Discussion Forums

I feel lost and at time afraid of what I saw. 
Started by mymothersdaughter
11 Jan 2014, 11:28 PM

Hello.  Dec 4, 2013 I lost my mother to brain cancer.  I was the only family member with my Mom throught this entire time of diagnosis up to and including death.  I found Christmas especially hard and finally threw the tree back in the crawl space of my home and packed up some of my Mom's belonging and put them there too.  I am lost, she was my best friend and I am having moments that just come to me of seeing her sitting up and trying to spit without saying a word in her dark room.  I am having flash smells of what it was like when I viewed her body at the funeral home and the smell.  I was terrified to be alone with her it scared me so bad.  These moments come and go and they are like thoughts, I can be watching tv and or cooking and suddenly I want to cry, cry like a scared kid.  Is this normal?  I am also mad, angry but I don't really know why.  I am interested to hear from anyone as I don't have much support.
Report this post      
Reply by moderator | modératrice
12 Jan 2014, 12:33 AM

Hi mymothersdaughter,

Welcome to Virtual Hospice. You are not alone. And all that you are feeling and experiencing is normal. What is normal at such a time? 

There are several people sharing about the loss of a parent. Please meet Nikki99, DragonFly, NatR, marstin, EastCoastPEI and others in these threads:
Were you living with you Mom?
Report this post      
Reply by marstin
12 Jan 2014, 8:34 PM

Hi mymothersdaughter,

I am sorry to hear of your recent loss. It is never easy to lose someone but at Christmas time it seems to make it even worse.

I want to reassure that the emotions you are feeling are okay. You have been through a very difficult loss. The reference you make to the smells is not uncommon either. I think it took about a year before we stopped getting sudden whiff's of the odor's associated with my partners cancer and ultimate death. It was very disturbing. My mom passed just weeks later and it took a long time to get over the memories of what she suffered through before she passed. I guess what I'm saying is that in time those memories and scents will not cause you as much pain but it is so fresh in your mind right now.

There is nothing easy about grieving and the emotions connected to it sometimes don't make sense, they just are. It's a rollercoaster effect and you will find that you have moments of peace, followed by the need to just scream at the top of your lungs, followed by tears of devastation. It is all part of the process.

Do you have a support system at all? A dad? A sibling? Close friends?  Some people are fortunate to be surrounded by loving people but there are also those who have no one to turn to. This site has helped me get back on my feet when the rest of my life was falling apart. You will meet people here who will support you along the way with hearts full of compassion and understanding. It's a safe place to give a voice to all that you are feeling.

Report this post      
Reply by NatR
12 Jan 2014, 10:00 PM

Hi mymothersdaughter,

I am so sorry for your loss.  It's hard to lose your mom, and it's hard to do it all for your mom.  My sympathies to you.  It sounds like you are re-living everything that happened..and dealing with the loss as well.

it would be good to talk to someone if you have anyone like Tracie  suggested,  a friend or family member to talk to.  You have found a place where you can vent, share your feelings and learn how to live in the new normal of your life, and that takes a lot of courage....there are many people on the forum who relate to your story.

please continue to share your thoughts and as you do - you will get responses and know your are not alone...that is one of the best things about this Forum....we are as close as your computer...and even though we have different experiences and losses, we all support each other and help to pick up the pieces.  It's very hard to lose your mom. And at Christmas it's very hard...when celebration and family get together  are the focus.

you are in my thoughts,
please feel free to share your feelings,
sending you  a hug,
Report this post      
Reply by Brayden
14 Jan 2014, 3:01 AM

Dear Mymothersdaughter,

I hear the pain in your message, which is so normal for someone in your circumstances. The feelings that you now are experiencing are very normal. I am so heartened to hear that you and your mother enjoyed Joyclyn House, which I think is such a neat place. They offer a limited amount of bereavement support but there is a good organization here in Winnipeg that does. I suggest you contact Hospice and Palliative Care Manitoba, Program Coordinator at 204-889-8525 Ext. 229 and they can connect you with a volunteer that will support you thru your journey. You can tell them that Irv. referred you. Feel free to do that as they are very accommodating. Also keep sharing on this site which you should find helpful. We all care deeply for you. Blessings,


