It's been 2 1/2 months since my mom passed away, and it's still hard. I dream about her most nights, sometimes they are lovely dreams of us on the beach, watching the sunset, and she says, "Wendy, you will be okay." Sometimes, they are terrible nightmares... we buried her alive on accident, I have cancer and she takes care of me, she drowns and I can't save her, she dies again... the exact same way. It's awful and I wake up in a panic. How long will I have these nightmares?
My dad is grieving, and while it's a relief to see my soldier father grieve instead of bottling it up, it is so hard. I can't fix this, I can't help him, I can't take the pain away. He has to go through his own process, just like I have to grieve. This whole experience from the time of diagnosis until now has been one excercise of learning that you just have no control, no power... and I hate it. Do you ever really stop grieving?
I'm 34, my dad is 77, I have no idea how to help him, and I feel like this is the injustice that cancer imposed on me. I feel way too young to be dealing with serious life issues like this. My mom was ten years younger than my dad, she was supposed to outlive him, she even joked about how she would buy a Mercedes right after the funeral. (My father dislikes European Cars.) Now here I am, trying to figure out how to help my father see the value of what his future holds. I know my future involves caring for my dad, being his shoulder to lean on, it's what my mom would want, and it's what I want. My mom may be gone, but I'm still my mother's daughter.