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Diva and Divus


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Not sure if some of my friends from this forum noticed that I was absent for many days. 
The reason was not a holiday or giving up collecting (although this idea haunts me for a few months now, because I managed to fulfill 90% of my realistic goals).
Last Sunday I was taking an afternoon nap (one of my weekend guilty pleasures) and I heard my phone buzzing. Normally, the only person calling me on a Sunday afternoon would have been my father, to ask me what's up or to confirm the time for the football match on TV.

Even if I was half asleep, seeing my uncle's name on the screen quickly made me realize something is very wrong. We were not close.

He tried to be as gentle as possible (not an easy task) but the news he had to deliver was that my father is dead. 

My mother died on the 14th of April 2022. Strange, this event looks awfully close in time. Like this last calendaristic year is compressed in a few days. I do not have any memories of it, just working from home, collecting, reading some books, like it was just one week that was on repeat. 

My mother's health was terrible. She was diagnosed with a very advanced lung cancer (strange - there were no symptoms, but she had several other diseases) and the verdict was very clear. Although she was a very pessimistic person, she was in denial stage. So was my father. 

She started chemotherapy but after just 2 sessions she felt extremely ill and all her organism collapsed. 

My father was a very healthy and active man. He used to work at a furniture factory (although he was an engineer, but being over 60 and in a poor geographic area doesn't offer many alternatives). My mother's situation destroyed him and he had a minor stroke a few days before her death. 

He was not able to recover himself mentally. Although he was, generally speaking, still a healthy man - intelligent, strong, he had no problems with cooking, cleaning the house - in fact, better than I am - he simply could not get over my mother's death. 

We were extremely close (my entire life) and got even closer after the event, I visited him quite often (he did not want to relocate to my city even if I insisted). He seemed OK - if you can call it OK. He had another part time job, plus retirement money. On the outside he took good care of himself. BUT every other word was related to cemetery, grave, religious duties. Lots of sighing, crying. And - this badly annoyed me and I told him dozens of times - he had a self destructive habit - going to the cemetery every day. 2-3 times a day. 

I would have been OK with this, but it was self destructive. He was not feeling well after the repeated visits. And soon, his health degraded. Rapidly. Heart issues. He was no longer able to walk on a normal pace, difficulties breathing, panic attacks. He had to come to hospitals in my town - better doctors and equipment - and in a few months he was OK-ish again. 

But what's the purpose, when he had the same habit - 7 AM - cemetery - 8-12 AM work - 12 AM cemetery - going home - cooking/cleaning/TV - 7 PM cemetery. 

I told him dozens or hundreds of times this is wrong. He started lying to me, saying he doesn't go there anymore. I knew better of course. 
His friends, his neighbors and even the priest (he attended the church every Sunday for about 10 years) told him it's wrong and he hurts himself. He knew "better".

Last Sunday afternoon at about 6-7 PM he went to the cemetery again. Probably the second or third time for that day. When returning, he had a heart attack while driving the car. The car is a total wreck (BER). The ambulance arrived but he died on the road to the nearest large city, after a few minutes. 

I know it's normal to feel what I feel - but my main feeling is anger. Because it was not the typical case of an old man who could not live without his wife. Of course, it was difficult and painful. But he had all the advantages to allow him to live many years without issues. He was totally able to take care of himself (when I arrived, with the first train, to his home, the house was carefully cleaned, as he was cleaning it every Saturday. The fridge was full with fresh food he cooked in the same day. He had a good financial status. He had a very good relationship with me - in fact now he should have been here, in my home, to celebrate Easter together). 

I wish nobody would have to live what I had to. The pain was unbearable. And there were a lot of tasks to fulfill - as the body was in the nearest large city, the death was recorded in a small village between my town and the large city; also had to go to the police; plus the religious tasks.

As humanly possible, I am OK now. There will still be lots of things to solve - I need to sell the apartment he lived in (and the one I was born and raised in). I left that town 20 years ago and I have no intention of returning. I have no relatives or friends there. It will be difficult - I do not have a car and I depend on trains. 

Posting some DIVA and DIVVS coins. 















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Very sorry to hear of your loss. The fact that you were somewhat close to your father is a blessing. In my case I had been estranged from my father for several years before he passed in 2018 from lung cancer. Even after his diagnosis he kept smoking, which did not make my mother happy. She at almost 85 maintains her own home and is generally in excellent health.

