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Hi Everyone - My Dad passed away one week ago today. He had liver cirrhosis which lead to liver failure. I have known for 3+ years that this would eventually kill him. It was a very slow, painful, and difficult process to watch my Dad - the strongest man I've ever known, end up in the state he did. My step-mom and I took care of him the last 6 days before his passed and were doing in-home hospice care. My Dad and I were extremely close. I've spent nearly every weekend with him since he first got sick, talked to him on the phone every other day, and now that he is gone it doesn't feel real. I was concerned my Dad was holding on so long because he didn't want me to see him die. So last Thursday I talked to him and told him I'd be back in 6 hours and that if he wanted to let go, that was OK, but if he wanted me there I'd be back. He ended up passing an hour later even though the hospice nurse said he wasn't showing the immediate signs when I left. So I didn't see him die and I never saw the body. In my mind, it's like he's still alive. The week I spent caring for him is all a blur - it feels like a bad dream that I just can't wrap my head around. I cry occasionally, but only when I'm alone and really think about what has happened. I cried hysterically when he passed but only for a few minutes then sobbed on and off that day. I started back to work on Tuesday - 4 days after he passed and everyone looks at me like I'm an alien. They all say they are shocked at how well I'm handling it, but it's just because it doesn't seem real. No one knows what to say to me and it makes me feel like I'm some sort of heartless person. My Dad was my world and the pain of knowing he isn't here any longer will hit me harder than anything before, but it's like my brain won't let me figure that out. It's just like any other day and I think I'm freaking people out by not showing my devastation. I'm getting married in two months and I had everything planned out with my Dad - how we'd walk down the isle, the song we'd dance to, a photo montage to play in case he couldn't dance, he even had his outfit picked out - this should be completely devastating to me, but for some reason I can't wrap my head around it. I feel sort of dead inside and like I'm just a robot going through the motions of life - burying my Dad's death deep within me so it doesn't actually hurt. It's so confusing.
On our very first date my now boyfriend told me his mom was battling cancer and had been for the past eight years. Now, two years later, she's losing her battle and I'm starting the battle of how to deal with the grief that my boyfriend is going through. I'm looking for a way/advice to help me cope with his grief as he is shutting me out and closing me off. He claims he's fine and that he's prepared for her death, but I know something is wrong. He is throwing himself into work, not eating, doesn't sleep, had no interest in intimacy or touch, and seems to be lost. Last week I confronted him about his recently behavior changes and while he continued to deny that it had anything to do with his mom, he did say that he doesn't know if he wants to continue our relationship, even though he still loves me, doesn't want to break up or for me to move out. At the time, I told him that I was going to stay until he asked me to leave, determined to help him get through whatever hard time he's having right now, hoping to make us an even stronger couple. Now, a week later, I'm struggling to keep that same positive attitude. My love languages are physical touch and quality time and I've been getting neither in the past week. Granted, he's a farmer and it's haying season so even if we weren't in this current situation I might not be seeing him much and I'm trying to remember that. I'm doing my best to give him space and time, while offering positive encouragement about work and life in general. We've had a great relationship these past two years, full of love, laughter and happy memories. We often talked about getting married and what our futures hold. I don't want to give up on that or abandon him in his time of need, but every once in a while I worry that he really doesn't want to be in a relationship with me anymore and just doesn't have the guts to break up with me. Maybe blaming the entire situation on his mom is just my way of denying it? If anyone has any ideas, thoughts or similar stories, please share.
