My uncle was recently diagnosed with lung cancer. Then it was in his liver. Then his prostate. Now his brain. This has all happened in a matter of about 3 weeks. He was sent home yesterday to die with his family in peace. He has maybe a week, they say. I get that. I know that he's going to die soon. The interesting thing is, my mother, a life-long Christian, has suddenly denounced her god. While I'd love for her to be an atheist, I'd kind of hoped that it would be more of a logical choice for her, rather than an emotional one. Even more interesting; I was jealous of her because she had something to hold on to during all this. And so does my uncle. I have to admit that I'm angry right now because I have no one to place the blame on. I have no where to go to scream at. I have no imaginary friend to imaginarily (sic) console me. She's converted (allegedly, though I don't believe she means it), and I'm just lost. Don't worry, I don't feel the need to convert to a religion by any means. Not at all. I'm just wondering where I can place MY blame? I've never been good at dealing with negative emotions, and all my husband wants to do is hug me. I'm grateful for that. But I don't want a hug. I want to rail against this cancer and, I don't know, SCREAM, I think. I feel a little numb, though, too. Part of me feels guilty for not wanting a hug. I really, honestly don't know how to deal with this.


So there's my rant.

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First of all, I'm so so sorry about your uncle.  Cancer is a terrible thing, and it's not fair.  I recently lost my aunt to cancer as well, she started off with breast cancer and eventually it also spread throughout her body.  Nothing prepared me for losing her so abruptly, and noone could ease my grief by saying she was "in a better place".   I guess this hits home for me since after my aunt's passing, my uncle went off the deep end.  Now his meltdown over losing his wife had nothing to do with religion, but he became suicidal and started drinking.  He also made a big scene at her funeral. I felt sorry for him, but I was also angry with him. I still am but it's only been a couple months and I'm working through it.

I guess going through this, I came to the conclusion that everyone will greive their own way and sometimes it ain't perdy.  There's nothing wrong with how you feel, if you need to scream that's alright. Just take care of yourself and allow yourself to let it out.  Something that helped me was telling myself "she's not gone, she alive and well in my heart and memories."

I feel that blaming your mom is a little displaced though, she's hurting too and possibly discovering how "powerless" prayer is for the first time. 

For now I would take your mom's newfound atheism with a grain of salt like you are, but it could be a window to a new relationship with her if she brings it up again down the road.  I'd love to have that common ground with my parents, no matter how they came to it.  And as a matter of fact, emotions led me to my atheism and the logic followed.  Good luck and my deepest sympathies :)

It sucks when we loose someone that we love.  It sucks even more when we loose someone that we are dependant on.  It is unthinkable to loose one’s child, young or grown.  Do what you can for the ones that are further on the loss spectrum.  It is the only thing I know that can give you a small feeling of control in a bad situation.  Truth is.  You will be helping your self more than the one you are trying to help.  It is always about the living.  Nothing else really matters.  Talk with your uncle if you can?  Don’t waste what time you have.

Thank you both so much. To be honest, I kind of lost it for a while after he did pass, so I haven't been back on here to even see what I wrote, much less what anyone else wrote in response. I did finally deal with it. I went through all the typical phases, I guess, the longest being anger. I feel much better today thanks to a wonderful husband and close friends. Happily, even this long after my uncle's death, my mother is still doubting her god's existence. Not saying she's denying it completely, but she's doing some serious doubting. I miss my uncle so much, but I know that he's gone, and Janelle, you are right about him being very much alive in my heart. He's there all the time.

I'm happy you have so much support in your life with your hubby and friends. Keep your uncle close.  Sometimes when I hear a song (everytime I hear the song Daniel by Elton John), I think of my brother that died in a car accident awhile back.  It's good to cry about it, it makes me feel human and more in touch and connected with myself and those around me.  Take care :)

John, I think I pulled together a pretty decent eulogy. Everything was the way he'd have wanted it I think, and since I was probably the only atheist there, it was very religious, which is also something he'd have wanted.


Janelle, I have a few songs that remind me of my uncle, but not because of the songs' content. Rather, the person who is singing them is what takes me back to those times we used to have so much fun together. He was a huge fan of old country music, and I giggle now when I listen to Hank and George, remembering the silliness that would ensue when we would listen to it... singing, playing his guitar, dancing. Thanks everyone.


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