Question: Dear Luise: I really think I need help but I dont want to get professional help.. My mother was my best friend the person I would call and contact for everything. One day she woke up in the morning having problems breathing.. At the hospital she kept saying she was going to die and she did… She died Nov. 10,2012 until now that is the worst dayof my life. She was only 55 years old and didnt deserve to die this way.. I can only sleep a few hours throughout the night she is the first person I think about when I wake up and the first person I think about when I go to sleep. My husband has been helping a lot with the kids I have a 4 and 6 year old and really dont want them to see me like this anymore.. I cant stop crying I cant stop grabbing the phone to call her and then realize that I cant anymore.. This hollow and empty feeling inside me is horrible, I dont want pills I dont want anything I just want her back and I know I cant have her back.. What can I do I am going crazy, in front of people I act like nothing is wrong but everything just builds up and once they leave I just break down and lock myself in the room to cry… I really think I need some help. V.
Answer: Dear V.: Your mother has only been gone for three months. Most of us who have lost a loved one are still pretty fragile for quite a while beyond that. You weren’t prepared and you sound like you’re understandably finding it a terrible reality to have to adjust to. On top of that, you have responsibilities that are really hard keep up with when grief and shock are taking their toll.
All I can tell you is to hang in there and know that if and when you are willing to have grief counseling, it may bring you comfort. Some find it helpful and others don’t. We’re all so different. You say you don’t want to try that but you also say that you need some help.
I can only tell you that I found my help within. Not from a religious perspective but because that’s how it turned out. I lost my eldest son just as suddenly when he was 52. It was startled to find what took me down were my expectations. He was healthy, had just had a productive and happy day, went to bed and had a fatal sleep apnea induced stroke. He never even woke up. I expected that I would go first and I was more than willing for that to be the case. My list of expectations involved what was fair and reasonable…and that’s not necessarily Life. We can hope and dream, and plan and anticipate…but…we can’t “expect” anything. Not really. It’s a hard pill to swallow. From my acute sense of injustice, I landed in self-pity and no one could help with that. I just had to get it. It took a while but once I saw that my not having life (and death) be the way they are was taking me down…I came out the other side knowing I was in charge of my perceptions, joy, sorrow and yes, anger. That may not be your road…but it’s all I have to offer. You have resources, we all do. When push comes to shove most of us have to go inside and access them…with or without outside help. Give it some time and be kind to yourself. Blessings, Luise