So it’s been 1 year 1 month 3 weeks and a day since my mother passed away and I can tell you I struggled to write this. Not because it was emotionally draining but there was so much stuff I wanted to say that it would sound like a disjointed 20 page essay with no clear beginning, ending or theme. And even though I did not want this to turn into a venting “let’s feel sorry for the dude” or a “bitch fest about no one understanding me.” from the looks of it.. it might turn out that way so please brace yourselves.
So how do I feel right now ? I feel like I am floating in a lost mixed emotion and mind space that I really can’t explain.
It’s hard to explain because I feel like though I have been trying to do things that would make me feel happy and positive (going on trips, etc) but for some odd reason it also has affected my relationships around me. I feel like I’m Jekyll and Hyde. At work I transform into this happy joyful nurse that strives to make my patient feel good, better and even make them laugh. It brings them joy…. it brings me joy. But as soon as I get home reality hits. I go back to that dark reality that I often try to push out of the way but everything reminds me of my mother.
Since I moved back home with my father our relationship has been good (thankfully.) I was quite concerned how our relationship would be honestly. I was scared that we would both lash out each other out of emotional breakdowns and fears and never get the chance to truly take care of each other and build that father son relationship I felt was not as strong simply because I was closer to my mother. Thankfully things have been good so far. I respect his space, he respects mine,we both take care of each other and look out for each other and rarely ever have any arguments (and if we do its towards others not us ha!) My relationships with my friends and other family members unfortunately have changed. Some slightly…others drastic. I now became the “guy who lost his mom to a brain tumour” or the “the nurse friend who lost his mom to cancer.” Or the best… “the nurse friend who works too much and does not have time for his friends or family to grieve properly.”
Yep… you read that right. “The nurse friend who works too much and does not have time for his friends or to grieve properly.”
Seems a bit insulting right? Well some people don’t think so. I will admit, I have been working a lot and I do use it as way of a coping mechanism (also a great way to clear your debt and bills!) I don’t drink alcohol, do drugs, or participate in any high risk activity. Apart from going to the gym, work has sometimes been a way to escape the reality I had to deal with and despite work being stressful at times, I was able to put on this “front” and act like everything was cool . Unfortunately it made my already limited social life diminish to a tiny speck of dust.
And that’s when people stopped inviting me or asking me out to engagements and events. And that’s when people would stop phoning, texting me asking and seeing if I was ok. And that’s when people figured I was working too much that I did not have time to grieve properly. This absolutely made me frustrated, exasperated and pissed. To make matters worse when I was actually free on a weekend or Friday night to do something everyone simply just forgotten about me and either had made other plans or simply were not interested in doing anything because they were “too tired.” I even had one friend who recently gotten into a relationship tell me: “Well you’ve been so busy to hangout with your friends and do anything on the weekend so now I met someone who I can chill with and hang on the weekends.”
Excuse – the – fuck- me ???? I am sorry I did not realize we were a married couple!!!
This, compounded with everything else just started a windmill of mixed emotions, thoughts, anger and depression. I was a thermostat…. I was warm and bubbly at work but as soon as I got home or who had any interaction with friends who seemed to forget that I existed I became cold, flat, monotone and curt. And my anger fueled more when I decided to things on my own simply because everyone was too busy for me and then the same friends get upset as to why I never informed or told them. It was loose-loose situation and I simply was getting exhausted for trying to explain myself for something that really deserved no explaining…….it was already self explanatory.
So through my entire disjointed rant what I am really trying to say?
Yes I am a nurse but that does not mean I am mean I lack emotion because “I’m trained and taught to do so.” Yes I work crazy hours to take care of the sick but does not that mean I don’t enjoy or receive therapeutic conversation and care by family and friends as I do with my patients. People…. please be mindful. Keep talking to those who are grieved with the loss of a loved one despite the fact that they might seem “ok” in your eyes. And remember this is not about YOU.. it is about them and their loss and trying to support them. This is not the time for you be like “well they seem to be okay or they seem to be preoccupied with something so let me focus on myself as they don’t have time for me.” This was not your loved one that died. That has to be the most selfish inconsiderate thing to think about. People heal at different stages and a different times of their lives. People also have different ways on how they cope. What you might consider a great way of coping may not be what someone else does. As long as they are not harming themselves and others support them and be there for them instead of ridiculing them and chastising them for not being there…….for you. Again this is not about you and your feelings, its about them and how they are coping.
Now that I got that off my chest I now have to get ready for work and put on that facade that everything is cool and I am just this happy go lucky guy…but in reality I am as sick as my patients….just emotionally sick.
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