Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Blessings and Curses

A blessing and a curse........we have had several friends whose parents have passed on in the past couple of months.  Some were ill for a long time, some died quite suddenly and unexpectedly.  A friend called tonight, whose aging parents are showing signs of dementia......she called because she knew the disease ravaged my mother before she passed away six years ago.

I answered her questions honestly and tried to be gentle as well as instill a little humor......I could tell she has had a rough holiday season.  I explained that  the death of a parent for me, well now I can see the blessings and curses of a quick unexpected death, and that of a slow paced illness.  My father died suddenly, he went to the bathroom in the middle of the night, and died with a massive heart attack.
My mother's death took almost two years......and sadly who she was died way before her body did.
I missed telling my father goodbye.  My mother's slow death, changed our family, and felt at times as though it was killing me.  Only a couple of months after my  mom passed, my oldest brother died unexpectedly.

My conclusion, death is difficult no matter when, how or where.  The passing of someone you love
takes a piece of you with them.....forever after there is a  part of your heart missing.  I think that our culture has made death even more difficult, it seems we have a put a time frame on grief, broken it down into stages,  and tied it up with a bow.   But loss cannot be measured by time. .....and it cannot be locked up and forgotten.  Grief for friends and family and pets,  can and will hit at the strangest times without warning. Sometimes the triggers are obvious and sometimes who knows what triggers the sadness or tears.

I think our memories, and the sharing of those memories are the soothing balm for grieving hearts.
And the realization that life goes on,  that for we who are left behind........it is part of our growth.
We can work through the guilt, the hurt and the pain and continue with our purpose, or we can become frozen in time....... paralyzed by the grief and the change that has taken place in our life.

So whether death comes quickly or crawls.......there are blessings and curses that it brings for those left living.  Whether we are consumed and killed by the residue of grief, or we learn and grow from its harsh lessons is up to us.   Death is a part of life, some fear it, some welcome it.......but at some point.....it comes.


  1. My pop didn't go that quick or unexpected but at the same time he did go fast in the fact that in June of 2010 he was still walking everyday about 8 kilometres a day and in July that year he was sick and went to the doctor and was sent to hospitial he died on the 4th Novemeber 2010 so in one way it felt like it all happened so fast. My nan is still alive but the Alzehimers has removed that spark that was nan and now she just existing not living........

  2. Your thoughts are carefully and gently expressed - your friend can count herself lucky you were there for her to talk to.
    My mother was 92 when she died, but her mind had died 5 or 6 years earlier. It would be kinder for everybody if the two 'deaths' coincided...

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  4. My biological Father died two years before I even found out. I was surprised at how much the death of a near-stranger hurt.

  5. I think the immediate effects of a death of a loved one truly paralyses as one is racked by all the "what ifs" but time marches on and the wounds heal a little and you find the courage to forgive yourself and to keep all memories alive and tempered a little by grief that will never go away. Take care

  6. I believe that the ones who passed on are the lucky ones. No more pain and suffering in this sometimes cruel world. You're so right in that it's how we choose to deal with it. Life is for the living!! Great post. Happy New Year!

  7. You've gone through so many trials Jilda..yet you have a great attitude and grasp on what's important and you seem to have a zest for life. I hope 2012 brings more blessings than curses and good health and peace. Happy New Year!