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My mother was 64 when she died. My father, 65. So not exactly old. Especially for people living in a civilized area, with all the required environment for a normal life. 

My mother was condemned - there was no cure for her disease. But I still nod and feel quite frustrated, as she had a different form of cancer about 10 years before her death. It was completely cured but the doctors were clear - no more smoking, some (mild) alimentary constrains - nothing dramatic and, most important, try keeping a positive attitude. 

Don't get me wrong, I disagree with extra super positive attitude, everything is fine, life is beautiful, everything's painted in bright pink. I find this unhealthy. But for my mother (and father) every single thing in this life was a severe problem and an excuse to invent paranoid scenarios, worries, "what if". I fought with this way of thinking in my youth as I had it also. Looking back, they really had nothing to worry about. They were OK with the health (my mother was, at the time, 100% cured). Their income was good. They had a very decent home. I was a full grown up and had my own life, keeping close contact with them. 

However when I went home for the weekend I returned totally drained of energy. "I have no reason to live" "I hate this life" etc. Sadness, pessimism, anger for no reason. 

They refused to take small vacations even if they could afford it. Just sitting home in front of the TV watching idiotic channels, displaying murders, political scandals &co.

My mother's death was a major shock for me. Although it was not unexpected and we didn't have the closest relationship. My major worry was my father - I was afraid he would start drinking and/or have difficulties knowing how to take care of himself - food, laundry...
But no, like I said, he was totally independent. And hated drinking. I think I only saw him slightly drunk more than 25 years ago, when his relatives came to visit us. Rather than that, he refused a beer or a glass of wine. 

There was only one thing missing - desire to go forward. And you can't if your main concern is going to the cemetery and crying 3 times a day. 
He even visited me less often than I wanted (mostly to go to the doctor) and when he did, he left after 2 days. And his first stop was the cemetery.
What makes me even angrier is that, even if they had a long marriage, it wasn't at all that kind of love. 

Sorry, my friends, the ones who know me - virtually - would understand my need to vent. For the others, apologies. 

Edited by ambr0zie
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I am so sorry for your loss, especially since he was relatively young. As for your mother's passing last year and the shock despite knowing about the fact that she was terminal, I don't think we can ever be prepared to lose a loved one, no matter how much we tell ourselves to prepare. When it happens and the loss and grief start to really hit, all we can do is just make room for the pain and allow ourselves to accept it as inevitable. 

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I am so sorry for both your losses. I hope you have friends (and family?) to give you the support you need, so you don't have to deal with all of this alone. My mother died at 52 after a car accident, so I understand what it's like to lose a parent who was far too young. It's very hard.

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Thank you, my friends (hope this term is not offensive or too overrated, but most of you are present in my life daily).

I have a fiancee (irony - I should have been married some while ago - first my mother died, now my father, because of religious customs this has to be postponed). 

I still have some uncles (old and not very close) and some friends. I am not alone in the world, although the pain I feel is difficult to be understood by others. 

I can only be 'glad' these two events happened when I am an adult, with a stable job and a home. 

Edited by ambr0zie
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@ambr0zie, you are among friends here. I echo everyone else's sentiments in saying that I am truly sorry for your loss. Many, if not all of us, struggle with aging parents and it is difficult when they pass, especially when we have complex relationships with them. I am in a similar situation with my own father at the moment. Like your mother, he has incurable cancer, and it's frustrating not to know when he will pass, except that it may be days or weeks rather than months. For this reason, your words especially resonated with me. Take care and have faith.

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I'm so sorry to hear this terrible news. Sometimes it seems like there's nothing that can take away your pain. Just know that all your feelings you mentioned of "anger" , frustration, second guessing, and "what if "  , these are all normal sentiments after losing a loved one. It sounds to me you were a fine son. I  know how difficult it feels now , but all of these feelings you have make you human. Pain is the price of love , and it's worth it in the end.

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Ozie, I too wish you strength in your period of mourning. It's too bad we can't share our grief with others, but it's impossible because grief is a personal experience. I lost my father 38 years ago, my mother 13 years ago, & my twin brother Henry 4 years ago. The loss of Henry was especially difficult to deal with, but it did strengthen my ties with my sister Barbara, who is 11 years older than me, & my nephew Glenn who lives is CA. Your serious interest in ancient coins can be a welcome refuge, so take advantage of it 😉.

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