Posted by: Kathy | January 11, 2013

I Am Still Here

My mom has been gone for 4 years, and I have been writing my blog for the same amount of time. There are times when I write post after post, and other times when my blog is silent. My blog is so specific in its content that I wonder if I should keep writing. Are my words helping anyone anymore? During the past few months, the number of visitors to my blog has risen and I’ve gained more followers. But this is not the reason I’ve decided to keep writing. I write because I need to. I write because I know others read my words and sometimes leave comments, and those comments help me. I write because I still deeply miss my mom.

My mom is dead. I lost my mom to pancreatic cancer. I watched as the cancer slowly took away pieces of her life, no matter how hard she fought against it. Her will to live was strong, but the cancer was stronger. I tried to help my mom fight her battle against pancreatic cancer for almost a year. I watched as it turned her into a walking skeleton. I lived through this with my mom. I saw her lifeless body in the chair in my parents’ bedroom. Yet, there are still times when I cannot believe she is gone.

As I write these words, tears are falling down my cheeks. There is a familiar ache in my heart. Should I still be grieving after 4 years? Does the pain of loss ever end? Am I crazy for still missing my mom? I know it would be worse if I was in denial and did not acknowledge that I am still grieving over the death of my mom. For those of us who have lost loved ones, denial is world we cannot live in. We need to grieve because through grief there is healing, no matter how much it hurts. And yes, I have healed and moved forward with my life. But I get tripped up every once in a while. Sometimes I know the reason. Other times I don’t.

For years grief dictated the way I lived. I lived in the shadows of grief, unable to see the joys in my life. I really wasn’t living. I was merely existing and going through the motions of life. But I was suffering and my family was suffering because I was unable to move forward. Slowly, the clouds of grief started to clear. I accepted that my mom is gone. I accepted that grief is a part of my life that I need to work through. I began to really live again. Grief still rains down at times in my life, but like the weather, there are cloudy days and sunny ones. I know my mom would want my life to be filled with sunny days.

My mom is gone and I am healing from her loss. I still bear the wounds and the scars from her illness and death, and probably always will. There will come a day when the wounds will heal and it will not hurt so much, but I will always miss my mom. When my mom first died, I did not know how to live without her. This is something I have learned to do, although I will always wish that she were still here with her family. I know that she is with us in spirit and always will be. I will continue to write in memory of my mom, as a way of healing, and hopefully helping others along the way.

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Responses

  1. Thank you for continuing to write. My mom has only been gone a year and already I wonder if I am grieving for too long. It’s so nice to see that I’m not alone.

    • Hi Jen. I’m sorry you lost your mom. I truly believe that we will always miss those who we’ve loved and lost. The fact that they are no longer with us leaves a hole that no one else can fill. I’ve found that the most important thing is to keep moving forward and trying to heal. I always hold this quote close to my heart – “To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die” by Thomas Campbell. I wish you all the best. Take care.

  2. Please don’t stop writing! I found your blog last year after I, too, lost my mother to pancreatic cancer. Your blog has been helping me get through this 1st year….I cry each time I read your words because they have so much meaning in them! I can put myself in your words, and that is somehow comforting….I read everyone’s comments and I read your story and I know that I am not alone in my grief. You write for all of us and we thank you for that! I, too, feel a connection…

    • Hi Lynn: thank you so much for your touching words. Reading what other people write about their loss has helped me too. I’m glad my blog has helped you – the first year is hard. Getting used to life without your mom is so difficult. It’s nice to know that we’re not alone at a time that can be so lonely. I wish you all the best. Take care.

  3. Kathy. I have nominated you for the Super Sweet Blogging Award. Like you, I grieve the loss of my mother every day. I feel a strong connection to you and your blog.

    • Thank you so much. It’s such an honor to be nominated for a blogging award. I’m glad you feel a strong connection to me and my blog. I also love reading what you write about your dad. Take care.

