Struggling to come to term with my mom’s death

How am I supposed to function at work? It feels like no one cares. My mom passed away at the end of August and it was so traumatic and unexpected. She was failed by healthcare professionals. My head is all over the place. I have no support from HR or my line manager at work. I am sat just staring at my computer screen.

I work in a high school so everyone is absorbed in their on work. But I just feel so alone and isolated. I miss my mom more than I can express, I am broken inside. I am compiling a complaint about her care.

She was in hospital when she died, we found out 2 hours before that she had metastatic ovarian cancer. We had no time to process this at all and it was for me the most horrific experience I have ever had to face. I am struggling to come to terms with is. My mom was my everything.

I don’t want to be at work, but if I am not here no one will do my job. I feel the weight of grief and work and dealing with home life.

Hi @Becca_d,

I’m sorry to hear about your mom.

I’ve read back through your posts, and it sounds like there is so much going on in your life - it’s completely okay to feel overwhelmed by all these things. You are dealing with a lot and it’s okay that sometimes it might feel like too much.

Your mom died very quickly, then you had the practical arrangements to sort out and now you’re back at work - it is completely understandable that you are struggling to come to terms with it, when you haven’t had the time to begin to process what has happened.

Were you able to make an appointment with your GP in the end? Please do consider getting in touch with them if not - you deserve care and support.

We also offer free counselling - you can click the link to find out more.

The community is here for you too. Take good care,

Thank you for your reply. It has all been so much. I see my GP again last week and he was very supportive. I see a counsellor every other week so I have been talking to her about all of this. She has been on this whole journey with me. I don’t want to be off work as that will cause me a lot of stress. But equally I don’t want to be there. I feel like my whole life has been turned upside down.

I am still waiting for my mom’s medical notes from her GP. Once we have these I can proceed with our complaint. It’s so hard as I just don’t have closure.

Hi @Becca_d I feel as though I could have wrote this, our experiences are so similar! My mum died in hospital a couple of months ago from lung cancer. Although she was in hospital for 5 weeks, I never actually thought she was going to die, even though it was all so traumatic and she was fighting so much, it wasn’t until the last day when we were told there was nothing else they could do (and I fought with them so much about that) that I realised, so I only had a few final hours to try and come to terms with it and didn’t process it at all. I still haven’t and expect her to walk back through the door, even though I held her in my arms as she left. Her treatment in hospital was also awful and I have also complained. They made major mistakes which made her situation so much worse. I also am not getting the support at my work. My manager seemed to just expect me back to normal as though nothing has happened, even though we had discussed for me to have a phased return and work from home more. It’s been really awkward and uncomfortable and made me feel like I have to put on a brave face and power through, and it’s exhausting as I’m so heartbroken and struggling inside. I would have taken longer off work but had to go back for the money. But yeah, it’s so hard working and I get no joy from it (or anything anymore) so it all feels so pointless. So I get what you mean, it’s all a lot, we’re trying to process everything we’ve been through and this giant loss with the weight of work and unsupportiveness on our shoulders. X

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I am so sorry to hear about your loss and your experience. It’s just so unreal. I too feel like I can go and see my mom. It’s just not fair and I feel robbed. I couldn’t really switch off from work even when I was off at the start and on my phased return. No one and I mean no one picks up my work when I am not there. I sat sobbing in my office the other day and did know who to turn to.

Grief is so hard and consuming. Although I am sad you understand , it is good to hear I am not alone in how I feel.

Take care

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Aw @Becca_d it really is awful. It sounds like you need more support at work for certain, can you speak to your manager about another colleague learning/doing some of your role? It shouldn’t all fall to 1 person, especially if that 1 person is dealing with such grief.

I know exactly how you feel about being robbed - my mum should still be here. She was desperate to stay and not ready to go, and I feel too young to have lost her. My friends all have their parents or grandparents and I have no one like that. My mum was my everything so it’s the biggest loss in my life :broken_heart::cry:

Here if you ever need to talk x

Thank you. I find it so hard as my mother in law is 92 and says she wants this to be her last Christmas. She’s been saying it for years. My mom was 74& would have loved more time.

Unfortunately work is not going to change at the moment. There will be changes in the future but I can’t make any big decisions at the moment.

This grief feels so different to any grief I have felt before. I just can’t believe this is real.

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I get you, @Becca_d. It feels so shocking that someone you’re so close to can possibly not be there anymore. I absolutely have not come to terms with that. I can’t process that I have to go the rest of my life without my mum. My support, my comfort, the person who always brought joy and light into my life and who I could always rely on. Does not feel real at all that she’s not here anymore. I’m not overly spiritual either, but I really really want her to give me a sign that she is still watching over me and OK somewhere x

It’s so sad for you, I wish I could say it gets better but I don’t know that myself. People say it just cha he’s over time. It’s early days for both of us.

My mom was my best friend we did so much together. I feel sad that my dad is on his own and that my kids have lost their Nan.
I saw a rainbow in the way to work this morning, I felt comfort from it. Maybe the sign will be there just at the right time.

I hope that you can get some support as you work through this grief. Here if you need to talk.

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