Report this post      
Reply by mzmojo
14 Jan 2014, 3:03 AM

Hi there my mother's daughter, my name is Lori.   I can totally relate to everything you have said and are feeling.   A bit of info about me first to let you know why. ..I am going to be 46 this Saturday.  I have a 2 1/2 year old little girl who just happens to be my parents only grandchild.   I am the only daughter with 2 younger brothers.   Just typing all of this is making me cry now.  Last fall 2012 my mom had some back pain.  We didn't think much of it.  We Were thinking maybe a bladder infection or something similar.   She and my dad went to the hospital for some tests. We were told on October 3,2012 that my mom had stage 4 pancreatic cancer that had spread to her liver.   I went off work the minute I was told this.  She was my everything.   She was in the hospital 3x. The third time being her last.   On December 21, 2012 I was alone with my mom.  Her breathing wasgetting wierd and i was told that i should call my family to come back.  My dad and brothers, boyfriend and daughter had gone home for the night . At 9pm my mom took her last breath while in my arms.  It was the most difficult moment of my life.  It was not at all like the tv makes it look like at all. I totally lost it because I lost her.  My family didn't make it in time.  Each time one of them arrived it was me that had to tell them. It was horrific.  

My mom was also my best friend.  We spoke everyday sometimes more than once a day.  We would talk about anything and everything.   She was my biggest supporter, mu love and my hero.  She was by far the very strongest person I have ever known.  She was forever thinking of others.  She was the most giving and thoughtful person I have ever known.  

I am not only struggling because I miss her more than I could ever put into words but also because she wanted nothing more than to be a grandma.   She loved my daughter so much. She was an amazing mother and an even better grandmother.   My daughter had her for 19 months - not long enough at all.  I am trying so hard to make sure my daughter never forgets her.  

I feel very alone because I feel like I'm the only one that can't accept my mom being gone. When i cry most people just change the subject.  God forbid I should geta hug. I've learned to cry when I'm alone.   I put on my phoney happy face for everyone else. 

I just needed you to know that you truly are not alone. I too have said that I Sound likea young child because I can't stop crying and get past this. How are we supposed to when this is the one person in this world that knew us the best and loved us completely.   I have that love again with my daughter and myself but im sorry, I still want my mom!  She had just turned 67 on September 20th. She was much to young. It's so very true... All the good ones are taken way too soon.

I hope to hear from you as you and I are sharing similar hurts and loss.

Take care,
Lori xo even when there are tears 
Report this post      
Reply by mymothersdaughter
16 Jan 2014, 4:14 AM

Hi Lori,
I totally understand what you are going through.  My Mom was a straight shooter and I could tell her everything and she would tell me things even when I didn't want to hear them.  I miss her so much.  My Mom thought she had an ear infection as she was dizzy all the time.  I said Mom you need to go to the hospital something more is going on.  She said, I don't want to go and waste everyones time because I am not that sick.  I told her I wasn't going to talk to her anymore if she didn't go.  2 days went by, she was so ill, she was throwing up, her head was to one side.  She called me and said, Tricia, I went for a scan and they called me back and said I need to go back to the hospital ASAP.  She had brain cancer.  I was angry right away and I think I said, see, see what happened, you didn't listen.  I can't believe I said that to her but for months she put off going to the hospital.  I was the only daughter who was here for her and at that moment I wasn't, I blamed her.  Mom had immediate surgery and the Dr said she he couldn't get it all.  Mom had less than 6 months to live.  I wanted her with me, to move in.  I made a room all calmly decorated for her, new paint, bed spread.  Mom only stayed with me twice as she wanted to be in her own home.  3 months after the surgery Mom was sick, vomitting all the time, the tumor they removed grew back.  Mom was at a hospital to get medically stable and then she went to a hospice.  I continued to work but went to see her 3 times a day, no other relief from family, no one to take over when I was burning out. 
We talked about life, I told her I forgave her for everything as my childhood was not a good one, i was the blacksheep when I was a child and Mom enjoyed the bottle a little to much at one time in her life.  We had time to say good bye but that doesn't make anything feel better now.  Mom was well taken care of in the hospice and she made friends ther which she was never good at doing.  In her last 2 weeks, Mom declined so quickly, her breathing changed, we couldn't turn the light on, so I sat in the dark with her for at least 2 weeks. I always kissed her head, told her I loved her and said if you need to go and I am not here, you go Mom, I will take care of everything.  Mom stopped eating and drinking for 1 week exactly.  I saw her wasting away, she was not verbal at all.  There were so many disturbing things I saw and they freak me out even now.
 I reolized I could not have cared for her at home and was glad someone else was there to help me.  I promised Mom she would never be in pain or alone. 
On December 4, 2013 I called at 10:30 am and the head nurse said she was finished washing my Mom and we hung up, at 11:15 am they called, Mom took her last breath.  I got there at 11:35 am.  I turned the light on and there she was, the shell of what was my Mom.  I feel a part of me was gone that day or maybe through out this process I was losing myself.
I cry even thinking about it, things I saw, maybe things I should have done or shouldn't have done.  I have a hard time sleeping as the room I made for Mom is across from mine.  I can't even open the door, I sometimes think I smell her.  I talk out loud to her, not often but once, twice.  I am not a religous person so part of me is unsure if she's ok where she went.  I am crying even typing this to you.
My son is 21 years old and he was the only grandchild my Mom was actively involved in caring for.  He is hurting but is very quiet and doesn't talk much about feelings.  My husband couldn't be around my Mom at the worst time because he couldn't handle seeing death so he does't know what I saw or had to deal with.  I get you when you said about the hug.  For some it's easier to change the conversation when all you want is for someone to know your pain cause you really do want to talk about it, cry about it.
I am sad most of the time, but BUT I slap on a fake face and move on with life because that's what everyone expects you to do.  Nothing stopped when Mom died, when my world crashed down when I lost my best friend, everyone expects you to just get on with it.  I understand.
Report this post      
Reply by marstin
16 Jan 2014, 6:32 AM


