Bipolar – Parenting During Times of Loss

My father is still with us and for this I am thankful. I dread his passing for where it/he will leave the family… grieving.

Most of my life my father and I fought. Some people somehow missed all that, but it was real we fought all the time. Well, if you can call violence in the air (verbal abuse I guess) as fighting.

Since his diagnosis just a few months ago as having stage 4 cancer that had spread at an alarming rate we have been having weekly and sometimes twice weekly family meals. We meet to celebrate what we have and finally who we are to each other.

Who we are… My brother is seeing me more often now and is noticing I change from week to week. I almost feel like I understand my father’s dementia.

Three months we’ve been fighting insurance to get any of the ADHD medications approved. I’m foggy. I’m distracted. I’m not driving safely. I’m spacy. I need help.

My counselor is taking up the fight for me to find out what is going wrong and how to fix it. She said that I have enough to worry over with my dad being as he is without having something like this complicating and stressing things more. I hope she makes progress.

Bipolar parents during times of grief and loss…. I’m still waiting. It’s getting harder for all of us each day. My mother,  my brother and I and I my three kids. The pain of watching (dad) grandpa go further each week is so hard. But he fights to stay lucid and in good humor and I think he does it for us.

And so as a Bipolar parent beginning to deal with loss and grief all I can tell you is this: at the end of the day, all we have left is family. Make your peace while you can. You never know when that kid or parent or spouse you didn’t tell you love them before they went out to drive someplace never to return to you.

Everything, every trip, every word spoken in spite or anger, every moment of love and kindness, every second before the passing of a Bipolar mom’s father… is stressing me much more than normal. Much. It pierces my brain. How can I help my kids through this and my mother and brother if I cannot think because an insurance keeps denying my medication? It’s very very hard.

Being a mom during the wait for loss is hard. My mouth might say the wrong thing in front of the kids that they aren’t ready to hear. We’re very open about it. We talk about possible ways we think we might react. I think that’s a subconscious effort to prepare us for the future.

For now, we’re working with Hospice and waiting. He can’t be left alone. I think that is the hardest on my son. He doesn’t know what to talk about when he stays with him. I didn’t realize until it was too late how hard it was. He never complained. Unless its about a sister.

May the Schwartz be with you.

Your friend, Robin

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