Everly

Loss of a parent - daily thread

2,314 posts in this topic

MissionBlue - Its so true. We women feel if we try hard enough, we can change someone but we can't. Everything comes down to the individual and their own wants and needs. You've been so good to Ernesto.  And you've been an amazing daughter. I hope you find the perfect house and the right person to share it with. Glad to hear you are going to join the Art Deco Society. Always nice to be around people with similar interests and passions. I admire you. Never too late to change or do something different. I wish I knew want I wanted to do, but I don't. Still feel very tired from the grief. I try to take comfort and strength from all you here. And know so many people share the same feelings and experiences. I know its still early for me, but I can't imagine a time when I will be happy again.

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Hello everybody. We have been traveling around Caribbean. I get it, it's so much easier to grieve when you do not have to sit in the office. Still, all I can do is think of my mother and why I had to lose her so young. Moreover, all these places remind me of the travels we did with her exactly two years ago. I remember like every single thing we did in the Dominican and how she liked it. No, I will never get to terms that she's gone. And at the moment I apparently do not want to be healed. I'm stuck in the period where not being sad makes me feel further from her. I do not feel her presence and though she's constantly on my mind, I also feel like she's somewhere really really far away.

Lisa, thinking of you. Hugs. Let's hope for the best. 

Szuzie, I am new here. I have lost my mother in her sixties because of the massive brain stroke and it all happened in a second that sometimes I still hope to wake up from my worst nightmare. I have young children, too. Mom was my main helper. My youngest daughter is 3 yrs. old, she's such a cutie, but literally now just looking at her hurts. Because she was always with my mother. My mom was looking after her since she was a 3 month old baby because I had to return to work. Every evening she asks about grandma, stating she's missed her and how long can she be dying? My mom loved her to the moon and back and it is unfair that she will not even remember her grandma. I literally feel like someone has shot a hole in me and left me bleeding. I remember in the beginning of 2016 a thought crossed me thinking that my parents were getting older. But I assumed they at least had ten more years because like everybody nowadaya manages to live up to at least 70, right? That were my thoughts in the beginning of the year 2016. How could I have been so stupid, making these silly plans? So people do die apparently. In the summer I had a dream that my mother died and I woke up all sweating but relieved. 

No, I ain't never ever accept the death of my dearest person in the world. I could live in this fog till my last days. I cannot come to the fact that there is nothing I can do to bring her back. I am so sorry my mom had worked so hard all her life and was not even able to retire properly, spend all her savings on things she adored. Literally, just thinking of the assests she left us make me sick. I don't want her money because I would feel guilty spending it. I am this close to the most unreasonable decisions in my life. I must have gone completely crazy. 

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Athina, I am very sorry you are having such a difficult time.  A cruise gives you a lot of time to think and that in itself is healing but also very painfui.  It is a very deep wound which everyone here has suffered.  You have to feel the emotions in order to get through them, even though it hurts like hell.  What you resist persists.  Just as a mother has to suffer to bring a new life into the world, we have to suffer to begin this new version of life we have before us.  I understand how the sadness makes you feel closer to your mom.  We want to participate in their suffering and loss of the world, and of us as well, but for all we know they could be far happier than we ever imagined.  As an agnostic, I don't know what to believe, but I still pray and it seems to help me feel better.  I was taught that prayers for the dead can help them to be happy.  It can't hurt.  God knows I tried to make my dad happy, but once he could no longer do all the things he could do before, naturally, he couldn't be as happy as he was before.  It's so hard to see our loved ones suffer, and now I feel sorry for myself, because I don't have my dear father with me.  He made my life worth living. 

You had every right to expect your mother to live longer.  Her passing was a horrible shock, because she was still fully engaged with living in this world.  Life is so unfair, but sometimes terrible things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.  Your youth makes this more possible than for someone like me who is older.  We are entitled to feel hopeless, but these feelings will lessen over time.  Two years later,  I now have hope for the future, but it still kills me that my dad won't be able to share my future happiness, if it ever arrives.   

I have also made some unreasonable decisions.  I have spent too much money, comfort shopping online, and ordering in food or going to restaurants, trying to make up for my empty, loveless existence.   During the first six months, I could hardly eat and lost forty pounds.  Even shopping online gave me no pleasure, but these enjoyments gradually returned.  I gained the weight back.   I want to lose weight again, but Ernesto is such a good cook, it's harder than ever to diet.  Now I have to try to sell more of my things to help pay for the storage fees which will double next month when the introductory rate ends.  I'm going to donate a lot of clothes and shoes, too, so hopefully some good will come of the money wasted.  Your mom worked so hard for her money, not just for herself, but for her loved ones, too.  She would want you to spend it, but try not to waste it.  I put the tiny pension my dad left me in a special account that I try not to touch.  It's for property taxes.   

