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Coping With The Recent Death Of My Mother

by Gary
(Sturgis, SD)

On July 1, 2010, I lost my mother to a massive heart attack. It was such a shock.

I will always remember sitting in my office, and receiving the call from my father that mom had just died. For a while, I sat in shock -- but eventually knew I had to take action, tearfully told my boss, and went home to meet my wife, who received the news from me.

Unfortunately, I lived 6 hours away, and we couldn't get everything in place to go until the next morning.

As I write this, it is 3 days later and the grieving for me continues. I'm in a regretful mode because I hadn't had the chance to visit my mom since last year--the year my older sister also died. I talked to mom often on the phone, but of course once tragedy strikes, the phone isn't good enough.

I've spent the past few days wishing I could have seen her again.

I know mom wouldn't want me to feel guilty, and I know in my heart I will see her again. But, I must admit, it has been a rough start to my grieving process.

Mom was always my best friend growing up. I told her everything. I confided in her, and can't imagine going on without her. I lay in bed, wishing for a spiritual visit so I know she's alright.

Any help in how to cope as I move forward would be appreciated.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Gary, and thanks for telling your story here. You are very early in the grieving process. I encourage you to be gentle with yourself as you move through the cycles of grief and loss.

When you're ready, it will help you to write about all of the things you love about your mom, perhaps while looking at photos of her. This can help you to connect with the love that is the most important part of this whole process.

Grieving is an act of love, and focusing on the love you felt/feel for her will help you get through.

If you haven't already done so, read this entire page on grieving, and follow all of the recommendations--when you're ready. Since you're so early in the process, you mostly just need to take care of yourself right now.

Grieving is about letting go, and love is the only emotion strong enough to allow you to let go. Celebrate her life and all of her good qualities, focus there, and you will do fine through your grieving.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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