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Almost-obsession That Is Out Of My Control

A little over a year ago my mother died. It wasn't peaceful. For her, perhaps, but for me it was scarring. I had lived with her my whole life until 8 months ago (then) when I moved out with my now-husband. She wasn't the type to let go willingly. She said many times before I moved out that she will die. And then she really did, and not even a year had passed since I had started living with my husband. She had a stroke first, and then died of myocardial infarction (Heart attack) two weeks later. I had had a dream the night prior to this horrifying event about Harry Potter. Hadn't watched it or seen trailers or commercials (didn't have a TV). Just came up out of the blue. As I waited in the waiting room one of the televisions hinged to the ceiling broadcasted none other than Harry Potter. And that is when I put my hand over my mouth in horror that something bad was really going to happen and there was nothing I could do about it. I waited for 2-4 hrs in the ER getting grimmer and grimmer reports of a heart that is too weak from necrosis, major clots almost completely blocking the aorta, attempting to put in a pacemaker until finally I received the final report. The pacemaker would not get her heart to beat, the muscle was just too tired and oxygen-deprived. At this point the only way to keep her alive would be artificially but even so the brain damage was too severe for there ever to be any kind of comeback. I lost my mother at 23 and the words to describe me then (if there could be words at all) would be "heart ripped to shreds and burned". They asked me if I would like to have a moment with her and of course I said yes. While they made her decent to see (callous as it may seem, it probably would have been traumatic to see her "post-op") my husband and I made phone calls. Well, he did. I made one and that is all I could handle. The rest of the time I sat in the rain (yes, it actually rained that night) watching my tears fall to the ground and trying to understand why the hand dealt had to be this bad. When I viewed her body I could only hysterically say " I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry" and hold her hand and pay attention to the feel of them knowing this would be the last time I ever held them and how this universe will never have hands this amazing to hold again. There was no denial for me that night. Bargaining, yes. But no denial. I went straight into the throes of grief and remained that way for a week before I went numb altogether holding back this ungodly amount of pain behind a veil of apathy. It took 3 weeks to set up the funeral and memorial. And it was mainly because I couldn't move, think, speak and I never wanted to again. If I did speak I really wanted to scream. And I screamed a lot when I was alone. I couldn't be like the people who cope by working. No, I had to lose my ******* mind. Just let all the pieces fall, and slowly build back up. Maybe it was desperation or maybe it was a gift from the maker. But I suddenly thought of the movie The Fountain and watched it. And suddenly I felt a sense of renewed hope. Death became, not a tragedy, but the road to awe. And suddenly a calmness and even delirious happiness overcame me during the funeral and I was anxious to live again and with fervor! I thirsted for life unlike anytime even preceding the death. I felt like I had taken a fresh breath of air. I began to go out and slowly drag my aching body out of the shell I'd imprisoned it to. And now I enjoy life. It's becoming better and better, fuller and fuller. There's the silver lining. But there is one problem I have and don't know yet how to handle. I'm enjoying life so much, that I get very anxious for it to end. I'll wake up in the middle of the night afraid my husband or my dog just died in their sleep. I'll be on my way home from lunch with my husband, happy as a clam, and suddenly think I might die soon. This might be my last day. How will my husband, Ryan, deal? How will my daughter (Australian Shepard), Maggie, feel? I think of Ryan when he takes the motorcycle to work and suddenly grow worried that he might die. All these thoughts in the back of my head each pour a drop of poison in my wonderful day and I fear eventually it could truly hurt me... Damage me to where I lose sight of living. I suppose then that my fear of death is not of death itself but of a sudden taking away of loved ones or myself. I want to live a long, happy life and die at 93 still shooting guns bigger than I am and flying high with my husband by my side. I fear the inevitable "early" death of my daughter (12-16 yrs). I fear the loss of my father who I have clung to through all of this. I became a certified EMT but I will never work as one. The thought of having to deal with death, especially when it is premature or early, would mess me up, I think. I can say I have some depression, but it doesn't take away my enjoyment of life and the people in it. I hope to find help in dealing with these thoughts. I also have to keep in mind that 4 other loved ones have died within a year of my mother's passing. I have tried to remember how much it doesn't matter how you die but how you live. And that is why I call it an almost-obsession. It clings in the shadows but never becomes a truly debilitating thing. Yet it is still enough to dampen my day a bit and after all of the death the thoughts have increased. I couldn't sleep much last night because Maggie was making loud noises in her sleep (she has always done that) and I suddenly started worrying when she quieted that her heart had just stopped. It irked me enough that I actually had to check her to be alright. It has happened a few times with Ryan as well. Suddenly I would dream that he stopped breathing and wake up panicking and have to check him. Thank you so much for your time.
aJaguarinRed aJaguarinRed 22-25 1 Response Apr 6, 2012

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I understand. I lost my mother almost five years ago, and felt almost numb for the first year.And still some very specific memory causes me to choke up and sob. And I've had a heightened sense of worry for the rest of my close family. But deepening friendships help.