I read that guilt is one of the most powerful of all emotions.  It is constructive when it helps us to improve our behavior but destructive when it's about things that can't be changed or made right again.  We can feel guilty about things we don't even remember doing, because our mind has suppressed or repressed the memories.  The two sides of guilt are disapproval of self and fear of consequences.  The latter can account for some of the anxiety many of us feel after the death of a loved one.  Disapproval of self generates the feeling that we don't deserve to be happy.  We have to convince ourselves that even though we have lost the dearest person(s) in the world, we still deserve to be happy.  Their death was not a punishment for us or for them, it was the fulfillment of natural laws that can't be changed, except by a miracle.  

Reader, thank you again for your kind comments.  I don't have much choice but to change my life.  Even at my age, I could still live another thirty years.  Both my mother and her mother lived to 89, even though they smoked and ate too many sweets.  My father and his mother both lived to 86.  My paternal grandfather died at 69 of cancer, but that could have been from exposure to asbestos as a boilermaker.   

I read in the following article that happiness isn’t a reward for being nice – it’s a birthright.   Shoot, even some prisoners in jail are having more fun than we are, especially the ones with conjugal visits. :)  

I don't claim to have the answers, I'm just sharing things I read here and there, trying to make sense of my new reality.  I have the comfort of knowing that my dad knew that I loved him, and thought he was wonderful, but he was such a humble man.    He used to say that when he was a young man, the world was his oyster, but that was long ago.   When I got my (modest) inheritance from my great uncle, I gave my dad some money so he could walk around with $10,000 in his pocket and feel like a big shot.  I wanted so much for him to feel like he was on top of the world.  We didn't even get to go to the Top of the Mark, but it's not my fault if he didn't want to go more places!  I have to keep telling myself this until it sinks in.  I'm glad he went to the Dickens Christmas Fair a couple of times.  He loved the attention he got from the ladies.  He looked so dapper in his Victorian suit and hat.  One lady remarked, "My, aren't you beautiful!"  He certainly was, inside and out. 

 

 

 

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Has anyone heard from Silver on how her Dad is doing?

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To all my friends here, thanks to each and every one of you for your kind words. Today I had a biopsy done and things dont look good. They say it looks like cancer but results will be early next week. Im so fucking scared right now and need my mum so desperately. If I have cancer it means I had it when my mum did. I honestly dont remember when i noticed the lump but at the time i couldn't cope with the fact my mum was dying and i remember thinking how much i wanted to go with her. The wait is killing me and it's reminding me of when we waited so long to find out if my mums cancer was really bad. It feels like dajavu and i feel numb and scared at the same time. I dont know if i have the will to fight this if it's the worst case scenario. 

Will catch up soon when I know more. Thanks for being here.

Lisa 

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Lisa K ... I am so sorry that you have to go through this but something that I have learned over the years in working in health-care is not to come to any conclusions until the test results come back.  A very good friend of mine was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer 2 1/2 years ago.  That day the doctors told him to get things in order because he had only 6 months to live.  That day I told him that the doctors are not GOD and that we live in good times when it comes to healthcare and what they can do for us.  My friend never gave up and today after 3 surgeries and treatments, he is cancer free.  Lisa, I know that this will weigh on you but try hard not to let it take away from your good attitude.  Positive thinking will take us far in any situation.  Also know that I will keep you in my prayers.  

HUGS
Cindy Jane

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So how is everyone doing today?  I find myself so tired lately. Before my dad passed I was full of energy, practically bouncing of the walls most days and now I'm falling asleep in front of the TV shortly after getting home from work each night and sleeping practically all night when I used to wake up often before.  Some of it may have to do with the fact that for days before and right after he died I was fighting a cold, some is probably from the fact that I've been doing a lot of stuff to keep myself busy and not think too much and part is probably depression.  So glad it's the weekend and I'm going to relax as much as possible the next couple of days and not push myself as much as I have been.  One of my neighbors just brought over a tray of homemade mac and cheese and homemade chocolate brownies, so at least I won't have to cook.  

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Hello everyone--Eve, May, Cindy Jane, Lisa, Missionblue, Reader, Athina, Belle, and welcome back, Zsusie:

Thanks for asking about my dad, May and Eve: he is now discharged from the hospital and in rehab. Mentally, he is more himself. I am still concerned about his oxygen though; he is still on the machine even though they have reduced the quantity. We still have no clue on his gall bladder cancer. One of the tumor marker tests came back negative; we are still waiting for the other. The question is if we should get the gall bladder removed in case it is cancer. Some have told us yes, some have said no; sometimes gb removal ends up causing more problems. Right now,  It seems that if he does have this cancer, it is in its early stages because it has not metastasized to other organs: that seems to be the only positive news for now. 

