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Finding space to prepare for and mourn the death of a parent when you have young children who take much of your time and energy?

(10 Posts)
Twozealotmorethan1 Mon 16-Jan-17 16:37:39

Just this really. My mum has been in intensive care for two weeks now and while there's still a possibility she may recover, it's looking increasingly unlikely.
I'm finding dealing with the whole situation stressful and overwhelming not least because I have a baby and a pre-schooler who are being their usual selves (albeit very adaptable) and who are needing me in all the usual ways. I am easily irritated and so tired and wish I had more space to deal with the awful situation my mum is in and with the likely scenario that we will lose her soon.
My children keep me going just about but equally they feel like a responsibility I could do without right now. I know that sounds harsh but I am drained and wish I could just lie in a dark room until this is all over and only come out for visiting hours at the hospital.
And when the worst does happen, how do you find the space to grieve when your baby needs you to breastfeed them every few hours even through the night and your pre-schooler is making the usual demands and having the usual options whines over relatively unimportant (to me) things? And life just goes on?! It's so so hard. I feel awful feeling like this about my dear children.

ReluctantlyRedundant101 Mon 16-Jan-17 20:28:50

Oh Twozealot this was me a few months ago I have a two year old & my dad was terminally ill and subsequently died. It's a dreadfully difficult situation because you want to focus on the person who is dying but your children are so small & need you too (although I think they understand more than we realise) and you need time to process and grieve and come to terms with what's happening. I found that I had to just tune out a bit sometimes even if it was just looking In the shops on my own for an hour is there anyway you could do something like that? You have nothing to feel guilty about its perfectly natural to feel the way you do.
So sorry for what you're going through flowers

ReluctantlyRedundant101 Mon 16-Jan-17 20:34:39

Also meant to say that there really is no preparation for what is about to happen I thought I was prepared but when the end comes it will still be a shock. You might see your children as a distraction you may be glad of then

Meffy Mon 16-Jan-17 20:36:54

My mum died quickly. She was DC with lung cancer and died 5 weeks later.
We live 230 miles away and visited and she died the weekend we visited. On the Friday she was getting up and down stairs on her own then on the Saturday she need help to go the loo!
Sunday pm she died.

I've got 3 kids aged 7,5 & 3 at the time. Luckily my brother lives 2 doors away so the kids stayed there with my DH while o nursed my mum.

We went home about 10 after she died and having the kids to keep me busy was the best thing (I've got a disabled son who is tube fed and basically functions like a 2 year old)
The kids help focus your mind but then you need time to yourself to grieve .... I used to walk the kids to the bus stop for school and then walk back crying my eyes out!
Time is a healer .... but you need to go past the year of firsts!!!
Love and best wishes to you all!!

guest2013 Tue 17-Jan-17 22:58:28

I'm in a similar position. My dad is dying of cancer and I've just had my third baby. I'm exhausted all the time.. I'm wondering who is going to look after my children when it happens as I know I won't be in any state to in the immediate aftermath.
I feel almost left out as my childless brother is spending so much time with my dad and I obviously can't because of the baby. I need my mum and she's totally wrapped up in caring for my dad understandably! It's just a totally shit situation! Thinking of you xxx

Twozealotmorethan1 Sat 21-Jan-17 13:02:02

Sadly my mum died yesterday in the ITU. She was unable to survive once off the ventilator due to her underlying heart and lung issues. She was made comfortable and passed peacefully surrounded by her closest family. We are bereft and broken.

Thanks for your posts and sorry for others who are going through similar 💐

ReluctantlyRedundant101 Sat 21-Jan-17 17:07:26

So sorry for your loss Twoze hope you can find a way through flowers

Twozealotmorethan1 Tue 24-Jan-17 17:08:44

Struggling with this at the moment. Just feel I need a couple of days of nobody needing me but with a BF baby and a pre-schooler too, it's not going to happen anytime soon.
I would love some headspace and rest but can't think how to make this happen. Baby is an awful sleeper which doesn't help.

ReluctantlyRedundant101 Tue 24-Jan-17 18:09:27

No it doesn't help (I spent the night before my dads funeral in the spare bed so I could get a decent nights sleep as I too have a shit sleeping toddler). Can you even get small breaks during the day? Even an hour or so to get a coffee or look round the shops would help. Do you have support of other friends or family? If so when they say "let me know if you need anything" say "yes can you take the kids for an hour".
flowers for you. Totally shit time

EsmesBees Sat 11-Feb-17 08:45:25

It's a horrible time twoze. I had a similar experience, my DD was 10m when my mum got the terminal diagnosis and 19m when she died, and I was just pregnant with no2. It's really hard finding time for yourself. I used to do my crying on the commute home. People stared on the tube but I didn't care. But there is something life affirming about being around very small children, plus you have to keep going for them, so you do.

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