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Born in the 50s

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Buying A House

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Anyone experiencing loneliness?

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Comment Wall


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Comment by booktime (Susan) on May 28, 2018 at 2:58am

All of this, I have felt! For quite a while after Ed's death, all I could see was that Ed, diminished horribly by the disease, not able to walk or do anything. I can see that Ed still but now I have other memories to comfort me. The best advice I have received on approaching an anniversary or special day or just any day, is think of something he did that made you laugh. This has helped me.

Also, for a while, I did not have pictures of him displayed. I wanted HIM, not just the stupid pictures!

But now I have several in my bedroom: our wedding day, my brother's wedding day, and one taken just a few months before he met me! I tell that Ed oh if you only knew then how your life was going to be with me! Many happy years.

The guilt: oh yes, Easy for someone to say get it out of your head. That's not going to happen. But believe me, that feeling dulls. It really does. I felt a lot after Ed died - why didn't I say or do this or that? Why.

Even though I was with Ed when he died, I almost missed it. I was sleeping in the bed next to him and was awakened at 2 AM by the hospice nurses tending to him and then I heard his breathing, and I knew. He died 4 hours later. Not that I could have stopped it but shouldn't I have been alert? So there's my did I do enough?

Each of us has to travel our own path of grief and there is no doubt in my mind that yours has some pretty big boulders. I want to share with you that mine is strewn with pebbles now. The path can be a little rocky still but it is mostly level.

There's nothing I can say to you that makes your loss less strong now. Only to say this is the right place to find the stories of others and know in that sense you aren't alone.

Hugs. Sounds like a nice bbq. Stories are great and it's really good to be able to talk about him!  I love talking about Ed even now.

Oh and yes, before the cancer, Ed was very healthy. Never never fair.

Comment by NoLongerInBergenJC on May 28, 2018 at 2:55am

@reit:  The hardest part, I find, is forgiving ourselves for simply doing the best we could and making the best decisions we could at the time.  You could not have known that your husband would pass at 5 AM.  You were looking out for your daughter and did not want to wake her.  

We all, especially those of us who dealt with terminal illness or situations, have things we wish we'd done differently.  I have so many things that I've already written about elsewhere here so I won't bore you with them.  But when we are in crisis mode, we can only do what seems right at the time.

I don't have any easy answers for you on how to do this, but it is something we do need to learn how to do, because otherwise it can drive us mad.  The only thing we can do is to keep reminding ourselves that we always did what we thought was right...and it may still be right even though it doesn't seem that way.

Comment by riet on May 27, 2018 at 11:47pm

Yesterday , we celebrated a few birthdays in our family. We had a lovely bbq.  But we were 11 and not 12 as it should have been. It is now one month and one week we lost him.

We all shared stories about my husband  and their dad and grandpa. I heard some I never knew before. So lovely,  But I miss him so terribly.

Sometimes I try and try but I can only see him  then in his last months when he was very ill. And more ill every day. I have to watch old photos to see the person he really was.

Then I can't accept what this terrible illness did to my darling husband and me.  He never had something serious before.  And I ask myself.  Why why why?

But of course there is no why.  Even when we first arrived in the hospital 4 years ago, the doctors told my husband: "you're a very healthy person, except for the "injury". That is what they call a brain tumor here in Belgium at first.  

That "injury" has demolished my husband step by step. And yet, till the last day he wanted to be with us.  I was his caregiver, but our 3 kids did as much as possible.

It was often proposed to us to bring him to an hospice.  But it would have broken his heart.  Now at home he could watch his garden and the flowers he liked so much. And neighbors and friends dropping in talking about daily life.

He liked that so much.  And so he died in our own bed.

But now I am asking myself constantly: did I do well.  Because I was very tired, I did not say the right loving words in last night.

I didn't even remark the moment he died. I was busy turning him around to help him breathing better. 

