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Offline Mia

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I really don't know where to start...
« on: December 10, 2010, 10:21:03 AM »
Hi

I never thought I'd be starting a post in this section of the site, well, not for these reasons anyway.  Some of you may already be aware that Georgia's Daddy died nearly a month ago now, he was 38, he had a horrible accident on his boat so it was a complete shock to everyone, it has changed my life completely and totally rocked a community.

The funeral was last week and over 250 turned out.  That says something doesn't it?

There is an inquest into his death which is due shortly and we have just discovered that as there was no Will it is left to his ex-wife and me to sort out all the affairs on behalf of the children.  Luckily we are friends and not arch enemies.

There is just so much stuff to consider I'm worried whether I've got the strength to get through it all.  I feel very alone, which is odd as I have family close by and lots of friends but when everyone thinks that someone else is probably helping out or "leaves you to have some time" then it can feel like desertion.  This has been highlighted by the amount of contact, support and company in the time between the accident and his funeral and now all of a sudden it seems to have stopped. 

I'm not one to ask for help and even if it's offered I'll quite often decline through a stubborn and independant streak so I know it's my own doing.  I know I have to just get on with it and be used to it being just the two of us.  On a practical level it has been just the two of us for the last 2 years anyway as we had seperated and lived in different houses but we remained on good terms, especially over the last year, and he was the person I had the most and pretty much daily contact with still, sending texts when things reminded us of stuff or things the other would find funny.  I saw him regularly, he had G regularly, we had days out together and he was due to come on school visits with me the week after he died, I had to cancel them.  We had just decided to spend Christmas together and he was coming to the Christmas Play next week, I have asked his Mum to come along instead, it will be really hard. 

I'm really, really missing him now. As very few people understand the whole situation which is far too complicated to go into on here, I get put into the "ex-girlfriend" category yet I feel like I'm grieving more like a current girlfriend would do.  I know how he still felt about me and us, I have text messages to prove it.  I feel like I need people to acknowledge the relationship we still had yet it feels wrong to make something so personal and special so public.  I suppose that the fact that I know it and he knew it all is all that really matters.

Georgia is doing brilliantly, she's just turned 4 and has totally got it which has suprised me.  She's a bright kid though and quite astute for her age.  She understands that he has died and isn't able to come back.  She has had a couple of brief tearful moments but nothing that she's dwelled upon, children just live in the moment don't they?  She is talking about him in the past tense, which has amazed me as that's something I'm not doing very much of yet in normal conversations.  We both wrote him a letter, we gave him a photo of all of us and we made him a 'Daddy' sign for the coffin instead of doing flowers.  We took them all to him at the Chapel of Rest the day before the funeral so she could connect the two, although when she was with me I asked that the coffin was closed.  She came to both services and understood why people were sad and had tissues.  I'll continue to talk about him as I would normally and answer any questions from her as they get asked, there isn't much more I can do except offer extra cuddles and Mummy time.

All of this has such enormous implications that it seems too overwhelming to beging trying to wade through it.  We have a house to clear and sell.  He has a lodger unofficially renting a room at the moment too.  There is an inquest.  There are trusts to sort out for both children and that is a minefield in itself, lots of different options and don't want to make a wrong decision. I need to write a Will for myself and think about Guardians for Georgia if anything were to now happen to me.  I now obviously lose maintenance too which has dire consequences as I relied on that money.  I am discovering that the difference between a single parent and a lone parent is huge, something I hadn't realised before...

A longer post than originally intended, I don't expect answers, there isn't anything anyone can actually do to help unless there are probate solicitors lurking on here :-)  See?  A funny, I'm getting better.

Thanks for listening x x x
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Offline zanywoman

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2010, 10:33:19 AM »
Aw hun, I dont know you but I couldnt just read and run.  My first husband committed suicide when I was expecting our 3rd baby 15 yrs ago now and I totally understand where you are at.  I also have a strong independant streak and never did ask for help however much I may have needed it.  I found that a lot of people would avoid me simply because they didnt know what to say, and eventually because they were uncomfortable with the fact that I didnt 'get over it' as fast as they would have liked.  Believe me though hun, your friends will be there like a shot if you give them a chance.  I bet you would be there for them if roles were reversed so please let them.

