My father passed away today, of a cardiac arrhythmia and probable MI. He was on his first day of a month-long Christmas vacation, and my mother found him when she came home from work.
I’m numb. She was in hysterics. My aunt got my mother’s doctor to prescribe Marizipan(?) to calm her down and she’s dozing on and off now. My aunt says that when she called the EMTs, she was so incoherent she couldn’t even remember my father’s first name.
I keep getting surges of grief that I’m suppressing for right now, because I’m the only one around. My brother can’t come in from Philly until tomorrow morning. My aunt is staying, but she’s not a part of my father like I am. I can’t break down yet. Maybe I’ll just cry myself to sleep later.
My father is GONE. Forever. He’s not going to come through the door from the auction with a box of old toys to restore. He’s not going to be putting up the Christmas decorations anymore. I’m actually debating whether to leave what he did put up there or take them down. No Christmas tree this year. None of us feel much like celebrating anything right now.
And the reminders are going to hit in the next days, months, years…when people call who were referred to him by friends to restore toys, when his employer empties his locker and calls us to pick it up, when I watch a really stupid movie or show and start to MST it, and remember that he used to join in. For my mom, watching any commercial or show with an elderly couple. That’s how it was supposed to be. Mom and Dad, growing old together, dying at the same time (by natural causes). My mother was convinced that it would happen that way.
It’s too huge to wrap my mind around. I can’t process this yet.
There will be a lot of emotions to process. Just be sure to take good care of yourself, a person can get run-down very quickly under such stress. Many prayers to you and your family. I am so sorry for your loss.
I know exactly what you’re going through. My father died in 1996, just before Christmas. It would hit me again and again, I’d sort of forget about it for a minute and suddenly remember he was gone. Didn’t seem real for a while. I searched back and found a thread I started last year about him: http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=51806
Do cry when you can. I know at times it’s necessary to hold it together, but first chance you get, let it out. Weep uncontrollably. You’re going to miss him and you need to grieve and just feel it. Try to sleep if you can, and make sure you eat. You probably won’t feel like it, but as the others have said, you need to take care of yourself.
If you need support, I’m in the book, so to speak. Feel free to email me if you want.
I’d like to think his last hours were ones of happiness, with that time immediately in front of him to spend with his loved ones, a removal from the stresses of work, and that sense of freedom on the first day of vacation.
Cry. Curse. Weep. Laugh. Be in shock. Be in denial. But please do not feel bad for how you feel. Feel it and do it, it will be a help to you and a show of strength to those around you.
We haven’t sworn at each other in the Pit, yet. Or chatted about something mundane, or had a fiery debate, or answered the other’s questions, but I still feel awful.
There’s nothing I can say, nothing I can do.
Just know that many people here who know you well are thinking hard about you, and also lots of people that you aren’t aware of, who know you only from lurking and reading your posts, also are sending good thoughts your way.
Jayjay, the best advice I could give you has already been said by these kind others. I just got through the ‘anniversary’ of losing my dad right before Thanksgiving. On some level, to varying degrees over the years, this grief will always be there; but it does get better.
Down the road, when you’re ready <and your heart will know when that is, take your time>, pull out all of the good memories of your dad and smile for him. Think about the funny things he’d say and do, how he’d smile whenever he saw you, how he’d look at your mom when he thought no one was looking; whatever will bring a smile. It will help. In the meantime, hug each other a lot, cry together, scream, yell, throw pillows, whatever you need to do. We’re all here for you, on here or by email.
There does indeed need to be a sadder face to use.