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Loosing my dad and a good friend all in a short period


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Hi, I needed a spot to just write what I'm feeling down and hopefully this will help with what I'm feeling. I'm 28 and lost my dad Aug. 11th, 2013. I never thought that i would feel the way I do because my dad and I did not have the greatest relationship. I'll start from the beginning because i feel that it would make more sense of where I'm coming from (or at least I think so). My parents separated when I was around 4 and divorced a couple years after that after having three children (with me being the oldest). My mom has yet to remarry, but my dad remarried when I was about 8 and had 2 other children with her. So together, there are 5 of us. I was always put in the place of having the responsibility of all the kids when I visited my dad on our visitation weekends. That made me grow up faster than I think I wanted to, but we can't always control things. I would come back home to my mom's some weekends and just go to my room and cry because it was either horrible there or we didn't see dad because he was out of state working (putting up cable) and we were stuck with our step-mother. When was 13, there were times when I didn't want to go over to see my dad because I knew that I wouldn't see him or he wouldn't give me any attention and I would be stuck watching all the kids while he was off drinking and being with his wife. Finally when I was 16 I had enough of being treated like **** and having to deal with his wife who would make me take care of the kids all weekend (plus seeing her lie, steal, and cheat on my dad), I told dad that I would come see him if she was there. He said he wasn't going to just leave his wife and I had to deal with it or not come over. He picked his lying, stealing, cheating wife over his first born daughter. I don't get how someone can do that. About a year later, he separated from her and found a trashing place to live for the time being. Since he was no longer with her, I wanted to try and have a relationship with dad again, so I went over to see him but never for the entire weekend. It would only be for a day because I couldn't do just a weekend yet. After about 2 months of seeing him, he brings me back to his place where I find his wife (that he was supposedly separated from) getting dinner ready. He said that he never really stopped seeing her and wanted to make things work. I was pissed and had him drive me back home. It was really shaking the following years and I only saw him to see my 2 half sisters. When I graduated high school and went off to college, he didn't lift one finger to help, and I didn't think he would since he had hardly done anything for me before that. As years went on, he moved around and eventually did split from his wife and ended up with custody of my half sisters. I tried calling here and there (birthdays and father's day), but stopped because he wouldn't even call for my birthday or to see how I was doing. He only called when he wanted something from me ("the girls want to see you", "I'm throwing your sister a graduation party"). He just didn't care it seemed. It came down to only seeing or talking to each other once a year.

Then this summer my half sister had her graduation party in June and I went for her. Dad said he didn't feel well because he had heat strock from yesterday. He hasn't looked good for a while now. He smoked, drank up a storm, and was into drugs. My mom called me the end of July (the 29 I think) and said that she had just talked to my aunt (one of my dad's sisters). My dad went to the hospital on Thursday complaining of back pain and difficulty breathing. The doctors said that he had pneumia. That Sunday (28th), he was told he has lung and liver cancer and they were going to do tests to find out how far along. After I heard this Monday night, i decided that I would head up there that weekend to see him. Tuesday night, my mom had not heard anything else yet. I had a conference for work on Wednesday and Thursday to go to and told mom that I would have my phone on me if she needed to call, because I wanted to be updated. She called me during my conference Wednesday to tell me that it was Stage 4 cancer that had spread to his lymp nodes and stomach. She told me that he wanted to fight it (not sure how you can fight stage 4 cancer but he wanted to try chemo and all). Thursday morning was when all hell broke loose. Mom called about 10 Thursday morning and said that I needed to leave now and get up north (mind you my mom lives about a hour and a half from me and she is about 40 minutes from the hospital). My dad found out that morning that the cancer had moved to his bones, he was having difficulty breathing, was coughing up blood, and then one of his lungs collapsed. He was put into the ICU and placed on a ventilator. I rushed up there as fast as I could and didn't care if I had to leave that conference. It was the last thing on my mind at that time. I went to my moms and together (brother, sister, and mom) we went to the hospital. All family was there, along with his friends and coworkers. We were able to see him (anyone could) and it was so hard to see him laying there, hooked up to all those machines, and all skin and bone. We stayed at the hospital for a while. During that time, he went into surgery to remove 2 (ended up being 4) blood clots that were on his lungs that was causing the bleeding. The doctors were able to get them but a couple days later, a couple more appeared but the doctors only gave him meds for those.

During this whole time, my mom and I were trying to ahold of her neighbor who is like a grandmother to me and I go over to see her every chance I get and think of her dearly. We received a phone call that Friday morning from her husband saying that he took her into the hospital on Tuesday because her oxygen was low (she was on oxygen and had been diagnosed with Lupis a little while ago. She had passed away that morning. So on top of everything with my dad, we had another person dear to us pass. I had to get out of the house later that day, so I went back to the hospital. It had cleared out some. Now mind you, I'm getting ready for school (I teach high school), dealing with a death, my dad dying, and then my youngest half sister takes it upon herself all week long to threaten me and tell me that I'm an ungrateful bitch who has done nothing for our father and she wishes that I suffer for putting our father where he is. She had gone worse than that (that was just the skin of it). I understand that she is 17, scared, and angry, but she had gone way to far and everyone in the family had seen what she was doing and everything and couldn't believe what they were hearing and seeing.

