Not Myself Since Mom’s Death

Question: Dear Luise: My mompassed at 58 yrs old on march ,28 2011. She had a pain pill addiction and passed at home while we were sleeping. My brother woke me up pounding on my bedroom door when he found her. It was very unexpected, she was acting weird the past 3 days before and I was very mean to her thinking it would make her realize she needed help.She was buried on April 2nd and I moved out at the end of 2011. I feel like I never dealt with her passing. I never cried like I thought I would. I’m always down about something and she is always on my mind somehow…is this normal after 2 years? D.

Answer: Dear D.: As far as I know, there is no “normal.” It sounds to me like you are carrying regret and that’s something we all have to face after we lose someone. None of us feel like we “did it right”. We want to look back and see perfection and it’s just not possible. You were trying to motivate your mom with tough love. To me, that’s commendable.

My husband died last week and the tears were more tears of relief than of loss. He was 101. And do I miss him…terribly, even though he’d been in the nursing facility on our campus for three years. I can think of endless things I “should” have done more of or better. It’s the way we’re wired.

I’d suggest that you get some grief counseling to keep from getting stuck where you are. That’s not what your mom would have wanted for you. Also, when I lost my mom, I wrote her. First, because I was overflowing with emotions, and later, because I liked the feeling of connecting with her. Eventually I wrote back to me from her. Did she do the writing? No, of course not…but I knew what she would have written. I don’t think doing that would work for everyone but it brought me back to the “now” and I was able to laugh and sing again. Blessings, Luise

6 Responses to Not Myself Since Mom’s Death

  1. O. March 4, 2013 at 9:36 am #

    D, so sorry about your Mother’s unexpected passing. I know what it is to have regrets, as you do, but ultimately your Mom is responsible for her addiction, which probably accounts for her death. Perhaps you have a mixture of longing, love and even some anger. If that’s so … well, you are human and those feelings would be natural.

    I think it helps to acknowledge — if even only to yourself — what your feelings are. Once they are “aired” you will find it’s easier to deal with them.

    And to Luise, my condolences on Val’s passing. You have been a pillar for him and all your readers. I hope you draw strength from knowing there are legions who admire and care about you. O.

    • Luise Volta March 5, 2013 at 11:23 am #

      O – Thank you.

      • K. April 3, 2013 at 12:48 pm #

        thank you so much for your willingness to share your wisdom Luise. K.

  2. D. March 5, 2013 at 7:12 am #

    First, Louise, let me impart my sorrow for your loss. I didn’t have a mother, or father so I can’t relate well in regards to the passing of your mother, but because of those absences I can somewhat relate to the passing of a life partner. My daughters are spoiled and don’t know what they have in me; given, they’ve never been without a mom. “Forgive them for they know not what they do”. I have worried about my passing and their regrets for not having appreciated what they had until it was gone…but, then, I remind myself that’s more about them than me so I don’t dwell on it, nor do I broach the subject with them. These hardships though have made me sure to not make the same mistakes. That is, I’m closer, more real, and stay in the present with my life partner. I cherish all that there is; neither of us a picnic to live with, and make it a part of my day to think what I can do to make his day better. I am happy for you that you had such a loved one, and that you treated him well in life and in death, that is, in regards to the latter, making your peace with him. That is so important for contentment in your final days. I make sure my loved ones know how important they are to me so I’ll never have to wonder about what I did not do for them that I could have….this to include emotionally constipated family members as well. If my losses taught me nothing else, it taught me appreciation and in that I’ve been granted a richness in relationships otherwise missed. Again accept my joy for the life you’ve lived, and my condolence for the lives you’ve lost but for that loving life you’ve lived! D.

  3. A. September 9, 2013 at 7:14 pm #

    … will be a year on 9-11 that I have lost my mother. I am still at a lost I look for her to call me every day and yet……she hasn’t called. I hurt some days more than others. I am not sure how to handle my emotions at times. I have to be strong for my dad and we talk more now than we have ever. …and I mean ever. He wants us to be more close and I do. My son at times be talking and I know he is talking to her. They were very very close. She was more his mother in his eyes than me and I was happy with that as along as I received attention too. It hurts me so much. I am not sure how he is handling it because you know guys hold in their feelings. I tried the whole write to her every day but …..its just not the same. So I text her number everyday or when I feeling sad. I used to call her number just to hear her voice. I not sure what to do. With all that being said. …. I buried my mother on the day she born me 9-16 so
    …. those days are forever in my memory. I figured since she brought me into this world on this special day and can send her out from this world on this special day. I am glad I was able to enjoy her for 32 years and 360 days…… I love and miss you so much Mom. A.

    • Luise Volta September 11, 2013 at 7:12 pm #

      We all handle death differently. Most of us haven’t learned to accept that life is temporary. I know I wasn’t ready when my eldest some died of a stroke at age 52. I wasted a lot of energy not wanting it to be the way it was/is…which was useless. Finally, I just accepted that I was hurting myself and started a gratitude book. In it I only write things that I am grateful for about having him in my life…and the things I am grateful for that have happened to me since his death. I am unable to think of more than one thing at a time…so I am giving myself more and more joy as the years go by. I’m not sure doing it would help you…but it has turned my life around. Blessings, Luise

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