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Lost My Dad


JillFairchild

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JillFairchild

My dad died on December 8th. He had prostate cancer for over 20 years, but opted for watchful waiting over surgery. He was doing fine until February of this year when his prostate shut down. He had a few hospitalizations in September/October but seemed to recover well. Cancer is evil. He had lost about 30 pounds over the last several months. He broke his hip right before Thanksgiving and even seemed to recover from that. But then he suddenly got weak, did not want to get out of bed, eat or drink, and died the next day. I was devastated. I had helped care for him over the last few months along with my siblings. I knew he would go eventually, but not that quickly. How does anyone get through this? The loss is so final, so debilitating, and the holidays only make it worse. I would love information from others on things that helped them cope, helped them feel better. I just miss my dad so much. I cannot stop crying.

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My dad died on December 8th. He had prostate cancer for over 20 years, but opted for watchful waiting over surgery. He was doing fine until February of this year when his prostate shut down. He had a few hospitalizations in September/October but seemed to recover well. Cancer is evil. He had lost about 30 pounds over the last several months. He broke his hip right before Thanksgiving and even seemed to recover from that. But then he suddenly got weak, did not want to get out of bed, eat or drink, and died the next day. I was devastated. I had helped care for him over the last few months along with my siblings. I knew he would go eventually, but not that quickly. How does anyone get through this? The loss is so final, so debilitating, and the holidays only make it worse. I would love information from others on things that helped them cope, helped them feel better. I just miss my dad so much. I cannot stop crying.

Jill:

It's hard. I lost my mom 2 days after you lost your dad- so the wounds are still fresh.

I too am struggling - but the best you can do is to talk about it - grieve as you need to. There is no specific way to grieve - each person is different.

Please look at my first post and you may find some videos that will help. Just reach out to us.

God bless you.

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JillFairchild

Thank you. It's comforting to hear from those who share the same loss. I certainly don't want to spend the rest of my days being sad, but it hits me in waves.

~Jill

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To Jill:

I know it comes in waves, when something doesn't go right. Like me today I started crying. I am staying with someone because i don't want to be alone. My mother died on Nov 14, i will never be the same again, your right jill, its so final and i am having trouble getting past this. No one compares to her. I am disgusted with everyone and everything and wish i could go with her.

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stillfighting431

Debbie,Jill,Frank Hi,

I feel your pain,it's only been a few days for you guys.I lost my mom on 24th july,so it's been 5 months for me.I don't know how I got here.For 2 months straight I honestly believed no one can live through so much pain,my heart is just going to stop beating,I can't go on like this ,something's gotta give.But here I am,still following my daily routine as best as I can,still missing mom like crazy.The first month goes by in a haze of shock & numbness,but after that wears off,the pain gets even more intense as all of your senses reawaken.Then come the anxiety attacks, you're lost in some daily chore & for a few seconds you forget everything,then like an electric shock the realization hits you,mom's gone ,she isn't coming back.You struggle to catch your breath,it hurts so much you can't breathe,silent tears roll down your cheeks along with an intense feeling of disbelief.You think how can it be,feels like yesterday she was right here with me,she can't be just gone without a trace.

Then there are the dreams in which you see her ,alive & well,you feel so relieved to see her again, you hug her & tell her how much you missed her.And then you wake up & realize it was just a dream,she's never coming back,you feel like you lost her all over again....

Hang in there guys,it'll get better with time,you'll learn to live & function with your pain.I made it it this far,you'll too.Just take it a day or even an hour at a time.Keep talking to each other, it truly helps.

