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Parent Loss

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I Have Gained An Angel [14 Feb 2011|06:59am]

I have recently set up a website called I Have Gained An Angel. This website is an online grief and support forum for people of all ages who have suffered loss in their life.

I, myself, have suffered the great loss of my mother last March, and found that speaking on support forums and to friends online was easier personally for myself to express my emotions. I am only twenty-one years old and wasn't ready for the massive responsibilities which were thrown upon me, and these friends helped me endlessly to cope with my loss.

This is what sparked my interest in starting my own support group. I Have Gained An Angel is a safe place for teenagers to the elderly, with easy to navigate discussion boards and a chance to help others at the same time as helping yourself. After all, who else knows how to help us better than one who has suffered the same loss?

At the moment we are a small group and are promoting around to collect more members and heighten the support network that the site provides. Our current members have had a great deal of input with the running and content of the site, something that we aim to continue so that it can continue to provide the best support for those who join.

If you would like to know more information about the site, please contact me on ihgaa@live.co.uk, or even visit the site for yourself at www.ihavegainedanangel.com
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Sometimes it hurts to keep the memory alive... [29 Jun 2010|07:50pm]

...but it is a pain I wouldn't ever trade.

It will be 5 years this coming August since my mother died, and 7 years this coming November since I lost my father.

I consider myself to have reached the point where I am somewhat healed. I still feel the usual heartache around things like holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries, but the hurt is no longer constant, and when it does turn up it is more often than not tempered by happy memories. I speak of my parents proudly and lovingly when other people talk about their families, and I can usually do it without tearing up, but every once in a while I can still bawl like it happened yesterday.

Today was one of those days.

A few months ago we got a Wii and a Wii Fit to help get in better shape, and, after some reflection, I programmed Miis to represent my parents into the system. Some people will doubtless find this odd, but our family has always had a healthy sense of humour, and I know Mom and Dad would have been amused by the idea of their avatars joining me in my games and fitness activities.

It worked out well. I would do step classes with my parents on either side of me, I would go on jogs and see my mother running by, or get passed by my father who used to suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, and feel comforted to know he was in a place where I believe he feels no pain and has recovered all the vigour and stamina of his youth.

But today it didn't work so well. I was doing Basic Step and suddenly I burst into uncontrollable sobbing and had to stop and sit down as I suddenly realized that this interaction and my memories was all I had left, and my mind and heart rebelled at the idea of how little time it turned out I was allowed to have with them.

Ten years after I graduated high school, they were both gone.

Five years after I got married, they were both gone.

I am coming up on my tenth wedding anniversary, and while the occasion is joyous it is also tempered by the pain of realizing that back then I didn't have any idea just how fast time was running out. I barely talked with them at all during the first few months of my marriage because I was so enthralled with my new husband and the grown up life I was leading. I only had them over for dinner once (we tended to have family dinners at my sister's house because she had more room) because I was embarrassed about being too busy to keep the apartment clean.

To say nothing of the fact that any children I may have will never know their maternal grandparents except through what I tell them.

I don't really know where I'm going with this post, except to say that it surprises me how badly it can still hurt sometimes, but even though it hurts I am not going to forget them. I'm not going to stop finding ways of celebrating my love for them in my daily life. I am going to hold on to what I have left with both hands, because even though that little bit is not enough, it is a part of them, and that makes it worth the pain.
4 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

I almost made myself cry today [03 Jun 2010|02:15am]

[ mood | crushed ]

Today at the gym I was without a gym buddy due to her crazy work schedule and new boyfriend. This has become a regular occurrence for the past month. And while I was on a machine working on my legs I thought to myself, "If my mom was still here she'd be the best workout buddy. She wouldn't be able to keep up with me, but she'd keep me going." And I saw a mother and daughter together on the elliptical machines and imagined my mom and I together gossiping and sharing MP3 players because I just downloaded a song she wanted.

For a minute I was lost in the what could have been. Then reality hit and I remembered that I'll never have anything like that with my mom and I nearly started crying right there at the gym. But I sucked it up and used it all to fuel the rest of my strength training and my 40 minutes of cardio.

It's been 9 years and I still have moments where I want to cry like a baby or hit things because she's gone. I can't say it's gotten better, but I can say that I've gotten better at dealing with it.

1 Tear Fell | Cry with Me?

"Always Faithful" [31 May 2010|10:51pm]

[ mood | proud ]

My father's body is buried at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.

Just his body. Once a Marine, always a Marine.

Cry with Me?

