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My mother just passed a few hours ago, a long painful battle after suffering a traumatic brain injury from a hospital fall, I was with her a few hours prior, just wish I was there with her at that moment, luckily my brother was with her which makes me feel better, not really in shock, I have felt this void for quite some time, just not looking forward to the next few days regarding arrangements, etc.....any suggestions to get through the next few days/weeks? preferably without the family drama that often occurs....

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Usa Positive, I am so sorry for the loss of your mother. The days, weeks and years that follow will be filled with decision-making. I wish you the best of luck in this process. I found it comforting to be alone rather than surrounded by well-wishers or family and friends. Bless you.
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I have done that singing songs in my head on more than one occasion and on different circumstances. It works. But I never thought of doing it to stop crying at a funeral. I will remember this one because it has worked for me! Thanks.
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That was beautiful and the perfect advice. Terry jack you are such an eloquent writer who spoke from her heart.
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Death is a part of the circle of life. All living things will pass on. Knowing this doesn't make it easier when our loved ones pass on. My mom has been gone 11.5 years, while I still miss her, the pain I feel has changed over time. I think we always miss our loved ones and it's more difficult for those of us left behind. I wish I had my mom back, but if she were to be sick-I wouldn't want that for her. Death can be a release, no more pain or suffering. Everyone has different thoughts and opinions about death. Your mom is still with you in all the memories you have, she lies within your heart and that love will never die. give yourself time to grieve, recognize your loss but know this is the natural order of things and that life does go on. In the grand scheme of things, possessions aren't important, but small items that have sentimental value help to remind us of good times. After my mom passed, I went through her things right away. Some people prefer to wait a couple of weeks. Making the arrangements were difficult, my dad, my brother and I made the arrangements and it wasn't easy. Our loss was sudden and unexpected, looking back now I don't think there was anything we could do to make it easier. It's just a task that must be done. During calling hours and the funeral, I sang songs in my head to help me get through without breaking down and sobbing the entire time. I must have sang 'row, row, row your boat' a million times but it got me through public appearances. (I'm not a good 'crier') It was a stressful time, I'm sorry for your loss. It's is no less or more a loss whether the death is sudden or expected. Remember all the good times and all the special memories you have of her. Keep them in your heart, that will see you through this difficult time.
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On a very practical note, if she has a house or apartment, please secure it by changing the locks and do not trust anyone to go in there. It is extremely common for thefts to occur, even by grieving (?) family or friends. If there is any tangible property that needs to be distributed according to her Will it must be done in a documented manner. It may seem harsh to not allow people into her home, but have the gathering at church or funeral parlor (better parking there) and make sure the home is off-limts. Also arrange for a neighbor or two to be on lookout for break-ins, which can happen if there is an obituary in local paper, its the perfect time for thieves to break in while every one is at the funeral.
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Be agreeable. I talked to a friend whose husband passed last week, and she was fussing about the sons wanting to include songs which she did not think were dignified enough for the service. "Tom loved those songs, but they don't belong in church! I want Beulah Land and Going Home!!" I pointed out that they lost their dad, and that maybe they could compromise by not including the words, and using them to open and close the service. The last thing you want to do is to cause family discord at this time. She said she'd never thought of my idea, and she would think hard about it. Today was the service. Eidelveiss was played as the family came in, and as they left, a wordless "She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy."
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UsaPositive, I am so very sorry to hear of the loss of your mother..
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I think the thing to remember is that everyone grieves and handles these beginning days differently. My mother passed Feb 4 and my two brothers and I are each handling differently .I was her caregiver for 11 years..she was bedridden for 4 years with dementia, heart problems, diabetes, etc. she was on hospice for 19 MONTHS!!!! I had weekly meetings with the social worker through her Hospice and will have for 13 months..I highly recommend seeing if some agency that handled her care can give you this…it has helped me accept that we ALL grieve differently.
Also although my mom was a Jewish athesist and I am more of a universal-finding the-essence in all religions type of person. it helped me go back to my Jewish roots in my time of mourning. The perfect rabbi appeared and my mom had the perfect service…The difference between my brothers and I disappeared and we each handled all the arrangements ( Jewish funerals happen within 3 days of the death) we all just spoke from our hearts and everyone said it was the most beautiful service they ever attended…My mom LOVED chocolate and we passed out See's candy during her service … Do what you need to do to honor your LO.. Then in the Jewish tradition we take a week out after the funeral and practice 'sitting Shiva" basically your friendstake care of you and you stay at home and take take the time to withdraw from the world and it's activities and mourn ( google "sitting shiva" ) it was SO helpful for me..I think anybody could take a week for their own mental health and to honor their loved one… Also what Vegsister mentioned Final Gifts..great book…I am sorry for your loss…However, the one truth in life is that we come from love and we go back to love and that are born to die… we also have each other on this journey…Also the Jewish people say a prayer every day for their loved one that never mentions death…it's called the Kaddish you can also google it and the english is very comforting for anyone as it only praises the glory of God…
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I am so sorry for your loss. The rituals we do after a death are things we do for a reason, they bring peace and comfort at a time when the sense of loss is so staggering we feel completely blown away. At least I did. When my mom died I felt so much guilt about all the things I should have done, most of all just be there for her. But the important thing as others have said is that you were there for her and she knew you were there even if at that moment you weren't.