I just wanted to send you a ((((((((((hug))))))))))

Tracey xxx
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Offline Paulie

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2010, 11:15:38 AM »
Ami,
Thats shocking, I havent been on here much for a while so its total news to me all I can say is I'm so sorry to hear of your loss, I'm sure those people are waiting on the sideline just waiting for you to give the nod, and they want to be there for you but also to give you space to think

Big Hugs
Paul

 
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Offline Happimamma

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2010, 11:27:17 AM »
Dear Mia,

You are so clear-minded and balanced I really am in awe of you!  To be able to clearly state the practicalities of your current situation at the same time as your feelings in relation to Him, Georgia and other people so appropriately is amazing considering it is only a month on since you lost someone so integral to you and your daughters lives.

I hope that my words to you are as honest and non-patronising as you so clearly are.

And Oh liitle Georgia - What a dear treasure.

I am yet to experience losing someone dear.  I have known for some years though that people who are experiencing this often feel that people avoid them and make various presumptions - I have seen it many times so I always make a point in these circumstances to not do the same.

Apart from saying similar things to people whom you would like to be more supportive I have two thoughts -

1. Seriously, Do any friends on this forum have any skills they could offer you?  I can offer supportive complimentary therapy but ehat may or may not be appropriate so early.  Star of Bethlehem Bach flower remedy helps people through their grieving process. It works on a very deep energetic level and I would be very happy to talk via phone or msg about this and supply you free of charge with some. I can also give you massage treatments if you are ever around the Oxford area and/or if you come to CenterParks or on the Farm trip.

2. Elisabeth Kubler Ross wrote a classic insightful and loving book entitled "On Death and Dying" and there is a website http://www.ekrfoundation.org/ where you can access videos of her talking on various topics, a page of resources, though these may be American but nevertheless give guidance and a synopsis on the stages of grief.

Apologies if any of my thoughts are not appropriate as they come from a person inexperienced in grief but nevertheless I am sensitive to your pain and challenges and in this respect If you would like Elisabeths book pleae just msg me your address - you need do no more.

With as much human Love and empathy as I can possibly transmit to you, I will leave it here for now.  Respond if and when you feel like it.

what a credit to Chrissie and Richard that they have made possible this unique forum.

You are amongst sincere and caring friends Mia.

Kendra

Offline TravellingChick

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2010, 11:32:13 AM »
Hey luv

Sorry haven't been around much the last week or so - been a bit under the weather etc.

You are doing amazingly well and I utterly believe that you can do this,  you do have the strength to get thru this.  Partly because the bottom line is that you HAVE to get thru it if only for Georgia's sake and you're a brilliant mum.

Try to focus on what is immediately at hand and deal with what you must on a day to day basis.  Hard to do when your future has just changed irrevocably I know but if you can manage it then it keeps stress and worry to a minimum.

All things will get done,  in time and when it's an appropriate time.  The issues around lack of a will will take some time to sort out - it may take a few months.  My father died intestate altho he was still married,  everything went to his then wife and it was all quite straightforward - still took ages.  

I am sure you and his ex will work out what is right and best for Georgia and her brother.  Remember what I said about factoring financial support in when you consider trust funds for any inheritance.  It's all very well creating nest eggs and start up funds for the kids when they reach 21 but they will need financial support between now and then.  My advice would be to try to work it so that some sort of monthly allowance is made available to you both to cover the maintenance gap now that Mal is gone.

This whole thing is just poop Ami,  and one of the shittiest bits is you just can't change it,  you can't avoid it,  you can't speed thru it to the day you will start to feel better.  Time goes by and life carries on for the majority of the people around you.  Your life carries on too but everything has changed whilst everything seems the same.

Jacob and I were talking about this the other day and it's like suddenly you're living in a parallel universe or a Dr Who episode.  

Things will normalise - even tho you don't want them to because the idea of a life without them in it is so abnormal.  It will happen slowly and you will adjust to it slowly as well.

Accept the help and support that might be offered in terms of the house and so on.  Grieve for him in the way that you feel appropriate - don't buy into the "ex-girlfriend" category and tailor your grief accordingly.  Until you have been there people just don't understand,  I remember being gobsmacked that my mother cried when my father died as they'd been divorced.  At 17 I couldn't figure out why she was upset!!!

Hang in there mate,  lean on your friends and family and don't let yourself become isolated.  The next time you say you're not up for a phone chat I will ring anyway - if you promise to do the same for me!

