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don't know how to deal...

Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2007

It all started 4 years ago march my moms fight for survival. I am on here now because I don't know how to deal. The past few months have been the worst. My mom crys to me all of the time telling me how much pain she is in and how she has no energy to do anything. She talks to my brother about how when she dies we will forget about her. I used to tell her she has to be strong and we will find a cure and she would be fine. Now I am not so sure. We have tried so many different treatments you lose hope after awhile. I live 3 hrs away from home, I'll tell you what everytime I go home I get worked up I hate it once I am there its ok depressing half of the time but good to be home. When I leave I put everything out of my mind I don't deal with what is actually going on. Out of sight out of mind they say. I guess I thought it would be good to talk to other people that have or are going through the same thing. I talk to my friends they listen and are there for me but at the same time they don't have a clue. Its so heart breaking to see your mother break over and over again. Sometimes I cry sometimes I drink and other times most times I just become numb! What do you do to deal. I am lost...

KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

First of all, would your mom consider talking to a counselor? And if she is in pain, she needs to talk to her doctor....there are MANY drugs that can help. She should NOT be a pain hero...

My mantra with my mom and daughter is "This is happening AROUND me, not TO me". I can be concerned, but not so involved that I myself get lost. I love my mom, but it is not healthy for me to stress out over her problems.

I have a post in the Expressions Gallery:

Caregiver's Bill of Rights:
I have the right to take care of myself. This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the capability of taking better care of my loved one.

I have the right to seek help from others even though my loved one may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.

I have the right to get angry, be depressed, and express other difficult feelings occasionally.

I have the right to reject any attempts by my loved one (either conscious or unconscious) to manipulate me through guilt and/or depression.

I have the right to take pride in what I am accomplishing and to applaud the courage it has sometimes taken to meet the needs of my loved one.

I have the right to receive consideration, affection, forgiveness, and acceptance from my loved one for what I do, for as long as I offer these qualities in return.

Hope this helps....

Hugs, Kathi

emmaloveanna's picture
Posts: 3
Joined: Aug 2006

Hello, My name is yvonne and I am going though lung cancer with my mother, she is only 46 yrs old and I am 29. This is the hardest thing I have ever done, she is a stage 3b she has cancer in the fluid around her lungs and she has been doing chemo and then radiation on her lungs and now they found 4 tumors in her brain, so she is doing radiation to her brain. She seems ok, but little things will happen like the other night I think she had a heartatack but she just took it, she did not want the EMS to come, after a while and an oxycoten she was better. SO I kinda know what you mean, She is not gone yet but I feel like I would go crazy, I don't know how I am going to deal with it. I am not a strong person. Like you I put it out of my mind when I can, I cry alot when I let it all in, we have only been going through this for about 6months and I can't take it, how did you do it for 4 years? What cancer did she have? Maybe if we talk we can help each other. Thanks

Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2007

Thanks emmaloveanna-
Well when we first found out she had cancer she had already gone through surgey and the tumor was removed. The next step was chemo...it was a shock but the cancer was removed so the worst was over at that point. Chemo first time around was rough she lost her hair, she went crazy but she turned out ok. We all had hope and we always re-enforced that with her. Any time she was done we (the fam and her friends) were her strenght. As time went on and we found out cancers had spread things I got harder but we made it. Now is the worst its been. Ill finish later hope this helps you some..

