Six months have now passed since my mum died. I received such wonderful support at that time from friends here in Blogland, comments, emails and cards, so I thought I'd let you know how I'm getting on without my mum.
I've been very close to my mum all my life. My brother and sister flew the nest at early ages, one going off for army training at sixteen and one leaving home to live in at the nurses home as she was training to be a nurse. I lived at home until I was twenty when I left to live with Mick, and ever since then I've only ever lived less than a couple of miles away from my parents so we always saw each other regularly, and used to talk on the phone for hours too.
I knew it would be very hard for me when my mum died but I think I've coped with it quite well. Yes, I've gone through the grieving process, and I'm still going through it, I don't think I'll ever get over losing her, but I think in some ways I'd already done some of the grieving as I lost my mum years before she died to dementia. I also feel that I've had to get on with things to some extent as my dad hasn't coped with my mum's death very well at all and we're having to be there for him. In fact, he's gone downhill so fast in the past six months that it's quite worrying but there's really nothing more we can do for him than we're already doing. It must be so hard to have been married to someone for sixty three years and then suddenly, they're no longer there. I find myself not talking about my mum at all in front of my dad and not wanting him to talk about her either as it just makes him too upset.
The weeks following my mum's death were taken up with practicalities, such as organising the funeral. Everything was left to me and Mick and looking back, I think this helped in one way. Having something to do took up my time and gave me less time to sit and dwell on things. Daniel and Jasmine were already coming home the week leading up to Easter so we arranged to have the funeral then. It took place on the Monday and they were here for the rest of that week, so having all my family around me at this time again took my mind off things. It was really only the following week when Eleanor went back to university and Mick and I had the house back to ourselves and the funeral was all over that I really went to pieces.
Mick has been brilliant. He's allowed me to talk about the things which are upsetting me, the guilt I feel about certain things which happened and obviously, not having my mum here. He's let me cry, but not for too long. There have been plenty of times when I've been sinking into a pit of depression but he's scooped me up and taken me out, even if it's just for a drive. Believe me, you don't feel any happier sat in a car than you do in the house, but a change of scenery really can be a bit of a pick me up.
I miss my mum so much, especially as things have happened and she hasn't been here to share in the celebrations: Eleanor's 21st, her graduation and her starting her first 'proper' job. She would have been thrilled to know how well she's done. It was sad to receive my first birthday card signed from my dad without my mum's name being on there. It was just three days before Mother's Day that she died and the card I'd bought for her is still sitting in the drawer, it was a sad day without her. Her birthday is in November and we've got Christmas to get through yet too.
I'm still having my moments, they come and go without warning, a little reminder of something can set me off, but in the main I'm coping. What else can you do?