My dad is presently relatively conscious. I always get nervous when he says strange things--like that other week when he was babbling in Japanese and bringing up "thirty years ago" (still do not know the significance.) Now that i'm thinking about his behavior over the past two years, I wonder if it's stemming from his physical problems. Is it from anemia and lack of oxygen? I now feel so bad about the way I yelled at him when he was confused. When I was leaving his room last week, he told me he wanted to stay alive and live with me as long as possible--whereupon I burst into tears. (On several occasions this year, he has said he is worried about my feeling lonely when he passes.)

Today, I felt particularly sad. It's partly over the fact that my dad's situation has not been entirely resolved and wondering about how much it's all going to cost. But it's also about the end of Obama's 2nd term. Naturally, I couldn't help but think of his election in 2008 and his first inauguration. What a great time it was for me! Mom and I walked to the nearby highschool and voted for him; we were thrilled that night when he won. (It was the first and only time someone I had supported in the primaries had won!) I can  remember how we went out to dinner a few weeks after the election and a lot of people were still celebrating it, all bedecked with Obama gear from head to toe. I recall being happy for other reasons at that time as I was teaching a new class and our two little kittens who arrived in August were so adorable! I also remember the afternoon when mom and I walked again to the highschool to vote in 2012 and were relieved that he won. And then in 2014, when my mom had her stroke, one question they would always ask her to test her memory was "who is the president?" So yes, I have sort of come to associate Obama with my mom: we were closer these last 6 years of her life than ever before.  We talked a lot about the Obama family too and thought was wonderful that Michelle's mom lived with them--and what a great mom Michelle was to her daughters. Now that they are gone, I feel even farther apart from my mom. Yes, I know that sounds extremely silly. But grief can make us cling onto the past even more.

This brings me to the issue of staying where our parents have lived. For some people, the memories are too much. And indeed, I have pangs whenever I pass by certain stores that remind me of the good times my mom and I had shopping there. I certainly felt it last night when I went to the local Marshalls to buy some loose exercise clothes for my dad: I could remember the various occasions mom and I visited, rummaging through the spices, cookies, and kitchenware. And I felt the same when taking the taxi home from my dad's rehab passing by the prettily lit-up houses mom and I always passed by when she drove home from downtown.

Yet, at home, I take strange comfort in knowing that I am still living in a place where mom and I shared happy times together. Somehow I feel closer to her here....because I can still imagine her moving about, going up and down the stairs. I can still "see" her at the sink. I can still imagine her on the couch, with the windows behind her. If I were to move, I would feel even more displaced.

Lisa, you have my prayers. I can imagine how you feel....wanting to join your mom yet not quite ready. From what I've seen and read, breast cancer is easier to combat today than say even 20 years ago. So don't give up hope.

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MissionBlue - Thank you again for the links and sharing your experiences with us. And for giving me hope and encouragement. I agree with you completely. People are living longer and longer and no matter what age we are, we have to make an effort to live as fully as possible. I still find it hard only three months after my dad, but try to get out bed at least. And make myself go to work. Some normalcy is better than nothing. People try to give me hope and tell me the pain will lessen, but for me that is still a long ways off.

Lisa - Thinking of you. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Sending you extra hugs.

Athina - I know this road without are parents is extremely painful. Its a struggle. Its still so fresh. I don't know if we will ever reach acceptance. Keep writing and expressing yourself. And please know we are all here for you.

Silver - Your dad is so lucky to have you. Its a tough road caring for an elderly parent. There are so many ups and downs with their health. Thank you for sharing your thoughts about continuing to live in the home you shared with your mom and dad. Me too. I think I would feel displaced as well if I sold the house. For me I think 2017 is a bit of write off. Not too interested in doing much without my dad around. Maybe next year I will have more perspective. I'm still looking into grief counseling and a support group.

 

 

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MissionBlue, thank you for those kind words, encouraging me to fight my battle. I am also doing a lot of shopping, eating out in restaurants, as if I were to die tomorrow. We have always talked with mom that money is to be spent. Glad, that at least we did some traveling together. But I thought so much more was ahead of us. It is also weird that 3 months on, I am no close of even registering her death. The more time passes, the more I do not think of her as dead. I still cannot believe she does not exist anymore. I cannot process she does not see this beautiful day, that she's no more.

But I might not be completely hopeless, because it's strange what grief can do to you. I'm incredibly sad, but at the same time I find the beauty of every day. I swim in the ocean, look at this blue sky and for the moment I even have a hope I will be able to find happiness. 

Lisa, you are in my prayers. I do not have words to comfort you, but other girls are right. In this age there is much more you can do with cancer. This is what I wished for my mother, because as it concerns the brain, the medicine has not come anywhere to be able to do anything in the deep structures of it. 9 years ago my dad was told he had a terminate ulcer cancer. He underwent an operation and it turned out the cancer had metastized. They removed the ulcer and he was under chemo for half a year. The doctors told us to get things in order as he was terminally ill. My dad beat the odds and for the record he's very much alive right now, cancer free. Of course, everybody likes to make a point  - oh, but the cancer can return. Absolutely it can, but he made it through 9 years. Lisa, we are with you.

