Widowed Village

A community of peers created by the Soaring Spirits Loss Foundation

Born in the 40s or earlier


Born in the 40s or earlier

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Members: 143
Latest Activity: 13 minutes ago

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Comment by HeartsForever 13 minutes ago

Laura, I live with adrenal insufficiency due to adrenal exhaustion and have been taking prescribed medication for that from my dr. for 15 yrs.  It happened long before I lost my DH and DD but the grief of their losses added to the issues.  I was diagnosed with lab work and along with my adrenals my thyroid was compromised so a medication for each.    Dr. said it was from stress of taking care of my disabled daughter 24/7 and from my husbands chronic medical issues.  It's a very real disease and debilitating.  I was very sick until I happened upon a wonderful internist that recognized the problem and tested me for it.  I'm glad you mentioned it to this group.  I also take a med that is labeled for depression, but for me it was given to me for arthritic pain.  I started taking it as well long before my losses so I wasn't put on anything else.  I am more worried about my chronic pain than I am about it affecting my moods, which I don't believe it has.  I've had plenty of emotional/physical pain from losing my DH and DD. 

Comment by laurajay 21 hours ago

californiajazzy---that's the word exactly.  dread   a feeling of dread  very strange and uncomfortable  not pain as such... it passes  but it is real when it comes.

I am not in the medical profession and not giving advice you should get from your health practitioner  but I have found L-theanine as a supplement very useful with no side effects you could google it to learn more.  I also use GABA  in additional to herbal tea containing  chamomile , passion flower .  There are other things to try before drugs if you are so inclined.   They take it edge off and allow  calm without sedating.  Another interesting thing to research is adrenal gland exhaustion  which can come about when stress is chronic with no break/relief  as in grief.  But be sure to ask your doctor before taking anything.  If you are lucky to have a complementary physician who combines many kinds of medicine even better because they are willing often to listen and offer  the least invasive methods  first.  I retired from classroom teaching but in my next life I'm returning as a dietitian/nutritionist/masseuse . lol  Goodnight dear friends   thank you for posting

Comment by Maggie 22 hours ago
PS...my friend in Fla takes Paxil and has for years. She takes it to keep her from getting bitchy...not from grief. So it's a personal decision for sure and works well for some and not others.
Comment by Maggie 22 hours ago
Thank you Silverlady for your sentiment. And Thelma, I ordered your book today...such wonderful reviews on Amazon. Patarky...a Maltipoo, how adorable. I had Yorkie sisters and were like my husbands and my children. We loved them so (no children of our own). I like to think they are all together. Californiajazzy, I take an occasional Xanax when I get anxiety. It works well for me. I took them long ago when my Mother was dying from ovarian cancer to help me calm down and sleep. I had gotten premature heartbeats from stress. I took them for about two years and began to cut back..no problems stopping at all, so I'm not concerned now. I have thought of anti depressants, but I, like Laurajay, don't want my mind altered and my Dr explained to me that they work best for people with chronic depression, not acute depression from a life changing event like we have. In all my searching, thinking and talking about my situation, for me, it's keeping busy, trying new things I would have not done before and keeping social in any way I can that have helped me the most. I'm also fortunate to have a very close friend here in my neighborhood and another dear friend in Fla, whom I text with everyday and talk to every 3 to 4 days with. And I have a brother and SIL nearby. Ironically, the two women I feel the closest to and who understand me the best are not widows. I love this group and feel so glad to have settled in the "Born in the 40's" group. Since we are older, our perspective is different and I can relate so to all of you. Have a peaceful and safe night....
Comment by californiajazzy 23 hours ago

thank you both for responding to my questions regarding medication. I have a weird movement disorder at night that limits types of medication I can take( no serotonin releasing meds) that normally lift spirits. It makes my disorder worse. I was alarmed that that the trainee counselor seemed urgent in mentioning me seeing a doctor getting my records transferred so I could get on medication. That alarmed me because my symptoms seems very familiar as  they are on this forum. Today I did have a terrible feeling of dread and actually went and laid down wondering if it was the fact that my husband started his decline about now last year. I did go into the local doctors office and signed papers to have my records sent and did make an appointment so feel like I accomplished something. I am doing the work as am seeing someone and going thru the motions to get out there and try and participate in life.

Again thank you for your posts and for answering my question.

