Another Loss Brings Grief to the Surface

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Another Loss Brings Grief to the Surface

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(Editor's Note: We welcome Amy, who cared for her parents, to our blogging team today. You can connect with her on her profile page: @amadge.)

IMG_7882On July 7, 2015, I received word that a friend of mine passed away. She was only 61 years old. She was someone I looked up to and admired in my twenties into my thirties. Patricia was the picture of health, she took care of herself, ate right and exercised and was just one of those people you could not help but be drawn too. She helped me through some of the hardest times of my life. She and her husband moved in the summer of 2005. I was heart broken but happy that she and Michael were off to start a new and exciting life chapter. Their boys were grown and off on their own, and it was now Patricia and Michael's time.

They moved in June of 2005. My brother passed in the fall of 2005 and my mom in 2009, though she was far away she still was there for me. Dad passed in 2012 and not long after that I sold my family home and moved to Maine. Sadly Patricia and I lost touch. Yes, there were the birthday and holiday cards, but time just seemed to pass on too quickly.

While going through some old photos I came across some of me, Patricia and Michael. Something inside of me (I believe it was Patricia) said, Pick up the phone and call them. I called and Michael answered. When I asked him how he was, he replied, "Not too well" and when I asked he told me Patricia had died. I went numb, I could not believe it. I had to have Michael repeat it again. No, not Patricia. She was still young and healthy. Can't be true. I can honestly say I don't remember much of our conversation after that. I hung up the phone and just sat there at my desk for what seemed like forever.

Once the reality of what happened set in, the grief wave hit. The feeling of hopelessness, sadness and disbelief came flooding back. I started thinking of my parents and how I cared for them and seeing them pass, my brother and his sudden passing and how I did not get to say goodbye to him. I felt like I did the day they passed. I cried and cried and did not know what to do with myself. Why did my heart feel like it was going to break all over again? That empty feeling was hitting me like a truck!

God, I prayed, not again. It feels like with every loss of a friend or loved one, these feelings surface. For me, knowing I need to " let them out" is my release. Knowing that it's okay to cry and still have bad days is okay.

We never get over the loss of a loved one. Learning to accept it and know that some days will be easier than others for me is the key. One thing that really gets to me is when someone says to me when I am having a bad day is "Oh you still have bad days?" Of course I do. Do I sit in a corner rocking back and forth? NO, but I will never stop loving or miss my loved ones. Still to this day when something good happens or for what ever reason I still want to pick up the phone and call my mom. In my mind I hear her voice and think of what her answer will be. I think of the sarcastic wit my dad and brother had and still get a chuckle of how they would react to certain situations if they were here today. That is what pulls me out of the sadness.

The memories of my loved ones. That is some thing death can't take away.

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Denise

Hi Amy--I am so glad you are blogging! And, you're right--our heart can only withstand so much without just breaking, at least until we can dry our tears. Your friend sounds like a true treasure. It's hard to keep moving forward, when our heart feels so heavy from missing those we love. But we do. Please continue to keep us posted as you take gentle steps forward.

Jean

I love this quote by a woman who experience so many losses and totally agree with it \n\n“It has been said, 'time heals all wounds.' I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone.” - - Rose Kennedy

anita0419

Hi Amy,\n\nI can really relate to what you are going through. I was my mother's caregiver for over 5 years. She had Lewy Body dementia. I lost her on Aug. 6, 2015. I miss her so much and it hurts so bad when I tell myself she is gone. I can relate to seeing something and wanting to tell her about it. I am doing that a lot. I have to remind myself that she is gone and I can't tell her anymore. My heart feels like she is still here but my head tells me no she isn't. I came on this site to get the support of people like myself who were caregivers and now feel lost or numb. Maybe we all can help each other through this rough journey.\n\nAnita

Sb

Hi Amy, I'm sorry for all of that you've been though. What a nice picture of you and Patricia! You both look so happy. If they haven't already, I hope the memories will soon come of times that will make you laugh out loud. I love when that happens. In the meantime, I'm all about the cleansing cry! I also lost multiple loved ones in my family within a few years of each other and you're right, it's funny how we can still hear their voices, wit and likely commentary on this or that. I'm glad for that and for finding this wonderful site too!

Goldie

Dear Amy, I am so sorry for your loss. Sometimes it seems these losses come in like ocean waves and just as you get your head above water and think you can ride it out, another one hits. Times like this are so challenging. You had a difficult, but beautiful experience with your mom. I'm glad of that! \nMy mother-in-law and her two brothers (her only siblings) died within 11 weeks of each other. That year, we lost a number of family members and friends - and one of my former kindergarten students who was brutally murdered. Not too long after this wave, I had to go in for surgery. This prompted a couple of my friends to tell me their stories... after I had come through okay. I think they were both very relieved and, almost without wanting to, their stories came out. Both had more losses in their lives than is possible to imagine. To say I had a crisis in faith is a gross understatement. I'm still working on it. \nThanks for joining us here! I just found your facebook page and \"liked\" it.