The_Animal Posted June 24, 2010 Report Share Posted June 24, 2010 My father had a massive stroke and heart-attack on December 16, 2009. He was gone before he hit the floor. He was taken to St. Paul's Hospital in Vancouver just across Burrard Bridge from where my father lived with my mother in Kitsilano. He was unresponsive to attempts to bring him back and he was put on a ventilator until I could be contacted. I'm not a sociable person at the best of times and some jerk was calling repeatedly (I presume it was some telemarketer and therefore I had turned the ringer off. So my mother went through hell trying to contact me. They finally had to notify Surrey RCMP who came to my door. The doctors tried everything that they could, but they couldn't save him. His body was kept around by the respirator only. I did manage to get there in enough time. I believe that my dad's spirit lingered long enough for me to say good-bye. I could see that he was pretty much gone when I got there. There was I think a little involuntary reflex when I walked in the room but other than that, nothing else. I took the time to tell the doctors who worked on him "Thank you for taking such good care of him." That was the least I could do after they tirelessly worked on him in the emergency room trying to bring him back. I'm not sure he could hear me, but I held his hand and told him "Go...don't be in pain...be at peace..." and "I love you, Dad." On the way to the hospital it was pouring rain. On our way home the sky broke and we had some sun. And on top of it all, we saw an absolutely gorgeous rainbow. I took it to mean that my dad was saying good-bye. I have this feeling in my heart that he probably heard my last words. ------------- 6 months hence and the pain of losing him still seems as raw as it was the day he died. I get up in the morning, I deal with what I have to do (take care of my kids...) but the pain of his loss still lingers. Every thing seems to irritate me. The social mores that go along with grieving; the whole so-called "heirarchy of grief". Half the time, I feel like telling society to "GO TO HELL". When my dad died in December of 2009, there were people who genuinely mourned his passing along with me and then there were others who strove to try to minimize my loss by saying "Well, he had a long life; at least he wasn't murdered or had a long, drawn-out illness or what not...etc, etc. etc..." To the former, I say "Thank you for your concern and patience"; to the latter, I say. "Look, I don't give a **** about the what-ifs and the barbed-platitudes. I just wish I still had my Dad around." I'm tired of seeing a "grief competition" or grief ownership. Why does every loss have to be a competition of who had the greater loss? Why do the victims of violence get to "lord it over those of us who have lost their loved ones by natural causes"? To me it doesn't make a ******* bit of difference. They're ALL dead, they ALL leave behind people who miss them deeply and will never, ever be the same again. "I'm sorry that you hurt but don't minimize my pain either regardless of the circumstances!" I think Pamela Cytrynbaum got it right in her Psychology Today Article: The Heirarchy of Grief - Who Is The Biggest Loser Society has created a "step-ladder" of entitlement to sympathy. In society there seems to be a heirarchy of grief and loss, where those who stand at the pinnacle are the ones who've had loved ones murdered with there being a heirarchy even there. Mothers who have lost children to violent crime stand at the very pinnacle of that heirarchy. Everybody has to bow down to those who have lost their children to a murder as if that epitomizes the very essence of loss and grief. Those who mourn their parents are at the very bottom of the heap. Does that mean we ache less than the mother who lost her child through murder? I don't think so. Why should we be made to feel guilty for our own grief just because the loss of our loved one didn't meet society's criteria for grief...by getting themselves murdered by a criminal? "Well, think of what your mother is going through." Yes, I can and I'm sure she hurts just as much as I do. We lost someone who was very important in our lives. It doesn't matter how, it doesn't matter when. It doesn't matter WHAT AGE...he was. "Be strong for your family and help your mother through this time." Well, buddy, do you not think that having lost my father, that I shouldn't take time to grieve myself. That I should just squelch down my grief and turn around and help someone else because..."my, oh my, her grief is much more than yours..." And people say this without thinking how their words affect other people. It's annoying at least; enraging at worst. So I ask society in general. Why should I minimize my own loss; why should I bow to someone else's loss and forget my own because society says that I should pay more heed to the grief of a widow of a veteran or the surviving families of a murder victim? I feel that everyones' loss is personal and important to their respective families regardless of the circumstances, and telling me to subordinate the loss of my father because so and so's son or daughter was murdered is an insult to my father's memory. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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