I am grieving. I feel like shit. Last night I told my husband I wanted to give up. I don’t know what that actually means. How does one give up while still living, except by suicide, which is not what I was talking about. But my grief is making me feel awful and what with the withdrawals, I’m feeling utterly challenged. I imagine my withdrawal process may be interrupted for some time, though I hope it won’t be for the entire course of my brother’s remaining life.
But my family obligations are many now. I strain to support my brother, by phone now. But in a couple of months he may move to my sisters, perhaps with his family, perhaps alone. I’ve asked if I can move to my sister’s as well and live the final few months of my brothers life close to him. I hope to do this, I feel I must do this, and I feel terror that I won’t have the coping skills to come through it gracefully.
My dad too is very ill. He will probably not survive the year either. On the 12th I leave to go cross country and care for him for a week. He needs to move out of his house into an apartment near my sister’s. I will be in charge of the move. (I am the only one with a flexible enough schedule to stay with him for a week to do all the necessary preparations then settle him into his new home.)
And then on the 25th I may have to travel again to be with my brother while he gets a chemo treatment to watch his kids and care for him. The chemo at this point is mostly palliative and may possibly slow down the cancer a bit perhaps giving him a couple of extra months. I feel swamped.
Withdrawal makes one much more sensitive to stress and overstimulation. This does not mean that it does not pass once the toxins leave your system and you continue to feed your body with healthy food and nutrients. I have to operate on faith now however. I have to trust the many who have gone before me. I hear their stories in the groups I’m involved in and I have to trust. I am moving through a dark hole. But that is the nature of grief. It feels scary. I have never had to deal with such difficult feelings without reaching for a med, but I also know that the meds never made dark feelings pass in the past and I was not dealing with such an obvious external pressure. Meds are out of the question. I’ve never responded to an antidepressant positively and was often made worse by them. Grief is not treatable–not by meds and not by diet and nutrition. It is the normal response to a painful external reality.
My mom arrives today for a visit. She and her husband will be with us for several days and then I go to take care of my father and then go take care of my brother. I may not be able to keep up the blog with the same frequency that I’ve been updating it. I will bring my laptop to my father’s and brother’s and I hope to have some free time. I’ll need it and this blog has been such a joy for me–I really want to keep it up. But if you don’t see me updating as often that is why. I hope you all might sign up for email updates or RSS feeds so you know when I’ve updated. (on the right side of the page) I don’t want to lose you, my frequent readers.
I never was able to keep a journal for myself. That I can share my thoughts with others makes all the difference. You help me and I hope in this process I might be of help to some of you.
I must add, as a final note, the severity of this grief comes and goes. It is not a heavy blanket at all times, like depressions I’ve experienced. Sometimes it temporarily goes to the recesses of my mind and I am free of feeling the pain and heaviness of it. In this way it is significantly different from some of the depressions I’ve endured.