If I had Mum with me, I wouldn't have felt as free to cry. Expression of my feelings regarding my father's death are not welcomed. She avoids or ignores it. If you think I am joking, think again.
This afternoon, as I finished telling her about George saying about living in a world without his dad (all the while crying because I can't talk about the episode without crying), she says to me, "Did you just hear what he just said? He had to apologize to that aweful man and that aweful man made him repeat a bunch of lies before he would accept his apology". That was in regards to 'Sue Thomas FBI' that she watched while I was talking to her. Thanks Mom! I said - that's wrong, isn't it? and walked away.
When we were getting supper ready, and I mentioned the episode again, she says "I suppose you associate that with your father, don't you?" Astute, isn't she? I replied that yes I do. That was the end of the conversation. It was clear she didn't want to talk about it anymore.
When my dad died, it wasn't my mother who was there for us, it was my aunts, my dad's sisters. But they could only stay for a while, before having to return to NH. I can clearly remember sitting on my sister's bed and my Aunt Carm came in, sat down beside me, and hugged me and talked to me. Don't ask me what she said. I can't remember that part. But you wanna know something? My aunts and my dad's two cousins who came up were the only ones who hugged and comforted me the whole time.
This may seem bitter, but my mother has never been supportive when it comes to dealing with my father's death. At least not with me. She was there more for my sister, probably because she was younger. But when I look back, it makes me mad. I was only 14 when I was dealing with this, and not very well, I may add. I spent a lot time sick that year, to the point that I was hospitalized. They never could discover a "cause". In high school, there were days I could barely drag myself out of bed. Other days, I wouldn't get out of bed. I remember my mother threatening me to get out of bed, get dressed, and go to school because I'd missed too many days for no reason at all. Now, looking back, I am appalled at my mother and my doctor - two people in the medical field who couldn't see classic signs of clinical depression.
I spent a lot of years being extremely angry with my father, and not just for dying. It's only been in the last seven or so that I accepted my father for the type of father, husband and person he was. In the past two years, I have come closer to getting through the stages of grief. Almost 18 years, and I am starting to make peace.
From Wiki on stages of grief:
Kübler-Ross stages are:
Kübler-Ross originally applied this to any form of catastrophic personal loss, such as the death of a loved one. She also claimed these steps do not necessarily come in order, nor are they all experienced by all patients, though she stated a person will always experience at least two.
Many threapists include guilt in that model. Guilt that you survive. Guilt over the anger you feel. I can honestly say that I never experienced the denial or the bargaining. But I went through the anger for almost 15 years. I couldn't let it go, and as a result I would feel guilty. It was a horrible, vicious circle. I still deal with the depression, but it's definitly due to more than my father's death now. I've finally started to work towards acceptance. It feels good to write that.
Gawd! I hope that doesn't take another 15 years!
P.S. I am sitting here proof reading the post, listening to "Life in Disguise" and crying and smiling all the same time. Is that strange or what?