Hi guys, some of you may remember me from a couple of years ago, when my grandfather was fighting his losing battle with GBM
Tomorrow will mark 2 years since he passed away, and I've been reflecting on it a lot over the past couple of weeks, and I seriously have no idea how I would have coped if it wasn't for this wonderful community.
It was more than his illness, I had been struggling to cope with life in general long before he was diagnosed. Seeing the emotional strength that you all display to keep fighting even when every day is a battle, to find moments of happiness in the darkest of days, and to hold on to your hope no matter what life throws your way inspired me and changed my life completely.
Next time you feel exhausted, or frustrated, or blue, just remember... you are amazing 🙂
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Hi, so sorry to hear about your husband. I lost my grandfather to GMB last year, he never recovered from his craniotomy so did not have chemotherapy or radiation. I've written quite a lot on here about my experience with him, if you go to my profile you'll probably be able to find it all 🙂
Best of luck xo
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Oh no... I am so sorry to hear that 😞
I'm glad you found this forum, it is a great place. There are so many supportive and inspiring people on here...I really dont know how I would have coped with my Grandfathers illness if it wasnt for all the wonderful people here!
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I'm so sorry to hear of your loss, it sounds like you gave him a beautiful send off ❤️
Grief is not easy to deal with, but that old cliche is true- what doesn't kill you makes you stronger! You may not feel it right now, but after everything you've been through, you are actually stronger than you've ever been before, the problem is, you are probably exhausted!! After caring for someone else and putting your needs second for so long, you need time out to recuperate... not only do you need it, you deserve it! You will have many new challenges to face in due time, so for now focus on restoring your energy so that your new found strength can be used to its full potential when the time comes :)
Big life events like being a carer or losing a loved one have a very profound effect on who you are. An experience like this teaches you so much about life, death, love, yourself and others, so once the initial shock wears off, it may be helpful to remember who you were before his diagnosis, and how much the cancer journey has made you change and grow for the positive.
Don't feel pressured to 'get your life back on track'... take it at your own pace. Leave his stuff laying around the house for as long as you like... you'll know when you're ready to pack it away. This is a massive change and it will take some time to adjust, so be kind to yourself :)
Once again, I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you, and I wish you all the best in your new life as the stonger, wiser you!
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In the aftermath of my grandfathers surgery, I coped by blocking it all out, and remaining completely numb. When he died, something inside me just snapped, I broke up with my emotionally abusive boyfriend, stopped taking drugs, drastically reduced my drinking, and got psychological therapy for all my issues. GBM4, while it took his life, it also saved mine.
I've learned through therapy that you cant block things out forever. You can run and hide from your problems for years, but eventually they will catch up with you. I always knew that what I went through with my grandfather would come back to me sooner or later, and I had no choice but to accept that, and focus on tackling my other problems, and strengthening myself for when it eventually did happen. And now, it's happened.
I was laying in bed with my boyfriend the other night, he was asleep and had his arm over me. I reached over and patted his hand a couple of times, and all of a sudden I was reminded of my grandfather tapping away at our hands because that was the only way he could communicate. I got quite stirred up, and tried to move my boyfriends arm off me, but because he was asleep, it hung there limp, which reminded me of how pop was paralysed down his left side. I woke him up, crying and shaking.
Then yesterday I had my wisdom teeth removed. Because I was under sedation, I had to have oxygen via nasal prongs. As I was being prepped for surgery, my nose was itchy, so a couple of times I removed it for just a second or two to rub my nose, then I put it straight back in. They kept telling me 'no!! You have to leave it on!!' and I thought... Wtf... I know that... I am leaving it on... I only took it off for a second... cant you see me putting it back on??? and then all I could think of was the exhausting 12 hour overnight struggle we had with pop to keep his oxygen prongs on. I freaked out, and I tried to explain all this to them, but my head had gone foggy from the drugs, I couldnt find the right words, kept getting distracted, going off track, talking around in circles, they just thought I was talking random rubbish because I was all doped up, they didnt understand that I was actually trying to TELL them that I was freaking out!!
The weird thing is, that all my 'flashbacks' seem to be from his point of view. But I guess that makes sense, because the whole time all I concerned myself with was what he was going through, how aweful it was for him.
It just keeps coming back up. I know its time to go back there in therapy to face what happened, and I really dont want to go through it all again. I'm begining to understand now what the rest of my family REALLY went through emotionally while I blocked myself off, cold and numb. And for someone who up until recently, felt no emotions at all and blocked EVERYTHING out to keep herself safe... its terrifying. But it must be done, and I can do it. Recovering from mental illness is a long, long road. I've faced so many challanges this year, I guess this is just the next one.