If you find a good lawyer to do your will,  ask him if he offers a 2 for 1 deal as I need one too!  

Lone parenting is hard,  I won't sugar coat that,  especially when you are left alone without choice or control.  But it's do-able and as you adjust it's enjoyable and rewarding too.

Loads a love,  loads a hugs and you've done the right thing writing on here.  I need to do the same and you've inspired me to face how I'm feeling right now - a little bit at least :-)
Sarah
xxxxxx
ps:  speak to you later!!!!!

Offline Dora

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2010, 12:08:24 PM »
Ami,
I want to reply properly, but I'm in a rush and can't write what I want in 5 minutes. I think I mentioned to you before that I know what it is like for everyone to think that 'it is all over now, time to move on' etc so the support stops. It won't stop from me though, I'm always here and I'll do whatever I can to support you.

I've got a good friend who is a solicitor, I'll ask him if he has a friend in probate you can speak to for free. I'll let you know.
I'm away the weekend but I'll message you next week. I'm also at my mums over Christmas - so maybe we can meet up? No need to decide now, we can talk about it nearer the time.

One last thing - if you can, please book the farm trip - it will give you something to aim towards.

Lots of hugs ((((((((((((())))))))))))
Love Leigh xx
p.s. I used to use Star of Bethlehem - it does help
Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder…”– Thoreau

Offline Stuart

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2010, 01:01:15 PM »
Hi Amii,

I hope you are both ok and trying to stay strong, I know how difficult it must be for you both and I completely understand that you will miss him as you will always have a connection in little Georgia.

I certainley don't pretend to be an expert but having dealt with my mothers estate which has only just finished and my fathers two years ago I can offer some guidance and will try to help where I can. I will be honest and say it is a bit of a minefield but agree with Sarah that take it one day at a time as it will feel like everything is on top of you at the moment and you don't know where to start.

I am not a million miles away if you want any help.

Take Care

Stuart
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Offline Scoobylou

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2010, 01:01:51 PM »
Hi sweetie.

I agree with Kendra, you are doing so amazingly well. And knowing you as I do, i would expect that. But that doesnt mean that I expect you to be ok or to be even starting to get over what has happened. But i have been very conscious of giving you space until you said you wanted otherwise. Please dont think the support isnt there - if you want to chat then i'm always on the end of the phone, if you want to get away then come and stay with us, or if you need someone there i'm in the car in a split second.

I'm not even going to try to give you practical advice - i have no idea where i would start. But just know how loved you are, how precious you both are to us all and that if you need a support network, its just here waiting for you.

Love u lots xxx

Offline Happimamma

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2010, 01:12:43 PM »
Mia,

I have had another thought (couldn't stop thinking about you and what you must be going through since I last logged on)

Now, bear in mind, I am not experienced in the grieving process so sorry if this is not helpful but I am aware that there is something that happens when one loses someone whereby every year, around the time the person passed, feelings and memories come back.

It stands to reason that being so close to Christmas (and that is what I was thinking about - how strong the pain must be when you go through things like attending Georgia's show and he would have been there.) ...but his passing being so close to Christmas is bound I think to bring back the pain and sadness every Christmas time from now on and whilst I wouldn't in any way try to suggest that you curtail any grieving I was wondering if it might serve Georgia and indeed yourself better if you could in some way do ONE really nice thing just before or on Christmas day that is brand new and completely unassociated with her Daddy, IF that is humanly possible.  Please don't think that this suggestion is unfeeling - It is far from that and it may not be possible but I want you both in the years to come to have something that is happy to remember at Christmas too.

Kendra

Offline helencitauk

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2010, 03:14:32 PM »
Hi Mia,

First of all, I am very sorry to hear about your daughter's father's tragic death. In my experience, you don't ever give up missing the person but you learn to accept the feelings you have - not that I've been experienced a death as shocking as this.

Anyway, I don't know anything about probate, sorting out a person's estate etc, but I have a guardian for my little girl, as her father is not capable of looking after her. It didn't thrill me to think about my own death, particularly in relation to the impact it would have on my daughter's life. And it was totally weird asking one of my best friends if she and her husband would be able to accept the role. However, once you've done it, there is a tremendous sense of relief.

It is a scary decision to make but you can review the choices you make as well.

