death of parent

‘I was vomiting. My doctor said it was because I was ‘promiscuous’. Others said it was from grief, after my mom hung herself.’: Woman with chronic illness says pain ‘robbed her of so much,’ but won’t rob her ‘passion for living’

“The pain got so bad. I pulled over on the side of the freeway and called my dad, begging him to come get me. I became confused, disoriented. I remember thinking I could understand why my mother took her own life. It made me realize I either had to fight for my own health, or continue to fade away. I had to be stronger than my mom was. I couldn’t stop fighting.”

‘My mom came out of surgery. ‘Everything looks beautiful,’ the nurse said. Just 10 minutes later, my sister called screaming. My little mom was gone.’ Mom passes after heart surgery, brings family closer than ‘ever before’

“I remember my mom stepping into the house. She looked different, weak. She blamed it on eating bad bacon…yes, bacon. I talked to her about the possibility of having had a heart attack. She looked at me stubbornly and said, ‘So?’ We convinced her to go to the hospital. She went only for her ‘little angels,’ her great grandkids. We found ourselves in tidal wave after tidal wave of problems.”

‘As I lay on the operating table, I heard the ONE word I dreaded. They wrapped him up, brought him over. I began to sob. ‘How can my heart be rejoicing and breaking at the same time?!’

“The room began spinning. I was thrilled to have my baby but terrified by the words used to describe him. Unlike his older brother’s birth, not one person came to see him. No flowers were delivered. No one knew what to say, so they said nothing. On that day, my life became defined by two words. Before and after.”

‘I love you. It’s not your fault,’ my mom said, crying. I screamed, trying to keep her awake until paramedics reached her.’: Daughter says losing mother to suicide was ‘the most painful experience I’ve ever gone through’

“A friend of my mom said, ‘Look, your mom came to make December beautiful again.’ It’s so true. My daughter is the light of my life. It’s emotional raising a daughter without my own mother alive, but I understand now I would not have the beautiful life I have today if she hadn’t passed.”

‘I love you, sweetie. I’ll call you Friday.’ Those words will forever haunt me. I received a call from my mom when school ended. ‘This is the hardest thing I’ll ever tell you.’ I fell to the floor.’

“My heart sank. I could tell by her voice I had to get home. I still hear the words as she fought back breaking down. ‘We have to go. We have to get there!’ I remember having thought, ‘He seems better. He seems more like himself.’ My dad was back. Boy, was I wrong.”

‘During my pregnancy, my dad came to me in a dream. He was holding a baby boy wrapped in a pale blue blanket. He walked towards me. It’s the only memory I have of them together.’

“We had chosen to wait on finding out the gender until birth, but I knew when waking up that the little boy inside me would be a boy. I’ll never hear you tell him you love him or sing him to sleep. He will never see you on the sidelines, cheering him on. But I know you were taking care of him before it was my turn to.”

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