If you can, stay active. Go for coffee with friends for conversation. Practice golf or walk or workout. Exchange books. Talk on the telephone; email. If you like groups, go and mingle. I started my own You'll lose some "friends" so be ready to make new contacts. Read the local newspaper to be informed regarding happenings/events. Reach out to others; I just visited a hospitalized friend who would call me. Talk with your maintenance peep so you can forge bonds as these are your support team.
I have always been independent during the 50 year marriage as my husband chose to travel and be absent for a few days a week so I kept myself occupied but during the last year I subordinated myself to Husband Jack as his caregiver and now I find myself feeling the vastness of what once was and yearn to be involved but must be very cautious in my selection as I do not wish to be "prey" as my widower/friend Barry says some men will see us as.
I am right there with you after being married for 50 years, never living alone until now, struggling to remain upbeat/positive and motivated and to continue to grow and open new doors as negative ones close. I was informed by a widower/friend that married women will avoid me for "fear" of losing their husbands! I am three months out and it is difficult for me to think of anyone but my husband of 50 years
I think most if not all of us are to be commended for the great jobs we did in caring for our departed ones, for our devotion/commitment/care and cheerleading and for continuing to fight the daily battle to maintain/manage our shattered lives. I say: Celebrate Yourself
I just watched a video my husband and I had made for my 70th birthday in January. he asked that if he died first that I enjoy all the memories of our wonderful life and that I appreciate all the joy we had. I am trying but all memories are bittersweet. I have only just met a friend who is a widow and am looking for a support group with which to connect. Thank you for connecting. The aloneness is so shocking after 21 years of deep wonderful connection with my love; the ability to share the journey with others whose story resonates will help. I look forward to hearing more about your journey.
Oh, Lady v, for me there has been much which has contributed to my move toward becoming a thriver. . . . But, first, let me say at four months out I was far from becoming a thriver. It was all I could do to be a survivor and reach out to family and friends who helped a bit to moderate the blackness. I tried to run from my loss and my feelings and at seven months, the date of our wedding anniversary (July 24) I started to hit rock bottom. I remember sitting in my house contemplating how to kill myself. Instead, I picked up the phone and called a friend who responded. I called a bereavement counselor at our local hospice; she took me into an understanding and safe place and I started letting months of pain out of my hiding place with words and tears. That led to WV and a widows group and lots of reading about grief, mourning, and loss. I read again and again how one has to go through the pain, not around it and I accepted that I had to let it consume me and keep moving forward, eating, trying to sleep, doing everyday things. Then a post here led me to the book, Getting Naked Again. That led me to thinking about my future as well as my past. I am 71; I believe I have a lot of years left and I want to enjoy them as much as possible. . . . I've spent time with kids and grand kids, discovering that I enjoy them, but will never want to make them the dominant fact in my life. I've traveled to learn, to enjoy, and to visit relatives. I've started bringing back into my life things I enjoyed in my thirties before I married but had set aside for our relationship. And, throughout, I keep coming back to my widows group, WV, and the home I've lived in for almost 30 years--where I have happy memories and can rest awhile. When I am overwhelmed with grief I let it overtake me awhile and then I write in my journal.
I think I'll move some day, but I'm lucky that I can take my time in selecting a location where I think I can more easily support my thriver.
And this has been the most difficult year and a half I've ever had, Lady v. Be kind to yourself and honor yourself for every step you take!
sorry For your loss.. The Phrase "different family similar story", Its true. reading your post. I thought I was looking in a mirror and seeing my story from anothers eyes. My wife passed 3 weeks ago. happened right next to me in Bed. I re-live it constantly. little to no sleep. I look in her Closet and draws, and say to myself. what am I going to do with all her stuff.. part of me says Let it go. I could open a Clothing and shoe store. the other part of me says keep it all the way it is Forever. Everyone says give it time when your ready you will know what to do. Im here only a few days. Dianne is right you will find the support, and Friendship here with others who have been through this. And REALLY do Understand what your going through. In one week she got sick, had a birthday, passed away, then our second wedding anniversary in that order. I was in the chat room last night, and made more new Understanding Friends then Ive made in a long time. I have to wait till the local group gets together at the End of the Month. Ive thought about jumping in front of a truck, as minor as it seems , I now have something to look forward to this Month. making new Friends, and having support. Hang in there. Be Blessed
Welcome to Widville, Lady v. I'm so very sorry for your loss, but pleased that you found us. You'll find caring support and friendship here.
Here's the best place to start: Need help using the site? Ask here! You can join the Groups that fit you to connect to others with similar experiences. Share your story. Take a look at our Forum discussions where you'll find meaningful conversations taking place. I look forward to getting to know you here in Widville.