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Is this Normal?

meganucci's picture
Posts: 11
Joined: Feb 2004

My mom passed away a month and two days ago. She was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in Dec. 2002, and fought a good battle up until the end. My family and I were lucky to be with her at home when she took her last breath. It's so weird though because I know she's gone, but it's like I'm waiting for her to come back or something. I don't feel like I'm taking my mother's death as hard as everyone else is. I miss my mom so much I try not to think about her too much. I wouldn't be able to go to school or take care of my son if I did. I just wanted to know if it was normal to feel this way. My mom and I were very close before she was diagnosed, but after surgery and chemo, she wasn't the same. I felt like I had already lost part of my mom when she was sick. She loved to cook for our family, and when she was sick, she would sit and watch the Food Network for hours asking me "Doesn't that look good?" She hadn't been able to eat for almost 2 years. I don't know, it's hard to watch a person you love so deeply die a slow and painful death. My dad and I took care of my mom everyday and every night right up until the end. I just don't know why it's taking me so long to break down because I know eventually it will happen. My dad already went through it.

Posts: 19
Joined: May 2004

I think that you are doing great and dont worry about how you are dealing with this too much. Everybody is different and you may have already dealt with some of your grief while your mum was ill. It is obvious that you were very close and even though she is physically gone you must feel that she is still with you which is a good thing. It has only been a month or so and you have probably been so busy organising things and catching up in general that you haven't really had time to stop and think too much. I haven't lost anyone to cancer but my advice would be to either just go on as you are or if you are worried about having a breakdown at a later stage - maybe go and see a counsellor and discuss how you feel. Your mum was so blessed to have such a great family to take care of her.

meganucci's picture
Posts: 11
Joined: Feb 2004

Thanks for the response RebeccaJane. I'm doing much better now. I'm going to school to become a Medical Assistant and then it's off to Nursing school. I feel like I'm doing what my mom would have wanted me to do. That is to go to school, get an education and take care of my family. Even though I miss her a lot, and she isn't here on earth, I know she will never be forgotten, I will make sure of it.

jsabol's picture
Posts: 1156
Joined: Dec 2003

Hi, Sorry to not respond earlier; I haven't been to this board in a while. It sounds like you are feeling a bit better as time goes on, which is what happens after we lose someone close.
I work in dementia care, and I know that many families feel they have said a "long goodbye", and when death takes their loved one, it's no longer the person they really knew, but still loved.
It's great to hear that you are getting on with your life and education, and, as a nurse also, I thing your plans are great. Been a nurse for over 30 years, and still love most parts of it!
Take care, Judy

Posts: 41
Joined: Dec 2004

Hello meganucci,

I experienced the same thing that you did when your Mom died. My Mom and I were and will always be, very close because we were and are bonded by our hearts. We were both Mother and Daughter, and the best of friends.

When the Hospice lady told us that it would be 3 days at the most before Mom would be gone, I actually smiled while the other family members looked sad or cried. I knew that is what Mom wanted and had wanted for a very long time, so when I smiled, I was happy that Mom's wish was going to be granted. I didn't shed a tear after Mom died, while the other family members had trouble dealing with her death. Mom and I had discussed her dying many times, and she said "Honey, we know that it is going to happen eventually, so when it does don't be sad. You know that is what I want so very much." When she was dying, Mom looked me straight in the eyes and said "Honey, there are such things as Guardian Angels and I am going to be YOUR Guardian Angel". It sounds like that you and your Mom had a very special bond also, so I am sure that you too have a very special Guardian Angel Your Mom. Mom had prepared me for her death, even though she told me that "she didn't want to leave me". She is in my heart and in my mind always. No,don't consider your reaction abnormal at all. I understand it very well, because I also reacted in the same way. We are our Mother's daughters and we will always be just that, and it is sealed with love.


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