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My Big Brother


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It's been around a month since my big brother passed away due to many health problems. Being only forty and his health rapidly regressing and leading to a coma right before his death makes this loss of mine that much harder to deal with. He wasn't my biological brother but I've known him since the age of 6 and, since then, as the years went by he became my brother and best friend. No one could tell us that we were anything different. Unfortunately, I am no stranger to loss. My mother passed away when I was 11, my cousin (whom I also looked up to as a big brother) was murdered in 02 and a very dear friend died in a traffic accident 2 years ago. So I've had my share of loss and turmoil that I had to deal with and work through to get to a point where I can lead somewhat of a normal life. I think I've faired well considering my circumstances and have become one that has not been burned but refined as person coming out of those fires. In fact I have been known to be the friend that one would go to when listening and advice is needed.

But losing my brother is quickly feeling like a torpedo hit to my achilles heal. I'm losing my mind right now. It's been a month and I still can hardly sleep or eat. When I think I'm getting better and feel like I'm making progress in dealing with my loss it seems like I just take 5 steps back. Things are happening to me that have never happened with any other loss of mine. I see him in the corner of my eye on every other face on the streets. As him and I were huge concert goers, I attended one by myself to get my mind off things (something I believe he would have encouraged me to do) but had an episode during the middle of a show. I was enjoying myself and the music when, all of a sudden, I break into tears for no reason and have to run out of the venue. I have never done anything like that in my life. I cant even begin to describe the details and explicitness of the nightmares. Some are of me in the hospital room with him in a coma and the nurses unplugging all the machines and saying he was gone while he was clearly still breathing. Another one was of myself being in a coma but being able to hear all the talk in the room not being able to respond to it. But the dream that killed me was when he called me after he was dead. I was so glad to hear his voice and be able to have the goodbye that never happened but when I talked to him he couldnt hear my voice and we lost connection.

As I said he was my brother, my best friend, my partner in crime, my spirtual co-pilot, my somtimes little brother haha. In general he was the only person I've ever known who perceived this whole world and existence the under the same candle light that i do.

This is just me telling my story. I am new to this. I've never joined any forum or group like this in the past ever. Just thought I would give this a try. If you have taken the time to read this all the way through thanks for doing so. All comments, advice and opinions will be greatly appreciated.

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lucidsaint - i rarely come to this particular discussion board, but your post touched me so. We all go through losses in life, but when it's one so particularly close to us, it's very different. You're not losing your mind, you're grieving - although sometimes it feels like one and the same. Emotions and feelings go over the top - it's almost like we're manic. I'm glad you came to this site, I had never gone on a forum before, either, but it's given me great comfort hearing from others who are going through the same journey I am. Be gentle on yourself - hugs, Marsha

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Lucid Saint, as Marsha has said you are not losing your sanity, you are experiencing pure unadulterated grief. I am so sorry for your loss.

There were times that I felt that my sanity was slipping away from me. I think it's just that our minds cannot cope with the horror of what has happened. But this is normal and natural, please believe me. I went from numb and not believing to fear and believing within the space of a nanosecond. I tried calling my husband a couple of days after he died because I couldn't cope with the reality of what had happened. I even took a photo of our lounge at home to see if the camera could see him, even if I could not.

Cliff and I went to many concerts together ... and I know that I could not face going to one for a very long time, if ever! I think you are so brave for having attempted going :-)

Please keep posting here. Like you I had never joined a forum before, however it has helped me enormously. The people here, and our lovely Counsellor Marty provide us with a safe environment and it helps to talk about your feelings and thoughts and worries. I'm glad you found us.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I understand how you feel. I just lost my younger brother to kidney failure Sunday morning. He died Saturday night in his sleep. He was only 48 years old. I don't know what happened since I haven't talked to him for 4-5 years. But I'm still in disbelief about what happened.

Please accept my condolences.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Lucidsaint - Like you, I lost my older brother on the 23rd Sept this year, four weeks ago this wednesday. I have few words to physically make you feel any better, but hope that you can find some comfort in knowing that I'm going through exactly the same confusion and pain that you are. For the last year I have intermittently cared for Steve, increasingly so in the last months, my life revolved round him completely at one point. This was a difficult time for my children but I am lucky that they understood totally and supported me in needing to be there for Steve. This is something that was difficult at times, but I dont regret a single minute spent with him. Ultimately I took on a maternal role and he became very dependent on me, for both practical things and also for emotional support. Now he has passed, I feel completely lost... Everything... and I mean everything I do, reminds me of something to do with Steve. Every smell, every conversation, every thought. I know this is not entirely healthy, but I also am fairly sure it is within the realms of 'normal' grieving.

My point, I guess, is that however differently we grieve for a loved one, we do HAVE to grieve. I foolishly thought that all the tears I cried watching my big brother deteriorate and approach the time limit he was given, was in some way 'grieving early', I was in fact told this was the case. So now I am even more distressed to find that it hasnt eased my grief at all and as I type, it feels as though I wont possibly be able to move on or feel better... ever.... but we have to keep going, accept the pain, accept that some days will be quite good, but not be hard on ourselves when we find we want to crawl into a hole and stay there . . it will happen... but these bad times do slowly become interspersed with more good days until we reach a point at which we can function again with some form of normality. I wouldnt say we ever get over the death of a loved one, but I do believe we learn to live with feeling differently about life.

I am so sorry if my waffle is no help to you, but I wanted you to know I DO know how you feel ... and if nothing else, that you are not alone.

Kindest wishes

Little Lou x x x

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