Silver, I was thinking of you. You are such a strong person to deal with everything. 

Reader, yeah, 2017 will be totally different. I don't have any perspective, other than to go with a flow. 

finally, I am so glad I found this forum. The only place I can come and vent. 

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Hi My Friends - Silverkitties, LisaK, MissionBlue, Reader, Zsuzsi, Eve, Athina, Belle

Silverkitties: I'm so, so glad to hear from you, Silver. It's so touching when your father said that to you. It clearly shows how much he loves you. I hope and pray that he will make it through all this and at the end he will be good and healthy. I'm glad it was caught early. Maybe it's a dumb question, but whenever he babbles, does he realize it? Silver, you truly are an amazing person and an amazing daughter. The frustrations are part of being a caretaker for all of us whose been there. You did everything for your dad -- cooked, clean, pay bills and much more. I call that a superwoman. Keep us posted.

Lisa: My prayers are with you. I know it's hard to try and think positive because I'm not in your shoes. Never give up. You have to fight it. We need you here. We love you. We are ALL here to support you. Much LOVE and HUGS. Keep us posted.

Reader: I can't believe it almost Chinese New Years. I remember mom loved to watch lion dance. I am in the lion dance group and I play the gong. I used to play cymbals, but I can't anymore since i just have one hand. Most of my family is in it. It was on a Saturday when we performed at a Chinese grocery store for the CNY. The next day mom had the stroke. I was glad that mom got to see us perform. She was so proud to see her grandkids being part of the lion dance. Ever since she was a little girl, she remembered watching the lion dance in China. Never in her wildest dreams she would imagine seeing her grandkids as lion dancers. Now, I think of mom every year during CNY. I have a picture of mom by the computer taken at the annual Asian Festival.  

I've been feeling a little uneasy this past week at night. I've been having trouble falling asleep and therefore, I hear strange things in my room at night. I have a walk-in-closet and I would hear noises coming from inside. Just the other day, at the head of the bed, i heard like a little piece of paper being slowly crumbled. Oh, crap!! I tried not to think of it. I heard like a thump on the bed next to me. I got scared. Maybe it was all in my head because I've been watching youtube videos of spirits, orbs, ghosts and the unexplained. 

Love and Hugs 

 

 

 

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Hello, I just joined the group today in hopes of coping with the loss of my mother. It is still so very hard to even talk about it without tearing up. She passed away 3 years ago and we were very close. I accepted it and knowing that I did all I could for her while she was still here gives me some relief. I miss her more than I can ever say. Well, this is as far as I can go...my heart and prayers go out to all who have loss a parent. God bless!!

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Cyn, welcome :(:(

I miss my Mom badly, too. I think I will need her more and more as time passes.

MayFGL, I do tape on my phone quite often, but I do not see the orbs.

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Zoe and Cyn: My deepest condolences and sympathies on the loss of your dad and mom. I'm so sorry. On this site you will find the kindest and most supportive people. I know I have.

Athina: I'm with you. We have to go with the flow. I know its tough. I struggle every day. I wish so badly my dad was still alive. I question myself every day wondering why I didn't do more to help my dad stay alive. I've become obsessive about it. I know its still early days for all us on this grief journey.

MayFGL: Thank you for sharing your mom with us. Happy to hear she enjoyed the lion dances so much and was able to see her grandchildren participate this beautiful tradition. My sibling was at the cemetery today. She told me she cleared away all the dead flowers in preparation for CNY. I don't know if that was really necessary, but she did it. I guess I will have to go and see my dad this week before CNY and bring him fresh flowers. And then wait again after CNY to see him again.

Sorry to hear you've been having trouble sleeping. I know what you mean, sometimes I don't know if things are in my head or just the sounds of an old house. I haven't heard footsteps in my dad's old room. And no more pennies to be found. I want my dad to rest in peace, but sometimes I really wish for a sign from the universe. Something from him to tell me, he is OK, and he thinks that I will be OK too. I don't know if that is too much to expect. So hard without my dad this year. And I'm still so angry with myself for taking our last year together for granted. For being mad at him. I was trying to hard to keep things going and he was just getting grumpier and more withdrawn. Never realizing he was dying. I feel so stupid. Wasting all that time, when I could have told him, he was a such a good dad to us and we still needed him. Harsh reality of only seeing my dad at the cemetery is sometimes too much for my brain to process.

I know I shouldn't cry during CNY. I need to have good feng shui and make the most of it. But I miss my dad. And how we will not have a reunion dinner with him this year.

Thank you again MayFGL for all your replies and kindness.

