Losing my mum is the hardest thing I ever had to deal with

by Therese
(Ireland)

My mum died in July 2013 and despite the fact that I knew she was slowly going downhill I wasn't ready for her death at all. We lost my dad six years ago and while my dad was much loved and missed I think I coped with his death by keeping busy with mum. I live in Ireland in Dublin and my mum lived a two and a half hour drive away in the west of Ireland. Mum had heart disease and I used to take her to appointments in Galway ,do her shopping etc when I could. I have three children and I work part time so it wasn't always possible to be there. My two siblings live nearer to her but as they are both male I always felt the brunt of responsibility fell to me.

My mum died in hospital her heart function had dropped considerably and she had less than 30 per cent function. I took her to the doctor and she was admitted to A and E suffering from mild dehydration. She was on strong diuretics and last July was particularly hot. The hospital weren't particularly worried about her and said they would give her intravenous fluids and allow her home. I sat with her until she was admitted having left my children with a friend.She was weak and frail but I honestly didn't think she was going to die.

My mum died the next morning as the nurses were giving her a wash. I never got to say goodbye. I am feeling guilty because I was tired that night we were waiting in A and E and I was cross. My reasons for being cross were that neither of my brothers came to relieve me and I sort of took it out on my mum.it wasn't her fault?I didn't tell her I loved her before I left. I just told her to call me the following morning which she never got to do.


it is Christmas now and I am heartbroken. I spent every Christmas with her. My brothers don't seem to miss her as much, although I know that we all grieve in our own way. One of them was congratulating himself recently regarding all he did for his mother and I was nearly sick. He often refused to take her calls and lied saying he was working when he clearly wasn't. He doesn't seem to have guilt. I am feeling guilty over all the days she spent alone.She had some home help but she spent the rest of her time alone. I called her several times a day as I lived too far away to be there. I am very upset over her death despite the fact she was 82 and I am 46.Grief and guilt are eating me up inside. I miss her gentle presence, her kindness and her interest in me. Sometimes I would get frustrated with her and when I would apologise she always answered it is ok pet. I miss that unconditional love. Please help me at this stage I feel as if I never will function normally again.

Comments for Losing my mum is the hardest thing I ever had to deal with

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Jan 11, 2014
Thinking of you
by: Anonymous

Thinking of you Barb as your Dad's anniversary approaches on the 14th. Wishing you healing and strength.Therese.

Jan 04, 2014
Dear Therese,
by: Anonymous

I am having trouble sleeping as well. This is something new, but I'm guessing that it is some sort of anxiety relating to the upcoming anniversary of my Dad's passing. It will be one year on January 14. I have also been told that it takes at least two years to come to terms with it, but I honestly don't think I will ever really grasp the reality. My father and I were extremely close, and we saw him almost every single day. He was a big part of my children's lives, and for that I am thankful. My Dad's death was sudden, and that makes it even more traumatic. He attended my son's basketball game on Sunday, and on Monday morning he collapsed and died. My mother and I have so many questions and regrets. Anyway, I hope you have found some comfort on this website, and I wish you continued peace as you heal, Barb

Dec 30, 2013
We are not alone
by: Therese

Thanks I agree with you. I have found the past few days really tough as it is so difficult at this time of year. I am remembering other Christmases and I always had my lovely mum with me.
I feel guilty for the times I took her for granted and for not always appreciating her.To be honest there were times she downright annoyed me and I often told her so. Despite all of this I loved her so much and her loss is almost unbearable. My sleep is affected, I wake up at 5am just thinking about her.I wish for just one more minute with her to tell her her how much I loved her.People tell me I have to get on with life and I know I do but how can I when I feel like this? I am trying it take it day by day but it still affects me so bad. I am hoping that time will help me. A good friend recently said to me that it took her two years to get over the death of her mum, so we have a long way to go yet. I appreciate your replies.It is good to know that other people out there feel our pain.Some times I feel that I am going mad so it is good to know that others are in the same boat.

Dec 28, 2013
Dear Therese,
by: Anonymous

I am having the same experience. My husband is a wonderful, caring man, but he lost both of his parents a long time ago, and at times I feel like he thinks I should be farther along in my healing. Maybe he doesn't remember the awful pain that goes along with it. I don't feel like I can talk about my father with my friends anymore, because as you said, I think it makes people uncomfortable. My father was 81, and people seem to think that because he was in his 80's, it should be easier to deal with. The loss is profound no matter what the age. I am 47, but was still my father's daughter, even later in life. Hang in there - Barb

Dec 28, 2013
Losing my mum
by: Therese

Thank you Barb yes I agree there is a lot of support on this website and we are all in the same boat so we understand each other.Most of my friends don't understand as they still have their parents and very often say things like she was a great age, as if I loved her less because she was 82 not 52.My husband can cope with only so much of my grieving and thinks that I should try and pull myself together for the sake of my kids and himself. A lot of my work colleagues change the conversation when I mention my mum probably knowing that I will cry and that makes people uncomfortable. I would probably have done the same myself before this happened. I hope the new year brings healing for us. I feel your pain.It is particularly difficult when the death is sudden as the chance to say goodbye and to come to terms with the loss isn't there.Although my mothers health was failing over the past year especially and her death wasn't totally unexpected
due to her various medical problems, I am still struggling to come to terms with it nearly six months on. Will I ever get over it? I am planning to go to counselling in the new year so I hope it helps me?I will keep you posted. All the best. Therese.

Dec 27, 2013
Dear Therese,
by: Anonymous

I hope counseling helps you. For whatever reason, I keep putting it off, but I really think I need to go as well. My son asked me on Christmas Eve if I was going to cry in church. I thought I was doing a pretty good job of holding it together, but children are so perceptive, and he recognizes how painful this still is for me. This website has been a huge comfort to me, all of the people who post here share the same experiences, and are so supportive and kind. It has helped me tremendously. Best wishes for peace and healing in the New Year, Barb

Dec 27, 2013
Losing my mum
by: Anonymous

Thanks for your kind words, it is good to know that I am not alone. I am trying to take each day at a time but it is tough and my guilt is overwhelming. I think I need counselling. I know my grieving is affecting my kids they often ask me when am I going to get back to normal again. Thank you Barb for taking the time to post back. I know that time heals all wounds and that it will get easier for us. Thanks again.

Dec 26, 2013
Dear Therese,
by: Anonymous

I am sorry that you are struggling with your giref right now. I lost my father suddenly in January, and I find that I have to work harder and harder through my grief as the time goes by. This is by far the hardest thing I have ever done, and because my father died suddenly from a cardiac event, I had no time to prepare or say "goodbye". One day he was just gone. On top of the grief, I am coping with the extreme shock as well. I am an only child, a grown woman with children of my own, and am trying to help my grieving mother as best I can. Sometimes I get overwhelmed, and act short with her, and she with me. Love IS unconditional though, and we are human after all, nobody can act perfectly all of the time. You sound like a wonderful, caring and attentive daughter, and your mother knows how deeply you loved her. I am holding onto a lot of guilt as well - I didn't do enough at the hospital for my father, didn't ask the right questions,etc. I think this is part of the grieving process as well. And you're right, people grieve differently and have different coping skills. Try to take one day at a time and be kind to yourself. I have been grieving for almost a year, and every single morning I wake up and have to take a minute to realize that this all really happened. I miss my father so much - we were extremely close, and I will never, ever be the same. But, none of us know God's plan, and we have to keep the faith and take comfort in his love. As hard as it may be. If it is any consolation, you are not alone. I wish you peace and comfort in the New Year as you continue to heal. Barb

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