Hi Samantha, so sorry about your pain! That sucks about your friends and sisters backing away. I hope you were able to get some sleep. And I'm glad that you still have the one sister and the few friends who have not backed away.
I think I agree with Kathy, that people back away 'cause they feel uneasy and awkward, and don't really know what to do??
How do you think they would respond if you dropped a casual "let's do lunch" email? Maybe they would "come back"?
Another thought I had was, they might be backing away 'cause they don't want to be a burden on your time? For example, they might think that if they ask you to do lunch, that it might be too hard on you??
I am just rambling as well, trying to find a not-hurtful explanation for their backing away. I am at a loss, and just feel bad for you.