 

 

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Zoe and Cyn: Welcome! I'm sorry for your loss. Losing a parent is the hardest thing anyone can experience. Please continue to come here and share with us your thoughts, tell us your beloved mom and dad or you can simply just vent. We have a bunch of awesome people here that are very understanding and very supportive. We don't judge. 

Athina: Maybe one of these days you will see the orbs pop up. I would think it happens when lights are dim, not bright. I have a true story that I experienced, but it doesn't have to do with orbs. Years ago when my brother-in-law's father died. I was taking care of their baby and house sitting their house while they attended the viewing service. I saw laundry that needed to be folded in the hamper. So, I went on ahead and folded the clothes. They had a 3-way touch lamp. It turned on by itself. It went from bright, brighter then brightest. Oh Damn! I nearly peed in my pants. I just froze. After I finished folding the clothes, I went to distribute the clothes to the other two rooms which was just the opposite side. As I stepped out of the master bedroom, I turned on the dining room lights, the bulb died. Then, when I got to the short hallway, I turned on the lights, the bulb died. I thought to myself, what the heck?! Then, I turned on the living room's light, that died as well. I told my brother-in-law and he in turn told his best friend. His best friend said that it's got to be his father's doing. I was so scared out of my mind. I have more stories that my neighbor told me she experienced with her father-in-law.

Reader: I don't know if it's necessary for your sister to clear away the old flowers, but I think it's sweeping out the old and bringing in the new. The CNY tradition is cleaning the house to rid of the old and welcoming the new. Everything starts fresh for the new year. I think that was your sister's intentions. I wish there was a sign from your dad. Maybe there were signs that perhaps you weren't aware of or missed. When I came on board, I read the forum ADC's, Visions and Dreams under Spiritual/Religious Beliefs and it is quite interesting. You read about people's experiences where their loved ones leaves signs. They get phone calls from their loved ones, pink feathers out of nowhere, balloons that float up the stairs and into a certain room, etc. 

I've accepted mom's death from the beginning. I can't quite remember, but I think the first couple of days I didn't have trouble sleeping. I think for me it was like, was mom really gone? or it was a sense of that relief. I don't mean it in a bad way at all. The relief of mom is in good hands. I no longer have to look after mom. The stress and tension was weighing off me. It's hard to explain. It sounds harsh when I put it in words. Do you know what I mean?! Every single day I think of mom. Every year will suck. :( 

 

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Dear MayFGL,

Hope you are sleeping better. And thank you again for your words. The story you told Athina about the lights going out that night you were babysitting really resonated with me. Before my dad passed I always felt like there was a black cloud over our family. One light would go out here and there, the light over my dad's car in the garage went out. Maybe I am giving it more meaning then it deserves. But I just ignored replacing some of these light bulbs because I had to drag out the ladder. After my dad passed, more lights were going out. Its almost like my dad said, get up and do something. There were at least 8 light bulbs out and finally last week I decided to replace all the bulbs. I know our house is old so it could have all been a coincidence. All of this part of maintaining a house. I haven't had the energy to do anything since my dad's passing. But I finally decided to get things in order before CNY.

I think that is part of the mentality of CNY. Letting go of the old and having a fresh start. I'm glad my sister wanted to tidy up my dad's grave site. I will try and bring him some fresh flowers before CNY.

I also lost my glasses. I don't know how that happened. I remembered someone telling a story here about how they were looking for their glasses. And it somehow magically appeared back on their computer keyboard. I feel like asking my dad for help, but he was always the sort that wanted you to figure things out on your own.

May, I completely understand what you are saying about accepting your mom's passing and how she was no longer in pain. I know how much you loved and cared for your mom. And still think of her and miss her. Its true, every year without our parents is a tough one. I am still struggling. I wake up and think I should be getting my dad his coffee and food. Or today is the day he would have a shower. Or how he would have the TV on 24/7. I keep reading and reading for something to help put this life experience in context. I never fully understood grief. I know none of us can live forever, but I honestly thought my dad would make it. At least get out of the hospital one more time. Hate myself so much for leaving him that day. Knowing how weak he was, I thought he just needed more rest.

I hope I can control my emotions and try to get through CNY without causing bad luck by crying and talking about death so much.

Take care my friends.

 

 

 

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MayFGL, I'll try to get some video taping in the dim, I would not be afraid. Thanks for sharing.

Reader, yeah, I can totally relate - nobody lives forever, but I also somehow thought my mother would be living a long life. I was sure of that. And it takes much harder to accept then. I find it hard to accept ordinary things, i. e. more than a year ago I did not get a job I so wanted. It took me a long while to let it go (it was like a cherished dream, a once in a life chance). So you can imagine how am I to cope with mummy's death. As I've mentioned a million times, apparently every day I seem to float further from the bare fact that she's dead. The first weeks I was more sure of her death. So I don't know if that's my way of coping (like in my thoughts I'm letting her know of everything that is going on in my life, like she's taking part in it), or am I still in denial? My littlest one ocassionally asks me to tell a story of how grandma died (my husband rolls his eyes, of course). And afterwards we are sending grandma kisses. I assume it is more for me to keep her memory alive. But what can I do? It breaks my heart. I guess with the death of my mother, I am also grieving for my children, and for the grandparents that I did not meet myself. My mother's parents died young. Like very very bad genes. Before I never did think of that. 

