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Loss of My Father in January 2009


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On January 22nd, 2009 my father surcome to cancer of the liver and shoulder after a short but corages battle. Both cancers were most likely caused by his job of being a firemen.

With it being 3 months tomorrow I still have days where I sit at work and at home being unable to think of anything but him(this becomes a challenge especially when I need to be getting work done at work and I feel like I can't do anything because all I think about is him). And when I don't think about him or forget to thank him for the new day that he has brought me I feel tremendous guilt.  Plus every month I find myself counting down to the date and saying oh I can't believe its been another X amount of months that he’s been gone. Even though I know it’s not going bring him back. I even have times where I think that maybe if I go to sleep and wake up it will all just be a bad nightmare that will be over when I just wake up, but in reality I know that it won't.

I have even found myself waking up in the middle of the night and checking my cell phone to see if my mom had called to tell me that my dad had passed or that she was on her way home with him from the hospital and that he was just dehydrated and that things were going to be ok. I believe that this just stems from the nights I spent at home when he first went into the hospital waiting for my phone to ring to know what was going on. Plus the fact that I was sleeping on the coach when my phone rang and it was my mother telling me that my father had passed after we had put him in hospice and I know it was coming.

Even though I know it was coming because we had to put him on hospice as their was nothing more the doctors said that they could do for him. I still have problems with getting over it. Their is one plus side to all of this and  that is that he helped us to make the very tough decision that he wanted to be comfortable in his last few days and get to say goodbye instead of in pain and miserable. But I just didn't expect it to happen at the rate I thought it would. Plus I thought that I would get the maracal that I had so desperately prayed for that he would make a meraculous up swing and walk out of the hospital. But like the one nurse told my mother and I you may get the maracal you want from god but it’s what he wants and not what you want and that his maracal may be to be out of the pain and suffering he was having is to enter into eternal life and not physical life. This I find helps me to focus on what happened in a positive way from time to time.

But sometimes I will wake up because I swear I hear his truck pulling in from a late night fire call or to see if its gone and that I will see him the next day when he gets home from work.(He would work shifts were he would be at work for 24 hours then be at home for 24 hours). I even think that while if I go to the fire house he will be their, or if I go to his work he will be their, or if I go to his favorite activity of racing cars he will be their or maybe when I get back from vacation he will be their. But I know better that he won't ever be their or walking thru the door and that where he is he is free from pain and suffering and that it was his time to go join his father in heaven.  I also know that I will one day get to see him again(many many many many years from know when I'm in my 90's I hope) I'm 24 right now and I know that I have so much more in my life to live for even though he is gone.

I do have feelings were I feel like I just start to make it to feeling better and then I fall back to the same rut I was in when I started the grieving process.  I have a photo graphic memory of things which doesn't help me as I sometimes will sit and just think about seeing him in his casket(not a memory that I really want to have but one that will constantly pop up from time to time and at the most random times too.) I do have times were I think of him in a good way and the fun things we use to do together.

But this even happened to me when I was on my way to Florida with my mother two weeks ago on the plane, then again when we were in the magic kingdom and then again after watching an episode of rescue me where Denise Leary smashes a casket that is suppose to contain his fathers remains. It even got to the point while I was away that I wouldn't even go on the Haunted Manchine ride or the Snow White ride as I couldn't bare to see a casket afraid that it would bring the flashbacks back even worse. I also have flash backs (that’s what I call them) at the most random times, I was at a party having a good time and it started. I couldn't enjoy the party anymore after that because of the flash back and would sit and think about it for the rest of the time.

I have been told by everyone that people grieve in their own way and that with time I will start to be able to put it behind me. But in 3 months time I keep falling backwards with no forward progress. Which keeps driving my mother nuts as I call her constantly thru out the day while I'm at work crying because of what keeps happening with me because of my father’s death.

I also dream about him every once in awhile. The latest dream I had was last night were he told me that he was fine and that with time I will be ok too. I like to think that this his way of coming to visit me to let me know that all will be ok even though he isn't her physical anymore but instead spiritually. All the dreams that I have of him bring the same message. I have talked with the father at my church and he believes that it is most likely god’s way of helping me to get the closure I need. I was very lucky to get the chance to say goodbye to him.

