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Hi everyone! I have been dealing with anticipatory grief most of my life but it is only after a year in therapy that i realised it. My mother has been nearly dying many times in my life (freak asymptomatic double pneumonia, botched surgery leading to constant infections, grapefruit-sized ovarian cyst, breast cancer, septic choc and more). I have always treated those events with a bit of distance. Moved out of the family home as soon as i could as i am an only child and my dad works full time. That allowed me to choose when and how i would help rather than trying to do as much as possible all the time and neglecting my own needs. Fast-forward 10+ years, i have two kids, am back in school and a string of events happened that made moving into my parents home (and turning it into an intergenerational home) the best possible solution for them, us (my partner and i) and the kids. Then COVID hit. Most of my life i have used physical distance to deal with her health situation and make sure that i have my own life going on. However, right now i am a full-time online university student, full-time mom, and full-time caregiver. Even if i don't give my mom full time care, and she is mostly autonomous, the worry is constant, especially while my dad is at work. The grief is always there. The hypervigilance due to COVID is suffocating. I have been trying different methods for regaining peace of mind such as meditation, mindfulness and journaling. I bike my toddler to daycare 3-4 times per week which gives me an hour of exercize. On the other days we spend at least an hour outside with the kids so we get exercize and get out of the house. I guess my question is how to you focus on anything? i have been doing my university work on adrenaline rush last minute. I am reading "Smiling through your tears: anticipating grief" and am working with my therapist on accepting the pain rather than bottle it up. I am just so exhausted my brain has a hard time staying focused on my reading more than a few minutes. My partner has been doing most of the housework because i struggle functionning. Antidepressant meds numb my feelings that i already tend to numb so it feels counterproductive, plus it doesn't help my focus. Everything is closed due to COVID so getting out of the house to study is a non-starter. Weather is still cold here so studying outside is not yet an option. Overall i guess my focus has been to keep everyone safe, keep the kids happy, and care for my mom. But the pressure of my studies have been intense, and i can't afford putting it on pause as i get student loans which allow me to be home instead of at work, and my studies are so i can get out of low-paying retail jobs and can buy the house off my parents so my dad can retire. It feels like i am doing what i can to function and get better and understand this grief better so i can cope more efficiently, but i still struggle to get down to studying, feel a lot of anxiety, mood swings. How do you live with an ill loved one without putting your life on hold? How do you keep functioning? Also, where do you live your spirituality? I haven't found a church that fits my values and i don't really like talking to priests. No nuns in my area. I don't know where to look for respectful spiritual guidance and this part of my life is missing right now. Thanks for reading my rambling. Any insight is much appreciated.
My dad past away in May of this year. My grandad called and told me this sad news and told me he got with the city program and eternity funeral home so he can be cremated because the family didn't have money to bury him. Now this is going to be long but I have been dealing with this since May and I have to let this out. He also discussed this with my uncle over the phone while he was at the funeral home making the arrangements. I know i didn't have the money and my uncle didn't either but my thing is my grandad did not make the effort from the start or even bring up the idea to have a proper burial. No one in my family has ever been cremated until now. He didn't consult all of us to see if we had the funds to bury him or if we could raise money. He acted like he had to rush and make a decision on the spot mind you I am the next of kin and he didn't include me on any arrangements or even ask me if i wanted him buried. I didn't even know anything about my rights as next of kin til my uncle told me. But this is how we found out something strange not right was going on with my grandad surrounding my dad's arrangements with the funeral home. When he first told me they had plans to cremate him they would have a viewing of my dad's body and only a few close family members could attend. He said he would have to list me as the sister because its only next of kin and too much of a hassle with paperwork to put me down as the daughter. Immediately I was thinking what? But I am the daughter i didn't know the order really then so I just said ok. So i call my uncle and he's immediately like that doesn't make any sense. My uncle speaks to his wife who has kinda been through this type of thing before with her own family and knows more about the law and says thats not right i am next of kin. She basically educated me more about that and said thats not right to put me down as the sister when I am his daughter. So then they fly down to help me figure out whats going on we find out talking with the funeral home that Im not even on the list to see him. So all this time Im thinking my grandad loves and cares for me but in reality hes doing sneaky mess like this. Now if my dad knew all this mess was going on and I wasn't on there he would've been pissed. He loved me and was always so protective of me. He wasn't always around he didn't get to see me much and he was going through his own personal struggles but whenever there was important milestone in my life always made an effort to be there. Whenever it was my birthday he would call to wish me a happy bday. He always wanted to see me he was there for my highschool graduation. Knowing how protective he was of me he would'nt have allowed my own grandad to do me like this. So the day of the viewing after finding out this the family had all showed up. my uncle didn't even want to look at them. Before all this though we set up a go fund me to help raise money for his funeral/burial thats what we wanted. But then grandad goes and puts up on the go fund me page that its a scam/ a hoax that its not real. My uncle had to go up on there and say its a real go fund me account to raise moneyfor my dad's funeral. I had to advocate and say this is real all I want is a proper funeral for my dad. Sadly we still didn't raise enough money in time because of my grandad putting that on there swayed alot of ppl that would've donated to not because they were sketical. My grandad planted that seed of doubt. Still til this day I dont know why he did this. Ive been dealing with all this and its now August. Since we didn't raise enough we had to turn his body back over to the city for them to cremate him at no charge and we refunded the ppl who donated to the go fund me. Now I explained to the funeral home and I have my family members who were actually there with me as witnesses of what we spoke of and I am rightful heir and that the ashes should go to me I am the legal next of kin even brought my birth certificate they even said they would be going to me. I was expecting the ashes to go to me. But the lady said I would be signing for the city to give permission to cremate him. So I signed and I thought that was that. During the time of waiting I spoke to my uncle and voice my idea of wanting to still bury his ashes in the same cemetery as my grandma his mom. Still have a service or memorial for my dad. Then I get a text from my grandad saying he picked up the ashes give him a moment he's having a hard time he's upset and sad whatever. The whole time im like wait a minute and Im fuming. The ashes were suppose to go to me. I ask him why would he have the ashes and he goes on this rant like he's the one angry talking bout my son's at peace and thats all i care about and that he scattered the ashes on commonwealth. Now I'm even more angry and hurt I was planning to have a proper service thinking I was getting the ashes and he got them anyway I never wanted that to happen that was the worst thing that could happen and it did. I call the funeral home call my uncle and his wife they consoled me. The funeral home said that I signed for him to get the ashes or rights to him. I was like no no no. I did not I was signing for the city to take back his body in order for him to be creamted. They knew I was and they knew I was furious. So they said to make both parties happy they will call him to split the ashes. They call him and he agrees to hand over half the ashes so now Im thinking wait a minute he sent me this text saying he spread the ashes(i still have the text btw) I go up there they hand me ashes saying its my dad. Now im stuck thinking who's lying was he lying.?Why would he tell me that? Thats cruel to just lie about something like that saying u scattered the ashes. The funeral said they got the ashes from him half anyway. I'm just like who's telling the truth. Now i dont even know if these are his ashes. My grandad had basically messed up everything and denied me closure. I just want to heal and set this all to rest. I just want answers from him and I want the truth but he wont give that. I'm still actively trying to get records and the paper that they I signed. To see for myself because that wasn't right We all sat in front of the staff at that funeral home told them my grandad was wrong and they still thought it was okay to release ashes to him.