Jump to content
Grief Healing Discussion Groups

Over Stressed-

Recommended Posts

:( Today I feel overwhelmed! I am dealing with my dad's estate. I don't know where to start. He set up everything with a lawyer before he passed. My brother is in another state. I am trying to liquidate everything and get things in order. I also have to take care of me. I still feel like I have not had a break for over 10 months and am a human doing vs being! Baby steps seem impossible. I want to chip away at the mountain but that seems impossible too. I just feel stressed!
Link to comment
Share on other sites


pman,I feel somewhat intrigued by your saying that by liquidating all his possessions that it would get things in order. I suppose in the business sense yes, but it sort of sounds like the business of your dad's estate and your mourning are directly related.

I think how we mourn and the business aspects of an estate may be easier to deal with if we can see them independently. I can understand that the executorship would be daily reminder and could be overwhelming. Do you think you could maybe rationalize that they are independent?

Right now you need to mourn and the extra responsibilities are taking away from the time you need to take care of yourself and properly mourn.

Perhaps what you could do is liquidate some of it and then use those funds to put some of the things etc. in a storage locker until you feel better to deal with these things. This may not be possible, but if it is, maybe you may want to look at potential other solutions like this. Perhaps even involve your brother if you can. If you do trust your brother, then this may be something that the both of you can do together and it may help both of you. You may just be surprised with your brother and he may step up to the plate if you ask him.

My siblings and I are very different people but the one thing we could agree on to a very high degree was what was best for our mother and what she probably would have wanted.

I do hope things get better and you can accomplish baby steps.

Are you able to take a week off from work and go for a bit of grief counselling and also just have some "me" time? I know when I was in that space definitely that helped. Also you could even see your family doctor. I hate to compare grieving to any sort of physical ailment, but if we had a cold or an infection of some sort and it was not getting better after an extended period of time, we would see a doctor to see if there would be a therapy either medication or otherwise to heal what troubles us. I believe that there are medications as well as counselling and other methods that can help in our grieving process. I'm not saying that it will heal one's heart or head from the pain of losing our loved one, but it can offer some much needed strength over the very worst part when we are having troubles. I'm not a doctor, but I have benefitted from prescription medications as well as other therapies, such as counselling etc. But what may work for me may not work for others. But it is work a try if it can help you through the toughest parts.

I hope you will feel better and you will feel like a human being again soon.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know what your financial situation is but do you really have to do all this right now? Can things not sit tight for a month or so at least? You need time to grieve and take a breath before you try to tackle all of this. I know there are certain things you have to do, like pay bills but can the rest wait for a little bit?

Maybe you could take a weekend away and have a nice supper (maybe share it with someone) and maybe a massage or if you like a sauna or hot tub. Men seem to think these things are just for women. There is also something called Reiki that helps some people get more "positive" energy flowing. I don't know if it available in your area or not.

I hope you can find a little time for yourself and then come back and just do one task until it's done and take another break.

If baby steps are too big then take it a minute at a time but I think you are pushing yourself way too hard and I think they are probably giant steps or bigger if you are honest with yourself.

Good luck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Yeah I know that "overwhelmed" feeling..all too well.

I had very similiar circumstances to deal with. My sis was out of state too.

In your other thread I gave you a link to a thread I wrote about going throuhg stuff. Within that thread there was another link to a thread I put together called "General Info Resources About Probate and After"

here is the link to that thread in case you didn't see it:


Things that helped me get through the process:

**Keep things as simple as possible.

** Use like a legal pad and take notes on everything you do with the date. If I contacted someone, like a utility company for example, I wrote down the co. name, phone number (also notes on how to navigate their various phone prompts..)who I spoke to and what was discussed. This way I had a record of what I did and a log of when I did it. I think my memory took a severe hit during all of this and I just absolutely needed to keep track of everything and this poor legal pad was semi attached to me for months. I also would use it to jot down things I suddenly remembered had to be done.

If you are computer savvy... you could use a computer to do this, just make sure you back it up on a flash drive each time you add or make a change to it.

** Identify things that can wait and things that can't.

Her vehicle was o-l-d. :) No one was using it.. so all I did in the beginning was remember to start it up every time I was at the house so the battery wouldn't die completely. It was paid for. So I didn't do much else at all with it til nearer the end of probate. So her car I put on my 'this can wait list'.

Conversely.. she had an underground oil tank on her property and we were advised to get it out of the ground and get a new above ground tank. We were told the house wouldn't sell without that out of the ground. This was going to take some serious coordination and involved contacting the town for permits etc... a tank removal expert, the insurance carrier that she had tank insurance with.. etc. It was a complicated process and I knew it would be not a swift thing to accomplish.. so I started on that within about 6 weeks of her passing. It was on my 'this can't wait list'.

And of course her bills couldn't wait. So I eventually noticed I could write her bills out 3 times a month and have it done with for the month. (It would have been nice to do all at once.. but they didn't come in that way. And for me personally.. I liked to write them out and send them as soon as I could after they came in. The odd bills that didn't come every month like her municipal taxes... I made notes on my own calendar as to when they were due so I could pay them in time.)

But just knowing there were things that I could hold off on doing made the things that I couldn't wait on, a bit easier to deal with. This way I wasn't trying to do everything at once. It made it less overwhelming.