Why I hate April 5 [05 Apr 2010|02:55pm]

[ mood | sad ]

8 years ago today, my stepdad died of colon cancer.
5 years ago today, my Mom died of what was probably a massive stroke, after 10 years of early-onset Alzheimer's disease.
I have been missing my parents a lot the past week, especially with Passover, I could remember all the seders that I had with them. We even used the Maxwell House Hagadah that I grew up with on the first night.

So to get through this day, I stayed up until 3 watching Netflix and then slept until 2. I plan to go get a pedicure once I get off the computer and get dressed, and then pick up Alex from school and take him to a park. I also need to read the memorial service for the last 2 days of Passover - one reads those when one has lost a parent, and I'm fresh out of those.

Cry with Me?

[24 Mar 2010|12:09am]

1. Name: Private
2. Age:36
3. Location: California
4. Your loss(es): my Dad
5. Age when you lost your parent(s): 35
6. Age of Parent(s): 64
7. Cause of Death(s): helicopter crash
8. What do you wish to accomplish with being a member of Parent_Loss? I have no idea, maybe some insight on how others have dealt with their grief.
9. Memorable Traits about your Parent(s) you would like to share? His big blue eyes, his great smile. His love of adventure, his love for his family.
10. Photo(s) of your parent(s): maybe later.
Cry with Me?

[16 Dec 2009|02:01am]

2. Age: 26
3. Location:
4. Your loss(es): Dad
5. Age when you lost your parent(s): 26
6. Age of Parent(s): 57
7. Cause of Death(s): SUICIDE
8. What do you wish to accomplish with being a member of Parent_Loss?: Not sure.
9. Memorable Traits about your Parent(s) you would like to share?: NONE AT THIS MOMENT
Cry with Me?

[16 Dec 2009|01:59am]

1. Name: Chalon
2. Age: 25
3. Location:
4. Your loss(es): Dad
5. Age when you lost your parent(s): Just turned 23
6. Age of Parent(s): 57
7. Cause of Death(s): Leukemia & lymphoma, stem cell transplant gone horribly wrong
8. What do you wish to accomplish with being a member of Parent_Loss?: Not sure. Just want to connect with people who have gone through similar stuff. It's been over 2 years and I feel like a lot of people have forgotten. But I'm still sad.
9. Memorable Traits about your Parent(s) you would like to share?: My dad was hilarious. He'd make some inappropriate joke and my mom would get offended but I'd laugh my ass off. He was witty and quick. He made up songs for everything. He just had a way with words. And he was an excellent artist and musician. I'd post pictures of his drawings but I'm too lazy. One time I was in his office and I found a picture he'd drawn of drugs that came to life.. like, a joint and hypodermic needle with arms, legs, and silly faces. He was creative. He was industrious. He was a really good father.. always thinking of creative ways to entertain me and my friends. When I'd have a friend spend the night when I was little, he'd turn off the lights and put a flashlight in his beard, and tell scary forest stories with hand puppets.
1 Tear Fell | Cry with Me?

Healing takes time, but it happens [25 Nov 2009|12:14am]

Today was my 40th birthday.
What has made this day especially wonderful is that ever since my Mom started showing signs of Alzheimer's disease, back in 1994, my birthday has made me very depressed. For weeks in advance, I'd cry. Because my Mom always made a big deal about this day, and she couldn't share it with me anymore.
She passed away in April of 2005, at the age of 60.
Today was the first day in 15 years that I didn't even cry on my birthday. Didn't feel blue. Truly a victory.
So it does get better.
Cry with Me?

[20 Nov 2009|01:41am]

I just lost my mother. Like, less than twelve hours ago. I'm 18 years old, with a 10 and 14 year old sister. I now life with my stepfather. It's weird. you never think....Oh, I'm going to have a Just-in-case-mom-dies-today drill. I don't know what to feel. It's like I'm hoping this is a dream. But it's not, is it? My tears, my anguished screams...those were all real, weren't they? I need some help. I have never lost a family member this close before. How do I cope?
5 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

Hi all (newbie poster) [01 Jul 2009|10:47am]

1. Name: Angela
2. Age:27
3. Location:London, UK
4. Your loss(es):My mum, and My dad
5. Age when you lost your parent(s):23 and 25
6. Age of Parent(s):59 and 66
7. Cause of Death(s):Mum; left ventricular hypertrophy leading to left ventricular failure (heart failure) and Dad; Lung cancer
8. What do you wish to accomplish with being a member of Parent_Loss? The ability to discuss and adust to my mothers passing. I put my grief off as I became a caregiver to my father, I am trying to face it and need a forum to share with others who have an inkling of what I am going through
9. Memorable Traits about your Parent(s) you would like to share? My mum was literally loved by all, she broke her back for all around her, my fiance heard my cousins talking of her and was impressed with how they all loved her, my dad was called the professor by his family, he wanted to teach everyone about his passions, even if you weren't into what he was passionate about. They were both wildly intelligent and remain to this day something very hard to live up to.

