I lost my son on Sep 4, 2008

katyroseSeptember 23, 2008

During all my times posting to the rose and perennial forums at this site I never noticed there was a grieving forum. But that was because I wasn't grieving...then. My son died suddenly of a drug overdose on Sept. 4. We never even knew that he had started doing heroin only 2 weeks prior to his death. He was only 41 years old...a talented musician (mandolin), furniture maker, gardener, and a generous and funny son, brother, uncle, and friend. He was loved by everyone who met him. At times I feel as though my chest will explode with grief. I go through the motions of living day to day...numbness takes over and I sit and stare. I need to talk with other parents who understand my profound loss.


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Dear Katyrose,
I have not lost a child, nothing can be worse and I want to give you my heartfelt condolences. I know that someone who has lost a child will write to you soon because there are some wonderful people on this forum, anyone who hasn't experienced what you are going through cannot feel what you are feeling right now. God will get you through this but it will take time, try to be strong.
((((hugs for you))))

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 12:40PM
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Dear Katyrose, I too lost my son. It will be 5 years next month and he would be 28. He hung himself. I know how you feel and I know the pain is unbearable. Take it day by day and don't be ashamed if you cry everywhere or talk about it. It will help you heal and as impossible as it seems, time will ease your pain. I still think about my son every day but it is easier to talk about it now. I had to work while going through this and it kind of helped because my thoughts had to be on the job, even thou a cryed all the time.People around me were very nice and ready to listen or just held me when crying. Try not to be alone. Life will get easier once again. Hugs for you.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 7:48PM
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My heart goes out to you. I lost my 46 YO son almost 4 months ago and know what you're feeling. The hurt is so intense and the hole in my heart and in my life will never disappear.
I couldn't sleep, eat or focus on anything - like you, just sit and stare. Doctor finally put me on Lexapro and it has helped - at least, now I can somewhat function.
The kind words and hugs help, but unless a person has lost a child, they can't really understand how deep and raw the pain can be.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 9:04PM
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Thank you so much for your kind words and hugs. My son has been gone 3 weeks today. The days have passed in a blur. Sunset is the worse time of day for me because that is when he died. I never liked watching the day fade into darkness, but now it's unbearable.

My heartfelt condolences go out to czechchick2 and jankey. Czechchick2, thank you for giving me hope that life will get easier once again. I, too, returned to work part-time, and it does help a little. I cannot even think about the holidays...I would just like to sleep through them. My son loved Christmas, and I know he would want me to continue our holiday traditions, but I can't.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2008 at 8:39AM
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Dear Katyrose, since my son died, I don't celebrate any hollidays. Evena fter 5 years, it is still difficult, it doesn't seem to be fair. I use to feel quilty, just eating, driving and breathing air felt like privilege. I was able to experience it but not my son. Long ago I stopped asking why. It is like I am 1/2 dead, 1/2 alive. I don't have the drive like I use to. I don't get too happy and what would seem like big problem before, doesn't mean nothing now. I know now that my son is at peace I know he didn't mean to cause pain to us. I know he doesn't suffer anymore. Life goes on and we have to be strong. Little by little it gets easier, but the hole in the hearts stays forever.
After my sons death, I didn't know where to turn so I asked God for help, I am not religious in any way,I prayed driving home or in bathtub.Crying, desperate... somehow it really helped. I got relief, I was able to sleep. I also had strange things hapening to me. I know my son visited me 3 times.Once I could hear him breathing, twice I smelled his cologne. Keep talking to your family and friends or just sit alone, let your thoughts go through for a while,but undertand it isn't your fault and your son would like to see you happy. Think about the happy days w/ him, it will bring some good memories back too, maybe even smile to your face. At home when I was alone (so nobody would think I'm nuts), I use to talk to him, that helped me a lot too. Hang in there, better days will come. For now just grieve.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 12:28AM
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Dear czechchick2,

Your words could be mine. I also feel that my son is finally at peace and does not suffer anymore, and I know he never meant to hurt us.

I also believe my son visited me the morning after he was cremated. It happened just before I woke up. I dreamed that he was hugging me and I was crying...I could feel his stubby beard against my face and his arms around me, and I said to him that I hoped he knew how much I loved him, and he kind of smiled and nodded yes. I feel he left then to go on to a better place. I don't tell many people this because they look at you as if you're crazy, but I know you understand. I believe your son visited you too.