Cindy54's picture
Posts: 454
Joined: Aug 2006

Hello. I lost my Mom on December 1. I had posted her story on the ovarian board. In 2005 Mom started having a lot of problems with her health. It turned into ovarian cancer. She battled through it, but believe me it was not easy. For either of us. I was her primary caregiver. I was on family leave. I got angry a lot. Not at her but at the disease that robs people of time that they could spend enjoying things after working a lifetime. Sometimes I would get impatient or frustrated. I would walk by Mom and just give her a kiss on the forehead. It seemed to help with the tension. Another thing that helped me was just getting in my car and doing errands. I could scream, cry, pray, whatever, and no one but God could hear me. Doing that helped the most. I spent these last years mourning so much over what she lost, that when death did come, it was not that great big shock. It was more sub-dued. My hardest times for grief have come this month and late last month. When I have settled into a routine and she is not there to share in the good things that are happening to me. I don't think any of us will ever get over losing our Moms. We just get through it. The people around me..some have been great, others are like, get over it already and get on with your life. No one understands that when you love someone and take care of them when they are ill and dying, it is a very draining time for you. You may not get to mourn at that time but once your loved one is gone all that you have kept inside during that time starts to come out. Time is a healer. Take a lot of pictures and just be with your Mom as much as you can. See if you can get her on some pain meds. Try and share a nice meal, even if it is fast food with her. My Mom used to love milkshakes from Dairy Queen. So I would get her one and she would fall asleep drinking it. Just enjoy being with her and listen to what she says. I also had a small tape recorder that I turned on when she started to tell her stories. Just listen but try to not take the complaints to your heart. She just needs to vent sometimes. If you ever need to you can email me. I wish you well and I send you a hug. Cindy

Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2007

Thanks so much Cindy and Kathy. I just got back from a weeks visit with my mom. I have now made the choice to go back to Cleveland and help my father and brother take care of her. Things are not going well, shes on so many pain meds and nothing seems to work. Death looks like it has taken over, shes all skin and bones her eyes are sunken back its so sad to see. Your right abuot driving in your car it seems to help me as well especially now since its so cold out. Before I used to go on walks with my dog to clear my mind. How don't know how you did it being your moms priamary cargiver, you must be one strong human being!
Yvonne- The carner my mom had was related to ovarian starts with a p but i can not think of the name off the top of my head. It then went to her colon now its all over her stomach. Through it all my dad was there constantly finding the next treatment. My parents went out to Germany and California different times along the way and tried natural treatments. Those seem to help but theres a very strick diet that goes along with it. You have to be strong, talk to your friends go out and enjoy yourself it will help. Be there for her and have faith that things will be ok. I had faith up until just recently I really believed that we were going to findt he cure that would save her. I still pray and hope that we do but I am not so sure as I once was. Yvonne- I hope that your mom will be ok. I am here for you if you ever need anything!

TheGiftfa03's picture
Posts: 1
Joined: Feb 2007

Like you my mother battled cancer for 4 years. My mother was 41 when she passed and I was 21. My mother was diagnosed with Stage IV Breast Cancer my freshman year of college. I kept telling myself that if my mother dies I dont know what Im going to do. My mother passed away on Jan. 29, 2006 and SOMEHOW I knew exactly what to do. I watched my mother many days in pain and there was nothing I could do. My advice to you would be to try to remain positive and just cherish as much time with your mother as possible. No one knows when their time is up so we have to make the best. Our situations seems so much alike b/c I too tried to go away to school and not deal with it, but my advice is to take one day at a time. You have to make time for yourself or you'll go crazy. Its been just a little over a year for my younger sister and I and its still very hard. Just stay as strong as you can. Keep Fighting WITH your mother. I never gave up on my mother until she took her last breath. You're in my prayers!

Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2007

THank you so much, you are right you do have to take one day at a time. I have moved back home to be with my mom and to help out as much as I can. As hard as it is to be there I know that it is the right thing to do. I do of course make time for myself though I feel quilty at times.

Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 2007

Your words definitely hit the spot... You have to stay positive and do what's best... I think it's the best idea that you made to help your father and brother care for your mother... My mother past away from Breast cancer on Oct. 23rd 2006 and taking a family leave from work and helping my father, sister, aunt and husband be the caregivers was a very tough and draining experience but in the end I was glad I got to be there for her, hold her hand, take care of her, talk to her and kiss her forehead.
I found out I was pregnant, the day we buried her and now I'm due around July 5th... Mom's birthday would have been July 8th.

Thinking of you and stay strong for your mother and family...

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