Does anyone have any ideas for coping with the overwhelming grief I have following the loss of my beautiful 60yo Mum to breast cancer just three weeks ago today. I have organised for counselling but was interested to hear from others in the same situation. Thanks.
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I lost my Mum in October last year and it is still very fresh, so 3 weeks it is very hard indeed. I have a 30 year old daughter and I found that sharing our memories of Mum was a lovely think to do - the funny things, good things, sad things. Thoughts of what she would say in certain situations kept jumping into our heads, about the ordinary things of life - looking after yourself, family, organising your money etc. So we started writing these down and it felt as though we were keeping her voice with us. On her birthday we cooked a dinner from her recipe box and with all the immediate family there including boyfriends(noone was left out - one of her favourite things) had a delicious dinner and celebrated all the good meals she had cooked for us. Another thing I did was to go to the sea - walk to a very wild place where the sea swelled and crashed against the rocks and 'gave it my feelings'. The sea seemed big enough to take them Grief is such an individual thing - these may not be helpful at all. I hope it goes well for you Freeasabutterfly! It is a good name to be moving forward with!
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Hi FreeAsAButterfly,

We've heard from many carers how hard this time can be. There are many ways of dealing with it. You might like to look at our resources on Coping with Grief for carers here.

It's important in this early stage to find someone you can talk to and tell your story (even here on this site). This time can be hard because those close to you can appear to have gotten on with their normal life, and the challenge for you will be to find fresh ears, someone who will listen to your story for the first time. This might help you to prepare to see the counsellor.

Best wishes

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Good advice. Thank you so much. 🙂
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Thak you so much for that. Im having a pretty bad down day today and hope that the grief counselling next week is going to help. Im exhausted with sadness. Thanks for your comments. xox
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FreeAsAButterfly, I'm so touched by your story. Last night marked three weeks since I lost my Dad to lung cancer. He was only 69 - too young to die. Isn't it always? Our story is probably not unlike that of so many families and friends of a loved-one with cancer. Dad was first diagnosed on 16 June last year. By mid-December he'd come through Chemo and Radio with flying colours and was told the original cancer site was now 100% clear - it was the greatest Christmas our family has ever had! What we didn't know is that metastisis had already started. The cells were too small to be seen at that stage, so there's no way anyone would've been able to tell him then, but by mid-February it had already started playing havoc with Dad's hips. On 6 March, his Oncologist told us there were new spots evident on Dad's liver and in his chest bones. My Dad died just 16 days later. Even the staff at the Palliative Care hospice were surprised at how quickly Dad's condition deteriorated; he was always a man who knew his own mind - part of me wonders if he didn't make it happen that way, so everything happened just how he wanted it to. Twelve days after Dad died, my Mum, brother and I "celebrated" my 35th birthday. Dad and I had joked for ages that it would be the first time in my life that I, his first-born son, would be more than half his age. On the day, it made me so sad to think that we never actually got to share that reality. So why have I told you all of this? Partly to share my story, as a fellow survivor of a loved-one being prematurely snatched away by this evil disease, so recently; but also to support Louisa's suggestion about talking. I've found talking to be so helpful, both throughout Dad's illness, through his (short-lived) recovery and since his death. I'm so lucky that I've been surrounded by so many people who care and are prepared to listen, over and over again in some cases. I've come to realise that those who are not touched by cancer, to some extent, at some point during their life really are in the minority. Friends and colleagues who've been through similar situations have been a huge source of support. And forums like this one are equally important. Sometimes the most detatched and objective ears can be the most helpful and, certainly, the easiest to talk to. More than anything, FreeAsAButterfly, my wish for you is that your online nickname is absolutely representative of where your Mum's at now. Because in the end, as the ones left behind, we need to feel that way about our loved ones; we need to feel, in our hearts and in our minds, that they are free from the pain, the torment, the sadness, fear and indignity - free as butterflies. My warmest wishes to you, FreeAsAButterfly.
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Hi there. Thank you so much for your lovely message. I am sorry to hear of your loss and really appreciate your kind words to me even during your own grief. I agree with everything you have said. I actually started grief counselling today and found it to be most helpful. Most people get back on with their lives and I have found that hard because I have been stuck! And I dont want to burden family and friends with my grief even though Im sure they are happy to listen and help in anyway they can. Talking is beneficial because for me its making sure my Mum is not being forgotten. Its amazing how many people drift away from you when something like this happens and I guess its because they dont know what to say. However a true friend wouldnt need to say anything would they? Just sit and listen. Anyway as for being free as a butterfly...My mum loved butterflies and we talked once about how she would let me know she was around by using butterflies and since her passing they have seen them in abundance in one form or another. I also went to the Lisa Williams shows 2 weeks ago, she is a psychic medium like John Edward and my MUm came through and Lisa was 100% accurate in describing my Mum and her condition. I dont know if you believe in that type of thing but it bought me alot of comfort to know she had crossed over peacefully and was ok now. It doesnt bring your loved one back and nothing ocld ever be as good as having them back but now I just think of Mum being a free as a butterfly to flutter around us and keep watch over us all the time. It gets me through. I hope you and youre family are doing ok. Thank you again for your lovely message. 🙂
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Dear FreeAsAButterfly I'm so glad you sound a little better today. Your story about the butterflies sounded truly beautiful.I can understand all the ways you are keeping you Mum with you. That seems very important. I have a story about my mum and nickname too. My Mum had a cataract operation - just a simple operation, but something went wrong. There was debris left behind in the eye and the pressure shot up threatening her sight. She needed a second operation a at the Royal Adelaide. The RAH can be really grim and bleak as hospitals go and we were scared, not knowing what it all meant. Then one of the nurses walked in wearing some tinsel on her name badge. Mum absolutely loved it ! It said 'normal' to her. She perked up and even asked the doctor where his tinsel was. (he didnt go in for that kind of thing). After that I always brought something a little silly in - helium balloons, entirely un-serious decorations. The other patients liked it too. She got better, but that tinsel seemed to be the turning point. Noone knows where our meaning, relief, safety comes from We are all different and hopefully a little crazy too! warm wishes, Tinsel
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