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I'm a little late on replying on the subject of building a new/different life; catching up on normal stuff after returning from a trip, and right now recovering from having a dental implant placed.  The anaesthetic is starting to wear off!   

When I think back, my family culture when things go bad has always been, "This sucks but I can't change it so what do I do now?"  I did have quite a few separate interests from Ron and have expanded some:  more time at the gym, more time bicycling the Katy Trail near our favorite B&B (Ron had given up bicycling years ago), more wandering in interesting cities (when we'd traveled together in the last years we tried to be careful not to get lost because Ron wore out easily).  Everyday stuff:  your list will undoubtedly vary but it's an example of the types of things that keep me engaged with other humans and gets me out of the house.  Toastmasters once a week.  Plenty of church-related stuff and they'd gladly let me sign up for more!   Everything from being on the Finance Committee to maintaining the Web site to baking cookies for Coffee Hour.   Studying for a Lay Preaching License at the local College for Ministry.  The Garden Club once a month.  A French discussion group that meets every couple of weeks or so,  the HOA Board.  I'm sure I'm forgetting something.

MeetUp is a good place to find groups with interests similar to yours- I haven't found any widows/widowers groups that looked interesting but just joined one for International Travelers.  You'll find groups focused on hiking, crafts, dining out- just about anything.   

As Bobcatkitty said, we may not WANT to build a new life but things have changed and we have to.  It's up to you to decide what shape you want it to take.  There are times when I DO feel un-coupled in a world of couples- when traveling or in a restaurant- but if the alternative is just hibernating at home, I'd rather go out and experience the world

Take an art, cooking, sewing, cake decorating. Knitting, computer or photography class, travel, exercise, volunteer at schools, hospitals, shelters, etc., garden, join a book club or a meetup for widows or maybe one that relates to one of your other interests.  I understand how you feel because I lost my best friend too, and I don’t have a lot of friends either because it was just him and me, and we liked it that way. We were married 30 years - together since high school. I lost him 20 months ago. He wouldn’t want me to stop living. You’re still here and he would want you to make the most of it too. It isn’t easy, but you are stronger than you realize. Keep moving forward.

K.

My husband and I did not have any close friends either.  Like you, we did everything together.  My husband was retired and our plan was for me to retire this December so we could start our "retirement bucket list" together.  Last Valentines Day he gave me a metal sign that says "Grow old along with me, the best is yet to be"...that sign hangs in our living room.  So....I am still working, trying to decide if I want to go through with my retirement plan.  Coming to work does get me out of the house but I really do not want to be there.  I have started to look at what do I want to do if I retire...I am researching volunteer opportunities that interest me, projects in the house I want to do, community groups to join (though I am something of an introvert, never been a joiner), exercise classes, meditation classes...anything that interests me and would fill my days.  I am "only" 57...soon to be 58,  and I know I potentially have a lot of years ahead of me.  I want to figure out how to live life and not just exist.  This is not the path we had planned for but it is the path we have been put on so I will continue to try to figure it out one step at a time. 

Continue to reach out...there is a lot of wisdom and caring on this forum.

Hugs,

JB 

Thank you for your inspiring post. I’m 20 months in, and I am beginning to reclaim and rebuild my life. You give me hope,

K.

Welcome Lon.

My husband died December 12, 2017 at the age of 45 years old in a car accident.  We were high school sweethearts and I simply adored him. We have 3 school aged children that are trying to navigate this new life since their super hero has went on to be with the Lord. I'm trying to make good choices every day and stay positive and strong as my life continues on without him. A friend that I just met suggested this site, this is the first time I've ever really talked to strangers or posted anything about this so I really don't know what to expect.

Hi Smoopy, it is good that you found this place. When my wife (high school sweetheart, love at first sight, etc) died suddenly from a heart attack I found this place. That was 3 years ago. In that time I received a lot of helpful comments and support. Please read our stories and comment as you feel appropriate. Many times the random thoughts of others or even their ramblings have assisted me in understanding the terrible burden that grief is. It's been almost a year for you. That first anniversary was difficult for me. I hope that you are able find some friends nearby to help you. If there's one thing I've learned through this process it's that I have had to ask for help from people because most folks just don't know what to do or to say. If you or your children need something and you think someone in your support network can offer it, ask. I wish you well and hope that you find peace.

Thanks for the encouragement. 

Hello, my wife and I were married 09/15/2017. She passed on 01/05/2018. Although we were only married those short few months, we were together for 10 years. She was the love of my life. The once in a lifetime relationship that we all hope for. It has been a rough year to say the least. 

I am so sorry for your loss, andy61453. My husband of 47 years died suddenly, unexpectedly, 3 days after his 69th birthday. In connecting with widows/widowers here and in my community, time in a relationship doesn't mean the pain can be easier or harder. The sorrow is excruciating. It's been 1 year, 3 months, 7 days since Marty died, and I still cry every day. I'm confident in saying, every one of us here knows your pain.

Hi Randy. Thank you for responding to my message with such kind words and encouragement. I am grateful that you did find this site, even if it took a little longer. As you continue to heal, be kind to yourself. I think, When you love someone you just always do. No matter what. I feel I will forever carry a part of Bruce in in my every breath. I can only imagine the concerns you must be having. It sounds to me like you are a most thoughtful and kind person so again, maybe just try to be patient and kind to you. 

Hello, I'm not certain how to navigate this site yet and forums. My name is Sandy (44) and my husband (44) past away exactly 3 months ago. I just survived the first holiday, my 24th wedding anniversary and of course Christmas is coming up. I have two teenagers 17 & 19 are coping along with me. I'm a full-time student and I was supposed to graduate in May 19. My husband encouraged me to go back for many reasons, one being he wanted me to have a better job security. I will be pushing my student teaching off a semester

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