Processing and dealing with a sudden death.
My mother died suddenly and unexpectedly of a brain aneurysm a little over a week ago. She was 54. I'm 25. We were very close. I spent a week where I grew up making arrangements with my father (I'm an only child). The service and viewing were simple. My mother had a rough life, a history of abuse in her childhood, and, in many ways--even from her own mouth--I know she was "ready to go," even if the event was unexpected.
I've cried, but not in over a week. I gave my Mother's eulogy. In the time I was home, I went to favorite places of ours. My friends are endlessly sympathetic and supportive. My partner, who went through grieving a grandfather last fall, takes wonderful care of me. I have a beautiful new apartment, three cats, a job I enjoy which I returned to today. She knew I was successful and strong and taken care of. She also knew that I loved her, of that I have no doubt. I know, in my own personal faith, she is still with me.
Right now, I feel okay. So, as it is, I am waiting for the proverbial shit to hit the fan. I've read up on past AskMeFi questions--and know that there is really no difference, but the death was so unexpected; she wasn't ill--at least that we knew of. I know I have barely had time to process it. I know it's barely real to me yet.
I feel like I have all the "answers" to all the questions I can ask, but, my questions:
1) I know there are "no expectations," but right now I feel as if I am processing the logical aspect of her death, but nothing really emotional. I know and understand all the reasons why this is happening, and that there is no specific timeline, but what are steps I can take to prepare myself for the next few weeks, months, etc? (I am internalizing This
like a mantra, yes, and have reread this thread
I tend to be of the, "Make everyone think I'm fine / don't show weakness / Debbie Downer," ilk, but have been intentionally reaching out for help, even if my emotions aren't connecting on all levels yet. This, of course, can break suddenly or push me to the level of being stubborn or whiny mess to my partner. Any ways to counteract besides being deliberate and self-conscious of my emotional landscape?
2) Any grief counseling ideas? I live in the Metro DC area, and am currently on temporary insurance and on a tight budget. Online communities? Websites? (This
3) Tips for taking care of myself physically. I am an emotional eater and was, before this, starting an eating/exercise regime. I had the thought, last week, that "Oh, maybe this will put me off my apetite." Heh. Not so much. I'm hoping for a, "treadmill every day, go get on treadmill when I have urge to eat," which will work at home, but I've got a sedentary office job (which will become more physical during the summer, but for now). I didn't bring any sweets with me to the office today, but then a woman hawking printing services came by and gave me a box of tiny chocolates. No good. This will be the hardest thing, physically, for me to overcome and deal with at this time.
The geek in me turns to MetaFilter for your suggestions and experiences. This will be my own road, I know it; I feel like I need some guidance while I'm still numb.