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Thread: Grief.

  1. #1
    Senior Member Andyland's Avatar
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    Grief.

    I lost my Grandma on December 7th to cancer. She was only 68, and she was only diagnosed about 6 weeks before her death.


    This thread is a bit random but I figure I can't be the only one feeling something like this right now.

  2. #2
    come out and level up Waylon's Avatar
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    I'm very sorry for your loss, Andy. I know I'll be devastated when my grandma dies.

    My mother died when I was 14, my dad died three years ago, and I've had countless friends and family members pass away over the past few years. I feel like grief has become sort of a part of my personality. I've actually become a rather morbid person.

    Watching "Six Feet Under" has helped me deal with loss, particularly my dad's. I also read a great book by the Dalai Lama, Mind of Pure Light: Advice on Dying a Leading a Better Life. I heartily recommend it to anyone who may be about to lose a loved one, as it gives great advice on how to help loved ones die, and how to deal with the grief yourself afterwards.

    Sometimes I think the so-called "experts" actually are experts.

  3. #3
    she might not be so bold fullofwish's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Oy With The Poodles Already!
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    I am very sorry for your loss Andy. I lost two brothers within 4 days of each other in 2010, October 27th and 31st. Even though it's been over a year, I still feel their loss all the time. Not a day goes by that I do not think of one or both of them. I went to therapy for a while immediately after their funerals, mainly to learn to cope with losing them and not being near my family (I'm in Colorado, the rest of my fam is in California.)

    It's a very difficult thing to go through. I struggle all the time with feeling guilty over not being there, or not being a better sister. But then I think of the good times, and all the times we were able to spend together. Little bits of their personalities, or a memory will pop out at random times and make me smile. But it's not easy by any means. Not at all.

    The best thing to come out of their loss though, is how much closer I have gotten to my nieces and nephews and other extended family. We all just really came together after they died and through fb and email we have continued to build and better our relationships.

    But I miss them. Every. single. day.

  5. #5
    safely on a cloud tully's Avatar
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    I'm so sorry Andy. Grief is a tricky journey. It's confusing and exhausting but necessary, and unless you are the most practiced non-attachment-forming Buddhist, continually painful. One of the worst parts is having to interact with people who aren't in the same emotional space as you are, which is a constant reminder of how different you've become from the people around you and the inability for most people to reach you in that space.

    Three years in and waking up to remember is still the worst.
    ... here i am!

  6. #6
    Luckiest SweetPea's Avatar
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    Oh Andy, I'm so sorry for your loss I wish I knew what to say beyond I know how you feel. I lost my grandmother (roughly 10 years ago) to heart failure, brought on by a long battle with breast cancer... at least that's what was told to me... I loved her so much and losing her was like losing a sister, as we were really really close. I miss her so much. I wish she could have met my husband and seen my sister get married. She was such a wise and loving woman.

    I hope you can take all you learned from your grandmother and remember the happy times you had with her while you move through your grief.
    You don't have to do everything all by yourself.

  7. #7
    :: dutch oven :: wout's Avatar
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    I too am sorry for your loss, Andy.

    Tully raised a very valid, important point about differences in emotional space. I had a very rough year 2 years ago after my father suddenly died and I know I still haven't fully recovered from that period of time. One of the hardest things was watching the world go on as usual, even though it felt like mine had just fallen apart at the seams. It's hard for people to relate, especially after a few months when for others the impact has worn off and you still feel like complete shit.

    Example: at the time, I was working half days due to stress/grief/anxiety and after 1 month I had to visit a company-doctor for a chat, status update etc and that idiot actually said to my face that the average time for an employee to be away from work after a death in the family was 3 weeks, so shouldn't I be thinking of going back to work like a normal person..? I was furious, and that remark alone did so much damage to my mental health and self-confidence. Statistics, really????

    So yeah, it's different for each and everybody and it's good to realize that grief may affect somebody harder that you'd think. The silly old line 'things get better in time' is sort of true. The intensity will wear off, life will pick up. But I found that I haven't been the same 'me' since and it still is very much a part of my life. That's not a bad thing per se, it's how it goes and you have to deal with it. But it's the way you grieve, what you choose to do, that will shape the future you. It's good to realise that.
    post28!

  8. #8
    Senior Member toriwannabe's Avatar
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    Gosh, everyone. So sorry to hear all your stories.

    smallbluething, is that book also helpful from the person who is having to deal with their own mortality? My mother is waiting for the news on whether the radiation/chemo worked on her lung cancers and we're all scared of what the outcome will be. I am seeing a psychologist myself, just trying to come to terms with it, my feelings about it, among other things. My doctor was surprised my mother hadn't been referred to a psychologist. Maybe this book would be good to have available for her?

  9. #9
    come out and level up Waylon's Avatar
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    I would say yes.
    Sometimes I think the so-called "experts" actually are experts.

  10. #10
    waited with a glacier's patience Churumbela's Avatar
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    Andy, I'm so sorry. Words and advice are fairly useless at times like these, and everyone handles things in their own way. I think that's the most important thing to remember. There's really no "normal" grief that everyone goes through and then it's over. If only!
    I wouldn't say I've experienced an inordinate amount of loss in my life, I'm 32, so I think I expect that most people my age have lost someone. But not everyone understands, and of course it depends on how close you might have been to the people you've lost. Some people are as close to their grandparents as they are to their parents. My maternal grandmother died when I was in high school, and I was extremely close to her, and it took a very, very long time to be okay with it. (It was extremely quick and very rare - she had Creutzfeld-Jakob.) My other grandmother, my Nina, whom many here/on @ have heard about ad nauseum, was actually a patient where I work and died of small cell lung cancer. I think I was able to come to terms with that more easily because for one thing, I had a little more time to process -- understanding her diagnosis because of my job, I knew her disease would likely be terminal. But it was still hard.
    I think the hardest of all was losing my father. It's been nearly 10 years. He and I were estranged at the time (about something stupid, really), and it has been hard to accept that he died knowing I was mad at him. He had his flaws, but he was my dad all the same. His birthday would have been Sunday. I always get a bit mopey this time of year, never fails.
    I am the beginning. The end. The one that is many.

