My son's death

aryche

My son passed away from cancer 3 weeks ago tonight. I am so depressed that I don't want to do anything, talk to anyone or go any place. He was a much-loved teacher and coach...so much so that his visitation and funeral were held in the high school gym. I kept telling him that he was going to be OK, but he wasn't. I just feel that I lied to him and let him down. People just don't understand this and tell me that I didn't. They are WRONG! I just don't know what to do.

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bleusblue2

I understand you. Right now you are going over and over everything that happened up to the end. People tell you you are not Guilty and you know you would do the same and try to make them feel better so you don't believe them. We all have things we wish we had done but it isn't either or. For me, the things I felt guilty about, I thought and thought about them. Sometimes I can tell myself that this is how it was meant to be. I did so many good things, so many right things, but I can't control the whole world and make everybody safe and happy. I went over and over it and prayed and prayed. I still pray and I still weep. I have regrets, big regrets, but I try not to let myself go there. I know I did my best but I want to have been better, much much better. You never wished him harm, imperfect you tried your best. Mostly I think about where he (my husband) is and I pray for him to be in beauty with great understanding. Almost every after death communication I've read about, the survivor is told that the loved one is OK. They see things in a different way. They are with God. If you don't believe in this Creator, it's still alright -- we are part of a big understanding universe. Try to think of that.

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sylviatexas1

I'm so sorry.

wise words from bleusblue2.

Your son knew you loved him, & he knew that your reassurances were meant to comfort him in the face of certain defeat.

Your words reassured him of your love for him;

his acceptance of your words, not insisting that you "face the facts", etc, reassures you of his love for you.

Take care of yourself.

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jhmarie

Do you think if you could speak with your son he would be forgiving or angry? You sound like you loved each other very much. I could never be mad at my mom for holding out hope for me and I think your son would not be angry either. Do you think he did not know how hard this was for you? Do not underrate him, it does him a disservice.

I recently read a book and it reflected what bleusblue said - about those with near death experiences and the place of incredible beauty and love they experienced. You will surly miss your lovely son, but in that place of incredible love and forgiveness, he will see only the depth of a mother's love, not any failings.

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mama goose_gw zn6OH

He is OK--the pain is gone. I'm so sorry for your loss, but jhmarie's last sentence says it all. Please forgive what you feel are your failings, and allow yourself to live life as he would have wanted--just as you'd have wanted him to live, if you were the one taken. What a good person he must have been. Cherish those memories and be grateful for the wonderful memories that others have, knowing he'll never be forgotten. I wish you peace.

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dondibklyn25

I understand your pain. My 31 year old son choked to death on Father's Day in a restaurant with my husband and myself present. My husband and 2 others did Heimlich, my son looked at me with panic in his eyes and I could not help him, I am haunted by this. He fell unconscious while we were looking at each other. EMTs could not save him. I am haunted by the whole scene and feel like I died and am just breathing. I feel I let him down. My house is full of memories and I become hysterical every day. I don't want to go outside, talk, or see anybody, I just want my son back, he didn't get a chance at a life, I am angry that I am still alive and he was taken. The pain is unending and unbearable.

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sylviatexas1

Dondi, I am so sorry.

You've experienced a nightmare as well as a profound loss,.

It was an accident.

Accidents happen in cars, in the bathroom, in homes, & even though we don't often think about it, let alone expect it, in dining rooms.

You did the best thing possible, your husband did the best thing possible, the paramedics did the best *most expert* things possible.

It was an accident, & everyone applied their best, most heroic efforts, & tragically, even all those efforts couldn't save your dear son; he died from an accident.

It wasn't long ago, & the images are still too vivid for you to "move on", as if that's an option, but for the time being, please get busy & stay busy.

Even though you don't want to leave the house...leave the house.

The pain is too fresh, & the memories too strong,, for it to be anything but agony to stay inside that house.

When I don't want to do something (or anything!), it helps to obligate myself;

if I want to start an exercise program, I don't really want to do that, so I pair up with a neighbor or friend to go to exercise class.

If I feel mopey, & I don't want to put on shoes & put one foot in front of the other, I tell the dog that I will take her for an extra-long walk.

I know that sounds silly, but if *I* understand that I've made a commitment, it doesn't matter if she doesn't understand it.

I am so sorry you lost your dear son, & I wish you the best.

Take care of yourself.

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dondibklyn25

Dear Sylvia,

Thank you for responding to me.

