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Nan died; guilt and longing/I'm in agony

(7 Posts)
HestonsFatCock Wed 23-Jan-13 12:18:06

My Nan died last Monday.
I am crying every day, alot and it feels so unbearable.

I moved away from home years ago, got married, job children and saw her less and less. I didn't go back home for Christmas because of my job(busiest period)/kids/exhaustion.

I want to turn the clock back and see her again, be kinder than I was to her and hold her close. I did go to see her in hospital the week before she died, she had loads of love and company, but I feel like retching. This has hit me like a train and I don't know where to go with it.

I am forty and Nan was a big part of our childhoods. I have never had a loss as big as this and I can't imagine ever being happy and guilt free again.

The funeral is on Friday and people are saying it really helps. I really can't imagine it.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 23-Jan-13 16:52:07

I am very sorry, she must have been a very loving presence during your childhood. Are you able to talk to another adult, do you have a close friend you can unburden to? Don't be afraid of showing your grief. The funeral must seem awful but in a strange way it can help. It is a form of social ritual so that it's an official farewell and others will be there who will have known and appreciated her. It may be that those arranging it suggest not wearing black, or perhaps carry a small token that is in a colour she loved. You may not be able to manage a reading for her, but lots will be said afterwards.

Of course it doesn't mean everyone then stops thinking about her or missing her. But you know a part of her will always be inside you. She knew you so well from when you were a tot, she would never want to hear you say you feel guilty or suffer a moment's anguish. Mourning her is part of it, wasting time regretting the past or chastising yourself isn't what you want to focus on.

HestonsFatCock Wed 23-Jan-13 20:54:59

Thanks Donkeys. I suppose I will get through it but it has been a hard few days home alone while DH and the kids are at work and school and i am at the other end of the country from my parents. I really loved her, but she got older and quieter and faded into the back ground as my life with kids and the distance between us took over sad so that upsets me.
I have never cried so much in my life as I have over the past ten days.

Have you been through it?

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 23-Jan-13 21:34:00

Both my parents gone ahead of their time and PILs in 70s, so unluckier than many. Grandparents long gone. Do feel sorry for DCs as we were small families to begin with and feel very conscious they are missing out.

It seeems very final but strangely things remind us of them in some way or other at least once a week. It can be something like a song or news item or a chance remark. My mum used to smell scent her GM wore. I don't know if you have faith to comfort you but can't help thinking there must be more than this. Consoles me to think my DCs carry some part of those we love on into the future.

Be kind to yourself Hestons.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 25-Jan-13 16:07:48

Thinking of you today Hestons hope you coped at the funeral.

NatzCNLS Sun 27-Jan-13 21:50:33

Hello Hestons, I hope Friday was a release for you? I too was at my Nan's funeral on Friday, she died 4th Jan.

I had very similar feelings of guily, loss and pain. My Nan was a huge part of my childhood and I loved her so much. I was lucky enough to spend more time with her when my DC came along as I quit my job and began working from home.

My DC's got Chicken Pox in October, then colds, then Sickness bug so I hadn't actually seen her for 2 months before she died. I visited her in hospital 2 days before she passed away, and she was so happy to see me. She even recognised me (Nan suffered with Altzheimers in the last 5 years of her life).

I promised her that we would get her home, and I honestly believed we would. I'm still heartbroken. She was looking forward to the kids visiting and said she would replenish her fruit bowl - they always had loads of fruit every time we visited.

The funeral was very surreal, but it allowed me a release. Im still hurting, but I do feel like Ive woken up from a very long sleep. It is still ongoing for us as the hospital where she died had to investigate her death due to her dying of reasons unrelated to her being admitted to hospital. Turns out it was due to neglect on the hospitals part. We had put in a formal complaint about her care 2 days before she died. I am now consentrating on persuing that complaint.

Im sorry this turned into a me post! I just wanted to reach out to someone who was going through the same thing. I lost my Grandads 8 years ago, and as painful as that was, I just always felt my nan would be here forever. But now she's gone, and I feel lost.

HestonsFatCock Mon 28-Jan-13 17:14:02

Thanks, Donkeys and Natz. I am touched you remembered Donkeys and it really helps to talk about it on here.

Sorry for your loss Natz, that must be really hard, having unresolved issues. We torture ourselves enough when a loved one goes. I know you promised her you would get her out of hospital, but that is so much more positive, even if it didn't work out like that. My nan was talking about when she was going home in hospital and I am glad she believed that, rather than thinking, "I am going to die in here".

The funeral definitely wasn't the worst day and I managed to read out a little homily to Nan that we prepared (I have three younger sisters). I was determined to do it, and I got a round of applause at the end. The priest also rounded up the funeral with a round of applause for my Nan too, so that was really sweet and fitting.

Cause of death was COPD (she smoked, but didn't die before her time at the age of 84) and breast cancer, which she'd had treatment for some years ago. I am not sure if it came back, or if she knew and didn't tell anyone. I hope the latter isn't true, but I don't think she would have kept it to herself.

I invited her to come and stay with me in December (I am three hours away by car), but she said "No", because her back was so bad. It wasn't like Nan to turn down a family social opportunity, so I guess it was her time to go. She was old and tired and we have been lucky to have her in our lives. I am forty and of course, I knew old people died, but I didn't see Nan as old. I remember her being a young granny and up until now, death has always been such an abstract concept.

I still want to turn back the clock; looking back at Christmas seems pretty hollow now, but I don't feel as bad as I did. It's been two weeks today since she died and I talk to her all the time in my head. If she can hear me, she'll be sick of me.

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