Good luck,

Helen x
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Offline The Naughtiest Girl

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2010, 04:03:07 PM »
Hi Ami

I keep starting to write an answer here and deleting as I simply don't know what to say as I have no experience of such a terribly painful thing.

There are many complex practical issues as well as many emotional ones and you feel very very alone

I know you know that many many people care about and Georgia and you are an amazing strong woman but it still doesn't stop all this being almost unbearable, like Sarah says there is no avoiding, it's your reality and a very hard one.

The emotions and the complexity of your relationship with M do not make it any less real and like you say you and him know what was the truth and that is something special and unique that can never be taken away. Reflecting on texts and things must bring some " proof" but also some very very painful emotions

This is all very raw and yet as you say what happens after funerals is that it feels like support has gone. I remember this happening when my Dad died. It's like the world carries on and yet in some ways for you to go foward can feel like the distance time wise between the two of you is growing.

BUT what you had will never be negated because of history and more importantly because of Georgia, she sounds like she is being amazing, what a little star.. this is a credit to you and to M. Mind you reading what your Mum wrote on FB she thinks you are a star too.
You do have so many people there for you. I have been a rubbish mate because I have had my head up my arse about other stuff and kept away from the forum for ages. I am sorry. I am here any time you wnat to talk.

On a practical level I hope you get some help from Leighs friend. Liek Sraj says the legal stuff will get sorted in time and even though the prerssure is phenomenal there IS onloy so much you can do.
T
Sorry keyboard going craxy will post this and carry on


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Offline The Naughtiest Girl

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2010, 04:07:39 PM »
What is it Hels Bels says " You can't eat an elephant in one bite"
You can not possibly manage all this immediately and I guess like with anything else it has to be a case of looking at the urgent and putting everything else on the " Not today, I am too exhausted so b*gger off " Pile
I know its very very very hard to accept help if it's not your thing so no one can tell you that you must
But never ever forget
1: You are very strong
2: You are very loved
Rach
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Courage is looking fear right in the eye and saying " Excuse me, get the hell out of my way, I have things to do "

Offline The Naughtiest Girl

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2010, 04:10:31 PM »
Sorry reply number three here
I think Kendra's advice re Christmas is excellent, I hope you manage it.
Take Care and am sending a load of love in the ether to you both
Rachxx
Courage is looking fear right in the eye and saying " Excuse me, get the hell out of my way, I have things to do "

Offline Laus

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2010, 08:40:46 PM »
I feel like I need people to acknowledge the relationship we still had yet it feels wrong to make something so personal and special so public.
Hi Mia, I know how you feel.  Scott, Amy's dad was the person I text if I had some news, the person I rang if I wanted to discuss something I'd seen on T.V. etc and his loss is great and huge.  I know that you need people to acknowledge your loss, sadly this doesn't always happen but in time this will be fine.  He is a huge loss to you and eventually you wont need to explain to others.  I tell people that I feel like a widower even though I'm not officially.  Many close friends and family have no idea the sense of loss I feel and I got fed up trying to explain it as why on earth should I be in a position to defend why I miss him so much... I've given up trying and am at peace with that. Strangely it's strangers that have more sympathy and understand my loss. For the panicky beginning times rescue remedy spray in your handbag is good.  Time heals is a cliche, I don't think it heals but it certainly helps.  I spent my early days making a memory box of photo's, birthday and Christmas card, an old credit card, small toy he'd bought her etc.  I also got one special photo put into a frame for Amy's bedroom.  I also began to write one word phrases and bullet points of memories in a book...  Nothing can take away the hard days and feeling of complete disbelief.  I find my head still physically nods 'no' when I think about Scott's death as I just still can't believe it... but I do accept it now.

I too have lost maintenance payments and struggle constantly.  It's one area that I feel quite strongly about with regards to a benefit being available. 

