This year will be the first holidays without my brother. He just passed. I remember the first holidays without my dad. That is another group.

My brother was not doing well for quite awhile before he suffered and passed away. He would come to my mom's home for dinner and leave pretty quickly I think because he was uncomfortable around me.

At one point I even said to my mom please stop inviting us at the same time, he is a stranger to me and it is obvious he doesn't want to talk to me. She replied, Well then treat him as a stranger. I found that odd and uncomfortable. What it was was that my mom wanted to see my brother and I get back together in a good relationship before she passed, she is 88. I did not think it would happen but by golly when he was in rehab and I could provide the cell phone he needed, our relationship healed because I also had forgiven him in silence.

Any ways, I kind of got  off the subject and I apologize. These holidays will be the first ones without my wonderful precious brother. We were both adopted and not blood related but if I could, in the end, I would have given him as much of my blood as possible.

The holidays are going to be tougher this year. Mom and her husband moved from home to senior apts. and I will be alone...except for my dog and cat.

Robbin McManus

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After losing multiple family members I dreaded Christmas and the holidays so much. When my sister was diagnosed with cancer we started collecting those goofy beanie babies. When she passed away I had over 1500 that I didn't know what to do with. Last year I took them to the nursing home nearby, and gave one to each person that alone with no family to share the holidays. They were so happy. Not so much for the beanie baby but for the fact I spent a little time with them and made them smile. They called me to ask if I would come back this year. I plan on seeing them and two more local nursing homes. My advice I guess is to stay busy. Find a way to brighten someone else's day. I felt a peace in my heart that I had not known for a long time.

The first holidays are always the toughest.  My first holidays without my brother were a struggle and I really didn't want to be around other people seeing that they were happy with their family members.  I'm not sure if you attend Church or if you belong to any organizations.  If you do, allow people to reach out and if they invite you for the holidays try to go.  I found out that it's good to be around other people and sometimes you meet people that have things going on just like you.  I'm going to remember to think of you during the holidays and hope that things go well for you.  Always remember that you are not alone. 

I'm so sorry about your brother. It's definitely tough. I lost my sister last October. So fairly close to holiday season. It definitely was a struggle. We were also getting my sisters autopsy reports around New Years. She had 3 children. 13, 16, and 18 at the time she passed. I don't know that this holiday season will be much better. Last year the loss was still fresh.  This year though we're all still getting through it. Two new babies in the family coming I hope helps. One next month, right around the time we lost my sister last year. Then the other in December.

I'm glad you were able to repair your relationship with your brother. I understand the struggle...my sister and I did not always get along. She could be...difficult. But she was my sister, and I loved her dearly. I wanted to add, blood does not automatically equal family. I have two sisters who were steps from my mum's previous marriage. They haven't been married since I was I think 8 or 9, but they've always been my sisters. Blood makes you related, but family is so much more.

I'm sorry that you'll be alone. Though dogs and cats at least can be very comforting. Hang in there.

Thank you everyone who responded. I am having a really tough time now. My PTSD kicked in and I became suicidal because I want to be with my brother, my dad, and my bio-mom, and yes, my daughter, (but I am not allowed in that group for some reason). I feel so alone. I keep asking myself, "where is God in all this?" Oct. is a bad month for me, (another group), I will write about it today and hope for some healing somehow. I know I should not question God, I am a preachers kid. But my dad is gone and I need him so much. I do not go to church like I should. I feel so mixed up. Angry, yes, ANGRY and stuck!! I have not come to this site like I used to because I do not feel like I have much to offer right now and I am so afraid of saying the wrong thing to someone.

My first holidays without my brother were very depressing. I cried so much, it was just all a blur. I don't think it will ever get easier on the holidays especially.

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