Hi there

I really miss my mum, in October it will be five years. I keep replaying the night she died in my mind. I seem stuck there at times. How my last words were: "I will never leave you alone" or how she just dropped to the ground and the half open eyes staring vacantly into the mid distance. I will never forget how scared I was, how I ran through all the possibilities for her being brought back, or how after nearly an hour I gave up. Or how my father kept saying it wasn't supposed to be like this, that he was supposed to go first. Or the sweeping lonliness Ihat vcrept in and never left.

Even now I have this horrific feeling of just wanting her back, wanting the laughter and the pranks and the in jokes and the fun and the eyeing up of actors and comparing views on them, or listening to music or singing for her. Everytime I think of it all my heart breaks all over again.

My father died of Lung cancer, less than 2.5 years later, there is still a part of me that can not comprehend it all. I found him on the 9th of April having had a stroke, I had thoght that night that he hwas having odd dreams and such. I took him to the hospital and was told he had tumours in the lungs and the liver, that it had gone to the bones and responsible for his stroke, a week later after being told by social housing that I would be homeless once my dad had ceased breathing, he died. I have no siblings and was for all intents and purposes homeless. I keep wondering what he thought in his last days. he had no way to communicate.

I really want them back.

Thank you for listening to me prattle on.

Take care
1 Tear Fell | Cry with Me?

I miss you, Mom [25 Jun 2009|07:02am]

[ mood | sad ]

Dear Mom:

I woke up this morning at about 6:30 AM and I wanted to go back to sleep because I realized you are gone now. I love you so much and I miss you so much. I'm unbelievably sorry that I could not have spoken to you closer to the day that you passed away. I would have told you how much I loved you again. I would have spent more time on the phone with you. I would have just been there. I wish I had been there for you around the day that you left this world. Now, you're gone. I can't say or do anything to make this right. I just don't want to be without you. I feel like I have failed you somehow, that with your body filling up with fluid, I should have called you more and tried to reach you more. I love you, mom. Please know this. I truly love you and you will always be in my heart. I wish I knew what to expect after someone dies. I wish we knew. It seems so cruel that we do no know, that there is no obvious, scientific concrete answer. I wish there was and that the answer was the spirit is still there and sees how much everyone loved you and misses you. I wish that the answer was that you are still here and can know that I just want to hold your hand, to hug you, to laugh with you, to tell you how much you mean to me - just one more time. I just want to be there to say goodbye to you and have you hear my voice say it.

Why couldn't your birthday card have come earlier? I would have called you to thank you. I would have told you that I liked the card and that I missed you. I now remember I said that I missed you the last time I talked to you. Because it was true. I really do miss you and I will always miss you.

I don't know how I am going to go to work today. The tears just will not stop flowing and all I want to do is think about you. Well, that is all I can do. You permeate everything I do and think right now. Life is so precious, so beautiful. Oh, mom. I hope you can hear these words somehow. I hope you can hear me and feel my love for you. I just want you to know how much I loved you. We can never say it enough or show it enough.

2 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

please help [11 May 2009|04:10pm]

I lost both my parents almost 5 years ago, and I am now engaged, but I have no one to help me pay for the wedding, so we are going to have to save up for years and years to be able to get married the way we would like. I am in a contest in St. Louis to win a free wedding. If you could all just go online and vote, it only takes 5 minutes and it would mean the world to my fiance and I. Please feel free to read our story and pass it along.

Here is the link to our story: http://www.loufuszgiveaway.com/Details.aspx?wid=127

Here is the link to register to vote: www.loufuszgiveaway.com

Thank you for your time.

Cry with Me?

[15 Jan 2009|04:27pm]

Hi guys,

I'm working on a documentary about young people who, due to parental loss, have had to assume leadership roles in their families.  If this applies to you and you'd be interested in taking part, please read on.  Thank you for your time.

Are you adapting to a new family situation and the responsibility of raising your siblings that was unexpected? Are you still figuring out how to adjust? Then MTV wants to hear from you. We want to know how you work through all the everyday struggles of being left to take charge because you have suffered parental loss. This show is really about kids who have come together under amazing circumstances to support eachother. If you appear to be between the ages of 18-28 and have 2 or more siblings that you are now the guardian of, then please send us your story and contact information to raisingmysiblings@mtv.com

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Words of advice about/ for my widowed mother? [26 Dec 2008|12:50pm]

Hello there guys, I hope you don't mind my posting here.