I have no advice whatsoever on the estate and trusts as Scott left no money or will or property... I wish he had so there was something for Amy but there was nothing.  I have written a will though and left everything to Amy, although half of everything can be spent by my sister if need be on Amy, and only if my other sister agrees to it.  Eg, they could use some money for university or to convert a loft for a bedroom etc.  I can however listen to your feelings and hope that it helps you to know that I understand the loss.  I never realised until the day Scott had died that he had become my very best friend in the world.  I never did tell him that but now I feel that he knows.  Me and Amy send a balloon up to the sky on birthdays and Fathers day.  As someone else on here mentioned, we also started a completely new tradition of going to the Isle of Wight at Easter with his other older daughter so they could have sister time (Arranging for Georgia and Scott to spend time together might be something to focus your energy on perhaps?)
I know you will have a heavy heart this Christmas and everyone on here is thinking of you and here for you,
Lots of Love
Laura
xxxxx

Offline NickNick

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2010, 10:11:47 PM »
Hi Mia
I am sorry for your loss, cant offer much practical advice but I just wanted to follow on from the other suggestions about Christmas.  We lost someone very special a few years ago, on Christmas Day itself.  I makes it so difficult because it will never be a easy time of year, and there is no escape with xmas adverts & songs on the radio and the xmas parties and the rest. It seems to make it harder to grieve privately inside when then rest of the world seems to be celebrating.
 We found it easier to cope by changing our Xmas traditions completely, because there was such a  big hole left behind in the old ones. Silly things really but for instance we dont have traditional Xmas lunch, we have a chocolate & cheese picnic because its less painful than sitting around the table knowing theres always an empty space. My daughter now enjoys that we do things a little bit different, they are now our own family traditions and a little bit special because they are individual to us, and over time it has made it a little less painful for me.
I do think doing something special just for the two of you helps too, my daughter & I have a couple of days away together just before Xmas, off to Bruges tomorrow for a couple of days.  Not sure why but being away from the familiar places & people seems to help,  Xmas will never be quite the same, but the couple of days away is our special seasonal time.
I dont want to sound like a cliche, things are never ever the same again, but they do get less raw.  Our past memories and new traditions all blend together now, I can hear Silent Night and smile at the memories as well as wanting to cry, when we go away we leave a night light burning somewhere, I suppose our way of acknowledging our loss, a way of saying we are sad you cant be with us, but we are thinking of you and carry you with us where ever we go.
Not sure if any of this will help, but hope it might a little.  Take care x

Offline Silky

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2010, 11:55:38 PM »
Hi Ami,
Although it's heart wrenching reading your post, I'm glad you have felt up to posting - and almost asking for help. The replies to this thread also made me fill up, so many people here have been through so awful traumas and yet open to share their stories to lend their support.

No one is ever quite sure how to react when someone is bereaved and there's a fine line between offering support, and totally overtaking someone when they need space. Your friends and relatives are hesitantly waiting for a sign that you're ready for their support and input - please don't be afraid of asking for help and support at a time like this, now is definitely the time to put the strong, independent streak in the drawer and treat yourself with kids gloves and accept as much help as you can, whether this is practical or emotional. 

Whilst bereavement is such a personal thing, the feelings of loss, emptiness, shock and anger even are recognised by anyone who's lost someone dear to them. There are a number of people on here who have lost a partner - current or ex - and it may well be useful to chat closer for support over the next few months when everything is still such a maelstrom. Others have lost close friends and loved ones and will also identify the feelings you encounter.

Bereavement really shouldn't have "categories" and the nature of your relationship really is no one else's business but your own. You have lost the father to your child, someone with whom you've shared some of life's most momentous steps and who was very dear to you. Don't feel pigeon-holed by anyone and please don't feel under pressure to recover, the grieving process takes time and you need to allow yourself plenty of this.  The 7 stages of grief are well recognised as the natural progression of this (there's some info on this at the front of our site too) but there really isn't a prescribed time scale.  Sometimes you may think you're starting to recover when the slightest thing can make you break down in tears - don't feel afraid you have to put on a brave front should you ever feel like this. It's only human -- and you're only human -- to need the odd shoulder to cry on.

The financial side is a nightmare when you've got the whirlwind of emotions to deal with. A quick google has brought up this site but I suspect there are others similar. Hopefully you can find the right support so you can be confident in the decisions you both make. If you have a financial advisor you already use they'd be a good first point of call.  As Rachel's already pointed out, break things into small and manageable steps, you're not Wonder Woman and no one will be expecting you to be under these circumstances.

Take care Ami and tread gently.
love and hugs,
Chrissie x



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Offline Dora

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2010, 09:38:59 PM »
Hi Ami,
I've been in contact with my solicitor friend and quite frankly was really disappointed as he's not really been any help - however I will pm you what he said but I am sorry he hasn't helped more.