** When you don't know.. ask.

Whenever I really didn't know what to do about something, I'd consult my sis first if I thought she might know. And then I contacted any number of people, depending on what it was, and asked them for advice or help.

It was OK that I didn't know everything. So I had no shame and frequently contacted others to seek their help.

This stopped me from procrastinating. I would quickly realize I had NO idea what to do and then just as quickly jotted down who I thought would know and began calling. Things were much easier when I had nothing hanging over my head and nothing was left perpetually "pending". I just couldn't tolerate anything hanging over my head. But.. that's me. :)

** Mix it up.

Somedays??? I had no brain for business and paperwork. So on those days.. I would do much more mundane things. There was a continual process of sorting stuff from the house; an ongoing job of going through things to 'save', 'toss' and 'donate'. Or I would organize things to make it easier to do a sort.

Other days it was much easier to just focus on paperwork.

But I allowed myself the flexibility to do one or the other or both. Like when it got too emotional to go through stuff.. I'd put that away and go back to paper work, cleaning or yard work which I found less emotional.

** Employ help.

This wasn't always possible because for one my sibling, like yours was out of state. All of those people who said "If there is anything I can do..." at the funeral?? Well, you can ask them for some help. But we were smart about it. We found it was much easier to ask someone over to help with very specific tasks. The helper felt better when they knew what was expected of them and we felt better knwoing that they were going to help with a specific thing and not 'go places' we weren't ready to go yet.. if you know what I mean. We set up one gal, who was friends with my sis, just wrapping up glassware and it went really well. So well .. we asked her if she could now do the dishes.. lol. Bet the poor thing was sorry she asked if she could help! But.. seriously.. these people... they can help SOOO much and it makes them feel good too.

Depending on the task.. you may want to choose closer friends for this.

Also... you may, depending on your financial situations.. find it easier to literally employ help. You could hire a lawn company to take care of that. You could also hire a cleaning company to come in and clean. etc. So keep that in mind too. Sure it may be cheaper to do on your own.. but..sometimes it is too emotionally, & physically expensive for you to do everything on your own. Consult your brother if you think of anything that a contractor could help out with.

** It is OK to take a day off.

In fact it is more than ok.. it is kinda imperative for our sanity I would think. I found it helped me tremendously to take days off from even just thinking about it.

** Remember it all will be done someday.

This was my 'keep your eye on the prize' type mantra. "I'll be done with it all someday." I had to hold on to that to literally just get through it all sometimes. The sadness will come and go for the rest of my life. But there is a defined end to probating an estate.

** Remember.. You are grieving!

I know that sounds stupid... but allalone brought up some very good points. Probate and grieving are two very different things. I found though that the probate process itself can sometimes be a tool to processing our grief. That was kind of unavoidable for me. I couldn't really accomplish the complete separation of grieving and probating.

Touching their things...recalling what they would want done.... even just being in their home... hurt. No two ways about it. And of course that brought up feelings and emotions that I found it was much better to express as soon as possible than to keep stuffed inside. So.. go easy with you while you are doing all of this. Give yourself the gift of time to feel & express things...

Allow your feelings because ALL of them are acceptable. I found it was critically important for me to just accept myself completely exactly where I was on any given day. I learned I could do ALL kinds of things while crying. lol I just shed my tears.. blew my nose and kept on going. I learned to just allow the feelings to surface and express them and that left me better able to continue.

On any given day.. if things get too much.. leave them. You'll know when you have had enough for the day. I had to be able to just say... and accept.. "I've done enough & had enough for today." and walk away from it.

I found this was the only way I could be executrix and grieve at the same time and take care of myself. I had to just completely take myself as I was and NOT judge me or anything I might be feeling.

Those are just some of the things that helped me get through it all.

Hon.. this is hard..(((((((((Hugs)))))))))) No denying that. For me it was all about finding a balance that I could live with. My attorney told me to just work on the estate for a short time each day. Well.. it didn't work out that way for me. I had to have some days completely away from it. And other days, because of the nature of what I had to accomplish.. nearly ALL day was spent on it.

Walking through their lives via the probate process was a minefield. And when I stepped on a mine.. it hurt.. so I let it hurt. And I learned that's just how it is. Grieving hurts. And that's ok.

You will get through this Pman. Just listen to what is going on inside you. You are the expert on you. You will find a way to accomplish what you must and feel what you must. There is no complete script for finding that balance. I can't tell you what yours is. But be confident that you will find it yourself. I know you can do this.

I would just be gentle with you and love yourself enough to allow your feelings to be expressed. Dad wouldn't want you to completely wreck yourself over this.

So the answer to your question of how do I both grieve and be executor of the estate is... you work some.. you cry some>>> etc. And doing this work may indeed be a tool to help you get along on your grief journey.

Listen inside for another reason too; I'm sure he will be guiding you as you go.


Link to comment
Share on other sites


I hope you are doing somewhat better. I just found this forum today - and I just read your post - I was thinking - did I write that?

Basically going through the same thing, wish I'd found this place sooner. I hope you took these wonderful people's suggestions - I could have used this help a few weeks ago and can tell that I'll find alot of help in the future.

Please, take care of you!!

Big Hugs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...