And at last, once again. How I really hate those people who tell me to move on while at the same time they come from the zone of complete ignorance of grief. Telling me they are so lucky they still have both parents. But advising me to move on. Hate them hate them hate them. 

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Athina, people can say the dumbest things. I remember sitting in the oncologists office crying my heart out when he said her cancer wasn't curable and his stupid registrar telling me people die that's life. How fucking heartless is that, i wanted to slap her stupid face into the next century. Maybe they become immune to telling people they are dying but i really expected a bit more compassion. Grief sucks.

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Dear Athina and Lisa,

I hear you. It seems in life there are so many insensitive and thoughtless people. Grief is already hard enough without someone saying something heartless and carless. I know how painful that it is. My father was in the hospital a month before he died. He told me he was in pain and couldn't breath. The heartless nurse told him to sit up and that was why he couldn't breath. I'm normally not a violent person but I wanted to slap her too. I reported her to the hospital but nothing ever happened.  And then after my father died his stupid insurance broker wouldn't give me his life insurance check. He wanted me to have a meeting with him and see if I would let him "invest" the money. I almost lost my mind. It was so soon after my father's death and I needed the money to pay for the funeral. And yet this jerk thought it was a good idea to use my father's death as a sales opportunity. Pains me terribly there are so many jerks in the world sometimes.

Athina, we have a right to our grief, our tears and pain. And no one should be telling us to move on or get on with life. Its not their life, not their journey. They have no right. They are so fortunate to able to still have their parents, but we don't. We know the terrible pain and sorrow. And we have to learn in our time how we will come to terms...if ever. Some days I think I am normal but other days I'm still so angry that my father died. Questions, questions and more questions. It just kills me inside.

 

 

 

 

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Athina/ Lisa/ Reader, I couldn't agree with you more. Some people are just jerks and insensitive. One day I went walking in my neighborhood and I ran into one of my neighbors. I would cry and just think about mom. She told me early on that I had to move forward because it's no use crying. Crying is not going to bring your mom back. I felt like smacking her. She around 60 yo., I think. I just don't get it. People just don't understand the grieving process. Everyone grieves differently. The insurance broker is a real jerk and an ass. 

I'll tell you an incident that happened while my mom was in the ICU. One day went out the unit to use the restroom. It was just a single potty. It was occupied and was waiting to use it. Along came this lady and stoop by me. Naturally, we greeted each other and started talking. We asked each other why we're at the hospital. She told me her neighbor was in ICU and they were going to pull the plug that day. She's an elderly lady that lived by herself. She hit her head on the coffee table and bled. Her daughter was suppose to look after her, but she was nowhere to be found. She's a drug addict. While she was telling me all this, the daughter along with 3 siblings came down the hall. She was talking loud. The lady said the daughter didn't want to see her mom. The other siblings tried to persuade her to be with their mom. I heard the daughter say that she doesn't want to go in there. She didn't care if it's the last time. And, get a load of this, she told her siblings to tell mom I said, "I love her and tell her goodbye." What kind of a daughter is that? That is an insensitive bit*h! A mom who raised you, fed you and put a roof over your head and in return she gets treated like that. It's so, so sad. How did she sleep at night, I wonder?! I saw them in the waiting room while we were there. She was being loud, too. 

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Dear MayFGL,

I'm so sorry to hear what happened when you went for your walk and ran into the neighbor. I find, I too, have been disappointed by the lack of compassion and understanding after my father's death. One person told me to take a vacation and I would come back feeling a lot better! She was Chinese and also in her 60s. I find myself quick to anger and wanted to scream at people sometimes for their insensitivity.

That is a horrible story about the lady in the ICU. I'm with you, our parents did so much for us. My parents were immigrants. They didn't speak English. They had tough lives. They struggled every day to provide for their kids. I wanted to make my parents lives as easy as possible in their golden years as it were. I tried to take on all the stuff they asked me to. After my dad's stroke, I thought I was doing everything "right" to keep him alive, but it wasn't enough and he died. It was all too late. He was dying and I was denial it seems. Or had become indifferent.

I always felt I was 99 percent responsible for my dad even thought I had siblings. And all the daily responsibilities was weighing me down. I had started to ask myself "how long can I go on for?" And then my dad passed. And now I'm still so angry with everything that happened for the last three years since his stroke. I would have given anything to be with my dad during those last moments. Telling him what mattered. How we loved him. How we are grateful for having a good daddy. But its all too late. And here this lady couldn't even go to her mom's bedside. It makes me sick.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Oh, Reader, you know you did all you could to best take care of your dad. Your dad was very blessed to have you as a daughter. I felt the same as you did that I was 99% responsible for my mom. I have 5 other siblings. We all live on the same street except my oldest brother who lives in L.A.