There is not more that can be added to the great advice that has already been given, I can only echo it - particularly Sarah's.
The only points I want to add (and they may already have been said) -
Don't worry about still talking in the present tense - he is still in the present in your memories. How you refer to him will change naturally in time. Before I had someone close to me die, I could never understand why people would say that they had still laid a place setting at the dinner table accidentally - now I can understand it perfectly.

People don't understand what to say when there is a bereavement, so they avoid it, never mention the person, cross the road, etc and they think you have dealt with it way before you have - I don't think in a nasty way, more because they want you to be ok. I think it is common for people to think - funeral over - Christmas to 'look forward' to so everything is rosy again, but those it's happened to know it's not. My brothers inquest took 2 years, and the following court case another 3. The process isn't always quick, and while it is going on, it is impossible to move on.

Louise is right though - your friends are there for you like a shot - even the strongest of people need the support of their friends and you've got lots. You will get through it, it just feels so daunting now, having to sort it out - just do what you can when you feel you can.

I have a guardians for E - I found it really hard to choose at the beginning of my break-up, and I put down who I thought was right, but have recently changed it. It's easy to change, so if you find when things have settled you feel you've made the wrong decision - it's easy to alter.

Sorry my friend couldn't have been more help, but I shall pm now what he did say.

Love Leigh xx

Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder…”– Thoreau

Offline Mia

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2010, 11:53:44 PM »
Thanks everyone for your lovely replies, the amazing thing about this forum is that even though people have their own problems going on they still take time to offer support to others, it's really appreciated.

I think I've just found the avoidance thing a bit strange, none of my comments have been aimed at anyone from this site btw, it's more from local friends and family.  Even my parents who we saw on Friday afternoon.  We went to see them and I'd asked if it was ok to leave G with them for an hour max while I popped to a store near them to get at Xmas present for G so she wouldn't see it.  It was fine and then when back we stayed for a cuppa and for a couple of hours.  It was getting on so at 4pm ish I said we'd have to make a move soon to get back to get tea on, more chatting and all of a sudden it's 4.45pm so I'm now gathering stuff up and saying we really need to get on as G'll be hungry soon.  Not once did they ask if we wanted to stop with them for tea.  And not once did either of them ask how we were doing.  G had said not long after arriving that "Mummy has been sad because of Daddy" and I'd mentioned in passing that I'm tired because of not sleeping well still and still neither of them commented on any of it. I just find it really bizarre and compare it to how I think I'd react if it were Georgia going through similar in years to come...

I think it's going to need to be me that takes the initiative if i want to see people but then I don't want to feel like I'm pushing us on people.  Also from a selfish point of view I don't see why I should be having to do all the running under these circumstances.  My brother is a chef and he lives 2 roundabouts away, he drives past my village 4 times a day as he does split shifts and had said middle of last week in a text message "I'll call you soon"  Has he?  No.  He also, given his trade, said that a way he could help would maybe be to cook some batches of stuff for us and drop it off, lovely, has he? No.  I just feel that people are quick to offer things but often there's no follow through after.  I'm not going to call him and ask "could you make a couple of cottage pies for my freezer please?"  but if he did actually bring something round it would be really appreciated.

Kendra, thanks for the offers and I may take you up on them.  I have the Kubler-Ross book as it's a Nursing text for the palliative care element but I've lent it to a friend who's currently digging it out for me to re-read.  I would love to do the farm trip but will have to see where the finances are nearer the time.

Sarah, you are an absolute star and I love you to bits.  Thank you for all your support and advice, especially with all you have going on anyway.  You are fast catching up with my best mate in terms of 'rock' status.

I will get round to calling everyone that has given numbers (esp Laura & Mel, thank you) and offered a place to visit, thank you and Lou, you're high on my call list I promise, I've not forgotten you x x x

Rach, you are spot on regarding prioritising the urgent stuff and saying pooh to everyone else, I need to stop worrying about other people and start looking after myself and Georgia first. 

We had G's half brother (12) and his Mum over for sunday lunch today, really nice to see them and we'll hopefully make it a regular thing at each others houses so the kids still see each other regularly, I said to her today that we'll get them camping with us at some point too but I don't think she's a natural camper, I'll work on her :-)

Leigh, thanks for the legal info and yes it's familiar stuff but was worth an ask anyway, appreciated.  I'm actually going to see a solicitor next week hopefully, one that's affiliated to my best mate and her family, he's offered to have a coffee with us both to go over the basics and at least let me know my options with regard to trusts etc and there's no charge.

