I'm so sorry for the loss of your wonderful mother; I cant imagine what that feels like. My grandmother died 14 years ago and I saw what that did to my mum. My grandmother was the matriarch of the family and everyone worshipped her; she was the most amazing person I have known. And when she died, my mum became the 'head' of the family and it puts a great deal of stress and responsibility onto you.
Congratulations in coming off your medication. People who havent been through it dont know how hard it is, and you should be so proud of yourself that you have done this. I was on meds for 10 years and have been off them for three years now. For me, it was a very scary time when I came off them. I felt so many emotions that I hadnt felt in so long, and it was wonderful to be able to feel again and not be on autopilot, but at the same time, I didnt know how to handle the emotions that people are supposed to feel. I guess I had forgotten how to. And every time I had a bad day, or started to cry or feel emotional, I was terrified because I thought it was coming back again, which would make me even more upset. In the end I had to realise that what I was feeling was 'normal', if I had a bad day, it was just because I was having a bad day and it didnt mean that I had to go back on medication again or that the depression was returning.
For you, the loss that you have so recently experienced is huge and it is perfectly perfectly understandable that you will be starting to feel upset and anxious as it gets closer to your mothers birthday, especially since Christmas and New Years is a stressful time anyway. The first year after losing someone that you love so much is hell because every single occasion is the first that they are not there. I agree with Darren in that I think it would be very very benifical for you to turn the tv off, disconnect the internet and sit down with your family and talk. Have you done this since your mum passed away? Talk to your husband and your children about how you feel and what you need right now; you dont have to be the strong one that gets everything done and thinks of everyone else apart from yourself. A life changing event has happened to you and YOU need support as well. So what if you start to cry in front of your children; they will realise that their mum is an actual person with feelings just like them and she needs their help and their hugs. Maybe when you sit down together, you could think of a way to celebrate your mums birthday together. Go out to dinner with just your family, or plant a tree for her to mark the occasion and let everyone say something, or if you feel strong enough, throw her a party and invite the whole family around.
I guess what I am trying to say is that this is a very distressing time in your life, and the pain is still so strong. Yes, you still have responsibilties as a mother, but right now you are having the feelings of a daughter and everyone around you should respect it. Please talk to your family, and try and get through this as a group, not individuals. And allow yourself to recognise the grief that you feel over the loss of your beautiful friend. I know it sounds cliched, but she does live on in you.
I wish you all the happiness in the world for the next few months, and please let us know how you are going.