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Debbie,Jill,Frank Hi,

I feel your pain,it's only been a few days for you guys.I lost my mom on 24th july,so it's been 5 months for me.I don't know how I got here.For 2 months straight I honestly believed no one can live through so much pain,my heart is just going to stop beating,I can't go on like this ,something's gotta give.But here I am,still following my daily routine as best as I can,still missing mom like crazy.The first month goes by in a haze of shock & numbness,but after that wears off,the pain gets even more intense as all of your senses reawaken.Then come the anxiety attacks, you're lost in some daily chore & for a few seconds you forget everything,then like an electric shock the realization hits you,mom's gone ,she isn't coming back.You struggle to catch your breath,it hurts so much you can't breathe,silent tears roll down your cheeks along with an intense feeling of disbelief.You think how can it be,feels like yesterday she was right here with me,she can't be just gone without a trace.

Then there are the dreams in which you see her ,alive & well,you feel so relieved to see her again, you hug her & tell her how much you missed her.And then you wake up & realize it was just a dream,she's never coming back,you feel like you lost her all over again....

Hang in there guys,it'll get better with time,you'll learn to live & function with your pain.I made it it this far,you'll too.Just take it a day or even an hour at a time.Keep talking to each other, it truly helps.

I went through those panic attacks as soon as Mom died. It started with me just thinking about my mom...my heart would flutter and I could not breathe. It felt like a hand grabbing my throat.

Even in my sleep I'd wake up choking.

Now 2 weeks later, its not as bad. But still, it's lonely without my mom. We shared so much together.

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JillFairchild

Yes, what is helping me is to write down things I remember about him. Things he said and did. And also NOT drinking. Alcohol for me is a depressant and I notice that whenever I have a cocktail or two I get even sadder. I also talk to him pretty much every day. I have his picture by my bed and he's the first thing I see when I wake up, and I tell him good morning. I also know that he would hate it if I were sad all the time, so I try to keep a brave face just for him. Crying is just part of the process, and thinking of how final it is does not help so I try not to go into those thoughts. Thank you everyone for your compassion and kind words. It helps to know that others know what we are all going through, and how gut-wrenching it all is.

~Jill

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I went through those panic attacks as soon as Mom died. It started with me just thinking about my mom...my heart would flutter and I could not breathe. It felt like a hand grabbing my throat.

Even in my sleep I'd wake up choking.

Now 2 weeks later, its not as bad. But still, it's lonely without my mom. We shared so much together.

To Stillfighting Jill and frank:

Stillfighting thanks so much for your insightful words. Your right the first month is hard, the first 2 weeks unreal. On my fifth week I got a bit better. I am going on 7 weeks, i am getting better until like you said the realization hits you all over again. Time marches on and we have to learn to live again without that person. Keeping pictures, someone said say good morning to them, this stuff may help, haven't tried it yet.

Frank, I hope your pain gets better and you learn to adjust. I was ok earlier today and then burst into tears at my friends house tonight because she said something that was unfeeling to me. lol Little triggers set us off and i think, "my mother would not have said that to me," Prayers for all of us. Frank you are the newest one to this pain. After about a month it lets up some, the awful memories fade some and are replaced with some type of acceptence for the most part. Reading Psalms 121 helps,

Jill I hope the bad part of your dad's illness fade a little, my mother broke her hip too and i saw her on a ventilator i thought i would die, those bad scenes come less now and i try to remember her and i in happier times. Jill your in my thoughts and prayers. I hope you are feeling a little better and stronger. You are not alone in this. Debbie

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JillF, I am so very sorry for your loss. I lost my Dad in April, and I still have days where I break down and cry. Usually alone. I am doing better and enjoying things in life again, but each time I think I'm doing ok something else happens and it all comes back. I have been excited about the new year coming up because I would like a year without sad things happening, and then I realized it will be my first actual year without my dad. Talking about him and the things he liked and would appreciate, although sad does give me some comfort. Also, concentrating on my son and husband and their happiness has helped. I have some great friends that will talk and go out when needed. My advice is to lean on those you love and let yourself feel the loss. My neighbor sent me a hateful email a few weeks ago about something very unrelated and also mentioned she could not believe I am still grieving for my father because she caught me crying on my back porch one afternoon. People can be cruel. But people can be very loving as well. Cancer is heartbreaking- it broke my father's heart and mine as well. Grace and peace to you in the coming year.

