Bereaved family and friends

For anyone who has lost a family member or friend to cancer to share their feelings and support one another.

Delayed Reaction

Posted by

This is the first time that I have posted.

I think that it has just hit me that my dad has actually died. He died 16 April this year.

I had had Lung Cancer which was diagnosed September 2010, it was caught very early by accident when he went for a pre-op for back surgery.

He got one course of Chemo and one course of Radiotherapy and then got put on Traceva.  He did really well for 2 1/2 years, he as more bother by his back as he never did get his surgery than the lung cancer.

One of the side affects of his Traceva was that he got spots/blisters.  One of the spots on his big toe abscessed which he hid for ages before mum saw it and called the doctors.  The doctor sent district nurses who dressed it for about 2/3 weeks before deciding that a doctor needed to see it.  The doctor came out on the Wednesday morning and he was in hospital by that dinnertime.  He was moved wards a few times but on the Monday they operated to amputate his toe.  The surgery went well even although they had to do it under local anaesthetic. 

On the Wednesday they arranged for an ambulance to take him home on the Friday.  That evening when mum was visiting him she popped down to the shop to get him something and when she came back up there was a curtain around dads bed and there was lots of activity.  When mum went in the nurse said that he had just tried to give them a fright as his blood pressure had dropped but it was ok as it was coming back up now, mum looked at the machine and it said 60 over 40.  He was given fluids and a blood transfusion and moved from the 6 bay ward to a single room across from the nurses station.

Everything calmed down and they rearranged the ambulance for the following Wednesday.  Mum went in to see him as usual on the Tuesday afternoon and he gave her stuff to take home with her and said my brother would get the rest when he went up that night. 

At dinner time mum and my brother were rearranging the bedroom as dad had been given a zimmer and there wouldn't be enough room at the side of the bed for it when they got a call from the hospital to ask how quickly they could get there as dad had become very poorly, we now know that he had already gone by that point.

I live about and hour or so away and was at work.  My husband had gone to the football with his dad leaving his mum at our house where he found a missed call on his mobile, so he was the one that had to get the news.  He then had to come and get me from my work, where I had to be told in the reception area, I work in a large call centre. 

I like I went into automatic mode as I knew that I would have to deal with my daughters. As soon as I walked in the door I had to break the news to my two young girls.  Then had to get them packed up and away with the inlaws and head through to my mum.  We then spent the week arranging the funeral and telling people, while I was running back and forward seeing my girls as well.

After the funeral it was back to work and arranging stuff for end of school term and going on holiday.  The girls have now gone to the caravan with my mum for a bit leaving me at home on my own during the day. 

I think it is all just hitting me now as I find that I am crying at the least little thing and seem to keep reliving my husband breaking the news to me each night going into work. We always knew that dad was to go but really didn't expect him to the way or at the time he did.  I have been saying I know it is the best thing for him as he was only ever going to start suffering more and more and deep inside I know this is true but still don't like it.

Sorry for wittering on.

Posted by

Hi Suse123,

I can tell that you are re-living what happened every spare moment you have- I do the same. You will be sat quietly and your brain starts wizzing around- re-lving certain parts of what has happened to you.

I lost my Mum back in May and I still don't think it has hit me that she is actually gone- we too had quite a traumatic time and she went down hill fast too. I think the strange thing is when you look back a couple of months previous where you can remember them walking around going about their daily business. Madness.

You sound like a woman in full throttle and I recon the time to yourself is really important for you now. My sister has been signed off for 2 weeks as her stress has caused medicle issues. She has a little boy of 3 years old and he loved is Nanny to bits. It's hard for me to look at him and think that he probably will never remember my Mum now- so god knows what its like for my sister. How old are your girls?

I know exactly what you mean about the your last comment. You know it will happen but never any time soon. It is a shock no matter when it happens or how much you expect it. Mum went very quickly and didn't suffer long but that still doesn't mean I don't long for her to have been with us an extra day/ hours/ minutes. It's quite normal to feel that I think.  

The old saying- time is a healer. I don't fully believe it. What I do believe is that we learn to cope and deal with what has happened and what is happening in the now. You need this time to think about your Dad and all the crap that happened. I find doing exercise at the same time is really helpfull. All that anger and emotion can be vented through running/ cycling...or whatever you enjoy. When you want to relax then you can tell your brain to shut up and think about all the good times!

I believe your Dad is in a good place now, as is my Mum.

Speak soon and keep your chin up chick,  

Clare *Hugs*

Posted by

Hi Clare,

Thank you for replying.

I think that you were right in that I have been running around after everyone and as soon as I got some down time it eventually hit.  Think I have also had to keep plastering the face on for everyone and read the script of best for him so many times that as soon as i didn't it has hit hard.

My girls are 3 and 7.  My oldest seems to have taken it in her stride and rationalised it although I am sure that there may come a time it will really hit her.  The little one still hasn't really got it, she idolised my dad and tended to speak with him most days on the phone so at least 4/5 times a day she will ask where grandad is.  We just need to say to her where is grandad then and she will tell you he is with the stars but it is as if she is just saying it rather than believing it.

Think I was ;having a really bad day yesterday as it is the longest I have been left on my own since it happened, Hubby is a work each day and I leave for work before he gets in at the moment and with the girls being away.

Big hugs to you as well

Posted by

Hi Suse,

My little nephew saw a lady with a hat on like my Mums the other day and went running up to her, bless him. He was very upset when he had to be dragged away from her. He's only 3 like you little one and similarly he thinks Nanny has gone up to the stars on a rocket. Does break your heart though when things like that happen.

I was 8 when I lost my Nan. We were all very close to her and she was like a second mother really. I did know what was happening at the time, you know about the 'death' thing and remember not being too affected by it at the time. Like your little one. When I was a teenager though I realised how much I missed her and would have a blub on my own some nights. Perhaps your girl will do the same...who knows.

Must be hard not having your hubby around before work. It really helps when you have been alone for a while just to have a hug and chat. I am always a bit anti-social otherwise, almost like I don't have the effort to make conversation. Just have to switch the button on in my head though and get on.

Hope you are feeling a bit better about things,

Clare :)