I do realize that I'm not the only one who has ever gone thru this but I feel like that is the case and that I can't move forward with it. As my grandmother (father’s mother) still brings up things about my dad and won't except the change that has happened. I understand for her to lose her only son 10 years after losing her husband is a very very hard thing and that in time she will hopefully be able to except the change.

But sometimes I feel that with her constantly bringing it up she makes my recovery and grieving process that much harder as I feel for her and what she is going thru. And the fact that she won't let me do things the way that I know how to do them but makes me do them the same exact way my father use to. Makes me feel like she thinks I am him. But she says she knows better that he is gone.

I also have a bad fear of what the future holds for me with questions that keep popping into my head. Will I end up with the same horrible diesiese as my dad? Will I get to get married? Will I have kids some day, if so will I out live them? Will they lose me when their in their 20's like I lost my father?  What is going to happen tomorrow? Will their be a tomorrow? Will I get to go on vacation again? Will I get to see my friends again? Will I every get to have a good time again? Will it be my last time to have a good time? Will I get to go to work tomorrow? Will I make it home from work tonight? Will I get to see that new movie that’s coming out that I want to see?

I know that the future is unpredictable and that I can't control what happens but can plan to enjoy the future like another vacation with my mom next April. But I'm so afraid to plan ahead afraid that something will happen and that what I think the future will be that it won't. But for me I fear that with out that control over every situation I won't be able to understand the future. See I'm a planner and the plan I had for my future wasn't one that included the passing of my dad until I was at a much older age.

I also have the regrets that my father won't be their to see me get married or to meet his grandchildren or his great grandchildren. Get to retire and enjoy time with my mother at are lake home. Get to see the new Yankee stadium, get to see me play hockey and get to spend time with are dog Lucy (he did get to see her one final time when he was in the hospital the day before he died). He won't get to go to the basset hound picnic or see get to get Lucy a brother basset like he always wanted.  And that their were so many other things he wanted to do that he didn't get to do like spend a night in the new fire house at his work (something he really wanted to do). But I know these are just physical things and things that you can hope you will get to do you may not end up getting to do them. Like he said before he died when ever we would have small talk.  "I know I won't get to do ______" sometimes it would get him upset but other times he would shrug it off and say oh well and then he would talk about all the positive stuff he did get to do.

I do have an appointment to meet with a grief counselor this coming Monday but any help you could offer me before I go would be great full. I have taken on so much responsibility in the past few months sense my fathers passing that I feel like I never truly have had time to officially greave. I'm actually going to print out this post and bring it with me to the consular so that she can read it over to get a sense of where I stand in my grieving. I have been told their are 7 stages of grieving and that each stage that a person moves thru depends on them.

But I am so afraid that I will end up like my friends mother who still hasn't been able to move on thru the first step of grieving after the sudden loss of her daughter 7 years ago next month.



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Oh, Jess. I am so sorry.  I wish I could offer you words of advice to make it easier, but I cannot.  Reading your post--it was as if I wrote it. 

I am 32 years old. I lost my dad 2 years ago this May. Tomorrow marks the 2 year anniversary from the last time I heard my dad tell me that he loves me. I have struggled through much the same issues as you--from the flashbacks to the all too deep questions about life, what's next and is it worth it.

I too feel cheated, out of many things. Dad died suddenly, 3 weeks to the day before I was married--so like you I didn't have my dad to walk me down the aisle. My husband and I just had a little boy 5 months ago...one that my dad never knew...I worry sometimes that maybe it wasn't fair of me to marry or to have a baby--after all either I am going to die first or my husband--who will be stuck hurting? And what about our little boy? If I die it will cause his heart to break into a million pieces, just like mine.

Funny you mention Disney. It was our favorite place in the whole world. My profile picture was taken just outside of Cinderella's Castle, one year and 2 months before Dad passed away....

I hope that you feel comfortable talking to me, email or PM me whenever you need to talk.


You aren't alone

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