Crisis, Grief, and Healing => Sibling Loss => Topic started by: ScottW on September 24, 2009, 02:52:14 PM

Title: Almost Unbearable
Post by: ScottW on September 24, 2009, 02:52:14 PM
My sister passed away in her sleep and unexpectedly last November, one month shy of her 40th birthday.  The 'bad weeks' had turned into 'bad days' but this past week and 1/2 has been almost unbearable.  I am feeling so sad and hopeless.  We just found out that my wife is pregnant with our second child (we've been trying for almost a year) and I can't find the excitement.

We are celebrating the Jewish high holidays now and not having my sister around (Jori) is just . . . unfathomable.  All of our 'inside jokes' during dinner, making fun of my in-laws (shhhhh) . . . it just feels like too much and I don't see it ending.

Plus now my parents are raising my nephews (8 and 10) - it is an extraordinary thing for them to take this on.  HOWEVER, my dad was not always the 'greatest parent' - he did the best he could but he was often hard on me (with sports) and hard on Jori (she had a weight problem).  Now I am seeing these behaviors transpire again before my eyes, I swear it is like a Shakespearean tragedy that I have to live - and see - it again.  I've talked to my dad about how he has to be different (re: the sports) but now I see him dealing with the 'food isssues' again and I get a shiver down my spine.

I know this is just a ramble but I know someone here (all of you here?) must understand at least parts of this.  I am in counseling and am going to begin taking medication (I bet a bunch of you are thinking right now, "Thank G-d, he's nuts"  . . . semi-smile).

Thanks for allowing me to 'sound off'.
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: browneyedgirl on September 24, 2009, 03:08:01 PM
Hi Scott ~ it was good chatting with you in the chat room breifly. 

Congradulations on your baby!

I am also sorry that you have to try and deal with issues with your dad. 

Take care of yourself and come back and let us know how you are doing, come back to chat sometime!
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: clc100 on September 25, 2009, 04:52:07 PM
Scott -

I lost my brother 4 days after his 50th birthday this past June. Last night was my youngest sister's birthday and after returning home from my mother's for the traditional dinner, cake and ice cream, I completely fell apart. In a tidal wave of clarity, I realized that my brother would never call me again to wish me a happy birthday as he had for as long as I can remember.

Sibling loss is excruciatingly painful because it feels like it belongs to someone else (your parents or the kids). I am in counseling too and have been encouraged to write, which I am trying to do. It's interesting because I went to the library today and found a book on sibling loss called The Empty Room. I found some pretty profound points in it; namely claiming the story of your relationship with your sibling and how it defines you.  I have known my brother my whole life - how am I supposed to be me without him????  Anyway - this seems to be a little bit of what you are saying as well and I wanted you to know you aren't alone. That the pain and grief are real and your are entitled to it.

Good Luck
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: Luvinmike on September 27, 2009, 04:48:13 AM
clc- I really like your post back to Scott. That sounds like a good book, maybe you could add the name and author to the book list  (message board) here on this site. I have also heard losing a sibling is difficult and unique as this is one of the only people who have a shared history with you, they share your past in ways no one else can, that hurts.

Dear Scott- you do not sound any more nuts than the rest of us here. Thinking of you during these important holidays and so sorry you are missing Jori.
Regarding the kids maybe you could give them an ocassional hug and tell them that they are incredible exactly as they are, and the family is proud of them, to counteract your insensitive Dad. I had a challenging childhood and when I reflect on what helped it was those kind of words from other adults, like my teachers.
I am sending you strength and a hug as you continue to miss your dear sister. Thinking of you.
An idea: Walking and meditation can be useful, let yourself feel what you feel and remove the word should from your mind. (As in, should I feel excited?) Peace to you and your family.
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: sevenofwands on September 30, 2009, 12:40:03 PM

I am so sorry for your loss.  Your post is very understandable, and your worries are very real. 

You say: "I've talked to my dad about how he has to be different (re: the sports) but now I see him dealing with the 'food isssues' again and I get a shiver down my spine."

Exactly: shivers.

You say: " I swear it is like a Shakespearean tragedy that I have to live - and see - it again".

"Tragedy" and "shivers" Scott.  Yes, and these two children are only 8 and 10. 
What would Jori have wanted?
The same bullying to which she herself was subjected?
Berating a child about his or her weight is, you see, bullying.

I find it utterly disturbing.  Sorry.

All the best

Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: pepper309 on September 30, 2009, 01:58:08 PM
I think that in times like these we all do the best that we can do.  Your father is doing the best that he can do with the limited parenting abilities that he has.  The best that you can do is try is be there for your parents and your nephews as much as you can.  Incorporate your nephews into your family activities and let them know that you are there for them, I'm sure that would make your sister smile.  When you see you father slip up, just give him a pat of the back and a gentle reminder that perhaps he could try a different tact with the kids.  He is grieving for your sister as well and he is only a human being who is not perfect.  I hope for the best for your family.  I also wish you some peace and in time some happiness for you and your wife as you begin a new chapter in your lives together.
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: ScottW on October 02, 2009, 12:37:27 PM
Thank you all for your very thoughtful responses.  It does help to know that there are people who really 'do understand'.  I also appreciate the advice about dealing with me and dealing with my family.

Trying to hang in there -
Title: Re: Almost Unbearable
Post by: georgiapeaches on October 03, 2009, 02:38:25 PM
Hi Scott,
Sorry to hear you are going through so much pain, noone understand better than I do , believe me. Congradualtions on the new baby. Last Christmas after my mother passed away I heaved my christmas tree out of my door across the lawn to the dumspter right infront of all the neigbors, I really understand. The holidays (first holidays) are always so hard, last years was the first everything without my husband and my mom, I know it takes time. You have to give it time. Its hard to sometimes find the excitement but its there. Its all new to everyone, that "new normal" hopefully everything will fall into place. Praying for you and your family.