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AGiles
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:33 pm

Dealing With The Loss

Postby AGiles » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:48 pm

Decided I needed to pluck up the courage to talk to people who have been in my position. I lost my dad 3 years this January and I’ve accepted I need to open up and be honest with my feelings. Abit about my story because getting this off my chest will help me recover. I’m 27 lost my dad a few months after my son was born. My son was born deaf and I split with his mother when he was one. My son will be 3 in October and I spent all last year fighting for him in the courts to make sure I carried on having him 4 nights a week which I won. I’ve never stopped to think about myself and how I feel till I guess the last couple months where suddenly I’ve realised I’m struggling. Little things in the day trigger me to start having watering eyes. I’m trying not to infront of customers colleagues but sometimes it’s like I can’t help it and I’ve got to switch my mind completely off. Silly things like a song or a destination or seeing someone with there dad just sets me, watching programmes with a scenario sets me .. I guess I just need to talk to people who get how hard it is not have a dad around. I know many might not relate to losing a dad an becoming a dad many wont relate to spending over a year fighting through the courts for their son but I think for myself I just need to be open an talk to people who understand slightly and see what I can learn. Every day is a lesson and I guess I need to learn more .. look forward to talking :)

KeithKerry
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:44 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby KeithKerry » Sat Sep 29, 2018 2:49 pm

Well, I also lost my Dad to cancer in a time that is to me quite recently (Almost 3 years ago now but it is still hard to not have him around). I'm a little bit more that twice your age, but I was not not much older than you are now when I lost my Mum to lung cancer. She has been gone for almost 20 years, but although the pain has faded, it never completely disappears. I think that's a good thing, because it means I still remember her, as I do my Dad.

Lots of things remind me of both of them, and I still have moments of great sadness where I miss both of them terribly. Sometimes a memory of something we did together, sometimes a song on the radio, sometimes a photo that I find when I'm rummaging around in a cupboard. I spent a lot time with my Dad in particular. Fishing and camping, watching football matches all over the country. I still fish in the same places and I still watch football. But I do all of those things less than I did because part of those activities was about us doing things together.

I can promise you that it does get less difficult and that the moments of sadness get balanced out by memories of good times. Try to remember that sadness is part of remembering our loved ones. Without that sadness we might perhaps not have the balancing happy memories and quite possibly forget that those loved ones were ever with us at one point in our lives.

AGiles
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:33 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby AGiles » Sun Sep 30, 2018 1:02 am

Sorry to hear of both of your losses .. i know death is certain but how do you even deal with it? I didn’t expect to lose my dad and I just go round in circles some days living on what ifs .. I’m so positive and I have to stay strong for everyone but how long can you stay strong? Did you grief straight away? Did you have time off to cope? I don’t think I will ever get over things but maybe I need to learn somehow to cope more because right now I’m not .. if I never had my son I would of joined my dad and that’s scary for me to say because it so easily would of happened. How have you learned to cope?!

KeithKerry
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:44 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby KeithKerry » Sun Sep 30, 2018 1:23 pm

Similar to you, I did not expect to lose my Mum. She was only in her 50's and was generally a well person. She went through a spell of chest infections during the winter, the last of which saw her hospitalised for intravenous antibiotics and some planned rehab as she had become painfully thin in a very short space of time. I saw her on Boxing day with the rest of the family, she seemed chirpy enough but grouchy about being in hospital over Christmas. Overnight she deteriorated so rapidly that she was moved to ICU and she died on 7th January. In between those dates we discovered that she had advanced small cell lung cancer so there was nothing to be done to prolong her life because she was so far gone and so weak.

That happened so quickly, and like you I wasn't much more than a young man just reaching proper adulthood. I didn't have time to grieve at first as I was too busy letting family members know, sorting out funerals and power of attorney and everything else that comes with sudden unexpected death. But it did come and I had to take a fair amount of time away from work whilst I worked my way through it all. I think the key word is 'through'. There is no getting round it, under it, or over it. You have to go through it and you have to do so at your own pace and in your own way.

