Lost my mom and losing my brother

Coping with the loss of a loved one.
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ChloeSanDiego
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Joined: Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:14 pm
Location: San Diego, California
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Lost my mom and losing my brother

Post by ChloeSanDiego » Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:19 pm

Exactly 4 years ago today, I took the last picture I would ever take with my mother... who died 11 days later from cirrhosis of the liver. My mother and I had an unexplainable bond that was a bit stronger than her bond with my other siblings, which landed me in the position of handing everything before and after her death. I was only 20 at the time, and I remember her asking me if I would hold her hand for the first 5 minutes in heaven. That memory will forever haunt me and I think about it often. Exactly one year before she passed, I made a journal entry that predicted she would pass away in a year if she didn't get help and tried numerous times to convince her to go to rehab. My father gained full custody of me and my siblings when I was in 6th grade, due to the unhealthy and dangerous living environment at my moms house. Driving us drunk, moldy and expired food, dog and cat feces all over the house, forgetting us at school..etc. It was really bad. She went to rehab the day we went to live with him full time. Fasting forward a few years, things got better for a while and I found myself spending more and more time with her. It wasn't until 2009 that she started going down hill... She lost her job, her Submarina store, her fiance, and her car. She was to the point that her withdrawls could result in seizures, so cutting off her alcohol intake was danger and impossible. She was living in a home with a hispanic family who didn't speak English and was getting frustrated with her incontinence which didn't start until a month or so after she moved in. For those of you who aren't familiar with the physical symptoms of end stage cirrhosis, it's extremely sad and painful. My mother who was only 55 looked like a skin cover skelaton that was about to give birth to twins...which was just fluid build up, called ascites. Well, it wasn't until June of the 2010 that I got her to agree to go to the emergency room (since she had no money or insurance) to get her stomach drained and the doctor (who was a guardian angel)) confided in me and told me she wouldn't last more than a few months and set us up with Elizabeth Hospice for free. Without them, my mothers death would have been a lot different and horrifying, given they provided her with meds to take the pain away and induced her in to a coma. We found a board and care which is right down the street from my home that we moved her in to and just 2 weeks later, she lost her battle. The day she died, my family and I were there from 8am until 5 with her. She was in a coma and could still hear, so we played her favorite songs and told her how much we loved her. My brother who was at college in Indiana, had to call and say goodbye on the phone, not being able to get a response back.. She died at 7pm that day.... after everyone had said goodbye and left.
I was responsible for cleaning out her room, handled the cremation, as well as planned her funeral. I think that has helped me with dealing with her death more than I know. I was diagnosed with PTSD by my bereavement counselor, however I've managed to get back on track and heal. I still miss her a lot and think about her often, and the month of August is always hard.

Unfortunately, my brother and sister struggle with addiction and have both been to rehab. I'm the only one who hasn't struggled with addiction and I'm very careful to keep it that way, given it runs in the family. My sister has made an amazing come back and we are closer than ever, however my brother has relapsed and is hitting rock bottom. My brother, who is only 22 is struggling with a heroin addiction and will be out on the streets come Thursday if he doesn't go to rehab. I feel like I'm living this whole nightmare again and have prepared myself for his death as much as I can. Tough love is such a hard thing to do and I can't help but feel horrible for him because his heroin addiction started after my mom's death and he experienced her death in a very different way than my sister and I. He agreed to go back to rehab last night, however today has decided he doesn't need it...leaving me, my sister, and my dad frustrated and devastated. Watching how it affects my dad is heartbreaking. Just need some words of support and encouragement from people who can understand and relate... :/ Will I ever escape being surrounded by addiction?

BeeBee
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Joined: Mon Jul 08, 2013 4:24 pm
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Re: Lost my mom and losing my brother

Post by BeeBee » Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:35 pm

Honey you have been through way more than I ever have. I see such wisdom and strength in your post. I am sorry for your loss of your mom and what you are dealing with. Glad you found the room and hope you can gain some clarity and shared stories here. Keep hanging tough and read here as much as possible. You will be okay and were here for you. Xoxo

ChloeSanDiego
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:14 pm
Location: San Diego, California
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Re: Lost my mom and losing my brother

Post by ChloeSanDiego » Sun Aug 17, 2014 11:20 pm

Thank you so much, it definitely forced me to grow up and have a different appreciation and logic towards life. I am so glad I found this site today and it felt good to write about it and read other posts. Although I miss my mom more than ever, I've accepted the fact she's gone and have found peace with it. What I'm finding hard is that I'm now at that age where the relationship between you and your parents transforms from viewing them as authority to viewing them as good company/a friend... (well,for most) ...and all of my friends are getting engaged, married, having children, and have their moms right there beside them...and I won't have that opportunity. I know I could have it worse though so I try to look at the positives.

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