Shattered lives, never the same
by Liz P.
I am in and out of shock about the new reality I am in. I am grieving over 2 very close people in my immediate family. In Oct. 2011, my brother Sam (34 yrs young) was shot and killed in his own home. My brother Dan, (Sam's best friend) was witness to this horrible tragedy. The night that Sam died, Dan's life ended too because he lost his best friend and only brother. My brothers worked together, lived together and spent their whole lives side by side. Dan is in a deep depression and has lost his will to keep trying and living. He is suicidal and has survivors guilt. It is a complicated mess, how it happened. My sisters and I try to help support Dan and help him not lose hope for a life that is worth living. I am constantly worried and concerned that Dan will hurt himself and that life is just going to get worse. Dan is the youngest of 5 children in my family. Sam was only 2 years older than Dan and I am 2 years older than Sam. We have 2 older sisters. Sam and I were very close, I miss him terribly. I miss having our heart to heart talks and learning from each other. I always felt safe around Sam, he was a protector. I can't imagine my life and family without him here. I want my 3 kids to have their Uncle Sam here to teach them and joke with them. He was a fun guy to be around, life of the party. It feels like holidays and special occasions only remind me of the past and how much I miss those times. Life is forever changed and I am trying to learn how to adjust to the enormous loss of my brother. I feel awkward expressing myself to others about how much I miss him because I feel like people just don't understand this type of tragedy. It is unthinkable. How come this happened to my brother?, I wonder to myself. This is not at all like I imagined my life going. I am trying to adjust but I don't know how long it will take. It still feels like it happened yesterday. I have seen a psychic/medium several times and my brother came through and I believe that he is ok and has forgivin the people that killed him. He seems to be fine on other other side and I am comforted knowing that. It is all just so surreal. I accept that he is still with me in spirit still but it is a different way to relate with him and I can't visibly see or hear him anymore. The comfort from the medium sessions has helped but there is still a huge hole in my life without Sam.
10 months later Aug. 2012, my dear, beautiful Mom, Christine passed away from ovarian cancer. I lost 2 close family members in less than 1 year. My Mom was shattered after losing Sam. She suffered with ovarian cancer for 4 1/2 years before passing away with a slow, painful death. Her health declined even more after Sam's death. She lost her will to fight the cancer each day and fell into a depression and wished secretly that she would pass away and be without pain and suffering and reunite with her beloved son, Sam. When we buried Sam, she wanted to climb into the casket with him but she would not tell us that, we all know she felt it though. My Mom continued to fight and stay strong even though she knew her health was declining. She felt guilty knowing that she would probably die soon and that she would have to leave us. She knew we were all heartbroken from losing Sam and she held on as long as she possibly could but had to let go. We wanted her to be free of pain and suffering. My brother Dan, 2 sisters and I waited and watched her pass away in my sisters home on hospice. It was the most horrific and awful experience that I have ever witnessed happen in front of me. I have these sad and terrible images run through my head of my Mom withering away in front of us. I miss her so much. I wish I could hug her and talk with her again. She was one of my best friends. I have learned so much from her. She has been an inspiration to me in so many ways. I wish I could call her on the phone and hear her voice. I moved out of state 3 1/2 years ago and have not been able to see my Mom much at all during that time. I'm so sad that I didn't have more time with her. She was only 62 years young. She had a lot to live for. Even though she was depressed over her illness and suffering, she still had dreams and I wished she could live longer to enjoy her children and grandchildren. We all miss her and her thoughtful ways. She has such a sweet, precious, beautiful spirit. I feel so sad for the hardships that she had to endure. She deserved all the best and wonderful things that life could offer. I feel angry and sad that she had to pass away the way she did. It is hard and unimaginable for me to picture my life without my Mom and brother. It feels like life is just getting worse and that people I love are inevitably going to just keep dying. How can I be looking forward to life when I know there will be a lot more pain and loss ahead?
Thank you for listening and giving me a safe place to share my grief.