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Bereaved family and friends

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

Lost and dont know what to do

Posted by

I cant believe I'm writing this but I dont know what to do or where to go. My beautiful mum died this morning after us only knowing she has lung cancer for 10 days. She had a heart attack in 2013 which resulted in a quad bipas and unfortunately whilst under she had a stroke causing her to loose the use of her left side but she didnt let that stop her. 2 weeks ago she had alot of swelling around her stomach which the GP put down it being water and increased her water tablets. A few days later she had a fall and was taking to hospital where she was told she had pneumonia. During tests they discovered that she had lung cancer which has spread to her liver and she had months to live. She was meant to be coming home  yesterday and to be cared for at home, then she took a bad turn and ended up on oxygen and my dad was called in to say goodbye and she died this morning alone which broke my heart. My whole world has been turned upside down in 10 days and I dont know how to handle it. My mum was a incredible woman and my best friend. She had waited so long to be a grandmother and i gave her her first granddaughter last year and she was so happy and has been the most amazing grandmother and now she wont be here to see her grow up and that makes me so angry. I'm sorry to write on here, I dont really know what to do, I just feel so broken and alone. I just want my mum back, she was 66, it wasnt her time. 

Posted by

Hi Mellymay

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

Your mum will always be around you and will try to guide and support you and your daughter as best she can.  She knew you were hurting and helped you to write your post.  You and your dad need to take care of each other as well as your daughter.  Even though you weren't there when she passed she would know how much you all loved her and she didn't want you to see her passing to save you from even greater pain.  Talk to your mum whenever you want - even silly things like when you come in from shopping briefly mention what the weather is doing.  Maybe you could visit one of her favourite places alone, talk to her and quietly await any response such as a gentle breath of air on a still day - you will know if she is near as you will feel the comfort she will bring.  You could also try writing a memory book which helps to get your emotions out - you can include stories from your childhood, stories your mum told you of her childhood, pictures, stories from relatives and any of your mums friends.  This will also be good for your daughter when she grows up.  Remember that we all grieve at our own pace and in our own way and there is no right time or right way - the main thing is not to bottle up your emotions too much.  Even when out shopping, nip to the toilet and have a quiet cry if you need to or leave the shop and find somewhere quiet where you can.   You will learn to recognise the signs of your grief and will learn how to cope with it  - your own mind will guide through this knowing what, when and how it is best for you to grieve.

If you need to talk to someone, 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 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.

Posted by

I lost my mother at age 63 so I can definitely understand some of what you are feeling. The big difference though was that my mother knew she had a terminal disease for two and a half years before her death, not just 10 days. I would expect this suddenness of her loss will take some extra grieving time to process. I know in hindsight, I spent the first several weeks after my mother's death in a sort of shock and grief. Gradually I started changing things so that I lived to honor her and her memory. I have taken up a number of her causes that meant a lot to her and I make sure I write down memories that come to me in a book that I plan to give to my kids when they are older so that they can someday know and appreciate the woman who would have been one of the best grandmothers out there. Eventually the pain subsides but thus far over 18 months later, there is still a hole in my heart and I don't expect that will ever go away.