I get so frustrated when everything it's me, me and me. I am the youngest of the siblings. My second oldest sister got me frustrated the most. Like the time when mom had a nasty accident in her diapers. I didn't know how to go about it without making a mess especially with one hand. I called up my sister to help. She just lives down one house over and it took her 30 minutes to come over. I couldn't wait that long and have mom uncomfortable. I did it myself and took her a shower. Thinking back, I could've cause an accident when I took mom a shower. I had to help her out of the wheelchair. She can't really walk or stand alone by herself. She had to walk a few steps to the tub, lift her leg up and climb into the tub. We were going to change it to walk-in tub, but mom warn us not to touch. What if I caused mom to fall?! I don't think I would be able to live with myself especially falling in the restroom. 

Mom overcame many hardship when she was living in China. She raised 6 children by herself. My dad died when I was a baby. So, I never knew him and don't care to. He was an abusive husband/father. Everyone in the family kept it away from me about my father. I didn't find out till about 10 yrs ago when mom told me one day. He used to abuse mom badly. Hit her black and blue. I just cried and hugged mom. We were very poor and what little money we had left, dad would steal to support his drug habit. Mom worked in the rice fields before sunrise and came home late in the evening. When she took lunch break, she ate porridge, but it was like drinking water, not thick. She would skip meals so that us kids can eat.

We all came to America together in March 13, 1969. Mom passed on the exact same date March 13. My mom didn't know any English either. She didn't learn how to write or drive. She never even became a US citizen. She never went back home to visit. All of my siblings have been back to China to visit except me and mom. Where are you from? Parents? 

I saw a video of a hidden camera showing seniors getting abused in the nursing homes. I was crying the whole entire time. I was getting mad, too. I just can't imagine if my mom was in a nursing home and that kind of abuse was going on. There's no telling what I'd do. I would never even think of putting mom in a nursing home. I'm not saying all nursing homes are bad. You just never know.

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Dear MayFGL,

Thank you so much for your kind words. Sometimes I really doubt if I did the best I could in the final year of my dad's life. Even the waitress at the dim sum restaurant told me, my dad was lucky to have me. I know others have said the same, but now that he has died, I feel like such a terrible failure. 2016 was the worst year of my life. I didn't see the situation as clearly as I needed to. Maybe the universe was trying to tell me something. Even all the little things like a light bulb going out seemed to bring me down. Just something else on my to do list. My dad was so grumpy and I tried my best to just let him be, but in hindsight it was a fatal mistake. I keep going back and back about what I could have done to save him. It breaks my heart that he never got to hold his new granddaughter.

May, you are such a selfless and giving person. You did so much for your mom. Always thinking of her comfort before your own. Changing her diaper and helping her into the tub with your one good arm. I know what you mean. I never felt like I could count on my siblings. I'm the oldest of 4. It was all on me. Night and day. I had emailed my youngest sibling back in early 2016. I told her, how frustrated I was. My dad was so grumpy and just didn't want to do anything anymore. No, how are you? No, is there anything I can help with? No, do you need a break? Nothing. Then fighting towards the end with my other sibling about placing my dad in a nursing home. I wanted to keep my dad at home, but I also wanted more help. It was a vicious circle. I was getting burned out, but I also wanted my siblings to acknowledge me, validate me and help me more. But in the end, I feel like mentioning the possibility of a nursing home also contributed to my dad's death.

May, I'm so sorry. Hearing your mom's story and her suffering is almost unbearable. But how fortunate she was to have you. Someone who cherished her, honored her and loved her unconditionally. Me, too. I read the most horrible stories about nursing homes. And saw the most horrible videos too. My dad never wanted to go to a nursing home. Honestly, I didn't want him to go either. I couldn't stand it. Even when he was in rehab after the stroke for two months, I wanted him out. I didn't like it at all. He was over medicated. And he was starving to death in there. Some of the staff was okay, but some I didn't like. No one's life is perfect, but I wanted to give my dad some happiness by honoring what he wanted.

Both my parents are from China too. They both got to Hong Kong and then came to America. I was born here. I always felt like my parents were waiting for me to grow up so I could help them. With the language. With the finances. With all the daily struggles when you don't speak English. I had to accompany them to a lot of things and be the translator. I have always been the responsible one. Some of my family members make me feel like I have given up my life for my parents. In a way, I guess I did, I just never thought about having my own family. I never thought about leaving or doing anything on my own. It never felt right to leave them alone. They needed me. And now that my dad is dead. I feel like I have no purpose.