I am trying to do what you suggest but I feel so weak and terrified. I am on medications and seeing a doctor but I think I am still in a state of shock. I naively thought I guess these tragedies happen to others and God only gives you what you can handle. I have been out of work since(5 weeks on vacation , I only have 15 sick days left. I work as a secretary to the assistant principal of discipline in a high school and am surrounded and dealing with troubled teens all day long. My son was very troubled since he was 17 and his father and I have been taking care of him all these years. I'm afraid that being with the kids all day at work may be a daily painful reminder of my poor son's existence before he passed. I am seeing my doctor on Wednesday. I am very grateful to you Sylvia for your touching response and reaching out to me. Dondo

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sail_away

I am so sorry. I, too, lost a son and beloved daughter-in-law several years ago. The sense of loss and pain never goes away completely, but it is especially acute for you right now. Please be patient with yourself. Each person's grief is very personal and different from an other's experience. Looking back and second guessing things is a common reaction, I think, even though it's not productive and serves no real purpose. It's just part of the process for many. I did find that, over time, I could dismiss those second thoughts when they would come, but it wasn't easy and I wasn't always successful. Each of us has to find a way to allow ourselves to grieve yet not give up on our own life---easier said than done. It just takes time. I don't subscribe to the theory that time heals all wounds, especially such a profound loss; but time does help blunt the pain and ease us back into life. Eventually moving on with our lives does NOT mean we are "over" the loss and didn't love that person very, very much. It just means we accept the reality of their death and manage to keep living in spite of it. For a very long time I found no real joy in life, but I went through the motions. Over time, I've found that there were moments of joy and those moments were experienced more frequently as more time passed. The pain is always there and will come up, sometimes at the most inconvenient times; but I've learned to accept this, too, as a part of my life and not let it entirely rob me of joy with the family and friends I still have around me. You're not there yet, and probably won't be for some time. My heart goes out to you---no parent is equipped to deal with such heartache.

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dondibklyn25

Thank you sail away for your hopeful response. This pain and guilt I am feeling has frozen me. I am grieving over his sudden loss but also the painful, troubled existence he lived for the last 10 years. We were not able to cure him or help him get what he wanted and tried everything with doctors and medications. I kept trying to reassure him that his life may turn around, even though in my heart I felt there was little hope of that, just in hopes of keeping him going. I feel I failed him terribly. I spent the last decade trying to protect and help him and now he is gone. I wish I could see him finally happy and at peace with God, I just keep praying that he is there with The Lord in Heaven.

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bleusblue2

http://www.adcrf.org/index.html

click on "experiences" There is a short paragraph about each experience and you can click on the name and read the entire experience.

I hesitate to give this website to someone I don't know. I look at it a few times a week. People tell their experiences with those in the afterlife. It is not a kooky site but very matter of fact reports. Those who pass on are OK. Does this help me with similar feelings of regret and guilt when I think of the way my husband passed? Well, reading about those experiences distracts me and I like to think that he doesn't care now about those hard times. I still wish I could have changed something in those last months but that isn't possible. And I can tell you that at first I thought about it every day, all day for months. Eventually life starts to take over. It subsides.

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dondibklyn25

Thank you for your thoughts and sharing the information about the website. Your statement of eventually life takes over again was comforting to me. I offer my prayers and sympathy for your husband's passing and your pain.

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imbubblee

I AM So sorry for your loss! The loss of my other half in 2002 is STILL devastating, I can not even bare to imagine the loss of a child at any age.

But I raised 6 of my own, and was involved with the welfare of many others.... as mothers we hold that darling, needy thing and commit in our hearts to protect and love, and sacrifice whatever we must for their benefit. We will fight ferociously for them, lift cars and tear down walls! They simply accept what we give them with no question that our motive could be less than all you have for their care.

However, there are times that our will fails against that of the universes. I have not tasted the bitterness of your loss, but I do know the agony and guilt that comes form the knowledge my failure left my child damaged. At times I cannot escape the pain of deep regret and guilt, full of self contempt, but he doesn't even feel it's my fault. We can only do our best with the understanding we have at that time. And there is NOTHING we can do to change the past.

Hope feeds the will to live, hope is not a lie, my dear, even when it didn't produce the results hoped for. You must forgive yourself, if it had ever been in your power to change, your ferocious mother's love would have done just that. Your son loves you, and he forgives you, not because he was wronged, but because he wants you free of undeserved guilt.

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dondibklyn25

Thank you for understanding the agony a mother feels seeing her child's life becoming painful. I am sorry for your loss and hope you find strength with your son and pray that God will help him.

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JoAnn_Fla

I am so sorry for your loss. Its very common to beat ourselves up after someone dies. I also have so many regrets like all of us do. Please don't do it. They know we were not at fault. We cannot change the past. Just ask God to give you peace about it. It will get better with time. It may help you to write a letter to your son and tell him how you feel, pour your heart out and put the letter away or burn it.

Hugs and better days ahead.

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dondibklyn25

Thank you Jo Ann for reaching out and am praying for strength for my husband and myself everyday.

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JoAnn_Fla

That's all we can do.

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dondibklyn25

Yes, and hope time allows the grief to become bearable.

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