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my dad has died / talking with those already dead / a caregi


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hello all you wonderful caring people

my most beloved and dearest wonderful father died yesterday morning at 2:10 am. my pain was indescribable. I believe he had no pain, and am so eternally thankful for that. The days and weeks before, i had been so fearful of my dad's impending death, so scared of "that moment," and so afraid of being alone for fear that i might go crazy crazy with grief at that moment. I had been alone taking care of him for the last six weeks with evenign assistance from my brother. yet wednesday evening when he started to "actively die," my mother came over (they are divorced), we had a home health care helper, and my brother came. then later my fiance arrived by plane from washington. suddently there were too many people. dad went on breathing that loud breathing for several hours. we talked to him and about him for some time, but then conversation went to everyday things. i felt the time's importance was diminished. after having being afraid of being alone for so long, sudddenly i found that i wanted all of them to go away (except eric, my fiance, who i wanted him with me).. i wanted all of them to go away beecasue it had, how can i say, we had had something special him and I. i had cared for him everyday and suddenly i wanted to be alone with him. selfishly i wanted to be with him, only me with him (and my fiance), when he took his last breath.

by about 130 am or so we were all very tired and everyone thought they would go to bed, at least to lie down, and we all figured out where everyone would sleep. the night before our 24/7 home health aide had slept in his bed while he slept in the hospital bed. (I really needed a good night's rest and felt guilty for sleeping in the other room but obviously didnt realize the end was so so so near..... ) but the night he was dying, Wednesday afternoon into early morning Thursday, i wanted to be near him. So everyone got ready for bed. i got the bed beside him ready for me and eric. everyone was moving pretty slowly. but finally i was alone with my dad, and my fiance eric.

i went over to my father. I notice that before where he was breathing through his mouth, now he was breathing through his nose. we had had oxygen on him for a few hours earlier, but he was breathing not through his nose so as I imagined it was probably uncomfortable to have this tube across his face, i took it off as it wasn't getting into him anyway, Then when his breathing changed to nose breathing, I quickly ran to reconnect the oxygen to him. Little did I know that he was minutes away from dying.

as i was adjusting the oxygen, I looked at him, and knew. I called eric to me, had him take my hand and we held hands across my dad's bed. the home health aide came in, looked at him and said, "i better call everyone." I said, "no, i don't want to." A few seconds later he was gone, and at that moment my mother walked in followed by my brother. I said, He's Gone.

I feel in some way my father knew or God intervened to give me that special moment with my father. I hope you do not think I'm selish. I don't know how other caregivers feel or have felt at a moment like this. I'm sure there are a range of feelings..... in any case, I feel honored to have had this precious moment with my father. I was also suprised that I needed so badly to have this moment with him and not a crowd of people around.

sorry this post is long, i hope it's not too long, but i wanted to share seomthing else with all of you. Tuesday, I think, my dad talked all day long. Almost nothing of what he said made sense to me, except he said TWO things loud and clear....

First he said: "my mother, she died in 1984. If you come across her, send her over here." and then a couple of hours later, he said "my brother George, why he is contacting me? He says it's okay over there, i don't know about that. I'm going to take him off my email!"

What do you think? Do you think this is a person knowing they are dying and thinking of family members who have gone before and wondering what became of them? Do you think it's a dying person's hallucinations? Or do you think it's possible that the spirit of those who have passed before who love my father come to help him make the transition to the "next life?" Do any of you have any experience with loved ones making similar statements while dying?

I have more to say but wow, this is a long post. I eagerly await notes back as I hunger for contact with those who have been there as I feel lost and seek understanding. Right now, after a hysterical day yesterday, right now i am a zombie and it takes so much concentration to write this to you. I hope that I have communicated well. Thank you so much for reading my post.

With love to you and yours

let's all bring more kindness to this world,


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You are not alone. I too was with my mom when she passed on. My other family was near so I was not alone with her. It is a very special moment when you know they are no longer 'with' you.

I have been around many people who have died. YES I have seen some of them talk right up to their death about what they were seeing.

My grandma talked with her dead mother and sister for 2 days before she died. She always had her eyes closed. I believe they were there with her.

My prayers are with you as you must now go on.

Love Cindy

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Hi, Lori, first, I am very sorry for your loss.

For others, this is confirmation of Lori's experience. Stop reading if you don't want details.

I lost my husband recently and it was much like you describe. Somehow I "knew" it was time in those last few minutes. Yes, he saw people, lots of people, all of the last day. He also saw "children flying in the trees." I am thinking maybe angels? He asked about only one person by name, a close friend who had passed away a few months before. He asked me if his friend Dick had died. I told him yes. Everything I have read says that this is so common, may do believe it to be a real experience, that they are going back and forth between worlds, spending more and more time in the other world, and yes, they see people that they know, waiting for them. How wonderful to believe that we are met for the journey. He also saw a glass boat coming, I took that to be significant. At the end, he was so "not in this world" I don't believe he was aware of the end from this side at all. He had largely already moved on. No suffering. No discomfort of any kind.

In my mother's case, she didn't mention any of that, but she just went to bed, went into a coma, and passed away without saying anything. But in her case, she was also totally gone from here, not aware. There was no suffering in the process.

