I lost my brother to liver cancer and 10 days after my dad passed away.

by Carol Cook
(Red Deer Alberta, Canada)

I was very close to my brother and when he called me a few months back to go for lunch I thought he was trying to tell me something? He did not have a drink at lunch so I asked him if it was something medical and he said no that he just wasn't feeling good from a cold. I was concerned but as the days passed I noticed he was looking worse...as he was my older brother I didn't pressure him about it but my instincts were telling me it was something worse. He said he was fine. He went on a vacation with his wife and they were back less than a week. I got a call that he was in the hospital and the test showed he had primary liver cancer and approx. less than 2 weeks to live. My heart was shattered and I spent most of my time visiting him as best I could his wife tried to cut down our visiting cause he had a lot of visitors. I went once during the day and spent most nights staying with him so he wouldn't be alone. He has 2 sons and a daughter that has just recently found him over the last 20 years so his sons started to stay with him at night, until he started getting worse then I stayed with him and one of my sisters also stayed with me. Our dad passed away 10 days after our brother so prior to dad passing myself and one of my sisters stayed with him for many days and nights. My sister and I did the funeral home today, dad had already prepaid for his and our moms cremation but we still had to choose a box and Urn for him and also identify the body today. I am very over whelmed and find that I am numb and feel I haven't had time to grieve for my brother as if get and now also for my dad. I feel very sad and sorry for my mom and call her everyday and will be going to see her in a few days, one if my sisters live and work at the hospital where they also have a long term nursing home attached to the hospital where my mom now lives alone. I feel very heartbroken, sad, numb and lost at all different times, I cry at unexpected times and miss my brother so very much and not sure if I am dealing with all of this very good...our brothers wife didn't even mention any of our family in the obituary and that seems to hurt a lot my brother loved his family and friends so much but not a word about us and that hurts me a lot.. Am I being selfish about that?? She has done and said things that have been hurtful and seems to diss us at any chance she gets. I understand she and their to sons are having their own grief. I just hope it gets better and at times I feel she has cut the strings with our family all together now?? So we will wait and give her her space for now. I personally don't know what to do with myself anymore and cry at such odd and different times through out the day, not sleeping good even though the doctor has given me sleeping pills to help keep my anxiety a little on the calmer side. I have been so tired lately especially since my dad passed. I all I can say is it hurts real bad and my heart is breaking from losing them so close together. Any advice or words that might help me deal with this situation right now would be greatly appreciated ?? Thank you for letting me write this to people who have lost family so close together as we have . Thanks Carol❤️

Comments for I lost my brother to liver cancer and 10 days after my dad passed away.

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Jul 16, 2014
I know the pain...
by: Donna

I'm so sorry for your losses... on November 27, 2013 my dad passed away unexpectedly from a brain stem stroke. He was still very vibrant for 77 years of age and was STILL working, because he loved what he did. His death was an utter shock. I have 5 siblings and a mother, but there was only one that I was close to, my sister Linda, and she was the only person who I could talk to. We grieved together. My sister Linda had successfully battled breast cancer and was working on year number 4 of being cancer free. She became sick in January 2014 with what seemed like a really bad cold. The cold turned into pneumonia and at the same time she contracted H1NA which then developed into ARDS (I had never heard of it either) which is acute respiratory failure. She remained in the critical care unit on a ventilator and dialysis for 101 days. She fought to stay alive but she was just to weak to go on any longer She left us peacefully on May 16, 2014, exactly 2 months ago today. I honestly feel like I'm alone now because of the estrangement from the rest of my family. My husband and grown daughters are very supportive, but they can't really understand how this feels. I hope they never have to. When you lose more than one, the grief is multiplied. I understand your pain and the sorrow that you feel. I wish I knew the simple answer to this, but I really don't think there is one. You never get over it, you just learn how to live with it. My only solace is my faith, and the faith that my sister and dad had in everlasting life. I believe that I will be with them again.

Jun 02, 2014
I lost my brother to liver cancer and 10 days after my dad passed away.
by: Doreen UK

Carol I am sorry for your loss of your brother and your Dad. Perhaps a grief counsellor may be able to support you whilst you work through each loss. It can be overwhelming to deal with two losses at the same time. I am not surprised you are tired. Grief assaults our body and our mind and makes us over tired. It is one of the worst experiences to be told you have cancer and going to die.
My husband of 44yrs.was told in 2009 that he had an incurable, inoperable, aggressive lung cancer caused by working with asbestos. That was the day my grief started and I nursed him for 3yrs.39days and he died 2yrs. ago at the age of 65yrs. I could not function for 6 months. I feel I am back at that first 6 months when I have once again lost my motivation to do anything. My spirit is willing but my body lets me down.
It is not uncommon to have difficulty with family members after the funeral. This is the time you find out who you can trust and who is going to walk away from you. I have had both experiences. I even had to get law enforcement support because my in-laws were possessive and wanted to run the whole funeral and decisions. I was respectful of their wishes but because my husband died of an Industrial disease his body could only be released by a coroner. My in-laws didn't accept this and gave me a hard time. It has been the worst 2yrs. of my life.
Many people have difficulties with family after a death. Sometimes it can take a little time and blow over, other times relatives just put distance between us and walk away. As you say, just give it time until everyone is able to process their feeling and loss and if things don't change you can contact your sister-in-law and get a better idea what her intentions are. You will undoubtedly still want to keep in touch with your brother's children.
It is sad when this happens. Just when you need people the most it can leave you feeling very lonely and all alone.

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