There is a wonderful book called Final Gifts written by two hospice workers; in their experience many people wait until they are alone to pass because they don't want to burden their loved ones. The book brought me comfort and I recommend it.

The lingering guilt I have about my mom is that we did not do a big ceremony for her funeral, with all her friends and the people who loved her, we just did a small ceremony with family. My mom would have loved having all those people remember her and celebrate her life, but my sister, dad and I were just so overwhelmed with all the financial, household, and other upheaval we couldn't think about the ceremony my mom deserved.

It did bring me great comfort to write and read a eulogy that celebrated my mom in a very personal way. My sister and I also created an online blog where we, my dad, and my mom's friends could write their memories of her and that helped a lot.

Again, I am so sorry for your loss. I think the best thing you can do is think of how your mom would most like to be celebrated and remembered, and try to do that for her. It will bring you great comfort to have some ongoing memorial for her--whether an online memorial, a special ceremony where family and friends can remember her in their own ways, a garden you plant for her, whatever your mom would appreciate--that allows you to feel and remember your connection even though she is no longer present in the flesh.
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I am so sorry for your loss UsaPositive. Yesterday was the one year anniversary of my moms death. I felt a sense of relief that my mom was in a better place and no longer suffering. My sister and myself chose to split duties. She took care of the mass and cemetary and I took care of getting a new suit for dad and getting a dress for mom. I wanted my mom to "look like a million bucks" (one of her favorite sayings). I took my 3 kids dress shopping with me. My daughter was about the same size as my mom. We were in a bridal store and it was so hard to find a gown that was not low cut and had long sleeves (moms arms were all bruised from iv's. The women who worked in the store were wonderful. My daughter would come out of the dressing room with a "ta da" , we laughed the whole time. The best was we were going back and forth with a thought a dress was too low and she thought it wasn't. She called me into the dressing room and there she was laying on the bench with her hands folded in her chest! Sounds morbid but all I could do was laugh when she said look you can't see my boobs! I never did find a dress at that store but it did lighten the mood. We chose to see my mom the day before the viewing to make sure she looked ok. Her hair looked good (I fixed her wig myself ) but her makeup needed some touching up. All my dad could say was how beautiful and young she looked. This allowed us to get the initial burst of emotions out and allowed us to grieve privately. I would recommend doing this, it was so helpful for us. The day of the funeral my dad was so proud and happy with what a great job we did. Dads new suit was comfortable, mom looked great and the mass was beautiful. It was a lot of work but I was glad I had no extra time inmy hands before the funeral. Afterwards i crashed for 2 days and did nothing. This was the part that was hardest for me. I almost felt guilty laying around doing nothing. Didn't have to get mom up, washed, dressed and fed. Would do all those things again in a heartbeat to have my mom back. Now I just muddle thru. Some days good, some not, but it does get better. I wish peace and comfort for you and your family during these next few days and know that your mom is with you every step of the way😢
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My Mom passed last Sunday after 5 years with mild dementia, mini strokes, and seizures, plus a fractured kneecap for which she refused surgery or physical therapy. Eventually she had to be medicated for lashing out physically (always lashed our verbally for years). She was under hospice care last year and "recovered" only to suffer another year to be taken under hospice comfort care again in Dec 2014. This time her decline took 2 months of suffering physically and mentally. I did my mourning the entire past 5 years and feel numb now. I am sorry for your loss but you will gather strength from somewhere inside and a wisdom to do what is necessary and what is in your heart. Let others help you if they are sincere but do whar you know is best. I too was with my Mom almost all day and night for weeks to be her advocate in the nursing home, but she passed while I was at home for a few hours. I wish I could have been with her but it was not to be! We had time to share our last talks and feelings and love and I am grateful fo that. Hugs and strength for you and you will find what you need to get through this and honor your Mom.
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I don't have a clue. I have been grieving now for almost ten years when he first started showing symptoms. Hoping I will be all grieved out by the dime he passes. But I doubt it. I guess it helps to have all the arrangements done ahead of time. I haven't done that. But I know you can prearrange the details before the person passes. This is also good if you have to go on Medicaid. As funeral expenses are allowed in the 5 year look-back! You have my deepest sympathy as you are finally facing what you knew was coming. But i know you were dreading it as am I. Please enjoy the best memories you have and forget the bad ones. God be with you!
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I don't have a clue. I have been grieving now for almost ten years when he first started showing symptoms. Hoping I will be all grieved out by the dime he passes. But I doubt it. I guess it helps to have all the arrangements done ahead of time. I haven't done that. But I know you can prearrange the details before the person passes. This is also good if you have to go on Medicaid. As funeral expenses are allowed in the 5 year look-back! You have my deepest sympathy as you are finally facing what you knew was coming. But i know you were dreading it as am I. Please enjoy the best memories you have and forget the bad ones. God be with you!
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I am so sorry for your loss. It's never easy to get through what you now are facing. I took solace in small things that happened when my mom passed ... One thing was listening to my thoughts and calling in to work the morning after she was admitted to the hospital with an infection. You know that little thing in your head that tells you to do something and you don't really know why ... that's what I had. So I called into work told them I wasn't coming in and then called my mom and told her that my sil and I were coming up to see her. She was so happy because she didn't expect it since both my sil and I were supposed to be going to work that day. My sil only decided when I told her I was going to the hospital to come with me. We went up to the hospital and things were fine ... Got to talk to my mom and gave her little things that she had asked me to bring her from home ... I still sat there wondering why I had this pull to go to the hospital rather than going to work that day ... and a little while later as if someone hit a switch my life changed forever. Right in front of the two of us me and my sil my mother had a heart attack. We ran for the nurse and they ran in with the crash cart. After a few minutes the Doctor came out and told us that they got her back. I immediately turned to my sil and told her to call my brother NOW and tell him what was happening. She looked at me and said I can't call him and tell him this ... he'll drive here like a maniac and have an accident! I looked at her and said "JO either you call him NOW or I'll call him ... this is his mother and he needs to be told ... If you won't call him give me his number NOW and I'll call him ... and if I call him believe me ... he won't be happy that you refused to call him ... you have no right to take this away from him ... and don't worry about him driving like lunatic ... he won't because he will want to make it here in one piece ... BUT either you give him that call NOW or you give me the number" I didn't have his number on me ... so I was at her mercy for that ... Well she called him and about an hour later my brother who was working in the Bronx ran into the hospital in Brooklyn like a maniac but in one piece. My brother myself and my sil the three of us went into my mon's room and not very long after that ... she had another heart attack and the Doctors all ran in again. I had called my husband and right after the second heart attack he came in while we were in the hospital corridor waiting for the news ... I KNEW then that my mom was waiting for my brother ... She saw me and knew I was there ... now she saw him and knew my brother was there ... she was OK. After the second heart attack the Doctors came out and told us that if it happened again they would probably not be able to get her back again. We were told we could go in to see her ... and this time all four of us went in. No one was missing that needed to be there. Well the third and final heart attack came ... and my mother passed. The Doctor for the third and final time came out and gave us the news. We were told we could go in and see her as soon as they made her ready for us. I slumped down the wall ... and when they came out to say we could go in I told my brother that I couldn't do it. Even now as I type this I have tears welling up. My brother reassured me and told me it was OK. For a long time I felt a lot of guilt about not going into my moms room the last time ... but as time passed I felt better about it because I knew that I had done the right thing to the best of my ability when it counted ... I saw my mom and made sure my brother and my husband saw my mom when she could see us and know we were there ... and that's what mattered ... Not seeing her moments after she passed when she could no longer see us ... that would have been for me not for her and I chose to let that moment go because it was right for me. I also chose not to rat out my sil for her bad decision making ... after all my brother saw my mom and that's what mattered why stir things up ... Not until she became my X sil did I tell him what she tried to pull about not calling him that day and when I told him he told me that he was so thankful to have me always watching his back. He said that would have killed him to have not been able to see mom at the end knowing that the only thing that stood in his way was a phone call from his wife.

