Does anyone feel like you just go on too much?

We lost my Mam 9 weeks ago today. She was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (brain tumour) 7 weeks before she died. She was only 66. Unfortunately for me I am a nurse practitioner and I’ve worked in oncology for the past 19 years so I was all too aware of her trajectory. But I clung to hope when they operated, but the surgery was not as successful as they’d like. Then she was to have chemo and radiotherapy, finally some treatment that may work, and we were told she might have a year if she responds well to treatment. Unfortunately her disease progressed like a steam train and the treatment plan was cut down by half as she had deteriorated. She continued to progress through the planning stage and lost more function in her limbs. They eventually told us on the Wednesday that she wasn’t fit for treatment anymore. I was devastated, the hope of having a year torn out from us. They moved her to the local hospice on the Friday evening for a bit of respite and to get her stronger to come home. I received a call from the hospice on Saturday morning at 2.30am to say she had died. My world fell apart. She had only gone to the hospice to get a bit stronger to come home. How has she died??? What are we gonna do now??? I had to tell my sister. The hospice had tried to call my Dad but he was so asleep he didn’t hear the phone. So she had to wake him to tell him. We are all so devastated. I still get a sick feeling when I remember that phone call. And I often have strong moments of disbelief, like there’s no way that she can be dead, how can my Mam be dead?? That makes no sense to me! There’s so many things I feel I missed out on, I never knew her favourite flower, or her favourite song, and I realised that I could never take a picture with her again. But now I feel like I am censoring myself in that I don’t want to keep going on about it. People must be so bored of me! Is this a normal feeling? I also feel like the days that aren’t full of tears fill me with guilt because I don’t want to stop feeling sad because that would mean I don’t miss her as much anymore. Is this normal? I don’t know what’s normal and what isn’t. My head is a mush of thoughts all the time and I don’t know what to do with them all. Sorry long message, just need some help.


You’ve had a traumatic 16 weeks so take it easy on yourself, at least allow 16 weeks after her passing to recover a little!
Sometimes we do other people’s thinking for them and it’s not healthy, she’s your mom, talk about her all you like, cry as little or as much as you feel because we all grieve differently. Try not to get caught up in the idea of tears equating to the amount you love someone. Grief is a process, to which guilt sometimes plays a huge role.

Hi Martinmcc
Im so sad to read about your mum, i can totally understand how devastated you must be. I lost my mum 3 months ago, it was sudden and unexpected, she died at home on her own. The post mortem said it was pneumonia but i struggle to get my head round that as she wasnt even poorly. Im a paramedic so like you have some medical knowledge which doesnt actually help at all, just makes it worse i feel. I help people every day but didnt get the chance to help her. Its traumatic and shocking and all i do is take each day one as it comes. I talk about her all the time and its tough shit if people dont want to hear it because i need to do it, and my family cared so much too so im sure they dont mind me talking about her. Im finding things are starting to get easier, i had terrible anxiety for the first 8 weeks. Its just so many triggers and so many times of thinking i will just ring mum or pop and see her. Or you have a question to ask and realise you will never get the answer. Its so sad. With regards to what is normal, i dont think there is a normal. If i have a good day i dont feel guilty because i know my mum would not want me to be suffering every day, she would be glad. Im sure you are also aware working in oncology that they say a lot of people choose to die on their own to alleviate the suffering of their loved ones. I dont know if thats true but maybe it helps to think of that as a different spin on things?

I am so sorry, that is devastating and you will be in a storm of emotions. You have had so much stress for the last 16 weeks you will be exhausted and unsure of anything. I am 6 weeks today and not sure of anything, just a few hours at a time, and basic living right now to survive.
Please don’t blame yourself, I have spent weeks at it, and with these kinds of sudden losses it’s even worse. For me it was sudden cardiac arrest for my mum in her room. She had alzheimers and though independent, was now starting to feel it’s grips . So I think she made a pact with the universe and often said she did not want to live like some of the people in the care home. She had had cancer, her body was exhausted and now her brain diseased too.
It’s not fair, it’s a daily shout to the universe that I have. I thought I had more time for talks, more time for photos, to cook for her.
Guilt it all we have, people don’t understand that. Guilt it love, we will not stop remembering them. I talk about her alot, and have my quiet time too.
Whatever helps you get through.
I have also jiuned Healing After The Loss of your Mother on facebook, a great group.

I was just looking for the group on facebook, is it the one that is linked to a book?

yes but you don’t have to have read it necessarily, I am finding it very supportive and have added the book to my list

Thank you, i have downloaded the book and joined the group

Great I will see you there

Thanks for all the advice. You are all so kind. I have joined that group too and I write this reply with tears streaming down my face after reading the posts. They all resonate so deeply. What I hate the most is the loneliness of this journey, and what I would have done was talk to my Mam about it and she’s not there now. That stings so much! I can’t really talk to family about it, my sister is in a very different place, she’s very angry. Im sure it’ll get better coz everyone says it does, but right now, I just feel a bit lost.

It’s a lovely supportive space and I have found very helpful and reassuring. You will find my posts there under Sophie

The irony like you say is when things are crap you want to talk to your mum…

Exactly, she was who I would call, within reason, as due to Alzheimers I never wanted to burden her but a general chat always helped