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Something Someone Said Got Me Thinking


lorikelly

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Well i went to a school function with my children on sat night. my older son just started there in sept. i didn't know anybody but one mom that i met through helping out at lunch came over. we started talking and we got on the subject of my mom. well the tears just came and she even cried. i told her how i don't have a relationship with my siblings and how i am not dealing well with it. now she is catholic like i am, so we both believe in everlasting life. well she asked me "why do you thinking you are having such a hard time?' now she was not being mean just i think trying to help. i looked at her and said b/c i miss her so much. then i tears flowed, we had to stop talking b/c the event started. i having been thinking about that ques alot since then. here are my thoughts.

I said to my self why can't i be happy that my mom is in heaven with God, that i will see her again and that she has no more pain. now i believe very strongly in heaven and God but i think i realized i am doubting my faith not my God. that is scary for me. i am not able just to hand it over to him b/c i am so afraid that he won't be there for me. now thats crazy. you see i have alot of fears. i am so afraid that i didn't do enough for my mom, that i was to short with her at times, did not spend enough time with her, got angry at her, refused to face the fact that i new my mom was dying and did not take advantage of the time we had left. i hate myself for this. i was her caregiver for 18 mos and missed out on so much with her. i was afraid to face that she was going to leave me. instead of telling her this i became angry and resentful, like she could control it. i did tell her in hospice ( her last 4 weeks) that i was afaid of how i would be without her,she told me not to worry i would be ok. well i am not.

i also am grieving the loss of my siblings. the story is a long one so i won't get into it. i just wish things were different. i want to write them letters to apologize for any wrongs i have done to them. i have given on waiting for them to accept any responsiblity in this. i let go of my anger to them b/c i believe it does not good. my therapist says i don't have anything to apologixe for but i feel differently. she says she will support me in any way but that i should wait at least a yr. she believes they will only say things to hurt me and that i could not take it emotionally. i just feel lost. i want to talk to someone about my mom, i want to be able to pick up the phone and say i miss mom do you.

i am feeling really bad and i am in this black hole. it has been 3 /2 mos since mom left and i know that it is still early but it has gotten worse. i don't feel any joy in anything anymore. i am not sure what my purpose is here. sounds crazy b/c i am a wife and a mother of 2 boys. but i feel like i am just here. my mind can never get off the what ifs , should ofs and mom. i can't stand the time when i am not doing something and even then i am still thinging. i am waiting but don't know for what. i took care of mom for so long that i realize alot of this comes from that. i realize also that i was very codependent on mom. i am reading a book on that. my mom had alot of issues all to do with my dad who was an alcoholic, her two sons were ( they have been sober over 25 yrs and have master degrees in social work) and her owne issues wiht her dad walking out and her "crazy mom" . my mom could be difficult at times and all my life i just wanted to please her. i put her before anything and now i don't have that. i thought i would be able to go on and give my family my whole self for once, but i think i am worse now that she is gone. i live with chaos for so long that i don't know what to do with out a chaotic situation . my therapsist has been working on this with me.

i went to a boy scout mtg last night and my mind was on my mom and all the other stuff. i found myself thinking about all the others that were there adn wondering about there lives. i just feel like my purpose is gone. i am trying so hard to fight these feelings but i am worn out. i don't want to have to start meds but i know that i am severly depressed. i am afraid and thats what scares me the most.

so getting back to that ques the women asked me, why am i having so a hard time. i still can't answer it. i think the answer lies deep down inside of me and i am unable to get at it b/c of all this other stuff. i think if i could find answers to all my other ques i would be able to really grieve for mom and have faith again.

i just don't like myself right now. it is hard for me to see the good inside of me. i wrote my mom a letter listing all the positive vs negative. the postive were much greater but i still didn't get any relief from it. i should of dealt with alot of issues before mom died and now it is hitting me full force. thanks for listening . i quess all i can ask for is prayers that God will get me through this, that i can let go of any quilt, that i can find my purpose again and that i like myself again. i know my mom would not want me feel like this. i just don't know how to change. HELP

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lori,

I think you answered this question yourself, but can't yet accept the answer for what it is...because it's not going to be either easy or quick, and that's something we all wish answers could be! You have a lot of hard, complicated issues to work through, given your family background, and I understand how slow and difficult these are to work through, having had similar issues and experiences myself. Your answers ARE found in "all this other stuff"...you know, like they say?...the answer is found IN the very question. You DO know what you're doing and you DO have the answers inside. Trust in that, as much as anyone with your background can...the trust will grow, over time.

Even though I already knew a lot about codependence, alcoholism, etc. when my Mum passed, I still had to revisit a lot of it, slog through the 'reasoning' over and over again, and forgive myself and her a few more times, before I could let it go again, as I'd tried to do years before. If it helps, I felt many of the same things you're now feeling, but the dust DID settle after a couple of years. We also become so ultra-sensitive to our fears and issues after a death...but these are things that always DID need looking at, and most of us just don't bother enough until we're forced to, by acutely painful events, such as the death of a loved one. I would have to say that, had I not already worked on many of those issues many years previous, and FOR many years!, it WOULD have been much, much harder for me. So seeing as you hadn't done the same, please, for your own sanity, allow yourself a LOT of time for this learning and processing. It's no quick fix, much as you probably wish it was. But with hard, emotionally-shaky work, it WILL come along in time.

