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A death in the family

(28 Posts)
bananasmoothie Sun 18-Feb-07 21:43:28

I'll try and be brief...

4 years ago my uncle (then 38) was diagnosed with a brain tumour, alot of cancer can be cured now, this tumour however turned out to be one of the most aggressive types of brain tumour and he was given 10 years max to live.

2 Years ago he had a scan and his life expectancy was cut down to two years.

Obviously we were all mortified but he seemed to be doing ok, he was out and about, went on a few holidays etc...

Last August however his 2 years were officially "up" and he was, from then on, living on "borrowed time".

Just before christmas he took a turn for the worst and was sent into hospital suffering from various problems...whilst in hospital he collapsed (suspected stroke) and lost the feeling in his right side, leg and arm. From here on he was bed ridden.

Over christmas he came home, he would seem to improve one minute and then go back down again the next...he never really got over it but gave it his best shot, he had a laugh and joke with everyone etc...the family managed to get him his own bungalow near his mum (my grandmother) and family meaning someone was always with him 24/7 but he had a "Kind of" independance in the shape of his own home...he loved the bungalow.

Anyway, last week he was taken into hospital with a chest infection, due to the chemo he was on it rapidly turned into pneumonia and his health went down hill quickly, I went to see him 2 weeks ago, he was unwell but still having a laugh, talking about his trip to New York etc and the time he was asked to sell his wife in Egypt!

Yesterday I recieved a phonecall from my mum, he was very poorly, heavy breathing, in pain etc but they were still talking about "when he gets better..."

Today I recieved a phonecall from my distraught mum, he'd died. Aged 42.

I held it together whilst on the phone, cried when she'd hung up, settled down again...

A few hours later she phoned me back and told me ALL the details of his death, how he cried in agony, how he was so scared he soiled himself, how he knew he was dying and he was petrified, as he struggled with his last breath....I lost it this time and cried, since this I can't stop thinking about him dying in agony, my poor grandparents holding their sons hand as he passed away crying, the comment my mum told me about which was said as he lie there dead "goodbye love, we'll see you soon..."

It's so unfair why him? I feel so powerless, how can he be laughing with me one minute and dying in agony the next? why?

And now I keep thinking about some photo's I promised him that I never actually took him as I kept forgetting, how bad is that?

I still have a birthday card to my son from him on my mantel piece...that's how sudden it was.

Sorry for the whinge, we knew he would die, we knew it would be soon but it doesn't make it any easier, fairer etc... my other uncle gave him a shave after he'd left us before the undertaker got there I just feel so sad.

Hulababy Sun 18-Feb-07 21:49:16

I am so sorry

littlelapin Sun 18-Feb-07 21:49:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SturdyAngel Sun 18-Feb-07 21:51:39

I'm sorry for your loss. There is nothing anyone can say to make you feel any better.

I lost my aunt to cancer just over 2 years ago. I cried every day for months. Gradually I stopped crying and am able to think about her without crying. I still get tearful when I talk about her but it is easier now. The cliche "time heals" is, in some parts true.

Don't feel guilty about not taking the photos, I was supposed to phone my aunt the day before she died but I forgot- it was a couple of days after Christmas and we were so busy. Seems such a rubbish excuse. I felt bad for ages and still do but it doesn't matter. She knew how much I loved her and I'm sure your uncle knew how much he meant to you.

pinkchampagne Sun 18-Feb-07 21:53:09

I'm so sorry.x

piscesgirl Sun 18-Feb-07 21:55:08

I am so sad to read your message. xxxxxxx

Eddas Tue 20-Feb-07 15:44:58

Sorry to hear of your loss. So many people now a days are affected by cancer and I know of very few people who dont know someone who has died from it.

My mum died 4 years ago of cancer. I just wanted to say that at least you all had those precious few years with him. I'm sure he brought alot to your lives as you did to his. Don't think about what you didn't do but what you did do. In time you will be able to put those thoughts about his death to the back of your mind. You won't forget but they will be less important. Try to remember all the good things and if you can try to remember him before the illness.

My mum was diagnosed as terminally ill on 9th June 2003 and died exactly 7 weeks later on 28 July 2003. She was told she had months to live. I believe that in a way it was good that it was so sudden. I hate to think of anyone suffering.

Try to be strong for your mum and grandparents, they need you right now

bananasmoothie Tue 20-Feb-07 16:08:41

Thanks for the replies, it's his funeral on Monday so I'll post again then. x

MadameSleepsLessAndLess Tue 20-Feb-07 16:21:57

bananasmoothie, just came across your post. I am very sorry for your loss. My sympathies to you & your family

OrmIrian Tue 20-Feb-07 16:25:12

So sorry banana

DimpledThighs Tue 20-Feb-07 16:31:48

bananasmoothie - I am so sorry to read baout your loss = for you and your whole family. How very terrible.

It sounds like the end was awful but often in your posts you mentioning him 'laughing and joking' and he sounds like a wonderful happy character.

