Lost Sister to Cancer

Caroline Nagy

My older sister Patty died January 24, 1998 from endrometrial carcinoma. A disease she knew she had but could not get a doctor to believe her. She did not fit the profile for this cancer. For that reason she was always told everything is fine.

She took a trip to Regina to see her friend who was dying from cancer. Patty collapsed and hemorrhaged. It was diagnosed at an emergency unit that she did in fact have cancer.

She came home and was scheduled for a hysterectomy. The reports that came back were not good news. She was terminal. This was September 1996.

Shortly after finding out she had cancer her husband lost his job and the apartment building they owned burnt to the ground.

My sister, Patty accepted all these challenges with such courage and dignity. Patty lived life as though she had a disease but it was not life threatening. This attitude allowed her to enjoy her time with husband, children and family.

My younger sister took Patty and her family to Disney World! Although I could not be there I was so very thrilled that Patty was living life with a laugh and a giggle.

There are many miles between me and my family so I did not see Patty over the 16 months but when we did get together it was deep thoughts and laughter.

I went to see her in August 97. I knew this would probably be the last time we share so that goodbye had a great deal of meaning.

January 22 I got the call. I remember telling my son two weeks prior I don't think Aunt Patty is going to be with us much longer. Jan 22 I got the call. I already knew in my heart and was ready to fly home.

I arrived at my sister's place on the evening of 23. She laid in bed face swollen from meds. It was obvious the dying process was taking place and it was rapid. With all in bed my younger sister and I laid with Patty quietly listening to music by candlelight. We shared with her we rubbed her back. We shed tears and yes we even had a laugh or two. Mostly we silence said the more than words ever could.

By 2:00 P.M. Jan 24 I was very tiered. I was scared to go to sleep as I felt Patty would die at that time. I relented. She died with in half hour of me falling a sleep. Before I went to sleep I went in and shared my last words with Patty. The words goodbye and I Love you have a power I have never felt before.

I remember little after that day. I have little memory of the funeral except my sister Patty the lady in red. I kissed her goodbye a hundred times. I was not ready for the closing of the casket.

I am now struggling with memory loss and grief. My Mother has disappeared for going on three weeks and other family members for reasons I don't know or understand won't talk with me.

I miss my dear sister Patty so much. I feel there is nobody to share memories with as nobody out here knew who Patty was. I don't feel anger I just feel depression and pain.

The ocean can be a good healer.

I would love to hear from others! Thanks for listening

Caroline Nagy

You can send email to Caroline at: [email protected]
mail welcome

anniversary date 1-24-98
date of post 3-15-98

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Crisis, Grief, and Healing: Tom Golden LCSW