That Sunday were the calling hours for our dear friend and the funeral was Monday. After the funeral, I took my brother, sister, and myself to the hospital to see dad because Sunday he was taken off the ventilator. I went back to see him by myself first. He was sitting in one of those hospital chairs, half conscious and asking for water and Terri (who apparently was his fiance, and I thought that it was his girlfried). I'm not sure if he even knew who I was because those were the only 2 things he asked for. Then my brother and sister came in and I left them so they could have some time with him. They came out eventually and they said that dad had told them he was sorry. That pissed me off but I didn't say anything or show that I was. I know that he may not have been with it, so I'm not sure if he even knew who was there. According to my sister (who I don't believe anything she says because every word that comes out of her mouth is a lie), dad had asked where I was. My brother was in the same room with them and he said that he never heard that, so I don't think he did. We went back home, and I was telling my mom what had happened and she knew where I was coming from. During all of this, her and my aunt had been communicating and keeping each other up to date. Mom had talked to my aunt that Monday night and told her what had happened and we decided that we would head to the hospital that Tuesday (mom, my sister, and I) just to see him again (can't remember exactly why we decided that. We get there and no one is in the waiting room. So I go back to the ICU and his room is all cleaned and empty. I think his old nurse knew exactly what I was thinking because when he saw me, he automatically told me that my dad was ok and he was moved out of the ICU because his vitals were ok and he didn't meet the criteria to be there any longer. So we go to see him in his room (his so called fiance and his best friend were in there with him). He was more with it, but the look he gave me when I walked in, I just wanted to run. He saw me, said "****", and turned his head. He didn't even want to see me. He told me that he wasn't doing well and he didn't want me to see him like that. He said that he loved me but that he didn't want to see me again until he was better. Then he would call and he and I could talk and try to make things better. He thanked my mom for bringing me and I walked out crying. How could a father do that to his daughter???? I didn't believe a word he said because he never did anything that he said.

My aunt and mom talked for the remainder of the week. That Satursday we get a call saying that he is going down hill and he may not make it through the night. Fluid was getting into his lungs, his heart was failing, and they thought that the cancer had gone to his brain. My aunt said that they put him on morphine to keep him comfortable so he could go in peace. However, he was unconscious and would not wake up again. She said that we didn't need to come down if we didn't want to and we were ok with our good-byes. But she stressed that he would not hear us or know we were there. My brother and sister didn't want to go. I couldn't go and be there and just wait things out. He had told me he didn't want me there or to see me, so I took that as his final good-bye. He passed away that Sunday morning at 4.

His funeral and calling services were that Wednesday. I did not think it was going to be as hard as it was. There were quite a few people there that had said to me that they had know him for many years and had no idea he had another daughter (meaning that they never knew I existed). What the HELL??? Then sitting through the service and hearing how he was such a great person, how my half sister (the one who wouldn't talk to me now and treated me like I wasn't even there) kept saying how he was a great dad, always there for her and everything. I was so angry sitting there listening to all this and thinking that he wasn't a great person or a great dad. What type of father tells his oldest daughter that he doesn't want to see her again, or even leaves her out of his life?? My aunt (ok now I also have 4 others on that side of the family but this specific one knows what he had done over the years to us and understands) was there towards the end when I couldn't say my final good-bye. She told me that she was there for me and she wasn't going anywhere. That I was stuck with her from now on. It made things better. But it was so hard. A whole lot harder than what I thought it would be.

Since there, I have had a hard time getting into the swing of things at work and other things. With being away from my mom it makes it harder as well. There are some nights where I'm fine and others (like tonight), where I cry myself to sleep. How could a person cry over someone who treated them like **** for so many years? No matter what I tell myself, I just keep crying. It amazes me what brings tears to my eyes now when those things never did in the past. I just don't know what to do or how to go from here. Will I ever stop crying over someone who was not there for me when I needed him and who made false promises and just walked all over me?

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Hi rfulmer1985,

First of all, I´m really sorry for your loss and what you´re going through.

Even though, as you wrote, you didn´t have a good relationship to your father, in your heart you always wished and probably hoped someday you would.

With his passing that hope also dies, so it´s perfectly normal you´re feeling the way you are, you are grieving for what you wanted and never had and for losing the person that could give that to you.

My experience is different, but I think that we grieve for the loss and for what we will never have in the future, all our hopes with that somebody die, so we´re left here grieving the loss of what he had and of what we now know we´ll never have.

Cry all you need to (I wish I could cry that easily), scream, get angry and put yourself first, your loss is still very recent, I don´t mean to scare you, but it´s a long and hard journey, you still have a long way to go.

The only thing one can do is try and make the journey more tolerable.

Hang in there, a big hug

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