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Pamela

Life goes on . . . ?

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It's been almost two weeks since Dad died. Right after he died, I had to "take care of business", help with planning the funeral, get my kids to Texas, go through Dad's things, etc., etc. We were getting on the plane to come home that Sunday night, and my 3-year-old granddaughter started throwing up. Her symptoms were bad enough that we decided to take her to the emergency room. Within a couple of hours she was already dehydrated, running a temperature of 102, and not responsive when we talked to her -- that quickly! Turns out she had a virus and a bladder infection.

Anyway, I got back in town on Monday, worked 12-hour days to catch up at work, left for a trade show on Thursday, worked long hours all weekend and finally got back late Sunday night.

So now life is returning to "normal" and the grief is starting to rise to the surface. It's so odd to me that everyone around me -- family, friends, co-workers -- assume I'll just shrug this off and go on like it didn't happen. On the outside, that's what I'm doing. No one knows that I am hurting inside. Sometimes I have a smile on my face, talking business or sharing pleasantries, and I want to scream, "MY DAD DIED. IT HURTS! HOW CAN YOU EXPECT ME TO ACT LIKE NOTHING HAPPENED?!?" But I just keep smiling and taking care of business.

Tomorrow is Dad's birthday. He would have been 78. I remember looking into his puppy-dog brown eyes for the last time, telling him that I love him and that I'd be back to see him on his birthday.

No one here understands, but I know you guys do, so I'll tell you. My dad died. It hurts. It hurts a lot. Life goes on, and I'll go on, but I'm going on with a broken heart.

Pam

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Pam,

You bet I understand. I get so angry because I feel like I'm not allowed to be upset any more. "Just move on" seems to be the attitude I get from others. But it sill DOES hurt. Even after this amount of time. It's not fair, it hurts and I still have all these "what ifs". Time is sure taking it's good old time healing me. I lost someone very special to me and I miss him every day. And every day I fight back tears for one reason or another.

I do understand and my wish for you is that you can find some peace in the days ahead and you will begin to heal. We will never forget the pain or get over missing our Dads but it is my hope that the pain will lessen as the days and months and years pass by.

Take care of youself,

Kris

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I was in a little bit different situation because nobody expected me to go on like nothing had happened. Maybe that is a difference between the response when a parent dies versus a spouse. But I do remember being angry that life didn't stop. I got ticked off at Walmart for being open. How can Walmart be open? Don't they know Becky died? That is such a silly thing now, months later, but I thought that at the time.

Don't feel like you have to bottle it in. You don't have to smile and pretend nothing happened. People want that from you because they don't want to face the fact that your father died because it reminds us all that our fathers will die and we will die too. We have done a remarkable job of setting our mortality completely out of our consciousness. Maybe we would be better off as in days of old, when people died in their homes, and the wakes and visitations were all done in the home. When mortality was an integral part of our lives. It still is, we just have decided not to acknowledge it.

But Pam, your first responsibility is to yourself and to your emotional health. So if you can't keep smiling, then don't. If you can't take care of business, then don't. It is okay to feel crushed right now; how much worse would it be if you weren't? If we can be an outlet for that grief, and that enables you to be more functional in your office and family, then we will be honored to do that to the best of our abilities.

Know that you are still the apple of your father's eye. And that you are in all of our prayers.

Curtis

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One of my friends gave me a book called "Angel Catcher"....it's a journal to help you through grieving.....amazing book. I know that Amazon has them.

It's just a little over two weeks since my Mom died.....it sucks. It hurts....emotionally and physically.

I spent two hours with the hospice bereavement counselor last night.....it was so nice to talk to someone who just said "It will feel this way until it doens't feel this way anymore....and then it will feel different, but it will never go away."

There are no timetables or schedules for grief. We all do it differently and for the post part, there are no right or wrong answers.

She talked about being "out of the moment". When your thoughts drift and your eyes well up....she said make sure you are in a safe place to do it (NOT driving) and let it happen.....

When I was driving to my Mom's funeral I was so angry that the rest of the world was just business as usual. I passed a truck full of guys there were obviously headed to work....drinking coffee, wearing work clothes....laughing and talking...it made me so mad. I wanted the whole world to stop because someone really important just left and everyone should feel bad.

So, there you have it......we're all up against a different spot of the same wall.....and to quote one of my favorite singers, Jimmy Buffett, "If it's a wall we can't tear down, we'll either decorate or climb it or find a way to get around."

You're in my prayers......

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Pam,

you bet we understand. My dad died too, it's been almost a year, and I STILL hurt ALOT...but everyone "out there" expects us to go on...and we put on a good show, you're so right.

There's not a timeline on love and grieving- it's different for everyone. SOme people break down inthe beginning and after a year, they are building themselves back up- whereas- like me, I intentionally kept myself so busy so that I wouldn't really grieve my dad...in down-times or on slow days--boy it feels like I just lost him all over again- I miss him so much. I grieve in bite-size moments- because frankly I don't think I could handle it full-blown. Maybe it keeps me stuck inthe past or stagnate in mourning his loss...but so what- it works for me- I'll never "get over it" and I will miss him until I die.

You are doing and handling things the best way you can. It's been so soon-- and those that expect you to "go-on" well, they haven't been in your shoes, and they haven't a right to talk or assume anything. Your heart and your mind will lead you and you'll go thru this next passage in your life- your way.

Take some time out for just you- let yourself grieve fully or be happy or rest and relax...whichever it is you need at that given moment. And come here, where we all understand and where we will all be here to support you.

Take care- and remember that I am here when you need a friend.

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I know how it hurts too and sometimes it hurts so much I just breakdown bawling! Then I feel so lost without him that I wonder how I will go on...but I always seem to. I pray a lot for strength. :cry:

Tess

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Pam,

It's ok to hurt and it's ok to hurt a lot. I have had many "moments" since my dad died in June. I liked what Paige's counselor said:

She talked about being "out of the moment". When your thoughts drift and your eyes well up....
That's exactly what happens to me. I also do what Katie describes: "I grieve in bite-size moments." I'm over it pretty quickly because I make myself be over it. I can't stand to be so sad and I've learned how to efficiently shut it off. I don't always think this is healthy, though. It is good to get it out because otherwise we end up with pent-up emotions and I don't think that's good for us. I also remember having a moment like Curtis described after my mom died. I was in the grocery store and everything seemed so wrong. I, too, felt like everyone in the store should feel my sadness, and it just felt odd.

Time will heal. I healed from the death of my mom, I will eventually heal from the death of my dad, and Pam, you will eventually feel better, too, but right now your feelings couldn't be more normal.

Love and prayers,

Peggy

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I am relating way too much to this thread.

I well up all the time and at the oddest moments. I, too, Peggy try to stifle it most of the time. The shower and the car are my best sobbing places. (As my niece said, you don't need a tissue in the shower)

Went to grocery store last Friday. I was clueless. How do you shop for one and that one has no appetite. Also felt everyone could tell I was sad beyond belief. Walked out with 2 diet cokes and a bottle of 1/2 and 1/2. How nutritious.

I sometimes feel like I take 1 step forward and 2 back. It is not a straight line forward of feeling better, that is for sure. I miss him so much.

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Went to grocery store last Friday. I was clueless. How do you shop for one and that one has no appetite. Also felt everyone could tell I was sad beyond belief. Walked out with 2 diet cokes and a bottle of 1/2 and 1/2. How nutritious.

Oh Ginny, that was one of the hardest things for my Mom. I think she lived on frozen dinners most of the time. I was so glad when she moved closer so I could include her with our family dinners. Wish you were closer and you could come have supper with us!

Bless your heart.....you loved him so much.

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