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JillFairchild

Thank you so much for your kind words. I cannot imagine anyone thinking that you should be done grieving in less than a year. The hospice brochure said similar things - "LEAN into the grief". So sometimes I allow myself to do that and others not. It's also true that we need to focus on loving those around us so that our grief does not overwhelm the good things in life. My dad hated to see me cry so I tell myself that he would not want me to be sad. I'm also glad that the whole Christmas thing is over. It was just too much too soon. Today I would typically call my dad and scream HAPPY NEW YEAR into the phone, so I said it to the Universe instead hoping he will hear me. As is typical with life there will be more death, and I just have to learn to live through it as opposed to letting it destroy my life and being stuck in grief. It is so helpful though to hear from others. So thank you again.

~Jill

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I was one of the luckiest women alive. I had an absolutely wonderful dad. His name was Skip and we were very much alike. I even look just like him. He taught us about nature and all outdoor pleasures and wonders and I could go on and on with all the sweet and loving and protective things he did. He was a very funny man and all our friends liked him and wanted him to come to their parties, too. I am so proud to be his daughter. Alzheimer's got my dad and mother and I took care of him at home. It seemed such a dishonorable death for so fine a man, so sweet a soul. After 5 years, he passed away. I thought I had done everything right in preparing for Dad's passing. I was determined to do all the right things that I had read about to do when someone dies and I was going to cross every t and dot every i. I carefully made all the funeral arrangements, coordinated the food bringing, got a video made of Dad's life (which he would have loved). I wore the exact right dress, shoes everything , I set up the cremation. I let mother take care of the stone because she wanted to do something. I made all the calls and, well, ran the whole show. I was determined that I was going to be like Robert Redford in The Natural. I was going to knock that ball out of the park, break all the lights, round all the bases and come home a winner. Well, I did and everyone was very impressed. Then, everyone went home and it was just mother and me. Slowly, over the next 8 months, I crumbled into a terrified little girl who lost her daddy. I was so confused. I thought that because I did all the right things, I would somehow have "paid my dues." I forgot about my broken heart. Daddy had been my hero when I was little, my pal when I was grown and then my little doll that I could dress up in nice shirts and pants and shoes, etc. Well, I didn't want to think of him at all. It got bad in a very wierd way. I couldn't look at my bare feet anymore because they looked just like his. I had to shower in the dark because I didn't want to see my face in the mirror, so like his. After a period of therapy and the passing of time itself, I was able to put my make-up on using 1 quarter of the mirror at a time! Now, many years have passed and a wonderful thing is happening. When daddy got old, his black hair and beard got snow-white streaks in it. He started calling himself "old skunky." much to my mother's annoyance. Well, guess what? My hair is coming in striped, too! And it's beautiful. I can arrange the stripes in all kinds of different ways. I get many complements on my strange hair and when I'm asked who my stylist is I tell them it was Daddy! Now, when I look in the mirror, I laugh a little bit and I see my/dad's eyes crinkle up in the same way. What I mean to say is what once would have slashed at my heart like fangs now warms my heart and makes me laugh. It seems to me that the longer the time passes, the oddly closer to him I feel...almost as if I could have a conversation with him. Do any of you feel like that? I'm going to pray for all of you to come to these wonderful realizations as I have and I would love to hear your stories so I can learn from you.--My Best Hopes for All

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My mom.past away dec 8th. I go tomorrow and pay the rest of her funeral expenses and pick up her ashes

I will be flying back to.Indiana in a week.and a half to have her memorial and lay her to.rest next to her mother, my grandmother. The closer it gets the more anxiety I am having. After the memorial it.will be final. Not.that it.isn't know. I.can.eat sleep my life has stood still.since dec 8th and the whole world has continued on. I.get so mad all the time

What if I.had done.this what.if I had done.that would.she still be here with me?

