Mom

The Timeline

There is an article in today’s The Wall Street Journal (subscription required, I think) that discusses the “identity crisis process” after loss. The article focuses on divorce or a job loss. The article is clear that the death of a loved one is a more complicated and lengthy process. But there are some things that are …

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The Next Phase

It’s a fallacy, this notion of “closure.” You often hear about it, particularly on television news…the worn faces of grieved parents searching for missing children…”we just need closure.” But there is no closure, even when you long anticipate the loss of a loved one. What happens is that the grief burrows in deeper, like a …

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The Phantom Limb

There is a phenomenon among amputees called “phantom limb,” in which the person still feels the missing limb is attached to the body and moving. Typically the sensation is a painful one, according to Wikipedia. That pretty much describes where I am these days, except it’s “phantom mom.” It’s the frequent split-second thought, reaction, or …

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Saudade

Here is how Wikipedia describes it: Saudade is a Portuguese word that has no direct translation in English. It describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic or deeply melancholic longing for an absent something or someone that one loves. Moreover, it often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing will never return. Saudade was once described as “the …

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The Cleaning

Everyone, including grief counselors, have told me to take my time. For the most part I have been avoiding it, figuring there was no rush. Now, two and a half months after my mom died, I am finally turning my attention to the process of going through my mom’s things. My initial strategy had been …

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Holidays

They say the first year is the hardest as you slog through each anniversary, birthday, and holiday without your loved one for the first time. One article I read a couple years ago said, in fact, it was the second year that was harder. The first year, your friends and loved ones are still watching …

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Step by step

I have spent a little time going through cabinets and cleaning some things out. I have been focused on clearing out the medical stuff, the record of her poor health over the years. I joked with Greg that it seemed she had enough materials to start her own clinic—a collection of thermometers, bags of bandages, …

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