Saturday, April 22, 2006

Darkness In My Veins

I have to drive up to Carmel Ridge this morning. A routine drive on a typical Sunday except that is suddenly feels so inexplicably different. Everything has changed & yet to an outsider it's all the same. Identical to last week yet for me it's entirely different. I've known many people who have cared for & dealt with a terminal parent & they grieve at least a bit in advance. They watch as the condition worsens or stasys in the same precarious place with no hope really in sight. This isn't the same. My mother's physical health is actually pretty good. Sure there's a few problems but I think that is to be expected when you're in your 70's.
I've been grieving someone that is physically ok & that could last another 10 years.

I've let go of people in the past that were just not good for me. People that bring out the worst in me or are too high maintanence in a really unhealthy way. That's always a clean break. I hate chaos.

This, again, it's different. Grieving someone that is still alive & physically healthy. Someone that I have to let go of but cannot make a clean break from. Where does this leave me? Am I heartless for trying to let go? Does that mean I'll be left to care for her in an empty almost clinical way? Everything just feels overwhelmingly wrong.



I don't think you have anything to feel bad about at all. You have been so supportive and loving to your mom all these years. No one could have done more for her than you have done. I think you are grieving what could have been had your mom been healthy. Everyone needs to take a step back sometimes from situations that are stressful. You are a good son and a very good person. Please try to give yourself some slack. :)

8:11 AM  
Blogger Unrequited said...

There is nothing fair or right about it at all. And yet it is the way it is.

It's so difficult to lose someone in pieces. The loss over and over again taking small pieces of you with it.

But I feel that if your mother was able to speak, if she did have a moment of clarity she would say that she would want you to let go.

She held on for so long to try and give you what she had so you could grow and experience life to the fullest.

She would say that now, Your happiness is her happiness. She wouldn't tell you not to grieve because I'm sure she's grieved the thought of her losing you as she grieves losing what's left of herself.

But her happiness her peace would be in knowing the love you've shared and the life you have left to live.

Love her by forgiving yourself, forgiving her, and being open to life and love.

My heart is with you. Loraine

12:30 PM  
Blogger The Rev. Dr. Kate said...

Unrquited has given you some sound advice, Bobby. Grieving and letting go are hard - and where there is unresolved pain it is all the harder. Your relationship with your Mom has been complicated by your father's abuse and abandonment, and her mental illness. Somewhere in all of this, your needs were not met. Often times we think we understand and forgive and then a new dimension of the situation is revealed and we discover we are not where we thought we were. You are the only one who knows where the need for forgiveness lies - whether there is something you need to forgive her for or - what I think is more likely - something that is unresolved in you that you need to forgive yourself for. Sons are very protective of their mothers. You could not protect her from either the physical nor mental abuse of your father. You could not protect her from the man who wounded her so badly in November. You cannot bring her back now.
You have to let go of something with your Mom - give yourself time to figure it out. That highly charged subconscious of yours is working on it and with time and patience, you will see what you need to to move forward. It takes time to learn and feel our way into new territory. Give yourself the gift of that. Keep being brave, Bobby. In whatever state your Mom is in, she is praying for your wholeness - as am I.

1:53 PM  
Blogger penguin_girl76 said...

*gives Robert a big slap across the face a la Cher in Moonstruck*

Snap out of it!!!

Please, talk to someone, I'm getting worried.

11:44 PM  
Blogger NemesisNicole said...

Darkness in your veins?! Bub-bee, it's called blood! Don't forget, you are alive!

1:28 AM  
Blogger ann said...

You're not grieving in advance; you're feeling her pain and feel helpless that you can't do more... but you are doing your best. Why do you want to let go? What would be the point of that? She's your mother; your flesh and blood. Oh Bobby, you're not heartless, you're going through a bad time, but when the clouds lift and the sun shines through again you will feel differently I'm sure.

lotsa luv ann xxxxx

7:50 PM  
Blogger Bryde said...

Sometimes,when we see someone leaving us in little bits we focus on self-preservation.That has nothing to do with how much you care or love someone.My grandmother lived for a year after having a stroke (all the while having "mini'strokes").She became a different person,which was not her fault,just like your mother's illness is not her fault.

Anyway,in order to survive her being terminally ill and very "fractured" mentaally,I began to pull away and became a more "clinical" granddaughter.I did it to preserve us both.It was easier to help her while being reserved about my approach.I still loved her but I could not let the darkness of the situation pull my down.

I do not think those in different mental postition in life misunderstood those around them.I think that they see things far clearer spiritually than you would think.In my spiritual path,they are not bound by their bodies when they are "ill",on the contrary,they are freer spirits (in the spirtual/material word) because of it.

You are grieving but not "agead of time",you are greieving parts of your mother that you no longer see or feel.That translates into grieving a death of sorts and odd as this sounds...makes a physical death something more joyous than painful for those who are left behind.

Your mother will hold NONE of your thoughts or feelings against you and neither will we.

11:53 PM  
Blogger Darling_Donofrio said...

Bobby, everyone loses the ones they loved. My grandfather held on in a coma for AGES before he slipped away. I used to sit beside him and tell him all sorts of things; what movies I had watched, how I was waiting for my High School results and what uni I wanted to get into, what concert I was going to see. Then he just disappeared and none of it made any difference.

I was angry at everyone for a long time, because it felt like, collectively, we hadn't done enough to make him snap out of it. But the fact was that he was going, whether that's what I wanted or not.

I'm not saying that this is what it's like with you, but bud, you gotta talk to someone about how you feel. Maybe write it down. I ended up writing a song for my grandfather's funeral, which was really nice. Maybe you could just write a poem, or draw.

Anything that helps take the pain away.

Love, Gemma.

7:49 PM  

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