Grief support groups, condolence advice, funeral etiquette and more
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Thanks Britany, that brings me some comfort.
Hi Kim, I lost my mom 4 months ago to "sudden cardiac death". She was 59 and lived alone. My sister went to check on her after she could not get an answer on the phone for 24 hours. She found my mom passed away in the bathroom. I was able to see my mom once the coroners had put her in the bag and on the cart. Her eyes were dialated and open and her mouth was open. I have kept blaming myself for not being there and thinking "what if I had been there?". But after extensive research on this type of death and many cardiac related deaths, there seems to be a high number of people who don't make it despite even early intervention. Your mom's experience with feeling nauseous makes me think that my mom was probably in the bathroom when she died because she felt that way also. The doctors that I have spoken to said that it is very common that before people have a coronary "event" they feel sick to their stomach or that they have to go to the bathroom. Your story has helped me understand what may have happened before my mom died. Thank you for sharing such a personal experience.
I also did a lot of research on near-death experiences to find out what others who have "died" and come back have shared. They are mostly similar with a couple common things present in almost every case. 1) A feeling of intense relaxation, no pain, euphoria 2) seeing a bright light 3) seeing visions of others they have known that have died. This has comforted me a lot and makes me think that my mom did not suffer. I hope you can find some comfort in these thoughts!
Sandra, what can I say except THANK YOU! You've given me so much to think about and a ton of wise information about MD. Also, thank you for the Bible passage. I take comfort in that. My Mom had Dementia for over 10 years & lived with us until I couldn't possibly give her the kind of care she needed & deserved but we visited her every day at first. After a while, it was more like once or twice a week. She didn't have a sense of time, so it was a blessing, in a strange sort of way. Thank you again for all of your kind words and wisdom.
There is more pain, love, loss, caring & support on this site, coming from all of you beautiful people than I've read anywhere. Kim, Sandra is right about the journal. You'll know when you're ready. Please don't hold those tears back!! They are SO healing. We cry for good reasons. You must have so many great memories of your times together. By that, I don't just mean happy times but, even as a little girl, there had to be times when you thought, if only for a moment that your parents were "not fair!!" when they scolded you for whatever you may have said or done to make them angry. As a grown woman, with education & experience under your belt, these times will make you smile & even feel comforted, as the depth of your Mom's love will finally be understood. Don't let those feelings get lost. You are hurting more now, than ever before & nothing is going to change that except that special Love that you & only you shared with her. Give yourself time (I know what an old saying that is!", but time does have a way of healing us, through God's guidance.
Shawn, my heart just aches for your loss. No, it's more like your Dad was stolen from you with no warning. Such a shock! I don't know you but I almost feel as if I do. OH, how much my husband would admire your wisdom & courage! For just a few lines, may I share something with you? In 1987, my husband's only child, at age 19, committed suicide by hanging. He was in the Air Force at the time & a temporary situation was forever resolved in the most hideous & permanent way! The day of his actual funeral just happened to be the wedding reception of one of my close relatives. What I want to share with you is that he shocked us all by choosing to go to the wedding that night! He actually said "I want to be where people are living & loving life." I was never more proud to know this man, than at that moment. Most of the guests knew what had happened & also knew that burying your child is about the worst hell on earth. But, he put them at ease with his dancing, not just with me but with most of the women who hurt so much for him. His laughter, the stories about his son & his friends, and also, other topics....normal "shop talk" & gossip about this one or that, completely turned the tables for all of us. He not only put them first & made them feel better but it was healing for him too. However, before believing him to be wearing a halo, or uncaring, at home with me, where he can always be himself & not hold anything back, I held him through that night & many others, as his body rocked with tears and screams of pain, sorrow & anger! It's been almost 30 years & all of that sorrow is still there but in a different way. No one will ever fill that void but God has been good to us in so many ways!! We now(on my side) have grandkids who adore him & make him happier than he ever thought he would or could ever be again. As I wrote in an earlier post, we have some hideously serious problems to face & we are both feeling our moralities & fears of the unknown. We'll get through it. Sadly, one of us will have to face it alone physically. But through our faith and through all of the support from people like the ones here, life will go on & will be sweet once more.