I couldn't go to bed tonight without responding to the two of you. Although it has been a year and a half for me, I miss my mom every day. It is hard to be in a world that is so fast paced and people tend to expect that grief should move along just as quickly. Unfortunately, it doesn't happen that way at all. I see people that I know that just about run in the other direction because they are afraid that I will talk too long or bring them down. I have learned now to pretend that I don't see them so that they don't feel uncomfortable.  In the beginning they wanted to listen and really seemed to care but it was short lived. I accept it, it's just another one of the lessons that come with grieving. Unless others have gone through it, they truly don't quite grasp what it's like. My brother was with me when our mom passed away but within about a minute, he ran off to an appointment and said he would be back soon. I was left sitting beside her alone and in shock. She too was my best friend.

It takes time, a very long time to be able to work past some of the painful memories of when they were sick. Having lost my husband just weeks before to cancer, made it doubly hard. We cared for him at home and it was a very tough thing to do.  It has been very difficult to try to grieve for both of them. They say that time will heal everything and although it may be true, it will be in your time not someone else's idea of how long it should be. I don't think the pain ever really goes away, it just becomes a little easier to bear.

Report this post      
Reply by moderator | modératrice
26 Jan 2014, 8:34 PM

Hi Everyone,

I thought I would check in to see how you are doing. Mymothersdaughter and mzmojo how has this week been for both of you?

Thinking of you.
Report this post      
Reply by mzmojo
30 Jan 2014, 6:35 AM

Hi everyone, sorry so long in getting back.  I'm very busy with a 2 1/2 year old :)  Thank you so much Tricia, Tracie and Colleen for your heartfelt words of both understanding and caring.  I'm not doing so hot.  It was my 46th birthday on January 18th and every year my mom would ask me what kind of cake i would like.  this year, my dad didn't get me a cake because he said we all complained last year.  we only said it was really sweet.  i know it's something little but to me it was everything.  every single day on my way home from work, i cry and every single day be it daytime or when i'm in bed, i cry.  i am so determined that my daughter not forget her grandma.  she was everything to my mom.  my mom said she didn't want to leave her or i.

i find that i just can not accept that any of this has really happened.  why did it have to be pancreatic cancer?? why couldn't it have just been a kidney infection or something easy.  i lost my last grandparent at 19 - whom i was also very close to and now, i have lost the love of my life.  my dad and my brothers think i'm being nosey when i call and say, hey what are you up to? or what did you eat for dinner?  i would never get such comments from my mom.

i find that now if i can't reach my dad, i am thinking the worse. i can't help this at all.  i'm trying not to but it won't stop.  he is fine.  he is 71 but is doing great.  he doesn't even have grey hair.

i think that if i didn't have my daughter to keep me going every day, i may have ended things because this pain is the worse thing i have ever experienced.  am i being a coward?  probably but i just want her back so badly.  she wanted to be a grandma so badly.  i feel like my daughter has been cheated.  No one needs to worry about me though.  She is what makes me smile and get through

thank you
Report this post