed the sensitivity I should have, despite at that point having lost many, many loved ones. I'm very comfortable talking about feelings and getting into the harsh realities of everything, but I still tend to shy away when I'm unsure of how someone else feels. Both of those friends were there for me, in their own ways, and I got the same feeling from them. That they didn't know what would be okay in my emotional state. I didn't think that it was any mystery that I can talk about any part of it, no matter how painful,but also didn't convey that to them at the time. So I wonder if maybe the fact that your friend, or my friends, had gone through it that maybe they were more aware that it can be easier to say the wrong thing rather than the right thing. Or maybe we'll find the loss of someone's parent brings back too many of the same sad feelings for us. It's also possible I give people too much credit, too. I do know I charish those who were there for me more than ever. Athina, that would be a bittersweet visit...The comfort of familiarity, yet so much sadness in the differences. I'm glad you mentioned her perfume. That's one thing I'm looking forward to when I visit my parent's house this summer. As hard as it is, I think it's good for you to be there taking it all in. I've regretted moving almost immediately after I did, more and more so as my mom got sicker and now after this. Now I still wish I could be there so that when I do visit, it isn't the huge shock it will be. You do need to be there for your kids, so it's good to get checked out. I hope all is well with you and your husband. I know dying doesn't seem so bad now, but your loved ones would feel otherwise. For awhile I felt envious of people of faith. That if I believed in it, I would believe I could die and see my mom again. The idea of it sounded so nice, but I'm not at all religious and even if I were, it would destroy the ones I love. What I've read is that needlestick injuries like your sister had have a very, very, very low transfer rate. They should be giving her medicine to prevent hep and HIV infections, which will destroy the viruses if they're inside her at all. Chances are, your sister will be okay. Did she prick herself recapping the needle? I've done that, luckily only on cats, so no risks there. But I learned if you don't want to chance it, you have to toss it in the sharps container w/o a cap. Wishing you and your family well.
  11. I think many people don't know what to say after the loss of someone that they simply want to change the subject. Some people are very open with their emotions and will offer their shoulder to cry on, while others are awkward about having that conversation. The two days following my mom's death, I was staying at my parent's house (I still can't bring myself to call it "dad's house" now), I had friends over most of the time. A lot of unintentionally insensitive things were said. I was still in a daze from the shock and completely exhausted from not sleeping that I just ignored it, but the words were still sharp. Maybe they thought I needed a distraction. That's exactly how I viewed it, as some silly distraction I didn't want. I don't know about you guys, but the best thing I can hear from someone is them sharing a story about my mom.
  12. It sounds like your dad was a loving father. Whatever your dad in the past - heroin, prison, whatever, none of it speaks to how he was as a father. I know ex felons and I know heroin addicts, and I know neither say anything of their true character. You say he died of an overdose...nothing you did had any control over that. It's a strong addiction, and I know addicts with young children who love their kids more than anything but can't get out of it. It has nothing to do with the people they love, but is more the fault of a lack of resources available to them. I know someone who oded the day after seeking out help, b/c he was turned away. It's an epidemic, and above all, it's a health issue on a national level. Please don't blame yourself for something that was out of your hands. Your dad was a teenager once, too. Even if you've said words that hurt him, I'm sure he's been there. The **** I've said to my parents at that age...yikes. I lost my mom last Feb and I don't think she took it personally after the fight. B/c it's normal. Even if your dad had never said anything directly to his parents, I'm sure he's thought it before. You said your dad fought in Nam. There are Vietnam vets all over the place who still struggle with PTSD. It's not uncommon to turn to drugs or alcohol, or other forms of escapism. Your dad may have had demons from the war he didn't share with you. It's perfectly normal to lean on those forms of escapism while grieving as well. As you've said, sex is also one of them. During my mom's funeral, many of my friends and some of my family were drinking beer in the parking lot. I actually had a few people show up with cases in the trunks of their cars assuming it would be needed. After the funeral, we had the wake at my parent's house and drank til 4 am, including my dad who hardly ever drinks. Sometimes we want to feel numb, or just separate ourselves from the tragic reality of it all. And from time to time, if it isn't harming anyone, that's okay. It's only been a month for me, but talking on here has helped some. As Reader has shared, there are places available for you to express those feelings. Just the other day, I ordered a journal to write in about what I'm going through after losing my mom. The week leading up to her funeral, I poured myself into making a 4 hour playlist to honor her at the funeral...that was especially comforting to me. Music hits you so hard when you're sad, but it's good to get those feelings out. You'll grieve in your own way. But when you do find something that helps, run with it.
