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Widowed in 2014

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Comment by Gary'swife on March 5, 2019 at 1:49pm

Yesterday was my 5 year mark.  Can't believe it's been 5 years.  Sometimes it seems like yesterday, and other times it seems like a lifetime ago.

Comment by Gary'swife on February 21, 2019 at 6:09pm


I hope things are going better for you.  You have been through a lot since your husband died.  I am taking care of my brother who had  a stroke 2 years ago.  He (we) adopted a 9 year old rescue dog last Aug., so that has been an adventure.  I realize I am now an old lady who walks the dog and watches TV in the evening.  My brother goes to bed before 8:00, and the stroke caused brain damage to the frontal lobe, so conversations with him are not in depth.  Luckily I do have a couple of friends I meet for lunch or dinner once in a while, but my former life was so busy.   I miss my old life.  At least now with social media one is not as isolated just staying at home.  

Comment by Nieta on January 1, 2019 at 4:58am

It's the first day of the year and I am feeling so frustrated, tired and way too sorry for myself.  February 12th will mark five years since my Patrick went to Heaven. 2014 was a blur an 2015 was pretty close to that. I've done a lot but, I'm tired and I know I need to keep going. 

2016 was to be our Silver Anniversary and we had talked of spending it in Paris and renewing our vows.  Instead, I went on an Oktoberfest Tour, which was fun and I met some very nice people.  

In 2017, I lost my dad.  I'd spent most if not all of my vacation time going to and from Miami/NY and my hotel room was basically his hospital rooms and rehab centers.  Half of that year was spent watching my dad's health fail and witnessing his slow demise.  I spent the holidays that year with Mom so that she would not be alone for what was to be the beginning of the first painful days of widowhood.  

In March of 2018, mom moved in with me and in June/July I took her to Dollywood and Graceland so that she would be distracted from her first birthday without dad and their first wedding anniversary apart.  I spoiled her for a good part of the year with movies dinners, shows, taking her to my cabin on Long Island...

In October of 2018, my life was altered yet again.  I took mom see a movie and when we came out, she did not recognize that I was her daughter.  I noticed something was wrong when she asked if dad was back at the house sleeping and also asked where the woman that brought her to LI for the weekend was.  She also asked where the woman and man that were sitting with us in the movie theater was.  Confusion was not solved by a meal or rest so, I called her doctor when we got home and could not get an appointment with him fast enough.  A visit to a neighborhood hospital emergency room was my next course of action.  Mom was given several tests, including a CT Scan, MRI, X-Ray and 2 EKGs.  the conclusion was vascular dementia brought on by minor strokes.

I stayed in the hospital with mom for a week, applied for FMLA and have been home putting things in place for her.  I retained an attorney, to help with Medicaid.  Initially I was going to go for guardianship but, thankfully, her new meds kicked in and I was able to get a Healthcare Proxy and Power of Attorney for her.  I'm still waiting for Medicaid to get approved because the aides that I have arranged for her are expensive and I need to get back to work.  I can't bankrupt myself paying for aides because I am now more than 55 years of age and there is no one to take care of me - I need to protect my remaining assets and still help mom.

Sorry for the vent session and the poor me silliness.  Mom is getting up now and I'll give her the first pill of the day, make breakfast and quickly take a shower while she eats and before the aide arrives.

Comment by Gary'swife on December 31, 2018 at 3:30pm

Hope everyone survived the Christmas holiday, and soon New Year's will be over.   New Years Eve was never a big deal for us, so tonight does not hold any special sadness for me.   I am coming up on 5 hard to believe.   I feel I am ready to start charting the next part of my journey, while my health is still OK.  I am at that age (62) where too many conversations with friends revolve around health issues.  Just have to get through winter, which I hate.

Comment by on November 22, 2018 at 8:51pm

Hello Silverlady and all of you reading and posting tonight. Thank you for asking about my son. He got a new job and it’s a very good one. He seems to be doing well and likes being useful and busy again. That’s helped him start to rebuild some confidence and security. He has also just moved out and is sharing a house with another single parent in a nearby town. I don’t see my granddaughter as much, but for some unknown reason, her mom is now being cordial and speaking to me again. She even assured me that I would see my granddaughter because I am such an important part of her life. This just came up out of the blue, but was definitely an answered prayer for me. My son is going through the motions I think, and being civil. He did join us for Thanksgiving.  It will just take time to rebuild our relationship. I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I know it was the right time for him to leave. You know, like so many of us, I lost friends and family when my husband died and I guess I was expecting the worst when my son finally moved. But I was wrong, and it seems that there are still a few good surprises in this world for me. It gives me hope and don’t we all need that?  I’m so very grateful today for all of you here. Your presence and support are priceless.

Comment by Nieta on November 22, 2018 at 9:15am

Thank you Silverlady and, a blessed thanksgiving to everyone and their loved ones.

