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Born in the 50s

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Camp Widow San Diego

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social security widow/widower benefits

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Comment by chef (John) on July 2, 2019 at 9:15am

Suzan,

Jude and I used to practice in the kitchen (large clear area there) almost every night for 10-15 minutes, and we actually became quite good at it--not that anyone would have ever mistaken us for Fred and Ginger.  :-) [We had taken up ballroom dancing as a form of joint exercise after Judith broke her wrist and was encouraged to take up an impact sport to prevent a repeat occurrence, and to strengthen her ankles.] I did continue to go to the dance studio after she died (after a several-month hiatus), but it just wasn't the same...so I stopped. Every now and then I get a text message from our instructor inviting me back (even after all this time), but I don't think it's a good idea. Perhaps I'll feel differently down the road.

As to travel: The "single supplement" annoys me, but...if I REALLY want to go to a particular place, I just bite the bullet. I also want to be able to see some the places I dreamed of seeing since I was a kid collecting postage stamps...and have actually been to Hong Kong, the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and Antarctica. I've been "adopted" into groups on occasion when traveling, because I speak German and French--not as fluently as my native English, but I can hold my own in most conversations--or those folks were extremely gracious with my heavily-accented conversation. I am sorry that you are not able to travel as well, but I understand your difficulty.

Comment by Ultra2015 on July 2, 2019 at 9:03am

LP.  My son works at the Victoria &Albert. Would that be close?

Comment by LP on July 2, 2019 at 8:47am

A peaceful birthday, Riet. Treat yourself as your beloved would have done.

Chris and I used to do ballroom dancing years ago. His disease slowly robbed him of the ability to move, so dancing with him was one of the things I gradually lost, along with going for walks, etc.

I couldn't ever dance with anyone else. But those were good times.

been having some bad times over the last few weeks, sometimes barely able to get out of bed. But taking Ibuprofen helps a lot. Apparently it is good for depression, and there are currently a lot of medical studies investigating this (including at my place of work, Kings College London). I really does help me, and it's as cheap as chips and OTC.

Comment by Barzan on July 2, 2019 at 4:57am

Riet,  So happy to hear that your birthday turned out to be pleasant with the help of your family gathering to honor you.  I know how emotional it must have been.  Hugs to you.

John, I gave up dancing when I married Barney.  He had no sense of rhythm at all and was blessed with 2 left feet.  We did dance at out son's wedding and we came out unscathed.  I love to travel but haven't done so as much as I would have liked to.  My friends either work or have mates.  I do travel stateside with my MIL once or twice a year.  Half my family is in Europe but I haven't gone for a visit because I just can't do it alone.  I had hoped to meet a fella that would like to be a travel buddy but the ones I've met have wanted more.  I think you know what I mean.  I'm still hopeful.  Hugs to you.

Suzan

Comment by Melissa on July 1, 2019 at 10:27pm

I'm so glad the day was better than expected, riet. Life continues to surprise us!

I wish you comfort and peace.

Comment by riet on July 1, 2019 at 11:55am

Dear friends, 

Your sweet words touch me deeply. Chef John, thank you for making the effort to wish me a happy birthday in my own language.
Sweet Melissa, I will definitely discuss this with my doctor. It could indeed help. Thank you for the detailed explanation. Suzan, I know you are always there and you understand everything that troubles all of us. A big hug to all of you.
I had a nice day. Children and grandchildren, neighbors and friends came to visit. It went better than what I had imagined.
The lack remains, but I could also think of the others and be happy for them. For their school results, for their travel plans. I no longer thought he should be there at every moment of the day. And what's more: I don't feel guilty about it.
It is so extraordinary that I can tell all of this here without being judged.
Dear fellow sufferers, thank you

Comment by chef (John) on July 1, 2019 at 10:44am

Riet,

Joyeux anniversaire!/Ik wens je een gelukkige verjaardag.

I agree with Suzan: The Year of Firsts hurts, but...they also must be endured.