  13. Dgiirl, I think you said it perfectly with you're dreading the approaching spring, and dreading time moving forward. It's not easy being around people who have something to look forward to. Or people who just aren't bound by the same sadness in general. I remember people saying how bad 2016 was, often jokingly, which can be painful when, like you, something too horribly real is going on. Though on my end, I had hoped 2017 would be a better year, that it would be a year of recovery for my mom. Then she passed in Feb and I'm thinking maybe the good years are already far behind us. My mom lost her parents a few years back. They were in their 80's, my grandma had cancer and my grandpa had alzheimers. They passed 3 days apart. I saw my mom struggle with this the rest of her life. It's hard to say if that pain alleviated on its own, or if her own illness just meant she had less time to think about it. It was all mashed together like that. But she also unexpectedly lost her sister a month after her parents, so I'm sure that compounded her grief. I'm under the impression it never gets better, but that in time we learn to live with it. That there will always be upsetting triggers and bad days, but that life is distracting and humans are adaptable. I think grieving during winter will be more...I don't know if this is the right word to use but, comfortable than in warmer weather. It's easy to hide during winter. Easier to avoid people or gatherings, or just life. I already have friends planning trips to stay with me over spring b/c I'm in a tourist town. I've agreed to them hoping it helps, and that I can even handle that much company, but I know it'll be hard. People are so damn exhausting these days. But I know I can't hide forever.
  14. Mission, regarding the guilt you feel about your dad in past situations...there's so much we can never predict. What matters is the times we do have the foresight that we strive to protect them. We can't hold ourselves to accountable to what we didn't know, as much as we may wish we could go back in time to do things differently. I don't know if it was a car accident that caused my mom's pancreatitis. It's usually from alcohol, but she wasn't a drinker, so they never identified the cause. But after she passed, I read all the Facebook messages we had sent, dating back to Dec 2012 (she didn't understand how to text until 2015) and it was directly following an accident she was in, in 2015 that those now familiar symptoms first began creeping up. Back then we thought it was from her cracked rib. My guilt lays with the night of the accident. She called me that February night saying she was in an accident and I needed to come get her. There was a snowstorm approaching and her car was totaled. My fiance, I'll call him The Boy, took me halfway across town to get her. Right as we exited the expressway the level 3 snowstorm started. It was a whiteout from that point on. We got my mom and got her in the car. Mentally she seemed off. It wasn't her first accident, she was a terrible driver, so I questioned it being from shock of being in a bad accident. I kept asking her if we should take her to a hospital. I was concerned about a concussion and we were only a mile or two from a hospital. She continuously refused and we made the slow trek back to her house, not using the expressway this time b/c we couldn't see 3 feet in front of us. Once at her home, I left her with my brother who lived there and asked him to watch her, to call us if anything changed. For some reason an internal injury never occurred to me. I don't know if there was injury to her pancreas, or if they would have even caught it. Maybe? She had an x-ray ordered later on that showed a cracked rib, but maybe they would have been more thorough directly following the accident rather than days after. Had I known this could have been the result, her butt would have been at the ER so fast, but we only consider the things that make sense to us at the time. As for helping our parents eat healthier...talk about difficult situations! My mom always said she's going to eat what she's in the mood for, b/c otherwise she'll lose weight. We went back and forth so much that eventually I gave up. My dad is diabetic and loves his donuts. He still eats them while taking his medicine. Drs say there's no good reason he should be diabetic other than his genes, so I'm not sure he puts much importance on what he eats. I'm not going to tell him what to do. I mean, at times I have, but I'll always be the kid and dad will always know best. Unfortunately I have to leave it at that. Dgiirl, that makes sense they would want to check skin elasticity and skin color. For my mom they were looking for a response since we couldn't ask her for one. I wish I had known about the elasticity and color on her last day though. I checked what I knew to check and the nurses felt she had awhile left in her, so I went home for the night. I thought my dad would sleep better if I wasn't also sharing the room, I knew I'd sleep better alone, so it made sense that we get what rest we could to be there for my mom the next day. Had I suspected she would pass that night, I would have stayed. I wanted to be with her for that. I also don't feel we're visited in our dreams. I believe the dreams are symptomatic of our parents being in our thoughts all day, it's bound to seep into our dreams as well. I had a brief but upsetting dream last night, that when I recalled it after waking up I started to cry. It was such a simple thing. In my dream I was calling, "mom, mom, mom, mom..." like kids do, just repeating til mom finally answers them. But I was trying to say it through a thick pane of plexiglass that had some holes drilled in it, so my voice was muffled. The part that hurts is she never came. She never responded. I don't think she was even there. I've noticed the mornings, and especially the nights have been hardest for me. I dread the nights anymore. Last night it snowed, and it snowed in the same consistency that it did the night my mom passed that it was breaking me. Just snow. Stupid snow. After seeing my mom after she had passed I went outside and stood in the snow crying while I had a cigarette. I didn't think much of the snow since then until last night, I went outside and had a cigarette and everything felt eerily familiar, when it hit me why.