  11. #11
    Who's Deanna? SparkleMotion's Avatar
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    Erin raises such a good point about handling things in your own way. It's important to allow yourself to feel whatever it is you're feeling. Don't let anyone tell you what you're feeling is wrong or that your process is taking too long. My mother-in-law passed away in August of 2010 and my husband and I are still working through it. She was a huge presence in our lives and was more a mother to me than my own ever was. There are days I still find myself reaching for the phone to tell her something her grandson did or said. Yes, things have gotten better but the loss is still very present. In fact, my husband and I experienced marital problems last year because he had just simply shut down. Thankfully things are back on track now and we're much more open about Mom's death and how both of us are coping.

    I want to hug everyone in this thread. It's a shitty club that we're all destined to be members of. It sounds corny but just remember to be good to yourself. I am thankful every day for this place. I've gotten so much support and gotten to know so many wonderful people. I'm forever grateful for that. It makes times like these just a bit more bearable.

  12. #12
    How am I not myself?
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    I lost my dad approximately two years ago (March 17) to a 10 year battle with cancer. My dad didn't just sporadically *get* cancer, he slowly killed himself through smoking 3 packs a day and starting each morning with a 24 pack of Budweiser. tully's point "waking up to remember", still hits me every morning. Although my father and I had a tumultuous relationship, (and when I'm really honest, I'm happy for him to no longer be suffering in the myriad ways he was) at his core, he was one of the most kind-hearted and thoughtful people on the planet. So I miss that aspect of him the most.

    It hits me when something good happens, and he's the first person I want to call, because I know he'll be the most happy to hear it, or when I stupidly think "gosh, I haven't heard from dad in a while, I wonder how he's coping with his treatments", and then I remember that I *won't* be hearing from him ever again. His death isn't fully ingrained in me yet, I don't think it ever will be.

    *tearing up at work reading all of your posts*

    It goes without saying that I'm painfully sorry for everyone's losses in this thread. Losing a loved one never gets easier.
    Last edited by Morgan; 02-15-2012 at 06:33 PM.

  13. #13
    Oy With The Poodles Already!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morgan View Post
    I lost my dad approximately two years ago (March 17) to a 10 year battle with cancer. My dad didn't just sporadically *get* cancer, he slowly killed himself through smoking 3 packs a day and starting each morning with a 24 pack of Budweiser. tully's point "waking up to remember", still hits me every morning. Although my father and I had a tumultuous relationship, (and when I'm really honest, I'm happy for him to no longer be suffering in the myriad ways he was) at his core, he was one of the most kind-hearted and thoughtful people on the planet. So I miss that aspect of him the most.

    It hits me when something good happens, and he's the first person I want to call, because I know he'll be the most happy to hear it, or when I stupidly think "gosh, I haven't heard from dad in a while, I wonder how he's coping with his treatments." His death isn't fully ingrained in me yet, I don't think it ever will be.

    It goes without saying that I'm painfully sorry for everyone's losses in this thread. Losing a loved one never gets easier.
    wow, this sounds so familiar. Both of my brothers could have been said to have brought on their deaths. My brother David suffered from colon cancer for years, while he was a functioning alcoholic drinking a case of Miller High Life daily. My brother Rudy died from Hepatitis C brought on by IV drug use. So yes, sometimes I do see their deaths as a release from their suffering. But selfishly, I miss them.

    I feel very guilty about my brother Rudy especially. Because he was an addict for all of my life, I saw very little of him and as a result we didn't have the greatest of relationships. It pains me and makes me feel very guilty that I never got to know him, and now will never get that chance to get to know him. When my sister went to pack up things at his home, she found his photo album. And among some other pictures, was a picture of my son that I had sent to him as part of a birth announcement when my son was born. While I had sent it with no other thought than "I'm a new mom, I want everyone to see my son!" he had kept it. He kept it for almost 8 years, despite us having only minimal contact during that time. When my sister showed it to me, it just pained me more than anything else. That he kept the picture for that long, that it meant so much to him to have that picture. It hurts even just thinking of it.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Andyland's Avatar
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    Apologies for abandoning the thread, but thank you for all the responses and support.

    I was just thinking about how it can be strange to be the only one in an extended family who doesn't necessarily believe in an afterlife. It feels strange when I hear relatives talk about how they're going to be reunited with her one day...it's a comforting thought, but it doesn't really fit with my desire to have an evidence-based view of the world.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Andyland View Post
    I lost my Grandma on December 7th to cancer. She was only 68, and she was only diagnosed about 6 weeks before her death.


    This thread is a bit random but I figure I can't be the only one feeling something like this right now.
    You aren't, Andy. My Grams was 39 when I was born, so I felt like I had two moms. She was the kindest person I've ever known and I definitely got my deep love and compassion for animals from her. I have felt adrift since she died, as if she was the star that I depended on to navigate my course and now no longer shines.

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