I too was a zombie right after and for some time, even now I still am some. It is your own protection system helping you to get through the worst few days. I still feel that unrealness, like he is just at work or out in the yard. Everything I read says that is normal. I am starting to feel the emptiness more and more, that is something I have to accept and deal with, it is part of the process.

I understand that you wanted that special time. It really doesn't matter if you felt that way, we are only human. I am so glad for you that you got what you needed. Maybe some part of him arranged that.

How kind it was of your Mother to come. I think that is special, too. Whatever happened later, they shared a part of life together. It was good that she was there for herself, for him, and especially for you.

Anyway, God Bless You, and your whole family. He goes on, in his new life. You will go on in this one, hard as that is to believe, you will take care of business, you will gradually feel the whole range and start to heal.

Love, Margaret

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Dear Lori,

I am so so sorry for your loss.

I do not feel you were selfish for wanting to be with your Dad as he drew his last breath, and obviously this is the way it was suppose to be as that is how it happened. I believe nothing happens by coincidence.

My Dad also spoke of things in the day or so before he passed.... some made sense, some didn't, but I read the book "final gifts" after he passed and it really gave me great insight into what he indeed was going through. My Dad spoke of hundreds and hundreds of beautiful birds flying overhead... he kept saying.... "don't you see them?" I would say oh yes daddy and they are beautiful....

I am praying for you to have the strength you need right now... You were truly a wonderful daughter to your Daddy, what a lucky, lucky man. Love, Sharon

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First let me say how sorry I am for the loss of your father. My dad passed away just seven weeks ago, and in some sense it still seems unreal. I also was my dad's caregiver and was with him when he died. He passed away on a Wednesday after a day and a half of a coma. Monday was his last good day. He was up and talking, eating and seeming himself. He talked a lot that day and other days about a man that was building a house for his wife and child. He kept asking if we could see him( We think it might have been his dad - was a house builder in Ireland.) Tuesday morning was the beginning of the end - the most we got from him were some "I love you." My mother swears that she heard him say the name "Ned" that morning. Ned was his younger brother who died 20 years ago. After 9 a.m. Tuesday he really said nothing else and late Tuesday night was definately in a coma. Wednesday brought more of the same. We were all with him - my mother, sister, his sons-in-law, and his sisters. We talked to him privately and as a whole. We said the rosary around his bed at about 3:30 and at 3:40 he was gone. Now my dad's eyes hadn't opened since Tuesday morning, but with that last breath he opened is eyes - looked first at me on his right side the looked to my mother and sister on his left, and then straight ahead ( where no one stood) after that last exhale. So many people there noticed the recognition in his eyes. He knew I was there, with my mom and sister, and I feel that he saw someone at the foot of his bed. I pray every night that his brother came for him - it's the only comfort I have.

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I'm so sorry for your loss. Please accept my sympathy and condolences.

What you are describing is similar to my experience 2 months ago with my mother. I was in the room when it happened and also noticed the changes in the breathing pattern.

Try to get some rest and don't hesitate to come back in the forum...


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I am so sorry about your Father. It is wonderful that you were there with him, I am sure he knew.

My husband did not speak of any people or things when he was going through the dying process. He said he did not believe in an afterlife. Does one have to do with the other, I have no idea. I felt sad that he did not believe, I would think it would make the process easier, but he was very peaceful at the end.

Earl had basically been in a coma most of Tuesday. He awoke, somewhat agitated at about 8:00. We gave him an Ativan which calmed him completely. Right before the Ativan set in, he looked at me, told me he loved me and gave me a kiss. What better present could I have gotten from him. He died at 4:30 Thursday morning, very peacefully, thank God.

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Hi Lori.

My grandmother was a rock. A nurse anesthetist turned hospital administrator.

When she was dying, she told my dad that she wanted to go be with gr.gramma and Hazel, her younger sister, but she didn't want to leave my Dad (her best friend and son) all by himself.

Gramma seldom talked about gr.gramma and Hazel, but they sure were on her mind when she died. Dad told her to go on to be with them, that he would be all right here by himself. After he said that, within minutes, she took her last breath in his arms.

I believe that they were there to welcome gramma to somewhere, somewhere good, I hope.

Also. I had a nurse friend tell me about her near death experience. It was one of the most powerful strories that I have ever heard. I may post it some day. I was listening attentively and I could probably re-tell it with every detail that she gave.

Take care, Lori.

Cindi o'h

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Dear Lori,

I am so sorry for your loss. I shared that moment with my Mother when she passed & even though it's now been a year & 1/2, I will always remember & treasure it as if it had happened moments ago. I would have never believed that there could be a bond stronger than the one we already shared but there is. I felt myself lifted up with her as I placed her in the tender loving care of the Lord & the loved ones who had passed before her.

For several days prior to her passing, she had been speaking to many of our dear departed loved ones & that truly helped me to see how beautiful her LIFE was about to get. Going through that experience with her has also given me such peace in regards to my own eventual passing. This is a gift that I believe that she & God arranged for me to share as they were the only ones who knew at the time to know that I was already in the midst of my own battle with the beast. I received my dx 9 months later & thanks to that incredible moment we shared, I don't cry for my passing but for those who will be left behind.

God bless,


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