My family lost Dad ten years ago this July. He and my Mom were 48 when he died. My brother had just turned 16, I was 18. Three days after his funeral I more or less ran away from home. There had been a long battle with cancer before his death, and my family hadn't been close in a very long time.

Now I'm 28 and living in NY, and my Mom's 58 and still in Memphis. I try to call her every now and then, and I've come back at least once a year to visit, mostly for Christmas. My brother stayed in town, and now lives at Mom's parents' old house. He obviously sees her more than I do, but not much.

We both know Mom's lonely, but this past visit I've realized that if anything she seems farther away from happiness now than she was ten years ago, and I don't know what to do about it. read moreCollapse )

Any words of advice you can give me would be tremendously helpful. If you've got some encouraging words for Mom, I'll send them along. Either way, thanks for listening.

2 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

Its almost Christmas Mom [24 Dec 2008|05:46am]

I think of how hard my mom worked each holiday to insure I had gifts under the tree as a child. I now have my own lil girl, I'd like to think mom will be watching her, as her guardian angel, on Christmas and every day. Merry Christmas Mom.

I lost my mom this year and looking for people who relate.
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3 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

Newbie. [28 Nov 2008|09:05pm]

1. Name: Leanne
2. Age:35
3. Location: Sydney, Australia
4. Your loss(es): My Mum at age 5 and Dad at age 32.
5. Age when you lost your parent(s):1 above
6. Age of Parent(s): Mum - 37 and Dad - 67
7. Cause of Death(s): Mum - accidental overdose of sleeping/anti-anxiety meds, Dad - Emphasemia/respiratory failure.
8. What do you wish to accomplish with being a member of Parent_Loss?  To be somewhere where someone one understands.  I often feel a bit stupid that I am still devistated that I lost my Dad. 
9. Memorable Traits about your Parent(s) you would like to share?  I can't remember my Mum which is a huge loss for me. My Dad was a larrikin and heaps of fun.  He was open to people and helping people even though he had nothing.

my belovedsCollapse )

1 Tear Fell | Cry with Me?

I'm gonna say it... [26 Nov 2008|09:29pm]

cuz we're all thinking it.
Holidays suck ass.
Thanksgiving is not Thanksgiving without my mom in the kitchen.
I hate the holidays season. All those happy people with whole happy families getting together for holiday dinners and crap can all just fuck off.
sorry. i don't really mean that. I am just bitter because I get to spend holidays alone.
4 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

,,, [16 Nov 2008|04:30am]

wow...just...one  of those nights it doesn't feel real. he's...he can't be gone. he's supposed to be here. i'm not supposed to be planning music at my wedding to 'dedicate' to him. i'm sorry..this is kind of a pointless post...i'm sorry. one of the most touching movie scenes i ever saw was from 'the king and i' where they put candles on the water to guide the spirit to heaven. i don't think i'd cried so hard in a long time. i just want him back...it's so...ungodly scary without him here...there's a huge part of me missing and i feel like a fake...everything after that point is about trying to fill that space...

thnx4listening though... =)

2 Tears Fell | Cry with Me?

[09 Nov 2008|03:56am]

[ mood | angry ]

I am so UNBEARABLY angry at my father for the way he has behaved since my mothers death and for his choice for my mothers "replacement" that it is eating me up inside. This anger has been building for almost 7 years and it resides in a dark horrible place inside me and I have no idea what to do with it. If I tell him why I am angry I will undoubtedly lose him forever and then I will really feel like an orphan, even more so than I feel now. The fact that he never grieved for my Mother and instead moved that woman into my mothers home, my mothers bed, 3 weeks after my mothers death is so insulting to my mother, to the concept of marriage, to love, to the term soulmates!! I will never believe in love again because of him. I stood quietly by, defended him even because he "loves" this second rate excuse for a woman. My family fell apart, chose sides and I stuck with him. Almost my entire family disowned me because of that. And now I realize that I chose the wrong side and I am left without a family. My father barely speaks to me anymore because she knows I don't like her and he had to choose sides. And the stupid thing is we all pretend that its not happening. I spend holidays alone because of that woman. She has single handedly torn apart my family from the inside out. And she doesn't even care. My hatred for her and my anger at him feels like a thick black poison pulled from somewhere so deep inside, I had no idea I was capable of feelings this evil.

Sorry if this is ranty and rambly. I just couldn't sleep and had to try and vomit up some of this awful black anger.

1 Tear Fell | Cry with Me?

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