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When will the nightmares stop?


taclupp

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I have just now gotten to the point where I can write about this. I have been told time and again that writing and sharing with other people who have been through something similar helps the grieving process. So where do I start........ November 16, 2011, 4:25PM, my mom was pronounced dead. 59 years old. Healthy, fit, waterskiing on the back of our boat last summer. On the November 5th, she call me and told me not to bring the kids over because she felt like she was getting ill, and didn't want them to catch what she had. She felt some chest congestion. I said okay and to call me if she needs anything. Turns out she was having a freak massive heart attack. My dad called me at 2:30AM the morning of November 8th and told me that Mom was being ambulanced from the ER to a Level 1 trauma center. I met him there about 40 minutes later. She had an emerency open-heart, triple bypass was then transferred to the cardio-thoracic ICU. She was recovering well but I remained at her bedside. On day 8 in the ICU, she was doing great, she was walking, talking, and smiling. She was to be transferred to a regular room in the next day or two. My dad had to run home for a few minutes and I was there with her alone. I sat right by her, holding her hand and petting her hair and talking with her and thanking God that she made it through that horrid event. It was about 3:50 PM on Wednesday, November 16th. Mom started complaining that she wasn't getting any oxygen through her oxygen mask. I alerted her nurse who came in and started checking all the monitors and such. Mom then told me that she needed to go to the bathroom. Her nurse wheeled over a potty chair to her bedside. I helped her out of bed and on the potty chair. Her nurse left the room because I think he felt Mom might be more comfortable. As I was holding her up I saw her oxygen level start dropping on the monitor. I got right in front of her face and said, "Mom, please, I need for you to take a couple of deep breaths, okay?" She nodded, but as she looked at me again, I felt a feeling of panic take over my body. She looked at me again and then her eyes drifted off to the side where they fixated as she went limp in my arms. I began screaming for anybody that could hear me. One of the doc's was the first to hear me and came running in. He helped me get her lifeless body on the bed. I was then told I need to go wait in the waiting room. I immediately called my dad, who was on his way up in the elevator. I met him in the waiting room where I know he could see the panic and anguish in my face. I knew that my mom had just died in my arms. We were called into a conference room and told to wait there until they could update us with Mom's condition. It felt like an hour had passed by, but in reality it was only about 5 minutes. A team of doctors and surgeon's entered the room. They sat down by us. The surgeon that did her surgery put his hand on my dad's shoulder and said, "I'm so sorry, we lost her." I could here the wail start to come out of my dad. I couldn't see his face because my head fell on the table in front of me. I just knew I was going to wake up from this nightmare. But I didn't. A few minutes later, they let us in the room with her. There she was, my dear mother lying dead on the bed. Her eyes were open and fixated in the same position as they were when I left her.

In two days, it will be 4 months since that day. It's not the memory of walking in and seeing her lying there dead, it's not the picture I have of her lying in state in the casket for not one, but two funerals that we had because we had to fly her body back to our home state of FL., It's the reel of film that plays over and over in my head of her last moments. The last look of confusion on her face as to why she couldn't breath. The last movement of her eyeballs as the fixated to the left. When does that stop? I need it to stop. It is still the first thing I think about when I get up, the last thing I think about before I fall asleep and the haunting nightmares while I sleep. I miss her so much. It hurts so much. I hurt for me, I hurt for my kids, who were so, so close to her, but most of all, I hurt for my dad. There is nothing that can fill this void.....

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chandralynn2012

Tiffany,

First...(((HUGS))) I am so sorry for your loss... I lost my mother too- almost 3 weeks ago. She didn't die in my arms, but I was with her the entire last day she was alive. That last day is my "reel" that you talk about with your mom. I knew she was sick, and she kept telling me she needed to go to the hospital. I told her I would let the nurses know, and I did, but I wasn't insistent that she go. The day before that she was sitting up, eating (little, but still eating), drinking, and giving the nurses a hard time. Many times she had declared that she needed to go to the hospital, got sent there, then sent home hours later. Never in my wildest dreams did I suspect that the phone call I had been dreading would come that next morning. It even feels surreal typing this.. I go back and look at her obituary quite often, and just can't believe for the life of me that she's gone. I have never been in your exact situation, but I know the pain of losing a mother. There is just nothing in this world that can fill that empty place where she once was. Please know that you are in a good place on this forum, and we are all here for each other.