The end was a tiny part of 42 years and although it is torture to dwell on it allow yourself to think of him 'being asked to sell his wife in Egypt' and all the good times too.

I will think of you today.

madmarchhare Tue 20-Feb-07 16:32:30

Hey, just because you 'knew' it doesnt make it any easier.

Im sure it will be of great comfort to your grandparents to know that they have such a cading family around them at this time.

madmarchhare Tue 20-Feb-07 16:33:09

caring, sorry.

fizzbuzz Tue 20-Feb-07 16:42:51

Try and take some comfort from the fact he had his family there at the end, at least he wasn't alone.

I know how hard it is.

Pavlovthecat Tue 20-Feb-07 16:45:36

I am so so sorry to hear your sad news about your uncle. My mum died three weeks ago (almost 4), and although it was 'expected' as she had aggressive cancer, diagnosed 8 months ago, it came earlier than expected and was very very hard to handle, esp as my first child is 7 months old. I like you had the news before she died that she was unwell, got to say goodbye though luckily for me. However when the call came in the middle of the night, I was still shocked.

It is very hard, and you are right, it does not make it fair, just because it was expected. In a way I think it is sometimes harder, because we know know what is happening.

I take great consolation in knowing that my mum is now at peace, in no more pain. I hope you are able to find some comfort in that soon. If you need to chat, I am here.
Sending you big hugs xx

fizzbuzz Tue 20-Feb-07 16:55:07

My mum died 10 months ago of pneumonia. I was 28 weeks pregnant at the time.

I got to say goodbye...I just try to think of her somewhere happy now.

Thinking of you x

Pavlovthecat Tue 20-Feb-07 16:56:51

(fizzbuzz that must have been so hard for you...)

onlyjoking9329 Tue 20-Feb-07 17:06:30

sorry to hear about your uncle,42 is so young, i don't know if it's any easier to know that someone is goning to die, cos i think it will still be a shock anyway.
be kind to yourself and i will think about you on monday.
my DH has a brain tumour.

fizzbuzz Tue 20-Feb-07 19:39:44

God, isn't life an absolute bastard at times?

Thinking of you onlyjoking as well as all the other people on this thread.


bananasmoothie Wed 21-Feb-07 23:01:12

Thanks again for the replies,

Pavlovthecat and fizzbuzz, I'm sorry to hear about your mums my father died 10 years ago, his was extremely sudden, a brain haemorage (sp?) and it makes you so scared that someone else will be struck down with similar

OnlyJoking, sorry to hear about your DH, I will be thinking of you both...

To make things worse now my mum feels that the family are not including her in anything, they have all been to his bungalow sorting out what they want to keep to remind them of him and have told her she can have his videos which she isnt happy about so I now have her slagging the family off to me and saying she doesnt want anything to do with them after the funeral. I do see why she's upset but it adds to the strain.

On top of this my uncles family are arguing with my family about his money and who's entitled to what, his son has even threatened to attack my aunt. It gets worse by the day.

Pavlovthecat Thu 22-Feb-07 08:05:34

Banana, again some experience here. It seems that arguments at this very raw time are inevitable.
I am currently having some 'space' from my sister who has been truly horrible and funnily enough it has evolved around possessions, who has what. I wont go into details but I have been told by others who have lost some-one close to them that it is very common for people to fall out at this time and I have been promised it will get easier as emotions soften a little and people can view things more clearly. It is because of this that I have avoided telling my sister what I currently think of her and her behaviour. Maybe some people focus on the material things in order to try to cope with the immense emotional overload. Something real to deal with?
I am so sorry things are so rotten for you right now.
Sounds like you need a big 'hug' so sending one to you...(((hug)))

Pavlovthecat Thu 22-Feb-07 08:06:43

Onlyjoking, thinking of you too.

fizzbuzz Thu 22-Feb-07 09:44:24

Can't they let it wait a month or so, and then sort everything out? Emotions are so raw at a time like this, and you need to pull back from acting on impulse. It is awful I know.

My brother and I have just had the probate finalised 10 months after my mum died. So you can see you have a long time to sort things out. Did he not leave a will?

I really really feel for you. To have family bickering at a time like this must be hideous, but is unfortunately commonplace. You really need to suport each other at this time.

Thinking of you x

fizzbuzz Thu 22-Feb-07 09:46:21

also, your mum is saying she is being left out. With bereavement I have found you get a feeling of aloneness and isolation. I wonder if this is what is really affecting your mum.

Pavlovthecat Thu 22-Feb-07 09:55:02

I agree Fizzbuzz. Grief is so very personal and lonely, because it is about you and it is hard to think of others feeling that way too. I feel it with my mum going, as although I want to be there for my family, I also want to feel the loss of my mum myself, i miss her, i feel desperately sad...
Its such a horrible horrible period in our life when someone we love passes on.
I do hope things improve...

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