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JillFairchild

Your post is awesome and gives me such hope. My story is quite different. My father was a violent alcoholic my entire childhood. It made me damaged. I moved from Arizona to California when I as 17 to escape. My mom was an alcoholic too but not as bad and not violent. I had a very angry and sad childhood. My dad quit drinking a year after I moved. Over 40 plus years we were able to reconcile and although it never went away completely, I knew my dad loved us more than anything. He spent years trying to make up for the damage he had caused. As he got sicker over the last several months, I was able to spend a lot of time with him. Time I might not have spent had he not been sick. I have wonderful memories of holding hands in the parking lot of one of his doctors, singing one of his favorite songs. Being able to tell him how much I loved him, and that there was no place else I would rather be. I was desperate to keep this man who I had once so hated and now adored alive. I couldn't. I hope with time the incredible memories of the last few months will outweigh the sadness of not being able to talk to him every single day as I had.

You are so lucky to have had such a wonderful father. It sounds like he was everything to you, and some people never have that joy.

Jill

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JillFairchild

I am so sorry. Your mom passed one day after my dad. I know how hard it is, I cry pretty much every day. I will tell you that my brother in law committed suicide almost 3 years ago, and my sister spent a lot of time agonizing over what she could have done to prevent it. And there is no good that can come of that. Here is something I got from tut.com, a really wonderful spiritual site that sends me daily messages. Maybe it will help you in your grief. I think there is no magic, that only time will help us replace our devastating loss with wonderful memories:

The top 10 things dead people want to tell living people are:

1. They're not dead.

2. They're sorry for any pain they caused.

3. There's no such thing as a devil or hell.

4. They were ready to go when they went.

5. You're not ready.

6. They finally understand what they were missing.

7. Nothing can prepare you for the beauty of the moment you arrive.

8. Don't try to understand this now, but life is exceedingly fair.

9. Your pets are as crazy, brilliant and loving, here, as they were there.

10. Life really is all about love, but not just loving those who love you

My mom.past away dec 8th. I go tomorrow and pay the rest of her funeral expenses and pick up her ashes

I will be flying back to.Indiana in a week.and a half to have her memorial and lay her to.rest next to her mother, my grandmother. The closer it gets the more anxiety I am having. After the memorial it.will be final. Not.that it.isn't know. I.can.eat sleep my life has stood still.since dec 8th and the whole world has continued on. I.get so mad all the time

What if I.had done.this what.if I had done.that would.she still be here with me?

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Jill thank you..

I am very fortune in alot of ways. One I had an amazing momma. I took care if het for 18 years and we were not only mother daughter but she was my best friend. I miss her dearly. In.thanksgiving day she went into hospice and within 10 days she was dead. We had many talks about hospice and she told me she was ready to.go..go yo heaven and see all her loved ones that past before her. She said she was tired, tired of all the pain, struggling to breathe, all the doctors hospitals etc. It was hard for me to accept but I did as she wanted and let her pass away at home under her terms. She had COPD, Congestive heart failure, diabetes, etc. And had been diagnosed over 20 years ago.

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JillFairchild

I can only imagine. When you are a caregiver your life's work is to try to keep the person alive. I only had that experience for a few months, so cannot imagine the loss after caring for her for 18 years. I am so sorry. I hope it is helpful to know how much you must have meant to her, dedicating your life to caring for her. Many people would not do that. Many people have no relationship or poor relationships with their parents. So it is wonderful you were able to care for her. I told my dad that there was no place I would rather be, and I meant it. The last few months of caring for him were some of the best in my life, and I hold those memories very close to my heart.

Jill

Jill thank you..

I am very fortune in alot of ways. One I had an amazing momma. I took care if het for 18 years and we were not only mother daughter but she was my best friend. I miss her dearly. In.thanksgiving day she went into hospice and within 10 days she was dead. We had many talks about hospice and she told me she was ready to.go..go yo heaven and see all her loved ones that past before her. She said she was tired, tired of all the pain, struggling to breathe, all the doctors hospitals etc. It was hard for me to accept but I did as she wanted and let her pass away at home under her terms. She had COPD, Congestive heart failure, diabetes, etc. And had been diagnosed over 20 years ago.

