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Why can't I just enjoy this?


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okay... here goes....

Mom had to retire early, she was too sick especially after WBR. SHE always dreamed when she retired (when she was suppose to retire which was NOW, July 2007) we would rent a big house boat on Lake Roosevelt and spend the week together as a family. Her, Chip (Step-dad), My brother and his wife and 2 young girls, plus us (my family of 5).

Mom planned bought and paid for the trip last year before she died in April, in hopes that she would live long enough into last summer for us to make the dream come true.

As I said she died in April and we didn't go. Instead we postponed the trip until July 21 (2007).

SO in a week we are going. My mom will not be there. My step dad has remarried and he will not be there nor is he really welcome. My brother will be there for part of the trip and my sister in law and the girls will join us for the entire trip.

My mom would have been the catalist for peace and my step dad would have been the captain of the boat. Now we have 2 captains, no catalist for peace and a hard grieving daughter.

My husband says I am going to ruin it for everyone and I really am afraid I might. How can I go on this vacation and try to put aside the fact that this was her dream, her trip and she should be there. Even last year I thought she would make it long enough, even if we had to hire a nurse to administer meds, and bring a hospital bed.

I miss her so much as I write this I am sitting here sobbing. How do I get through this again. WHy is this so fresh. I just need her so much and feel so damn lost and alone. I am so tired of feeling guilty about my grief and sadness. I am so tired of the suggestion that I am depressed, that I need medication.

I am not depressed, suicidal or otherwise. I have come to the conclusion that this is what it is. I feel like I have very little to look forward to as all the joy in living is clouded by the pain of losing. I have learned that as adults, as apposed to being children, we no longer get our way. We no longer can talk, yell, bribe or throw fits to get out from between a rock and a hard place. There are no deals to be had. There are no parents here to save me from myself. It is what it is and there is nothing we can do about it but get through it and try to grab the little joys that are presented to us.

Sometimes I just don't know what to do with myself.

I just want my mom. I don't want to be at the top of this family tree, I am not ready, I want to be someones kid.

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I think that would be a very hard trip for me as well. I would like to think I could do it, but I am not in that situation.

At least you are honest with yourself--I would try to pretend like nothing is wrong. Maybe if you own up to your feelings, as you are doing, that will help. You may surprise yourself. It could be that the whole first day of your trip, all you can think about is your mom, and her absence. It could be that the next day, you are also able to think about your kids and the the fun they are having. It could get better. You mentioned trying to grab the little joys....you may find some of those on this trip.

It might be very hard and painful. It might also be fun and healing. I guess you won't know for sure until you get there. I pray that you are able to enjoy it.

I'm like you--the top of the family tree. It seems so wrong to be there so soon, but it's our reality. I've heard it said that reality bites (wasn't that the movie title?), but it's what we are stuck with.

Prayers for you on this trip. Let us know how it goes.

:) Kelly

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Kim, Kim, I don't know where to start. What a hard thing. It's so unfair, it just is. I'm so sorry.

Here's my take...it might get better as the vacation goes on. I just got back from a week at my parents' summer house on Lake Ontario in upstate New York. Well, I should say my MOM'S lake house. It was her world, she grew up there, her family is there (in the houses right next to hers!), she lived there every summer (as us kids did when were young). My dad always resented it to some degree, that connection. Jealousy, I guess. Maybe b/c she left him every summer to go to her other home. Everyone loved her there, she was the life of the beach.

Last year, as sick as she was, she was determined to make it up there for the annual Christmas In July party on the beach - when she got out of the car in front of the party, bald and weak having just finished brain radiation, everyone stood up and applauded and she just cried. It was the last real time I got to spend with her - she passed away two weeks later. I sat with her in her room facing the lake, bathed her, rubbed her fluid-swollen feet, and loved her, never wanting to think this would be our last time there together. Her dream was always to have the house be our legacy, and though I dreaded going this year more than anything, since I've never been there without her, I knew I had to. The minute we turned onto the lake road I was sobbing uncontrollably, and by the time we got to the house at the end of the road I couldn't breathe. She was not running out to get my kids out of the van and fold them in her arms as she always, always did. My wonderful husband busied himself "unpacking" the van and let me go inside alone (my dad was not there yet). I walked in and the silence, the lack of her warmth, the absence of my kids' favorite treats on the counter, no smell of cookies fresh out of the oven, no portacrib set up in the bedroom, no toys all lined by the door, the filled sandbox not out front, no sheets on the beds...by the time I got to her bedroom I was on my knees almost screaming Why, why, why? Just writing this makes me sob.

But...after a few days of sobbing, you know what? It was better. Not good, but so much better. I don't know why. Maybe because she would have wanted us there, it's what we were supposed to do, with or without her?...Maybe getting that precious time with my husband and kids, feeling his love and their joy at being there? I don't know. I guess I think your mom would feel the same way. She sounds like she was that kind of wonderful woman. She would want you to go on this trip and get some joy out of it.

I only hope that you will find some measure of peace on this journey. I get it, I understand, and I'm sorry. Please let us know how it goes, please.

Hugs to you..

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I am so sorry you are feeling all of these unbearable feelings. It is interesting to read because we are about to do something similar, only it is the trip our family was planning, with hubby, and hubby did not make it. He passed the day after we were supposed to leave. We are having his memorial while we are taking this trip, in his honor. I feel scared and apprehensive, like you. I am trying to maintain the mindset that the intentions are to have as good of a time as we can, like he would want, but with no pressure on ourselves or expectations. I hope you can embrace peaceful reflection while you are on this trip.


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My first thought would be to Have everyone bring a fave photo Album or something of important memory to them about Mom and kind of Make a Happy?? Memorial To Mom. Think of alll the fun times that you had together and Reminnisce about the good times. Try not to think of the PAinful things and Make this a special reflection time for all. Hoping it does go well and I do understand the Pain of it though. Sending Prayers for Peace and Comfort and I do hope the sun shines in the most magnificent way for the whole Family.

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I can feel not only your pain but your fear coming through every word. It is very hard to go on and do anything normal when we lose someone we love so much. All of the firsts are really hard but I imagine something your mom aranged is even harder.

I will tell you something that you need to watch out for. I had this exeprience and still do once in a while. My grandson has done it also when my ex husband passed. We tend to feel that if we find any pleasure or joy in life we are somehow betraying our loved one who is not here to share that joy.

I was afraid to feel less grief or to enjoy anything in life. I thought if I did it would be a betrayal of the love Johnny and I had for eachother. I was so wrong. The one thing they would want more than any is for us to feel joy and pleasure again.

Go on your trip. Don't try to keep the tears away. Let the tears flow. Remember the bad and above all remember the good times. Open your heart to the grief and the memories and above all to the love you feel. Make this trip a tribute to those memories and that love. Don't worry about who is or isn't there. What really counts is that you will be there and with all of those memories so will your mom.

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Bless your heart. I am so, so sorry for what you are feeling. I can imagine that this feeling just sucks. Please know you have my prayers for peace and love, and that you know God's supportive hand.

I do have a few questions for you...

Your mom died in April and your stepdad is already remarried...did I read that right?

I can imagine that your mom is there with you and by the sounds of it, she would be awfully bummed with you if you didn't go on this trip and enjoy it, as she would have, right?

Girl, stay strong! Know we are here for you. You deserve a vacation, and some time away. Enjoy your family, grasp that "top of the family tree" as hard as it may be, and create those memories with your kids. Talk about Grandma...do what she would have done and share that with your kids. They will love you for it, just as you so love your mom.

My blessings to you. Know that I am sending you a big hug via the internet!


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