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Memories And Crying

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As of yesterday, I was away a for awhile, having gone through some medical issues. Sometimes difficult, because now I am on meds until I get to the golden years so it seems. I guess I'm emotional right now due to the holidays, it just brings up so many memories of my mom. As with many of you it was a closeness that we as a family shared together during these times. Now it just doesn't feel the same without mom. Lately, she is all I think about. It is slowly getting better but I think the sadness will always be there.

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I've read some of your earlier posts. What a time you've been through! Me too...Our family celebrated Thanksgiving less than three weeks after my mom passed. Although no one broke down that day, it feels like that's all I can do since.

Here's my story:

I lost my mom after a 2-month decline with lung cancer. Up until that time, she was living alone, completely independent, and otherwise healthy. She didn't even have real symptoms until mid-August. After a round of chemo in September and a week in the hospital repairing a perforated ulcer (side effect of the chemo), she decided to stop all treatment and let nature take its course. Nature did, and we had just three more weeks with her.

My sister and I took care of her at in-home hospice, where she died surrounded by her family, Pastor, and a lifelong friend. I am still heartbroken and haunted by the images of watching her die, and I know it it something I can never forget. I very much want to gather up my memories of her 79 years alive, but her death is all I can think of.

I'm also the executor of her estate, so we have a whole house to deal with, plus a new car she just leased in August. With Christmas coming in three weeks, I feel like I have no idea what I should be doing right now. I end up in tears so often over things like a Christmas recipe book being forwarded to my house - one that she ordered back in the summer.

I know my mom wouldn't want me to go on and on like this. Thanksgiving was OK because we had two celebrations, one for each side of the family, and it was a very busy day. But Christmas is dogging me, especially now that my phone is pretty quiet and very few cards are trickling in. I work at home and spend a lot of time by myself. I feel myself pulling away from my husband (going "under the proch" as I like to call it). I hear all this talk of the economy and the new president and it's all I can do to get up in the morning, say a prayer to get through the day, and survive.

This isn't my first bout with grief. I lost a 20-year-old brother when I was 21, so I feel like knowing how this goes should help, but it doesn't. With him, it was sudden; with my mom, just fast. I didn't know cancer could go so fast, and I just have a hard time dealing with going from no symptoms to death in less than three months.

Where does one find comfort?

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Dear JLU,

Yes, it is difficult. Especially, when you used to talk with your mom at least once a day. Now there is silence. I have my younger sister, but we live apart from each other. We are at least four hours away from each other. We do talk on the phone, but neither of us tells one another how we truly feel with our emotions about our mom. We talk but probably not to our deepest concerns. We are all we have. Our father is living in another state, where my sister is currently, but the strong connection we had long ago is not completely there today. My father remarried and that whole issue is another story onto its own. My mothers sisters are there for us, but sometimes it feels like we shouldn't bog them down with our problems. They have problems of their' own. I don't know what to do sometimes and wished I had my mom's advice to guide me. It is probably much tougher on my sister with the loss of our mom. My sister lived with my mom. I'm sure for her it is very lonely for her to be in the house. We have my mom's brother living with my sister, but that situation is not good either. It's comforting knowing that he is there for security within the house, but he lacks the responsibility of paying for bills on time. It's a burden to my sister worrying about paying for the rent and so forth. I guess that's what makes me worry for her. He is over 50yrs. old, has a job, but could care less of doing what is responsible. All he cares about is going out and have drinks at Hooters! I just don't understand that at all. As you may have read my sister has a visual impairment, and stays pretty much at home, I wish that she had something else that she could be doing. But I know that she feels like she is in a hole and can't get out. My sister is still young, she is 25, I know that she wants to go back to school but hasn't been able to get herself to go apply for graduate school.

She just feels like a burden to everybody, but I keep telling her that she needs to go out and do what she wants to do. That what makes her happy. The biggest problem is transportation, since she is not able to drive, and dial a ride is not available currently where she lives. She just stays at home.

I really think she needs to find a place that is cheaper in rent and closer to the school she wants to attend. I know that will be difficult because she is holding onto what memories are there of our mom.

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