What is normal when you are grieving? 

I sit here writing this blog post not because I’m looking for sympathy but as a means of catharsis for myself. 

Last week my mum passed away very peacefully after an incredibly brave fight with cancer. Faced with a terminal diagnosis in October 2015 she was a true inspiration. Not only did she have a positive attitude but she demonstrated a sheer determination to continue living her life to the full. Not only that she was always thinking about other people’s needs right to the end. This was evident by all the kind words and memories people have shared about mum. 

As a family we are beginning the process of coming to terms with mum not being around any more. Her decline in physical condition when it came was very quick, and to be honest with you, I did actually expect to have mum around for just a little bit longer. She was beginning to suffer though so it would be very selfish of me to want to change things. 

Watching mum in those last few weeks was incredibly hard. Mum had previously said she didn’t want to go into hospital but unfortunately in her last few days this was necessary. In hindsight this was the right decision for mum as we were struggling to manage her symptoms at home. She was actually happy to be there in the end as she was much more comfortable and less anxious about what was happening to her. 

It sounds a huge cliche but mum really did pass away comfortably and at peace, which was all we wanted for her.

We did actually have some laughs throughout all this. A classic ‘Mum’ moment was her deciding she wasn’t going to get the chance to use the gift vouchers she had received for Christmas. Her answer to this conundrum was to host a raffle from her hospital bed. 

She also insisted in posting selfies with all her visitors to her Facebook page. 

I have one very funny image in my head of my mum sat with her glasses on the end of her nose checking her medical charts for mistakes (mum was a nurse herself). 

Though incredibly sad to no longer have my mum around I have to confess to feeling a huge sense of relief that she is no longer suffering. I’m not sure how long I could cope with seeing her like she was. Does that sound selfish? Probably, but when you love someone you don’t want to see them in pain or stressed and anxious from the efforts of trying to breathe. 

At the moment my Mum’s death doesn’t actually quite feel real. Obviously I know that it is, I was with her when she died, it just somehow feels like she has gone on holiday and will be back in another week. Perhaps this is something that will become easier to accept given some time? 

It bothers me that I have hardly cried since mums death. Surly that is not normal? Though over the passed few months as things became harder on everyone I had some major tearful outbursts. Perhaps I had already begun the grieving process? Maybe I’ll be a mess at her funeral? 

Bizarrely I broke out head to toe In hives during my mums last few days. It was so bad I ended up with my very own trip round to A&E for some treatment via an IV. Everyone else cries, I apparently get psychosomatic hives! The mind and body really are weird. 

I have taken the previous week off work, but to be honest with you, I’m not really sure what to do with myself. If I’m not busy I’m thinking about mum constantly, you know those cliche thoughts. 

‘I’m never going to hear her voice again’ 

I am resisting the urge to call her voicemail as I know that’s just a form of self torture. 

Since moving out of home I would always say I was going round to mums house. The first time I talked about doing just that I suddenly developed a stutter and tripped over my words. It dawned on me what I had just said and she wouldn’t be there anymore. 

One thing I have done that is apparently normal is sleep. Not just a little bit but a lot! 

I can’t keep doing that though. With Mum’s funeral still an entire month away I am going back to work today. I think it is best to keep myself busy otherwise I feel like I am wallowing in self pity which really isn’t healthy. Let’s just hope I don’t have any shitty customers or it may just set off the waterworks. 

I’m not quite sure how to end this post? My usual happy ‘by for now’ seems a bit wrong. 


I’m going to leave you with a treasured picture of my mum, me and my two sisters. I love this picture as we all look so happy. We are all slightly different but have almost identical smiles. 

2 thoughts on “What is normal when you are grieving? ”

  1. I’m really sorry for your loss, but as you say the suffering for your mum is now over..
    What is normal? Everyone is different and has their own ways of dealing with things, this is just yours and it’s good to remember that it is OK.
    Sending lots of love to you my dear x x x

Comments are closed.