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I am so sorry for your loss Tiffany. And i know exactly what you mean about the reel playing in your head. Tomorrow will be 3 months since my mom passed away. I keep playing that day over in my mind all the time. I don't think it will ever end, maybe become a little less as time goes on. For me the sound of sirens triggers it and I cringe. I think about the sirens that morning, people running up and down the stairs, the moment she first died, the sound of them doing CPR, them taking her into the ambulance with her bare feet uncovered, to the moment we arrived at the hospital 10 minutes later to find out she was gone. I remember having to give a statement to the police, waiting in a room with someone from Victims Service until other family arrived, having the dreaded meeting with the funeral home and not knowing what to put in the obituary. She also had a massive heart attack. It hurts so much. We try to go on for our kids, to be strong for them, but it is so tough sometimes. My kids were very close to my mom, at some point in their lives she had lived with us so she was like a second mother to them. She was a constant in their lives and they are 21 and 29 now. Two days before my mom passed away, my kids other grandmother passed away after a long illness. Too much death all at once for them and it is their first death of someone close to them. Some days are better than others. Work keeps me busy and my mind off things. But nights are tough and so are weekends. Talking helps, but sometimes you feel as though people are tired of hearing about it. For them it is old news. Fortunately there are people close to me that I can talk about it anytime. I wish everyone had that. For those who dont or just need people who really understand, there is this forum which helps a lot. I will be thinking about you and hoping you are doing okay. *hugs*

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I am so sorry for your loss. It's been almost 9 weeks since my Mom has passed and I keep replaying the hospital images over and over. It is so so hard. I saw her fade away so quickly and right before my eyes and could do nothing about it. I also feel the pain and hurt for myself, my kids who were her world, and my dad. I try to stay strong but I cry every single day and the hole in my heart is enormous. I just wanted you to know you are not alone. I have found a great grief support group at my Mom's church which has helped a lot. The forum also helps. Please continue to visit us here and talk about your Mom.

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Hi Tiffany,

5 months is nothing in time. You are still a the tight grip of grief, and that is okay. You're okay, and normal. Your experience is a tough one. You should allow yourself to think about your mom in the morning and all day and into the night. That's pure grief and it's something you are going to have to go through and not around. Fighting the feelings will make them worse and last longer and longer.

Grief is as hard a pain that we will ever have. It's pure pain. I know what your going through. I was always fighting it, and it was pure hell. Once I finally accepted the sadness and hurt to stay with me, it started to ebb. It takes time, but it will ebb. A little bit at a time. Have you talked with a therapist about your feelings? It helps. They can really give you and outside perspective. Try to hang in there and keep us posted.

AaronB

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Daffodilfun

The memory of my mom dying are also a nightmare that runs through my head over and over (day and night). I too want to know when they will stop. I feel the guilt of not doing more for mom. I am sure you feel the same. I guess there is no magic fix. I pray that your nightmares and images go away and leave you with good memories.

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Tiffany,

First...(((HUGS))) I am so sorry for your loss... I lost my mother too- almost 3 weeks ago. She didn't die in my arms, but I was with her the entire last day she was alive. That last day is my "reel" that you talk about with your mom. I knew she was sick, and she kept telling me she needed to go to the hospital. I told her I would let the nurses know, and I did, but I wasn't insistent that she go. The day before that she was sitting up, eating (little, but still eating), drinking, and giving the nurses a hard time. Many times she had declared that she needed to go to the hospital, got sent there, then sent home hours later. Never in my wildest dreams did I suspect that the phone call I had been dreading would come that next morning. It even feels surreal typing this.. I go back and look at her obituary quite often, and just can't believe for the life of me that she's gone. I have never been in your exact situation, but I know the pain of losing a mother. There is just nothing in this world that can fill that empty place where she once was. Please know that you are in a good place on this forum, and we are all here for each other.

Chandralynn,

Thank you so much. I do really appreciate this forum, and it really does help to talk to people who are going through similar feelings. I am so sorry about the loss of your mom, as well. I know what you mean about it feeling surreal. It feels surreal to me everyday. There is a heaviness like I have never felt before. I pray it will lighten for all of us.

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