In retrospect I think that if I had conjured up the nerve to see my mom right after her passing some of the funeral arrangements would have been harder ... and some as the first time you walk in would have been easier. You have to do what makes you comfortable ... and what will bring you peace and just know in your heart as I do you saw your mom when it mattered and she knew you were there with her! As for the drama ... if it happens let it happen just decide not to help fuel it ... you have one purpose in the next few days and that is to say your final good-byes to your mom ... don't let anyones trivial issues denote or get in the way of that

Again my deepest condolences to you and your family at this very difficult time!
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Hello, I just went through the same thing a few weeks ago. My brother was was with my mom when she died after being sick for a very long time too. I am so sorry for your loss. I thought of my mother and wanted to make her proud of me while making arrangements for her. I put myself in auto-control and didn't let anything or anybody get in my way. I come from a big family with a couple of very negative people who were constantly critizising while not lifting a finger. They can live with the guilt, I can be proud. I kept my head down and chin up. Make a list and do the best you can. You've got an angel sitting on your shoulder now, guiding you. Nice people will help guide you along the way too. I kept paper in my pocket for the eulogy notes and I worked on it constantly while working on the other arrangements. It was the very first time I've spoken publicly. I did it for my mom, my last labor of love for her. You can do this and will do it with grace because you are doing it in your mom's honor, make her proud!
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I'm so sorry about your loss. This sad times to all of us. To get through the death of my brother, I busied myself with preparations for his memorial and I had a very gracious family member, a cousin, with me most of the time. We just socialized as we worked the preparations and that seemed to help a lot. I reminisced with some of his friends that I had not met and we told stories about him when we had a few moments.
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