October 13, 2011

Family Loss*

What a whirlwind in our household the past few weeks. I feel like I'm saying that a lot lately. But last week, my mother in law passed away from lung cancer. In a matter of three weeks we went from having a diagnosis to planning her memorial service. It was quick. So quick, that we didn't really know how to handle everything that was going on, when it was going on. The fact that my MIL lived 3,000 miles away across the country didn't help either, as my husband couldn't get there as soon as he needed to.

My father in law painted a rosy picture, one that we should have been more cautious about. The cancer, which we found out originated in her lungs [she smoked for about 40 years], was also in her liver, kidneys and lymph nodes. Everything ended up failing in the end & the choice to take her off her life support was left to my husband.

Not a choice that any child wants to have to make.

So for the past week, I was in Oregon with my husband dealing with the aftermath of her passing. He is still there until next week, finishing up some last details. This whole process has made me so proud of my husband and the man that he is. His family, specifically his father, left him to take care of everything himself. And while it was tough [and he hasn't really been given the chance to grieve yet] he stepped up to the plate and handled it well. I know this might be weird, but this experience, having to go through this together, has brought us closer together. We have had some really great talks about what we want out of life, changes that we need to make, preparations that need to be made, and an overall plan for what's to come.

But on top of it all, I just feel bad that my husband had to deal with it. My mother in law and I didn't have a great relationship, and no matter how many people told me she thought I was great, there were a lot of cruel things that she did to me that proved otherwise. But the sadness that I have for my husband is hard. I hate having to see him suffer and deal with such a loss. He is only 32. His mom was 58. It's a big blow and was completely unexpected.

But, we will get through it. Just like we get through everything else. Because that's what we do. I can't wait for M to get home next week.

1 comment:

Wife of a Sailor said...

So very tough. I was 22 when my dad died at 57. I didn't know my husband then but when his dad died this past April (at 59), I was able to help him though it.

And you are right, going through it makes you feel closer because you find out how precious life is.

((hugs)) to you and your family.