To everyone that has lost a beloved pet, I am sorry. To everyone experiencing this grief during the holiday season and/or another special occasion, I am sorry. It is tremendous to get through such thoughts and emotions and move forward. Never did I appreciate this before losing Sir Greysby to pancreatitis on November 25th, 2014 after a 30-day fight wherein he tried to live and my husband and I tried to help him win the battle. Never have I gone through such - let alone his passing 2 days before hosting Thanksgiving at my house, which I did do in an almost an out-of-body manner and excusing myself to go cry silent away from the guests. 3 weeks and 2 days later, I am healing, but have moments wherein I feel sucker-punched in my gut once more and I let-out primordial cries of anguish. Why? What could I have done differently? Why didn't I recognize the 2 earliest behavioral changes in him as signs he was becoming ill? Would those 4-5 weeks have made a difference in his ability to recover before I took him to the Vet? What have I done to work through and move past such grief? I downloaded 4 e-books to read on pets going to heaven and the grieving process. I learned that my grief and guilt are very "normal," although I have felt anything but normal. I created a beautiful photo journal book of him - from the days he was a stray and we took him in and up through the day of his departure from this life. I kept a swatch of his hair and his foot-print and his collar with the heart-shaped tags. His remains were cremated and placed in a nice oak urn that displays a picture of him making "soft eyes" at me on his last day here. I have gone to a Christian psychologist twice to help me process the void. The void is not as huge now, but the first week after he left, my stomach hurt, I cried a lot, and I did not know what to do with the spare time that Sir Greysby use to fill-up when he was well, but especially during the last week of his life. I had gone into a panic mode in trying to get him to eat all forms of chicken and/or treats ... anything! I woke-up in the middle of many nights wondering if he had passed away and got up to check on him. When he lapped his ice-cold water, I was so thankful and hopeful. But then, the battle ended. My momentum was still going forward and wanting to help him, but he was no longer here. I've played back the video, from the last morning of his being with me, several times. He loved my ankles and feet, then sat in front of his food without touching it once again ... after 3-days of his not doing so. He had come full circle. This is what had caused me to take him to the Vet to begin with ... he did not eat his favorite warmed, soft cat food for 3-days. The Vet placed him on steroids and an antibiotic, and for several weeks, it seemed he might have a fighting chance. Sir Greysby never resumed eating his food at the level he had done before falling ill, but at least he nibbled. The fact was that he was anorexic and continued to lose weight during those last 30-days of his life. 3-days before his departure, my husband and I decorated the living-room for the holiday season. Our minds told us that he would not make it, but our hearts hoped he would. We played Christmas carols for him, took a photo of him, and struggled with thinking it might be his last holiday season with us. Barely have I been able to hear any Christmas music since then. However, I do not regret giving Sir Greysby one-last Christmas with us, and I know that with time, I will smile and feel good about those memories. My other cats and their adjusting to his not being here has been awkward. The routines changed for them, too. Sir Greysby ruled our home during his 2-1/2 year stay with us. :-) However, I am adapting to their new routines and am spending more time loving and appreciating them. They have had numerous pictures taken of them in their favorite areas of the house, at play and at rest. Now, I fully comprehend they are my family that love me unconditionally. There are "those" people who are thoughtless for whatever reasons. I have chosen not to be rude to them in return, but rather to ignore them and move through my grieving process as I see fit. I know that one-day I will feel better. It is a process and a journey. I will always thank my God of understanding for allowing this beautiful soul to grace our home with the last 2-1/2 years of his life. We learned so much from him and I know that Sir Greysby is in a much better, heavenly place that affords him happiness and peace. May your soul find peace and comfort during this time and know that this lady is praying for your wellness and healing, too.
So I lost my dad on September 7th and I still cannot believe hes gone. I know its only been 3 weeks but I feel so lost. I cant wrap my mind around it. Im numb to things and I feel like I wander around aimlessly. Im back at college and working on assignments but no motivation. I just want to lay there and sleep or get lost in a movie. I feel like Ive aged 10 years in the past 3 weeks and I am so...lost. I feel like I lost a limb. My mom says I am in despair but I am so numb. He got diagnosed with cancer when I was 17. I never thought about it, pushed it to the back of my mind and adamantly thinking "ill think about it later." he was in the hospital for 2 wks after we found out and he got his tumor removed because he gave up for a bit. I just ignored it. Chemo made him sick and he was always cold and I ignored it. I remember talking to my mom and brother a few months ago and them saying they didnt think he would make it another ten years. I was so mad at them. he was fine! he had to walk me down the aisle and meet my kids. He would be there for that and for my college graduation. He had stage 4 cancer but it was just a number. I finally started crying when we found out he was terminal and two months later he had 6 mos to live. I woke my mom up at night cause i was scared. I drove to his house at night because I was sad. it finally came out and then a month later he died. Why did i deny it so long? i think its why I didnt spend all my time with him. I thought he would be there. I needed him to be there. He had to be there. He was my dad and he wasnt ever aging and he wasnt sick. He was fine. How do I get through this? I miss him and I am mad I never accepted it but I was scared. i remember thinking something at night "Ill deal with it when he dies." well here I am. it caught up with me and theres nowhere else to go.