It's been 3 years and 9 months. I was a strong, self confidant woman before my husband died suddenly. I tried to stay strong, but it seems as the years go by I only get more weak. I still miss him so much. I have children and grandchildren who need me to be strong. I love them all so much, but I feel like a stranger even to them, although I try to act normal. I never realized how much of my strength came from having him here to complete me. I know I will never be the same person I was, but as time goes by I feel like I'm not even a person at all. Just a pretend person. Does anyone else feel this? I do see a therapist.
LostandLonely, you took the words right out of my mouth. I am 2 years, 3 months out and feel like I have zero direction. It feels like two extremes - that I want to scream and say things are not all right, or just smile and hide all of these emotions.
I have always tried to be independent, though never very confident. From way back, I knew that my husband would go before me, so I prepared my self early on to do things that I would face alone, the things my mother didn't do before she lost my father in her fifties.
Like you, I absolutely felt that much of my strength came from my husband. He was my cheer leader. I am afraid to make any decisions, to move forward. I feel like I am vegetating.
The other thing I notice, though I remember my husband and I very well commenting on the sad state of the world, is that I am surly. I can't get out of a perpetual bad mood. Other people's happy lives on facebook just make me feel like I'm not doing anything right. It's not their fault, it's not anyone's fault. It's just that I can't find a source of joy that lasts.
Though I don't really expect this, there is an undercurrent that I wish someone would rescue me. As an independent person, I hate feeling this way, but in this vegetative state, I feel like an outside influence might alter the trajectory of my life in a good way. I'm sure my therapist would have a lot to say about that.
Sorry, I kind of made this about me. Please hang in there and know that you are not alone.
Sending you hugs and peace.
@ Tess and Lost, I too feel the exact same way. I could have written what you both wrote. I'm not sure what the answer is to motivate any of us to move forward. I suppose there isn't any one answer, but rather something individual to us all. On the 14th, I'll be one year out. So far I still maintain that this isn't going to be my new normal. I'll rise again, better for having loved and lost my sweet Jerry. I admit I have no idea how I'll manifest a new life for myself. I'm working on the courage to try something new and daring for ME. :)
To be honest I read that you both are much farther ahead and having the exact same feelings that I have. I scares me so much. I wonder if I should give in and accept that this is what I'm left with or keep trying to plow through the awful feeling of being a shell of a person. I have children, grandchildren and a stepdaughter who want me to live a full life. Who need me to be here in the now with them. I have parents who are counting on me to help them through their golden years. So far I've been failing miserably at being who those I love most need me to be. I feel like I'm slowly flunking/dropping out of life.
I'm trapped at the moment between nothingness and the land of the living. I truly want to rejoin the ppl I love in the living world, Tess and Lost you are both much farther out. What advice do you have for me?
Rainy, please don't let me scare you. You are where you're supposed to be right now. You're only at one year. I think you will move forward much faster than I have. My anxiety keeps me from living the life I want to. If I can ever get a grip on that, it will be a huge help. I know you have anxiety too, but you're working on it and I think you will rid yourself of it soon, and you'll begin to see the light again.
Thanks Lost, I don't know. With Jerry next to me, he took all/most of my anxiety away. Now that he's gone, I have all of the old ones plus new ones!
It sort of leaves one the question. Is grief why I'm stuck or is metal issues the culprit? I certainly feel like a lunatic a lot of the time.
Rainy, LostandLonely is right. Don't be concerned with where we are versus where you are. We are all individual, so the way we respond will be different. You said something very important, that your anxiety keeps you from living the life you want. I think that is part of my problem. I needed to work on myself anyway, so the loss of my husband just accentuated the problem.
It is not only the grief of losing our husbands, it is the burdon of creating a new life. Some seem to do that so much easier. I'm sure it is still difficult, but they seem so much more secure in who they are.
Like LostandLonely said, it is a "pretend" life. It is hard to conceive of genuine feelings of joy and people don't want to hear that you are still struggling because you serve as a reminder to what they will face when losing their spouse. Plus sadly enough, they don't want to need to worry about you.
Hugs and strength to all of us.
Tess , you are right that some people are just more secure in who they are. I thought I was secure, but just had no idea that the security was partly because of my husband. Since he's been gone, the security I had is gone. It's also easier for those who have a large support network to help them through. I do not have that. My children were very close to their father and although they have moved on better than I, they are grieving also. Friends have long ago gotten on with their lives and think I'm fine. I think this time of year really gets to many of us. This year has been the worst for all of my family.