I am also sorry about your dreams, since they cause you to be exhausted. I know how that feels. I am glad that you attended the lecture. It's difficult to do (what had earlier been a shared experience) alone, but I would encourage you to keep doing this, if it brought you some small satisfaction/enjoyment. Speaking for myself, I gave up dancing after my wife died...but I continue to travel.

Hugs.

John

Comment by SweetMelissa2007 on July 1, 2019 at 7:46am

Riet,

Check out this Brussels website to learn if it will be of help ...

www.acupuncture-abadic.org 

Comment by SweetMelissa2007 on July 1, 2019 at 7:36am

[[[Hugs Riet]]]
Grief can & will throw off a person's entire balance. It is akin to a foreign invader of the mind, body & soul that, unfortunately, does not come with a widow handbook for guidance on how to treat its symptoms. Everyone is left to their own devices of relying on guesswork, trial & error in navigating this unknown territory. In addition to grief validation, suggestions by those who have also stumbled while walking the widow path can be of benefit in helping to provide direction as well as lift your hopes for improvement in sharing their experiences. You truly do not "need" to suffer to the point of debilitation or "have" to suffer from the love of your cherished soul mate forever. Grief is enough on its own in learning how to first weather the adjustment phases to eventually accept death as a natural part of the life cycle. Been there, done that, it is hard, however, it can be less difficult more manageable when treating grief symptoms ...
For severe depression, I used both conventional medicine & alternative medicine. I, too, was paralyzed by grief unable to manage any amount of exercise to activate endorphins into my body for relief. I suffered tremendously while looking for remedies till I found acupuncture (applied alternative medicine) in doing what I could not do for myself. Acupuncture treats the "cause" in helping to restore balance, calm & well being in bringing back together the 3 main components - mind, body & soul to a functioning state. It reduced my stress & anxiety for clarity & crying jags become calm weeping w/a refreshing end result. The trick is to find an acupuncturist who can "provide noticeable relief on the first visit" as well as maintaining a schedule of regular appointments. I found massage was very helpful after acupuncture to facilitate continued release of stress/ anxiety residuals that often comes after treatment. It feels like skin hunger, in this case, a "gentle need" for soothing by human touch to promote healing ...
Check w/your doctor to learn if an anti-depressant might help w/depression symptoms. I found the use of a chemical anti-depressant added more fatigue & confusion to my already taxed widowbrain, however, it did keep my irritability manageable in preventing angry outbursts & other unacceptable reactionary social behaviors. Once I learned taking my medication in lower dosages - 1/2 dosage each morning & night worked better for me, I was good to go. It was a "duh" moment in answering why my question as to why the pills were scored in the middle. This is not a suggestion for you to do. I "chose" to take the initiative for myself to learn how much medication was needed for sufficient results in preventing the side effects mentioned above from compounding my grief symptoms. Consult your doctor for dosage changes especially in using a higher dose - never up your dose without doing so ...
My dreams began to improve during treatment as well birthdays, holidays, daily living. Depression was no longer invasive to hold me hostage pining for Bob, I was able to move forward in processing grief. BTW, I had complicated grief & trauma as a result of Bob being killed at a young age in a collision w/a road rage driver as well as from the attempted suicides of my 2 youngest children. I believe acupuncture can work w/the right therapist, regardless, of the type or amount of challenges a grieving person is facing ...
Hope this helps ...
Take care of yourself ...
Peace be with you ...

Comment by Barzan on June 30, 2019 at 7:02am

Dearest Riet,

I wish you a happy birthday and strength to continue on this journey.  The one think we all deal with are the firsts.  There are going to be many firsts in your future.  Each one is very hard yet we have to do them or else we will be paralyzed.  The seconds will come with time but do take those firsts as the opportunity arises.  I've been there and it was a struggle.  I'm so proud of you for going to the lecture. 

Tekwriter,  I know you've thought long and hard about the surgery.  If it will improve your physical abilities and your health, I know you've made a good decision.  These surgeries have come a long way since 2012.  My ex-SIL had the surgery about 5 years ago.  She did really well for the first few years and then got back to her old ways and is back to where she was before.  You have to be strong and stay strong to succeed.  I know you will.  I'm sending you good vibes and hugs.

Suzan

 

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