Almost 1 year and feeling like a horrible person(3 Posts)
On Wednesday it will be 1 year since my dad passed away after a short battle with cancer.
He was diagnosed at the end of Septemer and although we knew it was terminal (lung cancer that had already spread to the brain), I don't think I fully understood just how little time he had left.
When he was diagonsed I was 7 months pregnant and we were living with my parents while our new house was completed. My approach to dealing with it was to compartmentalise - I knew I couldn't deal with this and being pregnant and living with them without putting my thoughts and feelings into a little box and locking them away. This worked in a sense and it meant that while my mum, dad and brother struggled with things, I was the one who spoke to the consultants etc as I had the most level head.
I really, really struggled with what to say to dad though. He struggled with the diagnosis but I never saw him cry or get upset but he did become a bit distant - especially with me and a bit snappy which as a hormonal pregnant woman didn't work well.
My biggest regret is that I didn't reach out to him more. I didn't hug him more, or tell him that I was sorry. I kept my emotions in their little box.
When we moved out in November things were manic - had a new house to organise and then after only 18 days in the new house the baby was here. Dad seemed to be rallying and I was in that manic new baby phase.
As a result of that and the fact that we now lived 30 miles away, I didn't see my dad as much as I should have. He went down hill and was in and out of hospital so I visited him a couple of times a week (baby wasn't allowed in the ward according to nurses).
Other than when he came to visit me in the hospital, I think he saw his granddaughter another 3 or 4 times in the 7 weeks before he died which is pants. I should have made more of an effort to take her to him but things were so manic, she was so young, the weather was awful.
I was reading through old text messages and on on occassion he sad he'd like to see the wee one soon as it would cheer him up and my response was so snarky - "I'm not dragging her out in this, it's too much for her". What a horrid, horrid cow I was. But I didn't know!! I didn't realise he'd be gone so soon because I don't think mentally I could cope or even concieve of the world where my wonderful, amazing dad wouldn't exist.
He was the funniest, kindest most giving man I've ever met and he's not here. And I made his final days sadder by being so distant and he didn't deserve it. He didn't deserve to get cancer because he never did a bad thing in his life - he spent his time running after everyone else and deserved to have a long retirement playing golf, drinking whiskey, watching rugby and playing with his grandaughter.
I'm not a crier - I didn't cry at the funeral, or when he died - partly because I wanted to be strong for my mum who was, and still is a wreck. But I'm crying now and I should have let him see me cry when he was diagnosed but I wanted to be the strong one.
It all seems so pointless now. I just wish I could tell him I'm sorry and do things differently - but I didn't know!
Kitkat i am sorry for your loss.You are not a horrible person you did what was right at the time with so much to deal with.Moving house and having a baby are major life events then you have the fact your much loved dad has died,Im sure when my dad does die (he is terminal 3 yr battle with cancer) i will wish i hadnt worked so much as ive started a new job however no one knows how long they have do they.Look after yourself and your new baby.
You know, I'm certain your lovely dad knew just how much you loved him. You were his daughter, part of you. He knew how you coped with situations snd he would have realised just how much you had on your plate.
Please believe me.
He wouldn't want you crying. He would want you remembering him and all the wonderful times you had.
Start writing about your dad, fill a book with photo's of him for your baby so she will one day be able to read all about her lovely grandad.
Have you had counselling?
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