With my Dad, he faded away over a number of weeks. He was 76 and had been battling cancer for about 18 months. He got me to round up the family and get them over to the Berkshire hospital that he was in, ironically just before Christmas. We had a good day but he was not himself at all. He did not want to stray far from his bed. He did not want to eat, he did not want a cup of tea. For a man that seemed to live on tea and nothing else for as long as I could recall, that was not like him. When it was home time we all said our goodbyes, but as we left he called me back and said goodbye in a different way. He took both of my hands in his and told me he loved me. He hadn't said that to me since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I knew then that he had enough of the struggle. He died a few days later.

With my Dad I think I started grieving for him before he died. I found the grief a lot easier to process than I did with my Mum. I think it was because I had time to prepare for it, plus I was a lot older and he had at least had a happy life that lasted 76 years. Grief seems to take many forms.

With regard to joining our loved ones to escape the pain, don't feel bad about having those thoughts. I think it's a natural response to what to us is the worst possible thing that we will experience in our lives. A little while after we discovered that our eldest Daughter had inoperable stage 4 pancreatic cancer, I had similar thoughts about how I would not have to experience the pain of losing one of my children if something happened to me first. Not by my own hand, but through critical illness or by accident.

But I understood after a while that those are selfish thoughts. I have a Wife and another Daughter that need me. I have siblings that need me to still be around to share in their lives too. Most of all I have a sick Daughter that needs me to be as strong as she is being. After 6 months she's still here and the visible cancer has almost gone from her body. We know it's only a temporary reprieve, but she needs me more than ever now, as do the rest of the family that are experiencing this with me.

In your case you have a Son that needs you and will do so for many years to come. I would imagine that you also have other close family that want you to share their lives with them too. I promise you it does get easier as time passes. You will always experience some sad times when birthdays and other special days come around. But that means that we haven't forgotten them. How incredibly sad would it be if we had loved ones and then completely forgot that they were ever part of our lives?

Kerry
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2018 7:22 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby Kerry » Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:03 pm

I can relate to much of what you say. I lost my dad in August this year to PC and although his death was expected it hit me like a ton of bricks.

My dad was diagnosed in the middle of May and I felt as though I started grieving for him before he passed away. When he passed away I felt relieved and I often felt guilty about that however I now believe this is perfectly natural and you should not feel guilty if this is the case.

I have days where I long to speak to him and have even wished he was in the hospice so I could visit for one more time. I know this is selfish of me and irrational.

I have no regrets or feel there was anything I wish I had told my dad while he was alive. My dad knew I loved him and we grew even closer in his final weeks. Even though I have no regrets I am still finding his death hard to accept. If I have any advice for you I’d say don’t bottle it up. Talk to someone close and explain how you feel. Cry when you need to cry. Accept that your feelings are perfectly normal and there is no time limit to grief. Everyone is different and deals with it in their own way. Understand that some days will be easier than others. Find comfort in something - mine is spiritual - not religion but spiritual healing and signs from him (like feathers or robins or just a feeling sometimes). My husband thinks I’m mad but it’s my way of dealing with it.

Ive been told by lots of friends that the pain will never truly go but it will gradually become easier to bear. I hope you find that soon.

AGiles
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:33 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby AGiles » Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:08 pm

How do you do stay strong? I’ve read your reply a couple times and it’s just crazy .. does this come with experience? I couldn’t imagine losing my son, or even going through what you are. Inspirational reading this and I guess I just have to man up abit more. I just find some days I can’t talk about anything otherwise it will set me .. did you experience this with your parents? I know it becomes easier but did you go through this stage where like everything reminds you of them? My job an my life doesn’t give me a lot of time to think too much but when I do my mind just wonders so much .. everything is what if this what if that .. what if i said this what if I did that .. did you experience this? How do you cope? I became a dad an a few months later I lost mine and I’m just constantly thinking i wish my dad was with me, I am spiritual and I do believe in certain things so I know he’s watching but like sometimes I just need to hear that voice again .. do you ever still wonder about life and how things could of been different? Sometimes I worry I’m different in a bad way because of the thoughts an feelings I have .. I’d never leave my son I thought hard enough to have him in my life but sometimes I just wish we could all be together. I appreciate you sharing your story I’ve got even more respect for you and what your doing

AGiles
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:33 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby AGiles » Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:14 pm