Add to this the losses of your siblings' support, and you have about as complicated a loss as I did when my Mum passed away. (I wrote quite extensively about much of it on this site, so you could always take a gander at my older posts by viewing them via the Member's Profile options) That will naturally make everything ELSE more complicated to work through. I've also heard many times over that there are many people who go into the social work arenas who STILL haven't worked through their OWN issues, despite graduating with a degree, so keep in mind it's not a given that they are any more clued-in than you are about these emotional matters.

So this woman's question was quite a LOADED one, and you've got your work cut out for you. BUT, you're getting some help for this through your therapist, AND doing some reading for yourself...both good, and necessary things. Less than ideal families leave us with an awful lot of baggage, garbage and complicated relationships to have to sift through when they die, but you're doing the right things for yourself now, which is ALWAYS more than other family members who still live in ignorance and denial can say for themselves. It DOES make for a lonelier road though, when they don't accompany you on this journey. But YOU will grow, and they probably won't, so in the 'end' (I'm not sure it's ever ALL over for those of us with such issues) you can look back and say you did GOOD for yourself.

As you admitted yourself, you are used to putting your mom and her needs (which you most likely couldn't have satisfied, anyway) first, so of course putting yourself first feels so alien to you...been there, done that, still do with certain things...but give yourself time to get used to this new way of thinking and behaving, cuz it's WELL worth it in the end! You can come away from this with a new sense of self-gratification that is SO satisfying and rewarding, and that only those who've had never felt such a thing before can understand the huge difference and importance it can make in our lives. This isn't to say you won't still suffer with certain things, but your faith, mainly in YOURSELF (which is also another way of saying the God within you), will also grow. For most of us from such backgrounds, the seeking and learning is a lifetime journey, but things certainly can become more manageable and clearer and sometimes don't take as LONG to work through as before...and that in itself, is a really big blessing.

So keep that letter/list, and reread it after a good chunk of time and work has transpired, and you'll likely see some of the progress you've made. And make sure to add to it the proactive work you're doing here with your grief! And whether your mom would have seen this (or anything else, for that matter) as good or not, it's more important that YOU do. Keep up the good work...you're well on your way!

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Dear Lori,

I didn't even get through your entire post before I needed to address something that you said that hit me as very important. It was about depression and not wanting to take meds.

Soooo many people think depression is merely a "thinking" problem and if "you're strong enough, you can get over it"....but that just is not true. I like to look at it as though it were any other disease - like diabetes...all the positive thinking in the world won't change the diabetes - only medication can help...and so it is with depression - it's a biochemical problem and has nothing to do with weakness or 'just change the way you're thinking'...medication for depression is not addicting and does not make people feel 'high'...it just gives the person an opportunity to get out of the black hole and *then* begin to work on thoughts and feelings and grief, etc.

I know from experience! ;)

Love, Benita

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Hi, Lori...

I have been feeling similarly and I think that's because our grief is still so new. Even though I know, as a practicing Christian, that my Dad is in God's loving hands, it's still not OK with me that he's not here. I doubt that it ever will be. The holidays are coming and that seems to have made things worse for me right now. Dad had his stroke December 14th of last year; I was with him 24/7 until I went back to school the middle of January (my brother took over my vigil then and Mom came to stay with me). I had to make a Wal-mart run tonight and the Christmas stuff is out all over the store. As I walked through the store, I was thinking about where we were a year ago over the holidays and how we both fought so hard. It never dawned on me at the time that Dad wouldn't be here a year later. I was feeling pretty blue when I left the store. My Dad is always in my thoughts. I go through the motions in my day and it takes everything I have to go from one task to the other, to focus on what I have to do. I come home from school absolutely exhausted every evening with that effort.

I think we just need to give ourselves as much time as we feel we need to work through this. It's not going to be a quick process to adjust to our 'new normal' (as my brother calls it). We've had our pins knocked out from under us and the world looks sooooo different as a result. Be patient and gentle with yourself; you're in my thoughts and prayers.

Wishing you comfort and peace,

Leann

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Lori,

I have to agree with Benita about meds. In fact, I was just telling my mom yesterday that antidepressants are almost like vitamins, in the sense that they are just replacing something your body, or brain, is lacking. I, too, know from experience and I wish I had used them long before I did. I am trying to get my mom to consider taking them and I think she is about ready to try them, thank goodness! She is just about in the same frame of mind as you are (but, worse, she is having terrible memory problems too) and I am praying that the meds will help her. They have helped me more than I can say.

I think you need to realize that three months really is early in the game. I know the "wait" is draining, but it will take just plain old time to get "better". You are already thinking your way through your grief and that is good (as well as seeing a counselor). Try not to feel guilty. I'm sure all of us has felt guilty too, but you don't need to. I get irritated at my mom and then feel guilty, but I have to remind myself that it is only human. We are all suffering and tired and worn out, as you said, and it would take a saint to NOT react "inappropriately" at times. You did fine. Give yourself credit for all the good things you did.

Hang in there, Lori.

A huge hug to you,

Shell

Edited by shell
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