Losing a parent is the worst nightmare many people have to go through. It is like losing your soul and mind. We live in a stressful world, and this stress is killing us. Almost every disease is triggered by stress. It worsens existing health conditions, and kills people. Literally. Stress is the number one silent killer in the world. Our parents live with it. They stress over our education, our marriage and almost everything that’s related to us. That’s how they die. Can you imagine the horror that you have to live in from the very first moment your parent is diagnosed with terminal cancer? I can. It is like someone stabbed you, and you carry the knife all the time. Your heart bleeds and aches.
Watching someone disappear in front of your eyes feels like hell. You watch them struggle every day, and you can’t do anything about it. You live with their symptoms and their pain. They wake up every morning, trying to push through the day, and you are there, desperate and helpless.
Losing a parent means doing your everyday activities, and taking care of a dying patient at the same time. It is like being physically ill. You dream of the days when your lives were normal and you laughed with your dad or mom.
A dying parent makes you selfish
You catch yourself hoping they will make it to Christmas Day or Easter. You want to spend another holiday with your parent, eat your favorite pudding together and make plans. You live with the fear of losing them too early and anger lives within you. You are angry at everyone and everything. However, you have to forgive yourself for feeling this way.
You can’t live your normal life. Eating outside and enjoying a date night is something you haven’t done in a really long time. Your parent is dying, and you can’t just go out and party. You can’t go on living because your life is upside down. You forget what it is like to feel happy.
There are no rules. You can’t predict when sadness or anger will hit you. Your friends are here to cheer you up or help you go through your hell. They may be here to help you, but nobody understands your inner anger or the moments when you lose yourself in the middle of the grocery store.
You think of death all the time. You think of the moment your parent takes the last breath. How will you survive that? How long will it take before you feel the same again? Truth is, you will never feel the same and you will never get over your parent’s death. You just find a way to live with it and go through all the panic attacks death brings. You will cry and yell on your bathroom floor. Your family will not eat cooked meals for a long time. How can you cook when you think of your dying father?
The worst part comes when you sit next to your dad and watch his hands, trying to remember every wrinkle, because that’s all you will be left with after their death. Memories. You feel so small. The universe is taking your greatest support away from you.
Your parent will find peace at last, and their pain will be gone forever. But, the pain in your heart will stay there forever. This is your life sentence.