Kerry,

Thanks i think the difference being is where you don’t have regrets, I have so many, I clashed with my dad a lot, he was very old school, funny enough everything I despised as a child I’ve installed in my son, and although my mum say dad knows everything you did for him an he loved you that just doesn’t cut it for me. Like I will sit up till 2 3 in the morning just mind wondering wishing what I could of done different and I know I can’t change anything it’s just so tought to really realise fuck I won’t ever see him again. I can’t be weak for my son my mum my sister I’ve had to step up so I’ve had to bottle things up etc but I just guess now it’s slowly hitting me I don’t know why now but just these last few months it’s really taken it’s toll on me. I run every day to help me with the mental side of things and I did London half marathon this year for pancreatic cancer and I finished it with my son which was so amazing and such a good feeling but it was so bitter sweet :( thanks for your advice though I shall try to be honest with my thoughts an feelings

Kerry
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2018 7:22 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby Kerry » Mon Oct 01, 2018 8:08 pm

Showing your feelings is not being weak. Sometimes it does our kids good to see we are only human too.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. Be honest with your family and you may be surprised at how they react and how supportive they can be.

KeithKerry
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:44 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby KeithKerry » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:05 pm

AGiles wrote:
> How do you do stay strong? I’ve read your reply a couple times and it’s
> just crazy .. does this come with experience?

I think the best and most honest way to answer the first part of your question is that I don't stay strong.

I cry sometimes. I cry tears for my Mum on certain days because she did not see her Grandchildren grow up into adults. I cry because she never met her Great Grandchildren and they never got to know an incredibly kind and gentle person that would have enriched their lives.

I cry for my Dad because he won't see his Great Grandchildren become adults. I cry tears because of the guilt I feel for being glad that I did not have to tell him his first born Grandchild, the apple of his eye,was not going to enjoy anything like a full lifespan.

I cry because I am already grieving for my Daughter, even though she is still here and fighting the cancer with everything she has got. I cry because I am sometimes not as strong about that as she is being.

But, I understand that I do those things because I need to. That it is perfectly OK and normal to do so. You will get through your grief I promise. As for does it come with experience? I'm not sure about that. I suppose it might. But I'm not convinced that it comes with the experience connected to being older. I think it more comes from the experience of eventually realising that grieving is normal and healthy behaviour. That our bodies and our minds need us to work through it for our future well being and that of our loved ones.

Veema
Posts: 503
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2015 5:35 pm

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby Veema » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:11 am

In September 2016, my husband died from pancreatic cancer (that's why I'm here), that was really tough because I'd lost my future, but my main upset was that my daughter, Phoebe, would grow up without her Daddy. 10 months later, my own Dad died of liver cancer. It was very quick, just 6 weeks from diagnosis to death and I can honestly say it has been far, far worse to deal with than the death of my husband. I loved my husband so much and miss him every day, but a parent has always been there and although you know they won't be around for ever, you never really imagine a time that they won't be...until they aren't. My Dad was the person I looked up to, who I went to for support, who I wanted to be proud of me. He was the one that helped me lift Nige out of the bath on the day he died, and picked me up in the aftermath and he would have done anything for me at any time of day or night. I miss him moaning at me for doing something he didn't quite approve of. I miss arguing with him. I miss being able to ring him when I need something doing around the house. I miss just talking to him. BUT...I have millions of super memories, which when I'm feeling down, I can recall and they make me smile. I know I was lucky to have him as long as I did, he was 72 when he died. I just wish Phoebe could have had the same.

I think you've just got to go with your feelings. I know it's not ideal to be welling up in front of customers, but I'm sure your colleagues won't mind. You also need to realise that it's something that you will never, ever get over...you just need to learn how to live with it.

Vx

Dandygal76
Posts: 761
Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2016 9:49 am

Re: Dealing With The Loss

Postby Dandygal76 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:28 am

Oh Veema.. I still go to pick up the phone to my dad now. Hey Mr AGiles.. read my thread on my fight for my dad. People will be surprised (veema et al included) that me and my dad never got on and he did not get my rebellious streak. But, as you love your own son, so did your dad love you. We just never quite got it until firstly, we are a parent ourselves... then we think we got it and appreciate all they did. But no. then they die and really make us realise. x