Thank you MayFGL for your support and kindness. And for all your replies. And sharing more of your experiences with all of us. And for allowing me to vent here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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May and Reader, I can relate to the complex emotions you both are feeling about your parents.  My dad didn't finish high school, because he dropped out to work and help his parents and siblings survive.  My dad's grandfather was a professor but he had to leave Mexico with his wife and ten children to escape the Mexican Revolution.  Everything he worked so hard for was lost, so the family had to start over with nothing.  Then both my dad's grandparents died young, leaving their children to fend for themselves.  The oldest siblings took care of the youngest.  Even though my dad was born in Texas, he grew up poor also on account of the Great Depression.  His parents and seven siblings came to San Francisco, piled in a car, like in The Grapes of Wrath.  My dad never had the benefit of a good education, so I had to help him with a lot of things, such as doing his taxes, and handling other money and legal matters.  I had to explain to him what his meds were for and help him with basic things like spelling.  He had great penmanship though, better than mine.  He also had a refined taste in clothes, music and films.  I think he was a throwback to his illustrious grandfather who was also his namesake, except he didn't have the education.  Sometimes I used to wish that he hadn't been so dependent on me, and that he had been more proactive in his own care.  I kind of gave up my own life for him, too, though it was my own choice.  I also got kind of burned out during the last month of his life, because for the first time in many years, I was ill myself with bronchitis which I just couldn't get over.  I was able to function without having to be bedridden, but I was very tired.  I feel if I hadn't been sick myself, then maybe I would have taken better care of my dad.  I was also going through menopause around the last year of his life, and that was no fun.  I think that's why I was irritable at times.  I always asked his forgiveness though whenever I was short with him or complained too much.  Like I mentioned previously, I had gotten to the point where I no longer had romantic illusions, and just wanted to spend the rest of my life with my dad, but then cruelly, a few weeks later he was gone.   I knew that I couldn't spend the rest of my life with him, but that is what I would have liked more than anything else in the world.  On the other hand, I am so glad that I did not predecease him, because he was so dependent on me and I on him.  He would have felt so alone and abandoned, as I do now.  I too wanted so much to make him happy in his golden years, but with the house needing so much work, I ran out of time.  In this way, I feel like this house will always be a reminder of my failure.  Even if I ever had enough money to fix it up completely, it will always be too late for my dad.  So I think better to just buy a house that doesn't need so much work and have so much heartache connected to it.  I spent most of my life as a caregiver, so I've seen my loved ones grow old and die.  However, no one ever died in this house that I know of -- always at the hospital.  My happiest memories are from my childhood and the brief intervals when I wasn't a caregiver.    

I am feeling extra down, because Ernesto and I had another fight.  It doesn't look like we are going to survive this latest argument.  Since our last argument, he made an effort to improve his behavior, but now he's backsliding again.  Rather than go into details, he has made it very clear that he is not interested in a real friendship with me.  I told him before that when I let him move in here, I wasn't looking for a tenant, but a friend.  The piddling amount he gives me to help with expenses is a drop in the bucket.  Every little bit helps, but I'd rather do without it than put up with his bad manners and surly moods.  I was mainly interested in his companionship.  However, this symbiotic relationship we have is so unfulfilling to me.  He says he doesn't like me asking him too many questions, when I'm just trying to make conversation.  I told him I think you would be happier living alone.  He is still legally entitled to two months to look for another place, but as far as I am concerned, it's over between us.  He offered to cook me dinner, and I said, no thanks, you live your life and I live mine.  Food is not that important to me.  I want food for my soul!

Even though he'll be around, I am now on my own again.  I don't even want to talk to him or watch tv with him anymore.  I can expect no comfort or kindness from him any longer.  I am in a better place psychologically than when he first moved in with me, but facing a lifetime of loneliness is the pits.  On the other hand, living with someone and still feeling lonely and abandoned is even worse!

Silverkitties, I can sympathize so much with the intense nostalgia you feel about places you visited with your Mom.  Unfortunately, a lot of the places that my dad and I used to enjoy together no longer exist.  Not even the Marshall's downtown we used to go to.  It's now a Nordstrom Rack and just not the same.  One thing that makes it easier to sell my home is that I had to sell off most of the garden years ago to help make ends meet and to make repairs to the remaining property, so it isn't truly the home I grew up in anymore.  I sold one vacant lot and then another one.  The last lot I sold to my neighbor in a private sale.  The good thing about that is that I still have a fully detached home which is a rarity in San Francisco, and hopefully that will  make up for some of the property's failings.  If I had sold the lot to anyone else, chances are the buyer would have either flipped it or built on it immediately.  The down side is that whenever my neighbor has parties on the patio lot, where my family used to have our fun parties, it makes me sad and nostalgic. 

Lisa:  You and your brother are in my thoughts and prayers.  I hope the doctors will choose the best course of treatment for you. 

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