My Mom

by Susan Skinner
(North Vancouver, BC)

I lost my dear, beloved Mom on August 5, 2011. Although apparently, there is no real "normal" to grief, mine would possibly be categorized as "complicated grief" or "traumatic grief".

I suffer from PTSD from going through serious ongoing abuse from the father of my four children, whom I've been separated from since September 2005. And that is where part of the complication in my grief sets in, as the serious lies, manipulation, theft and being used - all of which the children and I experienced from their father, affected my Mom too. We all have a part to play in our relationships - and that is where part of my tremendous guilt and regret lie; it is in how the stress and trauma of dealing with my ex, greatly stressed and anguished my Mother and was a contributing factor in the stress related illnesses that preceded the diagnosis of small cell extensive lung cancer my mother received in May 2010.

That's all I can write for now. The grief exhausts me; and as well, I need to tend to the children and get ready for work - a good sign, perhaps, as I am at least somewhat coping today. Some days I let the grief overtake me, succumb to the intensity - cry, miss work functions, stay in bed, sleep crazy hours - but if all this sounds like I should be in a different place by now (6 months since Mom passed) - the information on this website solidifies what my intuition has been telling me of late - just surrender to it, accept, embrace and gulp down this strong medicine that is grief - with courage and continue to keep my heart open - to myself, my children, the few friends I am letting in of late, my Mom and my loving - all loving, all powerful, all knowing, God. ~ May grace, strength and love be with you all <3

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Feb 04, 2012
Some of my story, her story, of loss
by: Susan again -

I'm not sure how to write more, so I'm posting it here. My dear, sweet, angelic Mother passed away on August 5, 2011. Sharing her last few days was tthe highest honor and the most beautiful, spiritual experience. I must have been in a fog or denial because if I thought the early days were hard, I would never have fathomed the depth of my pain. How discombobulated, torn apart, swept under the undertow of these massive waves of grief, loss, sadness, regret, guilt - deep gratitude and love. It really is a roller coaster - one we must ride involuntarily and in no way fun. Missing her, longing for her. My world completely upside down. It is almost 6 months and it gets more acute each day. I still can hardly fathom that she is gone. My anchor to the planet, the most selfless, highest integrity, honest person. Oh, how I wish I cherished her more when she was here. I don't know how my four children are possibly dealing with it. She was so special. It seems so quick, so final, even though she was sick for 16 months, it's just that I always believed she would have a remission and continue on. And she did, but she didn't rally. The doctor's said she was cancer free for months and months. They said she got brain damage from the radiation and that she would have to go in a home. So they let her languish, albeit, ignored in a general medical ward - awaiting a care facility, until they said the cancer had returned - even though the day before she was told they were moving her to a moderate care facility which terrorized her. We thought she would have 4 to 7 months - Christmas I thought, but she was gone in 3 weeks. The only thing is I'm glad she didn't have to suffer any more. I'm glad I was able to spend her last three days with her in the hospice. I wish I phoned her more and visited her more when she was sick because now it's too late. Too late to be there for her - too late to talk to her. So much loss and so much guilt, sadness and emptiness. O

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