Comment by gardenlady 23 hours ago
to Silverlady and all of you on this journey to the future alone. I like what you wrote today about keeping up the traditions you shared at Halloweem. I just sent our Halloween cards and stickers or money to my younger grandkids. Most are out working or in college now...I have 3 littler boys...twins 7 and one in France who is 8. I am determined that they don't lose their Grandma too...so I am making myself honor our roles as grandparents as we always did too. This was the first time I didn't sign Grandpa too. But I know he is with me...as I do the grandparent stuff. He loved those kids as much as I and they loved him. I don't know how they think about his changed status...they don't speak of him much now. I give them a hug from Grandpa too when they come and leave. We do big all together family hugs when we part. I want them all to feel that love is forever and that may be my only purpose left of this earth. I am trying to honor him by doing the family building activities as long as I can. Even though there are so many times when I wish I could follow him or just be with him for a little while. This is a difficult journey! I am thankful I found widville and the writings of all of you. Peace.
Comment by silverlady 23 hours ago
There have been so many interesting posts since I posted last evening. Thanks for the recommendation of Joyce Carol Oates book, quilters96. If I'm not mistaken, she did remarry fairly soon after her husband passed. Like Maggie and others, I have no interest in remarrying or having another relationship. I'm still very much in love with and married to my husband.

Thelma, I've looked at your blog some but didn't know you wrote a book! I'll check it out. I hope you will consider writing a sequel when you are a few more years out. So many writers from CS Lewis on write early in their grief as a way of processing their own pain. I have found such books so helpful but keep wanting to read more about how it was for them several more years on.

Today has been a bittersweet day for me. My husband loved making caramel corn for the trick or treaters. My job was to bag it and put a "Happy Halloween from Anne & Gary" tag on each bag. It was always a fun afternoon for us. Today, as a way to honor Gary and continue something that brought him so much pleasure, I made and bagged the caramel corn myself. I was in tears before I started, but once I got going I felt close to him and knew he would be pleased I continued this tradition.

As we enter what I just learned is called Hallowtide (Halloween/All Saints Day/All Souls Day) and also Los Dias de Los Muertos, I wish peace and comfort for each of you and send a prayer for the souls of your departed loved ones.
Comment by laurajay yesterday

There are always two sides to the opinion regarding  using mind altering drugs  such as anti -depressants and tranquilizers.  Some claim wonderful results that keep  them able to function and some find in the long run they masked the grief and prolonged it  as they became addicted to the drug(s).  and all sorts of things in between.  I guess there is no right or wrong with this.   Personally, I am opposed to mind-altering drugs for myself.  I believe  much of what I deal with in my widowhood is life style issues and the lack of money and help domestically.  I also am very holistically  oriented   believing in prevention as opposed to cures whenever possible.   Drugs to be used only in life or death situations.  I have watched older people strung out on multiple drugs which just caused more and more interactions and problems--.  often doctors  say short term use   but in reality  withdrawal is not easy and many wind up on drugs for the rest of their lives.  if you are unable to think or function  it is probably a good idea to seek counseling  and perhaps medication  but bottom line you have to eventually do the work and make the changes   within you...drugs may or may not help...very individual decision and no one should debate what is right or wrong because each of us is unique and what is right for someone might not be right for the next person. 

  Grief is crappy and complicated and can make you think you are dying too or crazy---it is the very nature of grief to be grossly unpleasant and to make you question your sanity and your purpose.  Always know  deep deep inside you is your personal truth and all that  you are has resulted in living into your senior years---such a blessing--to be here to gain understanding and wisdom and still not know it all.  What a treasure it is when you put your grief down for just a moment and become aware of the love that keeps you alive.  Take a quiet moment to think of the wonder of  that truth. Because  even  down and out and flat on your face you would have no less worth because of the value of  every life.  That means you and me and everyone else on earth.

Comment by thelmaz yesterday

calformniajazzy...yes, I have had experience with medication.  During the last 6 months of my husband's life, he had a lumbar puncture that resulted paralysis of his legs, he fell out of his wheelchair and bashed his head on the concrete near the entrance to the hospital, my son had a heart attach, and I was working full time and spending most nights at the hospital.  So yes, I started Lexapro and it helped me so much.  I managed to get through that awful summer and the days after my husband's death.  Seeing a counselor was good for me, too.

Comment by thelmaz yesterday

silverlady, I hate to be pushy but I am 10 years older than you and have written a memoir about the last year my husband and I were together and how I managed widowhood.  Not a happy story but the ending part is positive.  Stumbling Through the Dark by Thelma Zirkelbach, available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.  


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