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Born in the 50s

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Latest Activity: 19 hours ago

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Comment by shelley 19 hours ago

Melissa.  Ditto.  

Comment by Tess yesterday

I had to weigh in on this fascinating "why am I here topic" as well. I think about this every moment of every day. I too had a husband that was an alcoholic and on a self-destructive path. That really never stopped, but his family credited me with giving him love and direction. He certainly gave purpose and meaning to my life as well. Maybe that is what made my losing him so hard. But it served as direction for me all those years.

If I think about my life now, I realize that for over a year now I have been making the day of my sister who has dementia. I cook for her every Wednesday (something I had to learn to do, as my husband was my chief cook and bottle-washer before his death). It seems insignificant when I look at my total contribution to her, but if I reflect on it, I am doing something that adds value to someone else's life. That I love.

I want to do more for others and there are ample opportunities in the church and in the community. I have to choose carefully though because there is an assumption with many causes that the givers have disposable income to contribute. I am not in that category.

A sense of purpose doesn't always need to be a grand gesture, just needed and appreciated.

Thanks for opening this topic all. Hugs.

Comment by Maggie yesterday

I don’t have a sense of purpose at all, but I’m not particularly depresuabout it. It’s going on 6 yrs for me and I have a new life and I’m fairly content, but no purpose. No new man....don’t want one.

i say do whatever makes you happy or at least content. For some it’s grandchildren, hobbies, reading books, friends or volunteering. It doesn’t have to be much. Besides having a partner, what made you happy before?

even when I was married, I didn’t necessarily feel I had a purpose other than a companion for him. I actually do more now than I did then, but then I’ve been forced to.

truth is we’re all just biding our time...I just try to enjoy it for what it is...my favorite thing is going out to dinner with friends and having a drink and good conversation.

life is really simple...just let it be.

Comment by booktime (Susan) yesterday

I too thought about why I was still here and it's becoming clearer. I thought it was to work as long as I could but now I know I want to really enjoy life without the constriction of work. With 6 months to go before I retire, I have a lot to do there still but my mind is already thinking ahead to when I don't go to work. It does not scare me. I feel I have a lot to do: my weaving and spinning, exercising, meeting up with friends during the week (!), traveling with one or two sisters, and eventually volunteering somewhere in my community. If a sweet little part time job comes along, that would be good too.

I thank my mother for helping me to figure out why I was still here. She was 89 when my dad died, mostly blind, and wanted to stay in her home. She showed me how to thrive, not just survive. She died when she was 96 at home and at peace with her life, She missed my dad probably every day but she surrounded herself with friends, family, art, literature, and conversation, the livelier the better.

And ultimately, Ed would be happy to know that I am OK. I promised him that after all!

And Bergen, I so related to your post! When I married Ed, he was still a smoker, had been a heavy drinker, and probably other stuff too. I often heard from his family that marrying me was the best thing. When he was diagnosed with cancer in 2003, he often told me that had he not married me, he would most likely have died a lot sooner as he didn't exactly take care of himself! So that may have been my purpose as well!

Hugs to all.

Comment by NoLongerInBergenJC yesterday

Lots of talk here about "Why am I still here?  What's the point?"  I've been thinking about this lately.  I am only 63, but I left my job in January, and while I have a good life with many friends and good times, and I'm enjoying the slack, I find myself often looking back and looking forward to try and determine what my path is.  I will think "What's my purpose?"  And I came to the realization that I have already fulfilled my purpose.  My purpose was the save my husband from the self-destructive spiral he was in when we met.  Oh, he was functional; he went to work every day and he was jolly and fun.  But like many people in the 1980s, he was a regular cocaine user, and I think he would have died by the time he was 30 if I hadn't come along.  I didn't do anything to "straighten him out", even though his father gave me credit for doing so.  All I did was love him and accept him, and that enabled him to straighten himself out.  He never really lost the self-loathing that I didn't know he had until a few months before he died, but he was able to live a normal, satisfying life.  I think that was my purpose, and now?  Well, I don't know.

I suspect it has something to do with feeding people.  I am at my happiest when I am cooking something or making food for people. It can be exhausting.  I had a potluck on Thanksgiving, my friends helped with dishes and such, and still it took me two days to recover.  But it was a good kind of tired.  I help prepare a dinner for a womens shelter once a month and I take a lot of satisfation in that.

Some of us will remarry and perhaps that will be our new purpose.  Others of us won't, and we will have to find that purpose on our own.  But even if it's just preparing a meal every now and then, or getting your dog certified for pet therapy, or whatever -- something that gives us an answer, no matter how small, to "Why am I still here?" is important for us to find.

Comment by Melissa yesterday

Riet, the day after tomorrow is my husband's birthday, too.

You have people to help you when you get home, don't you? I wish you a speedy healing.

People are strange. Every night I pray not to wake up in the morning, but every day I take my vitamins and put on sunscreen. I don't get it.

All the best to you.

Comment by riet yesterday

A person is very strange. In the last few months I have often thought: "Let me leave, I can not do without my love". And when I broke my hip on last Tuesday, I just felt: I hope they can do something for me, because I do not want to die yet.
Today I can leave the clinic. A few months of recovery await me. And that without him.
The day after tomorrow is his birthday. How can I do all that?
And yet: it seems that I want to live.

Comment by shelley yesterday

Yes, Melissa.  It felt peculiar to rationally consider how to best maintain my health when I constantly ask John to take me with him.   

Comment by Tekwriter on Monday

When my husband had his two brain surgeries I spent almost every night in the hospital with him. Two nights I stayed at home. The first I had been up 36 hours and they said he would remain sedated all night, and the second I was familiar with the nurses.  It is sad to think we need someone there. My cancer treatment was cutting edge and very aggressive. I would hate to do it again. Specially since my Oncologist moved over to Hematology completely.

Comment by Melissa on Monday

That's such a good decision, Shelley. I wouldn't have had the presence of mind to think it through like that. 

 

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