I must say though, the strength, courage and spirit of every single user on these forums is truely inspiring 🙂
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As both a student of psychology and a person with many mental health problems, I really don't agree with antidepressants. I would strongly recommend seeing a psychologist first, and only consider antidepressants AS A LAST RESORT- i.e. if you are seriously contemplating suicide and nothing else is helping. But that doesnt really seem to be the case...I don't really know you, but from what you've written here, you seem to be handling this situation how any 'normal', psychologically healthy person would. We must remember that there is a BIG different between being depressed and being sad, and that being sad is ok! I think that there would be more reason to worry if you WEREN'T sad about having cancer!
Its rediculous...is it not ok to feel sad? sad it not an illness...its a gift! its normal! its part of being human! Since being off my antidepressants, I appreciate even the negative emotions... it is bittersweet, while they may feel horrible there is also a hidden joy beneath them...because they make me feel alive.
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Hi sunshine. Sorry to hear about your dad.
There is nothing worse than people giving their oppinion when its not needed or wanted. There are very few situations where I believe people are not allowed to voice their oppinion, but this is one of them. While my grandfather was actually IN SURGERY, my boyfriend told me that he thought it wasnt worth wasting that money on surgery if it was only going to give him an extra couple of months. I was disgusted. We've broken up now. How dare these people judge the hardest decisions a person ever has to make? It wasnt even you who 'let' them operate, you didnt 'let' them do anything! Its the patients decision, their life, and they are the ones who have to live with it, or die with it. That needs to be respected!!!
Hahaha. 'Hes not suffering anymore'. I hate that one. Normally people ask me how I'm going and I say fine (because I am fine). They just dont believe that I could possibly be telling the truth and still feel the need to find some words to 'comfort' me. 'Just remember, at least he's not suffering anymore'. Yeah, thanks a lot for that, I WAS fine...but now I'm remembering how much he suffered. Good job!!
I know he's not suffering anymore, but he was suffering before. Just because its over now doesnt mean its ok. It still happened. It was still awful. My entire family still suffered with him. They act as if its something i've never heard before, something I dont know, thats them being ever so nice and supportive by telling me is gonna fix everything!
Of course I know he's not suffering anymore, Im not stupid! Its the only thing helping me cope with his death! It does help...in some ways. I tell it to myself, I cope with it myself, when I need it, when its the right thing that will help. I dont need to hear it over and over again by people who dont know how I feel, whats upsetting me, or how he suffered!
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thats exactly right peanutz. he was the most wonderful, kind, loving selfless man I know, and I wouldn't have wished what he went through on my worst enemy. He was incredibly proud, and had only been in hospital ONCE in 75 years-a few hours in emergency back in his 30s, so he would have absolutely hated his. He deserved to die with dignity, at home in his bed. Not like this...
I'm seeing a psychologist due to unrelated issues... I have mentioned these things to her, but they have been bothering me more and more since my last session, so i think I'll go a bit further into it next time.
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first of all, for those who dont know, my grandfather passed away from GBM on 30/5/12.
Everyones reactions are really getting to me. Its like they're all assuming that I feel a certain way, and even when I try to tell them how I really feel they ignore it completely and continue on with their words of reassuarance that they think I need, as if i've said nothing, or as if they know how I feel better than I do.
I'm not messed up because my grandfather is dead. I've never had a problem accepting the concept of death, and he had a long life full of love that any person would be satisfied with. Had he survived any longer, he would have had no quality of life at all. Of course its sad, its terrible and I miss him like crazy, but im coping ok and gradually accepting it.
What i cannot accept is the fourtnight between his craniotomy and death... Thats whats getting to me. I cant properly explain it to anyone who hasnt experienced it. He was like something out of a nightmare, or a horror movie, but worse...because it was real, and someone I love. His facial expression...he looked like he was being tortured from the inside out, trapped facing the unknown horrors of his own mind, unable to comunicate and paralysed down one side. This man was once our strong, proud gentleman just a few weeks prior.
No matter how much detail i go into...noone seems to realise just how horrific it was for me. Of course they dont understand what its like, that was expected, but they cant even comprehend that things that terrible exist. They only see the tip of the iceberg...
I tell everyone who asks the truth about how I'm feeling. But they just dont seem to get it. How else am I supposed to get the message across? IM ALL SORTS OF MESSED UP. Im having nightmares, massive panic attacks, and his face in that hospital bed WILL HAUNT ME UNTIL THE DAY I DIE! The horrible moans, the tap, tap, tap against the bed when he had to be restrained, and the heartbreaking look in his eyes that silently screamed GET ME OUT OF HERE! I need support but all im getting is the usual crap 'hell always watch over you' and 'hes better off, at least hes not suffering anymore', advice i dont need! THIS is whats bothering me THIS is what i need support with THIS is what i need someone to talk to about BUT NOONE SEEMS TO WANT TO HEAR IT AND ALL THINK THEY KNOW BETTER ABOUT THE WAY I FEEL AND WHAT IM GOING THROUGH!!
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Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.