  4. Kathy, grief has a life of its own. You are doing the right things by finding ways to heal -including this wonderful blog. You have much to offer those in various stages of healing -your writing is so refreshing because you are Real. Love to you…

    • Thank you Denise for your kind words. I needed an outlet for my feelings, so I just wrote and continue to do so. Sometimes I wonder how people react to what I’ve written – whether it’s too revealing or raw. But I’ve been surprised by the way readers have reacted. They have helped me to heal. Love to you as well. Take care.

  5. Yes, the grief goes on, but I feel it’s easier to let go too. The loss of my mother is woven into my fabric of being, but so is joy. We never get over the loss, but the fact we can learn to live again is a miracle to be celebrated.

    • You’re right, we don’t get over loss. It becomes a part of who we are, shapes us in good and bad ways. I will never stop missing my mom, but I also remember the good times we shared together and the times she spent with the kids. More than anything now, I am realizing just how deeply she loved me. That in itself is a gift. Take care.

  6. “Should I still be grieving after 4 years?” Yes. If the pain is still raw and near the surface your grief can’t lessen. I would not be concerned about this.

    Grief is a part of love Kathy, we each deal with it in our own way.

    I’m no expert, just someone who feels unbearable pain every day since the loss of my one true love in Aug 2011. I spent more than half my life with my husband and there are no words…

    There is one place that has been a tremendous help to me. You may want to pay a visit: http://memorybearsbybonnie.wordpress.com

    Many Blessings ~ Maxi

    • Hi Maxi: I read Bonnie’s blog every day. I even got 2 bears for each of my children. I’m no expert either. I just write to try and figure out what I am feeling. I hope your pain lessons soon. Yes, grief is a part of love and I guess the deeper the love, the deeper the grief. Take care.

  7. My Mom passed away April 17, 2011 just one day before her 64th birthday… She too had cancer but it was everywhere. With the diagnosis came so much sadness for me and I know my Mom as well but she never let on how scared she was. She was gone within 5 weeks the cancer over taking her so fast. I am still so lost without her. Sometimes the pain of grief is almost to much to bear. She was my best friend the person I could talk to about anything. I feel lost and alone. Reading your blog has helped. I have only recently discovered it. I agree about being lost in grief and unable to enjoy life… I feel like I am just going through the motions everyday… Thank you for what you write it helps so much. Blessings to your and your family.

    • I’m sorry you lost your mom to cancer. The loss is so deep. I hope you can free yourself from grief and enjoy life. Going through the motions just isn’t right. I’m glad that reading my blog has helped you – thank you. I wish you all the best. Take care.

  8. “I live in the shadows of grief, unable to see the joys in my life”… is exactly where I am right now Kathy.
    I know thing will get better eventually ( I went through a terrible time when my dad died, I was much younger and he was taken so quickly, and I’m trying not to let my Mum’s death become all consuming, but sometimes it /she is all I think about.
    I miss her too, and I wish that I had done more, been more understanding, tried harder, all sorts of things that are slowly eating me up.
    I know how you feel too about your blog…I started mine really as a bit of a joke/peer pressure from my mates, but then soon after I started it, my Gran died and it’s gone on from there really
    Writing about them does help, telling the world ( or one or two people in my case 😀 ) about them means they haven’t just vanished off the face of the earth… it helps me with memories, good and bad, but just sometime I wonder if perhaps i’m going on too much about my Mum, dad, Gran etc… I have so much I want to say, but not enough time to say it!

    Thank you for your advice and comforting kind words, they mean a lot and do help me to put things in to perspective.
    You keep writing Kathy, people will keep reading.
    You have a way of putting your emotions and raw feelings on to ” paper ” and your grief and pain is palpable sometimes.
    Strangely knowing that I’m not the only one who feels like this is a comforting thing, thank you. .
    All my very best wishes to you Kathy,
    love n hugs
    xxx

    • Thank you for your kind words. Writing is actually the best way for me to express my emotions. If I try to just talk, it never comes out right. Keep writing about your Gran, Mom and Dad. They are special to you and it’s important to keep their memory alive. That’s what the blog does – helps us to keep their memories alive. Best wishes to you as well. Take care.


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