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JillF the bond between me and mom.was the strongest bond anyone could have. She was an extroarinary woman. My loss is so overwhelming most days I.want nothing more than go be with her. I just couldn't do that to my kids whom I am very close to, to lose their nanny then have their momma commit suicide.. I couldn't put that pain on them. Yesterday I had to go and finish paying her funeral expenses, , today they are cremating her. It was very emotional cause I know sir was just in the other room. I miss her so much

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JillFairchild

Linda. I am so sorry. I only wish you could try to think of the wonderful times with your mom. That has helped me a lot. The hospice brochure said something like "imagine you are carrying them around with you all day" and that helps me too. My brother in law committed suicide almost 3 years ago, and it was devastating to our family. Especially to his children. So please, please do not let your overwhelming grief lead you in that direction. Your grief will get less with time, and suicide and the after affects on those left behind are permanent and incredibly sad. I have a picture of my dad by my bed, and I tell him good morning and good night every day. It helps. I also talk to him throughout the day and tell him that I love and miss him. Someone told me that we owe our love to those that are here, so try to think of that as well. And keep posting, because we all know somewhat of what you are feeling. Everyone grieves differently, and I have had some powerfully sad days but also some good days.

Jill

JillF the bond between me and mom.was the strongest bond anyone could have. She was an extroarinary woman. My loss is so overwhelming most days I.want nothing more than go be with her. I just couldn't do that to my kids whom I am very close to, to lose their nanny then have their momma commit suicide.. I couldn't put that pain on them. Yesterday I had to go and finish paying her funeral expenses, , today they are cremating her. It was very emotional cause I know sir was just in the other room. I miss her so much

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Gryke1,

You sound like an amazing daughter! I have never heard of anyone be as prepared as you are, however, that also makes me realize that you can never be prepared for the loss of a loved one. I have thought of that too. Thinking well if I do this or that I will be ready for their passing, in this case I was talking about my grandpa, who was also suffering from Alzheimers. The hard truth is that you can never be prepared for such a shocking event, yes shocking. I wish also I could say what you do about my dad. We are not close by any means, in fact, now that I'm married and with a baby I can't watch a movie or a show about dad's because I break down. All I'm grateful for is that my beautiful daughter has her's with her all the time (my husband works from home).

It's good that you sought therapy to help you through your grief, sometimes that is what someone needs to do in order to move on. I also agree that as time passes by, things that used to make us break down now are a source of happiness. In fact, that is completely normal. Strange as it may seem sometimes we are afraid to let go of intense grief, believing that it may indicate our love for loved one is diminishing. In fact, letting go of the pain makes way for treasured memories that will remain with you. The Bible says that: "for everything there is an appointed time...a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to wail and a time to skip about".

Linda Lee,

My deepest condolences go out to you. The passing of your mom is so so fresh still and what you are going through is normal in fact, grief last longer than people realize. Be patient with yourself Linda. Although it's a natural reaction for others to say 'Don't cry' we know that doesn't really help, grieve if you want to, crying helps ease the pain. Don't torture yourself with the 'if onlys', it is actually normal to feel regret over things you wish you had done differently. The fact is, you would have done things differently had you known what would happen, but you did not know. Therefore, the guilt is inappropriate, you are not responsible for your mom's death! If such thoughts continue to plague you, share your feelings with another adult or a surviving relative. They in time will help you get a more balanced outlook. You should also communicate your feelings. There is a proverb that says in Proverbs 12:25: "Kind words will cheer you up". Keeping your feelings bottled up inside may make it difficult for you to deal with your grief. On the other hand, discussing your feelings with someone you trust will open the way for you to receive "kind words" of encouragement when you need them the most. Overall, Linda grieving is not an overnight process it is to be taken day by day, for "each day brings it's own anxieties" (Matthew 6:34)

Warm hugs,

Ada

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