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.