Loss of Mother - I am an only child feeling lost, guilty and alone

Discussion in 'Loss of Adult Child' started by Heidi Koerner, May 31, 2018.

  1. Heidi Koerner

    Heidi Koerner New Member

    My mother had carcinoid disease which ended up damaging her heart valves, causing heart failure. The doctors did not prioritize her case and when they finally referred her for surgery, she passed away one week before surgery. She started not being able to breathe last December and it took until April to schedule her for surgery.

    I feel so lost with no siblings and my father has been deceased since 1995. I have a 4 year old boy and a hubby but I feel so alone without my mother or anyone who can share any history with me. She sold her house and moved across the country to be close to us in 2013 and I thought we would have her around for many more years.

    Nothing seems the same anymore. I don't enjoy anything and each day is a struggle. I have so many regrets - things I never got to do with her and my son.

    I also feel so overwhelmed with guilt. I was so stressed out the months before she passed as I was the only one caring for her and my family as well. I feel like I should have done more and not been so impatient at times. I feel like I am in a very dark place. I don't know how to feel part of a family anymore. Friends help but don't fully understand and they have their issues too. Anyone in a similar situation?
    evaisa2616 likes this.
  2. griefic

    griefic Administrator Staff Member

    Heidi, I am so sorry for the loss your mother. I think you have touched on so many relatable issues - the struggle and guilt that comes with caregiving, and also the importance of our parents and the void their loss can leave behind.
    We have a blog (under resources) that touches on a variety of topics, but I have included a few articles that I think may help and apply to your situation. I hope it can be of some comfort. I'm glad you are reaching out for help, it can make a difference in the long run as far as how well you are able to cope, especially when you can connect with those who understand your situation because they've been there too.
    Please keep in touch and let us know how you're doing and if there is anything you need please let me know.
    Take care~

  3. JoNas

    JoNas Member

    RLC likes this.
  4. RLC

    RLC Well-Known Member

    As I read your story I feel your pain jump out at me, let me say I am so sorry for the loss of your Mom and the pain you are enduring. I’m on this site because I lost my husband suddenly to a heart attack that took him from me in hours, he was my everything. He was my love, best friend, business partner, you name it. We were together 24/7, my life turned upside that night and nothing has felt ok or right since.

    However, I’ve been through the loss of both my Mom and Dad, I do know what that feels like. Everything you list all the pain the guilt the loneliness, I’m afraid we all tend to put ourselves through those feeling. My Mom passed in 2005, she had had surgery to repair her heart valves, she had turberculosis as a child that caused damage to her valves. I’ve seen what you mention, being short of breathe, difficulty breathing. My Mom lived through the surgery, so we thought she’s going to be able to do things now and be in such better shape. Within the first year, my siblings and I noticed her memory was fading. Before surgery we were told to let them know if we notice changes in her after surgery and they listed memory. I noticed it fairly quickly, during one of her first check ups after surgery, the doctor asked how she was doing, he asked me. I told him about her memory, you’d think he was deaf, he never even replied to that. The story goes on but you get the picture, the surgery bought her more time but she wasn’t ok. She now suffered with dementia. My Dad had already passed in 1994, from non Hodgkin’s disease, that was caught too late and he passed shortly after diagnosis. I can’t say exactly how long my lived after the surgery but I’m thinking 7 or 8 years. After my Dad died, I thought I can’t live another minute without my Dad, my super-hero, he knew everything, I have no one to go to with questions. But I was 35, had my husband and two young children, and my Mom was in so much pain. My Mom was already my best friend, and my Dad had asked me to take of her. Of course I did, we became even closer. And when she passed again I thought I can’t do this. Sorry if this got too long, I’m sharing because I know the pain of losing your parents and I’m familiar with the surgery of valve replacement and how the person is suffering before the surgery.

    The guilt can be overwhelming, yet there’s no need for guilt but it’s there. You took such good care of your Mom, I think it’s great she moved to be closer to you. You had a lot on your plate and you were doing as much as humanly possible. Your Mom knows how much you loved her and loved you right back and you son and husband. You might feel you had so much more you hoped to experience with her, and that’s so normal. There’s a saying, Never is too soon! That’s how I feel with the loss of my husband especially, but also both my parents.

    I know the dark place you speak of, no one to share family history with etc. but you have all that in your heart, your Mom is with you, and she’s there to stay. When you’re up to it start sharing stories with your young son of his Grandma. Help him to remember her as he grows. Nothing will feel right or normal for quite a while, just take one day at a time, or hour to hour or minute to minute. Don’t push yourself, this takes time. I’m glad you have friends to support you, you’re right, unless they’ve experienced such a loss they don’t truly understand, but they’re trying. And you have your son and husband to live for and love. Give yourself time and try to remember the happy times, I believe she’s watching over you and loving you.

    You’ve come to the right place, this site is so much help. It’s helped me so much, it was 11 months after my husband passed that I found this site, I was not in a good place at all. But reading and sharing stories on here is such a help. Knowing you’re not alone in how you feel and that others understand what this horrible nightmare feels like, is comforting.

    I found trying to stay busy was helpful to me, and early on, busy meant small things, I wasn’t up to doing much. It’s 1 1/2 years next week since I lost my soul mate and I miss him so very much, but I’ve come a long way and still working to keep feeling better. My 2 children are my best support, I have siblings and friends but they don’t understand what this feels like but they do try. A lot of support disappears quickly and people can say cruel things, but they don’t mean it, they don’t understand.

    Be good to yourself, take care of you, love your husband and hold your son close.

    There are better days ahead, it takes time but keep working towards them. Keep posting it helps

    Sending you hugs!
    evaisa2616 likes this.