Chrissie & Richard, thank you for providing us all with this forum that enables this support to take place, for the card you sent us, the messages and for your advice.  I've now read through the bereavement advice section and it's very good.

Am off to bed now, not sleeping well still and I suppose being on here at midnight won't really help with that....

A x





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Offline TravellingChick

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2010, 06:37:19 AM »
Morning, hear ya on the not sleeping goo good front!!

Just a quickie, proud and honored to be one of your rocks mate and always here.  After what we've been discussing I think you know how much I value your friendship. Equally you've talked me thru some crap recently despite all you have going on.

Just quickly about your parents and brother, mine were very much the same until X vanished. Then mum was a legend but I realize now it took a lot for them to see past my 'I'm fine and coping' independent outer shell.

As for your bro, I absolutely DO think you should text him TODAY and say 'oi! Where's that freezer food you offered' or 'what happened to the cottage pies?'

He's your little bro, he's not used to realizing you need a big of looking after and is probably unaware of how Mal's death has turned your life upside down on so many levels.

Hope today is a good one luvvie and I'll catch up with you later.
S
Xx

Offline Happimamma

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2010, 10:58:05 AM »
Hi Mia,

On the parents not stepping in at relevant points front, I don't think It is just in this exceptional circumstance, I think as parents get older they do it anyway.  I have noticed it with my parents.  I have been having a battle with Rosie's ex-nursery which has not been elevated into a court hearing and not once, even when I went to one court hearing on my own did they enquire about it so I mentioned to my Dad that I had noticed and felt their lack of concern and he did not respond.  Instead, he started to talk about something else.  I have noticed this over many topics over the past few years.  You wonder what they are thinking don't you?

Have you tried over-the-counter Nytol for sleeping?  I am on it at the moment as a persistent cough stopped me sleeping and it works wonders.  It doesn't stop you waking up if you are needed but does make getting up in the morning a bit more difficult.

I can remember reading an article by a woman recently bereaved who said that the most helpful thing somebody did for her was to leave casseroles on her door-step.  Agree with LF - Ask your brother - Just be straightfoward.

You are still very much in the thoughts of many of us.

Kendra

Offline Pheonix

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #20 on: December 13, 2010, 12:55:14 PM »
Ami , you are amazing and so is your lovely daughter , arent children amazing when everyone around them is crumbling , its as if they find a strength to hold you up when you need it most

Many years ago, my boyfriend died suddenly , he was only 21 , I had Bobby then and we had planned more children together.

While everyone else was mourning for the person they knew and a past they shared , I felt I was mourning for a future that was ripped away from us, people avoided me because they simply didnt know what to say and were afraid i would burst into tears at any given moment, only someone who has experienced that awkward avoidance can really understand it.

I could always tell from the way you spoke about him (when the rest of us were merrily slagging off our useless exes ) that you were a tremendous support for each other and he was the kind of dad we all wished our children had .

Just because you were no longer officially a couple it does not mean that you havnt lost a partner, you dont need anyone to validate that, if other people dont get it then thats their problem.

You are such a strength to others going through all kinds of dramas, please dont feel that you cant ask for some of that back, you dont always have to have a stiff upper lip you know.

Whatever you do, carry on meeting friends and organising muddy , happy days out for us please.

xx






Offline gypsy

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2010, 01:26:54 PM »
ami,

ive clicked on and off this post and feel my words are so meaningless but all i can say is that you have some amazing friends around you - use them and please dont feel selfish

i know my parents are the same whenever ive experienced trauma altho nothing at all compared to what youre going thro - rach is right - take things slowly and only do the things that matter to you and g

kids are so so resilient - we see this time after time - there are other kids on this forum who have lost parents who are some of the amazing kids i know and im sure your little gorgeous girl will be the same

take every bit of help ami, take things one day at a time - dont feel selfish or guilty - this is a time for you and g

take care

ange xxxxx

Offline bindy

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2010, 05:07:07 PM »
Hi lovely

Am so sorry I have only just caught up with this post, so please don't think it's a case of ignoring you because of any awkwardness which some experience at times of grief & bereavement, & I do know this happens, as I went through the same with close friends etc at the time of my Dad's death.

