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I used to love to read. I have not been able to read a book from cover to cover that is not about grief or some kind of self-help or inspiration (usually the kind with small quotes on each page).

Now I am about halfway through a real book. It's been a year for me since my wife died. My goal is to be able to concentrate and pay attention to this book, and then another.

I want my mundane regular daily life back. I want to be able to do normal human things like read a book. I'm curious, if you are able to read a book, at what point in your grief did you accomplish this?

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Amazingly enough...I have. I lost my husband to cancer less than 3 months ago and made it through a fictional more "fun" Summer kind of read about a month and a half after he passed away.  What I found was that while grief can be all consuming for me if I allow it....I have tried so very hard not to allow it to be that. So I made it through a book, started a second, started reading magazines again, watch movies, started a few new TV shows that weren't ones John and I were watching or talking about watching.  I have gone to places we used to go as a couple.  I almost hold my breathe when I first do that...thinking I may explode or something as I walk in. 

A book I LOVE and I feel helps me get through especially those very dark days is called "Healing After Loss" by Martha Whitmore Hickman. It has truly helped me get through days.

How does it feel reading the book you are reading right now?

Hi Shirley,

    My husband passed ways from Cancer also. About 9 months ago.  He had Glioblastoma Multi Forme grade 4.  ... But reading and crocheting helped me when things got TOO much for me. It worked sometimes. It still helps me.


Hi Susan.  

John had stage four small bowel cancer. We had 21 months from the date of diagnosis...which ironically enough was the number of years we were married.

I like to bake.  I also make cards....I have yet to make a card though since John passed away. I haven't baked yet either. I will be moving my oldest into college 5 hours away from me next week.  I will also have a junior in high school. I hope once my daughter and I settle into a routine this Fall that I am able to start doing some of those things again.

Some days are ok and some days are absolute torture. Such is grief.

Thank you for sharing with me. It helps to know I'm not alone out there.


Hi Shirley,

   I love cooking & Baking also... And quilting... But I just can't do it yet. Why bother, it's just me now.... But I DO love crocheting. I have made 3 baby blankets and am working on the fourth one. It's for my FIRST Grandchild! All of the babies I'm making blankets for are due in October. :-)

   I remember when our son was in college.... " Empty Nest Syndrome " big time, for me... Now he's married and they are having a baby in Oct. :-)

   I know what you mean about how some days are OK and others aren't.  It's all Up and Down. 

   Maybe your daughter can bake with you. :-) 

   Don't ever think your all alone in how you feel. Your Not. You can always come here and drop a line if you need to talk.



Susan, grandchildren are such a blessing, congratulations on expecting  your first soon! I'm so sorry your husband will not be there to see the newest family member, but you know he will still be near and better able to see than we are! 

My oldest daughter was expecting twins when my husband died. (She had 3 older children already) and it was pretty bittersweet. Because it was twins, I was not able to accompany her for the actual birth after spending her whole labor with her. She was whisked off the OR 'in case' and I sat in her room and cried, waiting. I had brought a small picture of him in  a little frame one of the grandchildren had given him that said something like Best Grandpa, so that he would be there, as he had been for all the others, as a gift for the new babies.

I also love to crochet, but haven't done so in years. I taught my middle daughter, though, and she sits crocheting all the time! :-)  She's 24, and engaged to be married next Spring.

Hi Nance,

   I know Paul will be watching... He just won't be able to hold my hand :-( ...  Right now the " unborn " baby is called " Little Boo ".  He hasn't been born yet and I'm already in love with him.

    M y son and Daughter IN Law had a " Gender Reveal Party " to let everyone know what the sex of the baby was... It' s a boy! Michael looked up at the sky and said, " I told you Dad , It's a boy " .. :-)  And I was lucky enough to catch it in a picture! 

   At least

Paul was alive to see them get married in 2015.  We even danced at their wedding. 

Warmest Regards,


 Lovely photo of a happy day!

Everything FEELS so much more, now, doesn't it?  I'm sure that gender reveal party was bittersweet also. My daughter's for her twins was the last time my husband was with everyone, and we had no idea what was to come.

Shirley, I also bake, and was accustomed to making cookies from scratch very routinely. My husband died rather suddenly (had a cardiac arrest at home, was hospitalized a week unresponsive and died after being removed from machines) a bit more than a year ago. I have made cookies two or three times since, and made some ridiculous mistakes in the cookies I could have made in my sleep before. Grief impacts every single characteristic and nuance of life, it seems. I am definitely coming back to (a new) normal, now, and a little more readily able to do the simplest things that have been pushed to the wayside. My poor kids (five of them from 33 down to a 15 yo special needs daughter) have had a lot of their norms taken away as I have been changed.

Hi Nance,

   I hope you don't mind me reading a post intended for someone else. ... I just wanted to say that I'm glad I'm not the only one making idiotic mistakes on something I could have done easily before.



oh, gosh, Susan, the posts are really meant for all! I have been getting these posts in email these last few days and have wanted to join in but my schedule has been too awfully tight, so I am taking some time to respond individually instead of one long post~full.

It is comforting when we hear others expressing something we can relate to, isn't it?? and omgosh, the mistakes I continue to make astound me and ...well, also infuriate me!

    I'm glad they are meant for all... Today I had extra time to just sit down and catch up on my e-mails. I worked yesterday, so sitting feels good. ( At work I'm on my feet all day. And my feet hurt at the end of the day.)

   It IS comforting to hear that others are doing some of the same things I am doing. ... It lets me know that I'm NOT the only one. :-)


I also like that book, "Healing After Loss," ShirleyB.  There's another one that I have found especially helpful, also, with each page a question and reflection. You can open to read whatever suits you at the moment.  _A Time to Grieve_


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