Bereaved family and friends

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

Can’t move forward

Posted by


So it’s been 6 months since loosing Mum to Bowel Cancer and I still think about her and the last week spent with her.  It was really traumatic and I think about it every day ,  all the time in fact.  I’m still struggling with guilt ,  I should have done more ,  but having a 3 year old to deal with made it hard to be with her all of the time.  I was able to move in with her ,  for her last week though and I didn’t leave her side for more than a few minutes.  

Her ashes are waiting to be interned but we can’t do this until her house is sold and we have the funds,  it’s all taking a really long time and I can’t seem to move forward.  I’m still stuck in what seems like the early stages of grief.  I can’t celebrate her life as I still feel so shocked and overwhelmed by what happened to her in her last week.

i don’t really know if I’m stuck in the same place and should be moving forward and if it’s a the ashes and house preventing it,  or if I’m just dealing with her loss very slowly and is this normal?

Posted by

Hi Faye

Welcome to the community.  I'm sorry to hear about the loss of your mum.

What you are experiencing is perfectly normal - we all grieve in our own way and at our own pace.  Having your mum's ashes and not selling the house will be a part of this but you recognise that this is the case and so this will help you to move forward after these are resolved.  Did your mum have a favourite place - maybe you could scatter the ashes there (you may need permission for this).  Have you got a really close friend who you can talk to?  A true friend will not mind if you call at 2:00 am, a true friend will give you a silent hug if that is all you need, a true friend will not mind if you are tearful.  Always let your emotions out is the main part of grieving - even in front of your 3 year old because bottling up your feelings will only make them a lot worse.

You can take great comfort from being with your mum so much during her final week - something she would have appreciated more than what she could say.  We all blame ourselves and others for our loss thinking that more could have been done - this is a normal part of the grieving process.  Your own brain will know what is best for you and will let you grieve at the pace it feels is right.  Why not visit your mum's favourite spot on your own, sit and quietly talk to her - watch and listen for a sign she is near (you will know if this happens).  Your mum will always be around you and will try to guide and support you as best she can.

Please contact the support line free on 0808 808 0000 which is open daily 8 am – 8 pm for a free confidential chat.  You can use this link your area to find support near where you live.  This could be 1-2-1 or group and is also free and confidential.  Also, post as much as you want whenever you want here and someone will always respond to you.

There is some useful information on coping with grief and information on the symptoms of grief - this includes feelings of guilt.

This link allows you to download the Macmillan book Coping with Bereavement which is full of useful information and has support contact details at the back.  This booklet about bereavement is free and can be downloaded as PDF or as an ebook.

This link takes you to a leaflet called In Memory which is very useful.

Lastly, here are some words which I hope will bring you some comfort -

Death is nothing at all.

I have only slipped away into the next room.

I am I and you are you.

Whatever we were to each other, that we still are.

Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way you always used.

Put no difference into your tone, wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together.

Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.

Let my name be ever the household word that it always was, let it be spoken without effect, without the shadow of a ghost in it.

Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was; there is unbroken continuity.

Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?

I am waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around

the corner .......

All is well.

Hope this helps and sending you a big hug.


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