I talk to my son too, and it does help.

Thank you again for your kind words and understanding.


    Bookmark   September 26, 2008 at 1:17PM
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Hi Katyrose, just checking how you doing today.
You know,shortly after my son died, My cat acted weird too. Just for couple of days.One day he sat on top of the sofa staring in the hallway, just moving his eyes. He never did it again. The second time he was really buggy and meowed and acted like he wanted something, wouldn't let me touch him or pick him up but guided me all the way in my sewing room. In the middle he sat down, all quiet and I could pick him up then. My kitty is little strange to beggin with but what he normally does is the oposite of what happened those two times. It is hard to describe it.It's like he tried to tell me something or maybe he saw something I couldn't see. Friend of mine told me that animals smell, hear and see spirits. I don't know but it was strange.
Another friend of mine who also lost her son by suicide ,told me that one day she came home, and she smelled her son's cologne too. She walked through the house, calling her son's name and when she got in the guest bedroom, there was imprint on the bed like someone just sat there. I believe when we die, our soul or spirit goes on.I think the spirits are able to visit us. And I believe everything is O.K. There is no pain or suffering, no judgment, just blissfull feeling. Maybe I'm just trying to make myself happy or give myself hope to see my son again. You have to be really strong to get through this.
In the begining,after my son's death I called first call for help from the phone book because I felt like I was going to loose it. I couldn't even breath . But they really didn't help. I figured group therapy is not good idea because hearing others suffering and crying would make it worse so I just cried A LOT and my good friend just held me as I cried and cried....
I used to scream at home out loud or in the car why,why God, why?!?!?!?There were no answers and so I eventually stopped asking why. After few weeks and the initial shock I accepted my son's death and understood more and began to grieve. I also lost one of my jobs, and went through the bancruptcy, my back yard turned in messy jungle . I didn't care. It took me two years before I slowly started to push myself. It is 5 years now and my yard is only partially fixed.
I thought about getting some antidepressants but I don't feel depressed and I don't want to be drugged. I'm kind of back to normal now, I laugh and enjoy going out for dinner or shopping and I am a server too so my job keeps my mind occupied. I met many people who lost their children too.
Everyone has different ways of dealing w/ things. My daughter told me that I am very strong woman. Maybe, sometimes....
Katyrose, don't worry about next day, next week, just do what you feel like doing at the moment, talk to your plants in the garden or talk to yourself at home.
I use to sleep w/ tv on because the noise helped me override my thoughts too. I know it feels like time stopped too but it will get better, I promise. Take care for now. Helena

    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 2:19AM
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Dear Helena,

Today is kind of a "pit" day. I call them pit days now because I walk around my house going from room to room feeling as though my heart is an empty pit. I am able to sleep in spurts (that is, I sleep on and off through the night). My doctor did prescribe ativan to help me sleep, but I don't like taking anything that could make me become dependent on it, so I only take them when I have to get up for work the next morning.

I agree about the animals acting strange. My son and his girlfriend had a black cat, and she said it acted very strangely the day after he died. She was lying on the floor crying, and the cat actually came over to her and stroked her head with his paw. There was also a strange black cat that came to my daughter's house and was actually crying and scratching to get into the house one night. My daughter couldn't let it in because she has a dog. The cat stayed outside crying all night, then the next day it was gone. I walk every day, and one day there was a black cat just sitting on the sidewalk in front of me. It looked exactly like my son's cat. The cat let me pat it and rub its tummy. It curled against me and seemed so happy. I never saw it before, and I haven't seen it since.

I, too, do not like the idea of group therapy. I find comfort "talking" to people like you. You know what I'm going through, and I understand perfectly what you are saying to me. I also find comfort talking to my son at night...it relaxes me into sleep.

Today I am going to try doing something pleasant. We are going to play cards, something our small family group did all winter last year. I think it may help get through another day. I'll let you know how it goes.


