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Grieving my mother's absence

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Old 06-17-2009, 06:25 AM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Terre Haute, IN
Posts: 1
BrandonIN HB User
Grieving my mother's absence

Hello everyone, this is my first post.

I've decided to go try the internet message board route to try to deal with my grief I've been dealing with. I've found that the internet can be a great way to deal with problems in your life and relate to others dealing with the same thing, so why not give this a try too. The source of my grief is the loss of my mother when I was 5 years old. I'm 27 now, and I still routinely grieve about her absence in my life. Here's my story.

My mother was born and raised in Davison, Michigan (little town outside of Flint). My father was born and raised in Terre Haute, IN. When my father and mother got married, my mother moved down here to Indiana, which is where I was born, raised, and still live today. My mother died when I was 5 years old. My maternal grandfather, and one aunt and her children (my cousins) still live in Michigan. My grandpa still lives in Davison, and my aunt lives in northern Michigan. My father remarried when I was about 8 years old, and is still married to her today.

We just visited my grandpa and my aunt & kids this last weekend, and as usual these visits are always very hard on me. When we go up to see them, everything about my mother comes back to life for me. My grandpa has pictures all over his house of my mother when she was alive, and I get to be in the house where she used to live and grew up in. Every time I'm in that house, all sorts of memories of my childhood come back alive and as soon as I step foot in the house, usually a wave of emotions come over me.

As I said, she died when I was 5. The only memories I have of her are just brief photographic memories, but nothing of any real substance. I can't remember a single time of really connecting to her. I can't even remember her voice. I see plenty of pictures of us together, but it kills me to not be able to really remember connecting with her. Because of this I feel this huge sense of emptiness and lack of closure. I'd to anything to just be able to see her again for 5 minutes, just to tell her how much I love her and miss her. All I want to do is run to her and have her hold me in her arms. Everyone tells me that I took after her in so many ways, from looks, to personality, and everything in between. We could have been so close. She is the biggest missing piece of my soul. A huge part of me that has been missing ever since she past away.

Right now as I sit here and think of her, the pain I feel is so intense. I sit here and am yearning for her to just walk in the door, and sit down with me, but I know that will never happen when I'm on this earth. It just doesn't seem right for a little boy's mommy to be ripped away from him when he was only 5 years old. It would be different if I NEVER knew her, but I did. Right as I was reaching the point of my life whre I'd be able to really relate to her, she was taken away. Now all I'm left with are just photographic memories with very little substance. I feel so sorry for myself.

How am I supposed to deal with these feelings? She died so long ago, but I have never felt like I've gotten the closure from her death that I need. I don't know if I ever will. I have other family members that have died, but I had relationships with them as I got older. I have never felt the closure I need from my mother's death. I think it's because of the fact that I have no memories of her. I didn't attend her funeral, because I think I told my dad I didn't want to go. I remember my dad coming home and telling me that she died, and just feeling like a little boy who didn't know what hit him. That's it.

Other than that I have nothing. I'd do anything to be able to tell her I love her and how much I miss her. I just want to hear her voice, and hear her say she loves me. Don't really know what kind of responses I'm looking for. I guess to hear that someone may understand and feel the same way, it could help. Thank you for listening.


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Old 06-17-2009, 07:16 AM   #2
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caringsister54 HB Usercaringsister54 HB Usercaringsister54 HB Usercaringsister54 HB Usercaringsister54 HB User
Re: Grieving my mother's absence


The one thing i pride myself in is being able to 'read' someone and understand. I also pride myself on always telling the truth even when it hurts, as long as the end result is it helps heal, etc.

Your grieving is an internal thing. I have a feeling that you have it more compounded because you 'think' you should feel this way or you 'think' you should grieve this way because not doing so makes you feel like you are trivalizing the mother you had and loss.

Honey, that is far from the case. You carry guilt that is self-imposed because you think you are suppose to have actual hard-core memories of her. The smell, the touch, the hug and kiss of her but you have to free yourself of that guilt. You were only a little boy. May of us do not possess the ability of long-term memory that allows us to remember when we were little. We remember based on pictures I see, but I actually remember nothing of being in kindegarten or playing outside with my friends, or eating at the dinner table with my parents and sister, etc. So you have nothing to feel guilt about.

I too suffer loss both as a child, teen, and adult. My children loss their Dad in 2005; one was just turning 20 and the other was 17. They don't remember any relatives who died when they were younger and there were many. These were relatives to interacted with them. It seems that they can go back in memory to about the age of 9 or 10 and that's it. anyone in their life before that who passed before that age, is nothing more than a picture to them of that person.

Free yourself of the pain and guilt. You stated that your father remarried when you were 8. I'm sure that if you carried this guilt in your heart, you may not have been receptive to this woman? or were you.

I hope you were. She wasn't there to replace your Mom. She was there to give support to your Dad and apparently it was welcomed, desired, and wanted because they are still together today.

You may have loss your Mom, but I'm sure there were arms that still hugged you and people who cheered in your corner of life. Embrace those memories.
Don't think you should feel anything to a woman who gave you life and then had other business to do in heaven for God. It wasn't her choice or her desire to leave you but she gave you life and its a wonderful gift.

You are 27 -- you were given a life by her and your Dad. Live up to your potential. Create a legacy of love in her name for yourself. When its your turn to go to heaven, she'll be there to give you that hug.

But, please love those who are still here on earth. Forgive yourself because there's truly nothing wrong with you and the guilt you seem to have in your heart is unfounded.

There are many who are incapable of remembering things from such a young life of 5 or younger.

You will have much more issues to grieve over as you go through life.

One thing for sure: Write a letter to your Mom. Write it long and put in it all the words of love you want her to know about. Tell her what happened in your life, what your dreams are and what you intend to do. Do not sign it

Then either, put it within a helium balloon and send it up to heaven OR burn it and let the smoke and ash take it up to heaven for you. You'll have peace

I go to my husband's grave during certain times with a balloons. I write on one of them with marker my message of love, cut the ribbon and watch it go to him. he knows and so will your Mom.

God Bless You, and please carry peace in your heart. Doing less is a disservice to your Dad who is here watching you hold yourself back from all the love that is around you.


Old 02-02-2011, 02:14 PM   #3
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 7
DiggDigg HB User
Re: Grieving my mother's absence

I have the same problem and found this thread while trying to see if someone else had similar issues. I know exactly what you are talking about. My mother died suddenly just before I reached my fifth birthday. I remember my father coming home to tell us she was dead, but have no real photographic memories of her. But look at it this way. The next time you go to the grocery store or coffee shop, look at a five year old boy and his mother. See how they interact. You will see that the emotional bond is quite strong. So that even though you do not have photographic memories, your emotional memories are quite strong. You have to learn how to trust your intuitive feelings that the bond was there even though you don't have the photographic memory. These are just two types of memory systems, and one goes back farther than the other. I have a similar problem though of feelings of yearning for my mother, feeling frustrated that I cannot come to closure or have resolution. In my case it is compounded by the fact that I was never encouraged to talk about my feelings as a child, and so I am having to do it now through therapy and otherwise. If you are not in therapy, I would recommend it. Choose a female, and you will develop feelings about the therapist that are similar to the feelings you have about your mother, and then you will be able to talk about them.

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