You are an amazingly strong woman, & it is certainly not a sign of weakness to reach out & ask for help when you need it, although again, I do realise how difficult this can be when you are used to being independant & resilient, but everyone needs help & support sometimes & you need to let people do stuff for you, even on a most basic level, as you can't take everything on board all by yourself right now, & if those around you like your parents & brother are not stepping in like you thought they would, then, as Sarah said, I think you just need to be really blunt with them & tell them how it is for you, even if it does make them uncomfortable, but I think it's more just a case of they don't know how to handle things with you at the moment & are probably being over-cautious in offering their support & are really not aware of how their usually capable, strong daughter/sister needs them more than ever at the moment, even if only for some culinary help! 

I do know how hard it is just to function on a day-to-day basis with the most mundane tasks, let alone with all the other issues you are having to contemplate & confront now, & I totally agree with what has been said by Rach & others in that you really don't have to deal with everything now, break it down & just deal with what you feel you can on a daily basis, & if it doesn't get done today there is alway tomorrow or the day after - or, hey, even next week/month - no one is going to judge you as to what & when it gets done.

I also just want to reiterate what I've already said (& others too), if you need any help, company, support at any time over the coming weeks & months then I am there for you in whatever way you need.

Love you both loads
Amanda xx
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Offline Mia

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2010, 09:22:24 PM »
Thanks ladies. 

Today we were taken by my folks to a local winter wonderland walk at a nearby garden centre/park and then they bought us some pub grub, so they are doing nice and thoughtful things like that, especially as today is a month since Mal died although they may not realise the exact date.  However nothing mentioned again about how we're doing, what the probate situation is, blah blah blah.  I've come to the conclusion that they're going for the distraction route and that's just how they're dealing with it.

I have booked an appointment with a solicitor for Thursday and I've also re-booked 2 appointments to look around potential schools this week for G to go to in September as the deadline for applications is early January and I had to cancel earlier appointments for obvious reasons.

It's G's pre-school Christmas Play on Friday morning too, her first ever one so I'm really looking forward to it but also will be sad as Mal was due to be coming with me. I'm taking his Mum instead so we can mop up each other's tears.

So a busy week and a start to the long road... x x x
Having children makes you no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist.  Michael Levine.

Offline Dora

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #24 on: December 13, 2010, 09:37:35 PM »
Hi Ami,

Quote
I've come to the conclusion that they're going for the distraction route and that's just how they're dealing with it.


I reckon you are right - they do care - they just don't know what is best to do. My parents are brilliant with practical stuff but cr*p with anything emotional. It's why my mum still does my ironing - she has said that she doesn't feel she gives me emotional support so she does what she feels will help and that she does well. They also might not be asking how you are doing because they look at you and see how well you are coping so don't feel they need to ask. I'm not saying that it is right, you might feel like you are not coping, but you are.

Are you going to the schools on your own - or do you want someone with you - if you do want someone and they don't offer then ask them - I can't think that anyone would be reluctant to accompany you, but they might not think to offer. If you don't like asking and you ask your mum or his mum, you could always sell it to them by saying you thought they would like to join you.

I am sure G will be fantastic in her play, you will all be proud of her (well prouder lol). G knows her daddy loved her and would have been there - it's not much comfort and it's so unfair that he is not.
Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder…”– Thoreau

Offline Happimamma

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2010, 09:39:22 PM »
I'm just wondering Mia whether your mum and dad are just presuming they know what you need.  I actually had a talk for an hour with my dad today about obviously a less important situation but even so and he admitted that he did in fact make presumptions.  Doesn't mean to say your folks are doing the same but they might be.  If it feels right for you maybe everyone might appreciate a heart to heart?

Kendra

Offline Ann Stig (official SWK booking name)

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Re: I really don't know where to start...
« Reply #26 on: December 13, 2010, 10:36:41 PM »
Hi Mia

My thoughts are with you....hugs!

I know your the one who emotionally needs the support but often people dont know how that support should be given.  Seems a bit twisted that the person needing the support is the one who has to support others in how to deal with their grief.

You will have to tell your parents what help you need.  If you feel like staying for dinner, then ask them if they mind. 

I bet people have offered support, then you've not seen sight nor sound of them......they are scared (simply put).  Dealing with someone else's grief is truly hard cos none of us want to experience it.

I'm cheeky and therefore ask......can you?

Ann x

 

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