Losing my mum

I lost my mum in May and I don’t really know how I should feel.

A bit of background: my mum was diagnosed with cancer on 31st March this year. I live 250 miles from my family but i was fortunate enough to be able to pack up a few bits and basically move back home. Every appointment seemed to be bad news after bad news but me being there seemed to help mum. I won’t lie, i was terrified and woke up with the anxiety knot every single day but i never let her know that. I was able to work from home so i carried on doing that. I took time out for hospital visits. I took time out when i thought she needed me (she would never ask). 6 and a half weeks after diagnosis, she had a bad day and took a turn for the worst and we heartbreakingly lost her. I had to instruct my brother to call an ambulance. I tried to keep mum calm. I explained the situation to the responders and paramedics. As her heart rate dropped, i had to be the one to make the decision to stop trying to resuscitate her. My brother wouldn’t be able to handle that and my dad was (self admittedly) useless. Now, i know it was her time, it was kinder to go that way, i know it wasnt my fault. I know all the rational thoughts. But that lies heavy. I took care of all the official stuff. I took care of the cremation arrangements (the last i knew she wanted a direct cremation so i had to honour that, despite my own feelings). I made sure my dad and brother were adjusting to life without her. I decided on a memorial “party” and told my dad how we were doing it because i had to come back home.

Now we’ve had the memorial, it’s hit me that she’s really gone and there’s nothing more i can or need to do for her. I feel like I’d already come to terms with her death and almost made peace with it but now I’m in a weird place. I miss her enormously even though i didn’t see that much of her which makes me feel like a fraud. I’ve been signed off from work but i feel like I’m letting her down or using her death as an excuse. I normally keep on going but for the first time I feel like I haven’t been coping but I can’t explain what it is. It’s been almost 11 weeks and it feels too late to be starting to grieve. Shouldn’t I have dealt with this already? I don’t mean that I shouldn’t be upset or still grieving but shouldn’t I be further along?

I don’t even know why I’m writing this, if I’m honest. I suppose I hope that somebody else understands how I’m feeling. Only a couple of friends my own age have lost a parent. I’m not exactly young (mid 30s) but i feel too young to be dealing with this. Mum was too young to die. We’ve been robbed of so much time, both in chasing hospital appointments and the future we should have had. The memories we should have made. I’m so angry that she’s gone (never at her. I know she didn’t want to go) and angry that most people around me don’t know how it feels, but also grateful that they don’t. I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. I’m not depressed and I know that I’ll live my life because I have to for her, but I don’t want to do my life without her. How do you live without the woman who gave you life and was always there whatever you did? My dad and brother (mid 20s) turn to me for strength and guidance and because im so much like mum, but I honestly have no idea what I’m doing and the only person who could advise me is gone. Grieving sucks but I’m so grateful for my mum and everything she did and every battle she fought. She was an incredibly strong woman and I’m determined to not let her down.


Hi, sorry for the loss of your Mum. It sounds like you did everything you could to support her in her last weeks. Although all the arrangements are now complete this is the time you really start to accept the loss. Expect your emotions to be up and down for some time to come. I’m over six months along from losing my Mum and I am weighed down by sadness. I’m not weeping and unable to function but I lack motivation and appetite for life. I too know how important it is to carry on and get on with living, but grief for my Mum has changed me. I’m letting time pass so that I can continue to adapt to the tremendous absence of her from my world. Having her there, always a constant for my whole life, means it’ll take a while to adjust. I’ve come to accept it. Remember there’s no timeline to grief, it will always be there, sometimes more sharply than others. We have to learn to live with it somehow. Take your time, best wishes xx

1 Like

Thank you for taking the time to reply @Rosiepink. I’m very sorry for your loss. I never truly understood those words until now, but I mean it genuinely. It’s funny how grief changes you and your attitudes. I do feel like time will “help” but, at the same time, I don’t want it to as each day is one more without mum.

I always say that she raised me to handle anything but not how to do this without her.

I hope you can find your spark again as well, no matter how long it takes. I’m sure we both will but it’s hard to see that some days. Take care x

1 Like

Hi Krift,
It will take you ages to even try to get your head around everything that has happened. My mum passed last Dec and I am still the same as you are. All the emotions are awful and never go away. I relive everything every single day. What you are going through is normal. You have been so so brave and have done so so much. Now it is time to find ways to help yourself heal slowly. I have found this site amazing and have found wonderful friends on here who keep me going and we understand each other. Keep posting and people will respond to you and reach out when you are feeling all the emotions. Post even if you want a rant because it will help you.
You did your mum proud so hold your head up high and look after yourself now because that is what you deserve and what she would want. Remember she is with you all the time. That’s how I think anyway.
I miss my mum so much that it actually hurts to breathe at times. It’s all the process we have to go through and the healing journey that no one wants.
It is going to take us forever to adjust to life without them and for me I doubt I will ever be the same person again. I now realise I have to start living a whole new different life. And I don’t even want to. I can relate to everything you have written so you are not alone
Keep in touch and post anytime
Sending big hugs
Deborah x