    Bookmark   September 27, 2008 at 11:12AM
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Katyrose, I am so sorry for your loss. Three and a half years ago I lost my 30yr old son to cancer and at that time I neither cared nor believed that I would make it through. I remember times when I would look at his photo and it was like my chest was caving in and my legs would not hold me up. Sometimes they didn't and I ended up on the floor unable even to cry. We had watched him suffer for 6mths and in the end he died peacefully holding my hand and looking straight at me. For a time there was comfort in knowing that he didn't hurt any more and that he was safe. Other times I was screaming inside and sometimes out loud because of my longing to hold him again. These intense feelings do subside over time but there are moments when they return and shock you at their intensity. I still wake up and go to sleep most nights thinking of my boy but can do so most of the time very much the same way if did of him and his brother all their lives. He is still ours and the love we had for each other is forever.
It has taken a lot to get to where I am now but even though there were times when I did not want to live and as CzechChick said, felt as though I was half in this world with my living son and half in the world with my Glenn. I took risks driving and didn't look after myself well at all but there came a time when I was able to enjoy life again. I knew Glenn would be disappointed if I did not go forward and I consciously decided to honour him by choosing to live. I left my husband a year later which was a good decision for both of us and moved to the country as I had always dreamed. I also fulfilled another dream and have travelled overseas twice - and I know Glenn came with me each time and kept me safe. I am sure some people thought I was nuts smiling to myself when there was turbulance because I would be telling Glenn in my mind to stop jumping on the wing and to hold the plane steady. I can just see his lovely blue eyes and beautiful grin at the idea of shaking his Mum up a little.
Sorry if I am rambling but what I am trying to say is - nothing really can make the pain easy but you have to feel whatever you are feeling at the time. Don't try as I did and make it easier on others by pretending it is OK when it is not. A lot of people got uncomfortable when I spoke of him and at first I shut up and kept it to myself. But then I decided that I had spoken of him for the 30rs, 4mths and 18 days I had him and the months I had him before he was born and I was not going to stop now. It came naturally to talk of him - not so much of his death and illness - but of ordinary memories and others had to deal with their discomfort. I needed and still need to talk of him sometimes. He is still my son. I still have 2 sons.
Holidays and birthdays are hard but I have Glenn's son and my other little grandchildren so have to make the best of it. One thing I do at Christmas is to light a blue candle (for his blue eyes) in front of my place at the table. I don't make an issue of it but the family know that he is at the table with us and part of our Christmas. We have let go balloons with messages tied to them on his birthdays, had a drink for him or done something which has meaning to each of us. Writing notes to him and setting fire to them is another one.
Be kind to yourself. Try little steps when you can and if you cannot - it is OK to pull the covers over your head and not face the world for a little while. Accept help and love from others if you can and come often to this forum. I spend quite a bit of time here, sometimes just reading and others posting but for the life of me I cannot remember which name I used Elspeth or Beth and had a different user name. Try and be aware if things get out of hand and see your doctor. I went on Lexapro 8 mths after Glenn died for about 12 months and it had some good effects. I accepted that I needed it at the time although I fought against it for a while.
Remember the love you and your son had for each other and know that you can make it through. You will never stop missing him but you will keep going for him. Hugs from Beth

    Bookmark   September 29, 2008 at 1:20AM
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Dear Beth,

Thank you so much for your kind and supportive words. I like when you say "be kind to yourself." Right now, I really think I need a day or two to just be alone with my thoughts and grief. Since my son died, I haven't had one day for myself. People mean well, and I love them, but I'm not doing what I want to do. I work only 3 days a week, which is a good thing because I am able to somewhat focus on my job. So the other 4 days I am home. I feel overwhelmed with so many things to do. I would like to just spend one or 2 days writing out the many thank you cards to all the people who sent condolences and contributed in one way or another. I would like to go to my son's garden, and just sit and meditate for a while. One of my dearest friends has suggested that perhaps grief therapy would help. I don't know. It's only been 25 days since my son's death. When I do go out and come back home, the pit feeling in my heart returns and I want to die. I tried playing cards with a small family group last Saturday to see if a little diversion would help for a few hours, but it just seemed to make it worse. After people left, there came the "pit" again.

I hesitate to take meds like Lexapro because I'm afraid that it will just mask my grief and I'll never come to terms with my son's death.

Today I spent a few hours with my 2 grandchildren (6-yr old twins), and they seem to be my best therapy. They are so beautful, happy, and full of innocence. I feel that they will be my lifeline through this horrible grief.

I did just take an ativan to sleep tonight because I have to work tomorrow.

Good night.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2008 at 8:10PM
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