Comment by idaho on November 22, 2018 at 9:12am

Thanks for thinking of me Silverlady. Bend is ok...I am very homesick, but moved here for my daughter's education and she is doing awesome in RPA. I am especially emotional this year and feely very lonely. I also celebrated my anniversary last week .31 years! I thought it would get easier ..but no! Still seems like yesterday. Hope everyone one finds some joy today in their memories

Comment by silverlady on November 22, 2018 at 6:57am

There is some comfort in knowing I am not alone in still struggling after nearly 5 years. The holiday season seems especially hard for those of us whose anniversaries are at this time of year. We celebrated 40 years of marriage last Sunday. I never dreamed we would be in a “transdimensional relationship” on that day. 

I’m thinking of each of you who have posted this Thanksgiving. Idaho, I’m wondering how things are going for you here in Oregon. Experiencing the holidays in a new place for the first time must bring all kinds of emotions. Just Me, I’m wondering how things are going with your son. We had discussed changes in family relationships here a few months ago. It’s a long story, but my sister an I are going to family therapy to try to improve our relationship. I also never dreamed that would be an aftermath to Gary’s death. Nieta, how very, very hard for you to be facing the difficult transitions of your parents so relatively soon after the death of your husband. My heart goes out to you. 

To all reading this post, know you are thought of this Thanksgiving Day.


Comment by Nieta on November 22, 2018 at 2:50am

It's been a while since I've posted to this site.  February 12th of next year will mark the 5th year anniversary of the day my dear husband went to Heaven  I know not everyone believes the same thing - this is simply what I believe.  The last couple of years have been a blur for different reasons.  

In August of 2017, my dad fell in front of my parent's home in Miami.  Dad was 87 when this happened and my mom, was 84. I live in NY so, I basically flew back and forth several times and my hotel room was basically either a hospital or rehabilitation center.  Poor dad lost the ability to stand, walk and even feed himself.  He became completely incontinent and they found multiple infections.  Tests revealed that he had incurred strokes, pneumonia, sepsis, liver issues and kidney issues. Not all at the same time but, each time one thing got better, some other issue cropped up.  In short, I was watching my dad die slowly and I know it.

On October 22nd, the doctor told my mom to ask me to come back out.  She hesitated because I had already made several trips and I had to work.  Thankfully, she called anyway and I was on the first flight out the following morning.  

My dad had relentlessly kept calling out for my mom while in the hospitals and rehab centers but this time, he started asking for me.  I heard him ask for me as I was walking into the hospital room and his face lit up.  In fact, his vitals started to improve and doctors and nurses actually thought he was going to make it.  Things seemed to improve until nightfall.  I had set up my usual makeshift bed with a couple of chairs on one side of his bed and at night, I saw him looking up at the ceiling and reaching his arm out as if seeing someone and speaking to someone.  No sound came from his lips but he was mouthing words.  I knew this was not a good sign and suspected he was going to pass soon.  The following day, I sent my mom and her caretaker out of the hospital room and had a talk with my dad.  I asked him if he was tired and expressed that I wanted the truth and not what he wanted me to hear.  He replied that he was tired of all the doctors, needles, etc.  Most of all, he was tired of what he was putting my mom and me through.  

I told my dad that he would always have a wife and daughter that would absolutely adore him and that, if he was tired, he should not be afraid to let go because he had a son on the other side that he hadn't seen in a long time (my older brother passed away about 3 decades ago).  Dad's vitals started to fluctuate the following morning and before long, he slipped away in the presence of my mother and I as we kissed him and caressed his arms - telling him it was okay to let go.

I arranged the cremation and memorial service for dad in Miami and also the transporting of his ashes to New York so that I could ultimately bury them in my brother's grave.

To fast forward a bit, mom sold their home, came to live with me this March and was diagnosed with moderate stage senile dementia after suffering multiple minor strokes about a month ago.  I took her to the emergency room of a neighborhood hospital when her primary could not see her fast enough and had a CT scan, an x-ray, 2 EKGs and an MRI done among other tests and they all showed evidence of neural damage from minor strokes in her brain.  The EKGs showed that she has a nearly sealed blockage in the main valve to her heart and she is not a candidate for surgery due to her age and condition.  So, I'm living with the knowledge that I could now lose my mom to another stroke or heart attack or, ultimately, dementia.

Comment by on November 21, 2018 at 9:58pm

Hello Idaho. I just made it through the fourth anniversary date of my husband’s passing at midnight. I’m trying to wind down and sleep. Last year wasn’t as hard for me either. This year I started getting depressed and anxiously anticipating the date many weeks ago. I don’t understand why, but it seems like this inconsistency is pretty common, and stressful. I even had a few really disturbing dreams this month. For me, getting through the months of November and December feels like sloshing through mud each day. My husband passed suddenly right before Thanksgiving, so that’s the first day, then I attempt to get through Thanksgiving, our wedding anniversary and Christmas. I never realized how many days during the year we spent marking special events and celebrations until I had to spend these days without him. Sometimes I just don’t think I’ll make it through one more holiday or birthday without him, but somehow I do. It passes and things get better for awhile. Maybe that’s what we all do and eventually we either get better at it or actually start finding more happiness as we adjust to being one instead of two. Well, I just wanted you to know someone is listening and understanding you tonight. Keep coming here when you need support. There are so many of us who care and this is a good place to share the good and the bad. 


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