And the worst thought is: at 2 am he asked to call our daughter and I told him I wouldn't do that because she had gone back to her own family a few hours earlier and would come back in the morning to nurse him. And so he died at 5 am.  And now I feel so very guilty.

I would give my own life for his now.  

And hug him endlessly.  

I told this story often to the people around me.  And they all tell me to get it out of my head because he knew how much we all love him.  Still love him.

But I wished it had not happened.  That nothing of all this had happened. And that we still were the happy couple we always were for about 50 years.

As I am sure you all wish the same.

Comment by shelley on May 27, 2018 at 5:23pm

Hi Slick, Sorry you can't find a group to join.  I find grief support groups so helpful.  In San Francisco & Santa Cruz (where I am in groups) there is no requirement for number of years widowed.  A person lost a parent 12 years ago, a person lost a child 5 years ago, widows and widowers experienced loss whenever.  If a person believes the group can be helpful, they're in.  I see you're in Pennsylvania-  I hope you find support.  Maybe you could start your own group-  find a facilitator and advertise.  

Comment by Melissa on May 25, 2018 at 10:58am

Thank you NancyD. "Held in love" is such a beautiful image. Our first wedding anniversary since my husband's death is coming up - June 15th. I've been dreading it so much, but perhaps I will also be held in love. 

Comment by NancyD on May 24, 2018 at 8:06pm

Just wanted to share this:  It's our first wedding anniversary since my husband died 8 months ago.  I was dreading it.  But this morning I was surprised by waking up with a sense of being "held in love".  I can't really describe it, but it felt wonderfully peaceful and reassuring.  Later I took flowers to the grave and thanked him for loving me so well. Lots of tears, but it all seemed OK. <sigh>  What a strange, unpredictable journey this grief is! Thanks for all your sharing and support. 

Comment by NoLongerInBergenJC on May 24, 2018 at 5:58pm

I've seen my husband in airports more than once.  But the weirdest experience I had with OMG THERE HE IS was when I saw the movie "Loving."  There's a scene where the LIFE Magazine photographer comes to take photos, and when the actor, Michael Shannon, walks towards Richard Loving in the movie, he looks JUST like my husband.  The thing is, my husband looked NOTHING like Michael Shannon, but no matter how many times I watch that movie (and it is a terrific film, if you haven't seen it), the minute that photographer appears in the picture, I think it looks like my husband.

Comment by Gary'swife on May 24, 2018 at 4:02pm

As Memorial Day approaches I realize how many people I knew and loved are dead. 

Slick and shelley- I understand what you mean about seeing someone you thought was your husband.  I am now to the point where I will just say to myself "that guy looked a bit like Gary", but for quite some time I would get startled, and you all know what I mean, when you thought you saw him (or her). 

I am now taking care of my brother who had a stroke a year ago.  When I allow myself to think that he won't live just makes me so sad.  But then, I won't live forever either, so guess I just hope to outlive him as there is no one else to take care of him.

Sending hugs to all.

Comment by shelley on May 24, 2018 at 3:39pm

Riet, My husband died on November 10, 2017.  For months after he died, whenever I was outside, I would think I saw him.  Then I transitioned into noticing that someone was wearing his shirt, his shorts, his Tilly hat, that it was not him.  I thought I was past thinking I'd see him; thought I'd come to some form of acceptance.  Then yesterday as I drove to my grief support group, I was positive that I saw him- walking down the street.  The group's agenda was to challenge ourselves by saying the words, "He's not coming back."  It's a tough one.  Somewhere in me I know he's not coming back.  But I still think I see him.  

Comment by Barzan on May 24, 2018 at 2:34pm

Riet and Whoever else is interested, I was given a book soon after my husband passed that helped me immensely day by day.  It is "Living With Loss" by Ellen Sue Stern.  These are meditations for grieving widows.  It is like a blueprint or guidebook on grief.  I believe it's available through Amazon.  My copy is so dog eared from reading and re-reading.  My thoughts are with you.


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