Thank you Sandra. I have lots of church friends and family who I know love me and are trying to be helpful. But when I express any sadness the first thing they say is "well honey you know she is in a better place". I do know she is in a better place but I still miss her being here. I just didn't realize until I lost her how much our lives were intertwined. Our personalities were so much alike. We did everything together (shopping, gardening, cooking,etc.) And just the reality that we will never ever do these things together again is hitting me daily. I will try the journal idea again. I had tried it the other day but I started bawling and had to quit. Maybe it was too soon. I know I am not the first person to go through this and I will one day not hurt this bad but it is just hard to believe right now. I know the Lord knows my heart and understands my pain. I pray to Him daily for strength. Thank you again for caring. .
It is 12 days now since I lost my most precious Mom. She always enjoyed seeing the kids find their Easter baskets in the morning. Both are too old to hunt eggs but are still excited to see the basket of goodies I made for them. We spent the day with my husbands family and I spent the day being giving everyones condolences. I really do appreciate it but I just feel numb. Everywhere I go I feel like I am not really there, I just feel like an observer if that makes any sense. Its been 12 days and everyone seems to think that the answer to me losing my Mom is to be thankful for the time we had and get back into a routine. So if I "act" like everything is normal and I am fine, then everything will be fine?? I can't. I am hurting too much to pretend I am fine just to make others happy. Everywhere I go I see things that remind of her. I just went and smelled the apple blossoms on her tree today and thought I was going to fall apart. I am trying so hard to hold it together but I am not doing a good job of it. I have no one to talk to. My brother and sisters who she did not live with the last 18 years are fine and back to their old life like nothing happened or like It happened a long time ago. They are telling old stories about all of us and laughing but I just want to scream. She was my best friend, she was sitting right next to me when she died. I was the one who did cpr and failed to bring her back. I cant pretend its okay. I cant.
Yesterday was very, very hard for us. I know it was for all or most of you too. It wasn't Easter, as I always knew it. I've been ill, physically for some years now & Neurologically since the end of January after 3 awful falls with severe facial & head injuries. Plus being of advanced age (70) doesn't help! Mom died in October but since I can't remember much since the last injury, it's like it happened just days ago. My hubby & I were together yesterday but we just "prettied up" for each other & more or less, rested up by watching movies, side by side. He is a saint & a cancer survivor as well. We made no special meal, didn't even go to church. We made sure we were comfortably dressed all day, in lounging pj's. We have a wonderful family, but saw no one, & only heard from a few. Both my daughters called to wish us well & tell us they love us. Both are professional women & grandmothers themselves We DO have a big family. They must be feeling awkward about it all. We understand that. Not only do they realize I lost Mom (they loved her too) but I think they may be scared of losing me next. I feel their distancing, just when I need their closeness the most. I refuse to try to "guilt" them into visiting us! My son never called or anything. I don't see him much anymore. It's been like this for years. He is a 51 year old alcoholic, fighting his own demons. We've told him & showed him in every way we can think of that we love him & are always here to help him to help himself, any day of the week, if he wants or needs us. My eldest granddaughter DID call & we talked & laughed for 1/2 hour. That was the best ever! She is 5 months pg & it's a touchy one that may not end well for her. My middle grandson, whom we usually hear from, recently found out his 4 year old has a severe form of Muscular Dystrophy. My beautiful 15 yr old granddaughter may also have a terminal illness that is more than I can bear!! We'll find out soon but it doesn't look good. God never gives us more than we can handle, I've heard that all my life. But, seeing those we love suffer, one by one is too much. Maybe God "blessed" me by not letting me remember too much lately. No, I'm not just feeling sorry for myself or for my hubby but it sure is hard. No, it's devastating...all of it! I will find out Thursday what my dx is, & perhaps it can be "fixed". In my heart, I believe our family is more afraid of their impending losses than thinking about our loss that has been realized. Who could blame them?? Their losses are our losses as well!! Again, We understand but it sure hurts. I'm still here. They are all still here but I miss all of them & the happy Easter, Christmas, Thanksgivings, birthdays, bar-b-ques, dinners, etc when we all gathered together...here, at our house. Yesterday, the silence was deafening. I'm rambling & am sorry & embarrassed at the same time for it. Maybe instead of the neurologist, I need a "shrink"! Can people grieve before death happens? Please, along with your own suffering, remember us in your prayers. Thank you , Mary
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