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Please don't interpret anything you read here as medical, legal, or otherwise expert advice. Don't disregard any expert's advice or take any action as a result of what you read here.

We're friends, not doctors, financial or legal professionals, and we're not "grief experts." But we are here, and we've been "there."

I made it... don't know how... and can't remember doing anything remarkable in the past 3 months, but I made it.  (actually 3 months and 1 week) I"m still not sleeping... putting on the weight I lost (ugh) and have cried more times in a day then not... but I made it...correction... we made it.  Need to give credit to our son... he's doing amazing.  He's filling in your shoes the best he can, while still remaining a typical teenage boy.  The other day, you would have been so proud of him... he had all kinds of girls talking to him on the beach! The other two teenage boys with us looked on in wonder and awe... I looked on in horror! LOL  Too add to it...he got their numbers and has been messaging them and facebooking one of them for a few days!! You have to come back and deal with this please.. I can't do the tirls... we discussed this... you had girls.. I had school... 

I'm supposed to return to work in a little over a month... I don't know how I"m supposed to return to a classroom of kids when my happily ever after is gone... they will know i"m changed... I can't go and be the same fun loving energetic teacher I was before that horrible day in March... and kindergartner need that "old" teacher in me to thrive... I can't afford not to work.. and I loved my job... but can I honestly return to a job that already sapped so much of me at the end of the day in the shape I'm in? i have lost my enthusiasm for life... my energy is gone.  I'm starting to heal.. a little... but its taken 3 months just to get here... wherever here is... I know I'll never return to the me before... and I'm ok with that... but I hope to refind the "me' you fell in love with... because that's who I want to be... that girl... that mom, that teacher...that friend.

We went to the beach again... third time since you left us... I revisited "your" beach... even though I haven't given up your ashes.. its still your beach... and someday in May (?) I'll do it... it still felt right... (honestly, I was hoping it didn't... that way I wouldn't have to come to reality) The limestone bottom makes that place one of the prettiest spots along the coast... I know its a good spot.  I'm so relaxed there... and I know we said (and I believe) that we don't need ashes or a grave to remember each other... but its 6 hours away... 

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Comment by Seeking peace in VA on July 13, 2014 at 7:20am
Hi Shelly- I've enjoyed your posts to the groups I read and am happy to find this blog. I teach, too, and am having the same qualms . I hope that returning to work will help fill my days a little better- these long summer days of too much empty time are killers. My kids are grown and out of the house, but my son lives close and I have two grandsons here- kindergarten and second grade in the fall. I teach 8th graders- different energy level, different emotional level. I need to work, but I'm nervous, too. Hope we can stay in touch as school starts. I also have to say that your post about hoping to refund the girl your husband fell in love with really rings true - I'm going to copy it into my journal- I've been collecting affirmations to help me. I'm at the two month mark- glad it's not one month, but I still suck at this!
Comment by hendrixx2 on July 8, 2014 at 2:20pm

hi ((Shelly)),

nice blog, yes, you've made it to that point you could not even imagine 90 days ago; and how...? Like most of us, probably one day at a time. It's amazing to me the things which are revealed as we make the Journey, coming from despair and confusion we find we can arrive to a state of being about which we have no discrete recollection of doing anything special to be there...for sure our loss is great but i think we can come to know that being forced to turn inward to a greater degree shows just what we can achieve...wishing you Peace and Healing...

Comment by sugr-plum (shelly) on July 6, 2014 at 7:12pm

thanks Laurajay and Seeking Peace and MrsRichieD for your love

Comment by MrsRichieD on July 6, 2014 at 1:58pm
These stories hit me so close to home! My family (non teachers) have no idea what you all described. Although our schools need us as much as we needs the jobs and structure, I am just like you in wondering where and how I will find the resources to keep my energy going. Also, so many people keep talking about the joy of being around kids to pull me away from my grief, but sugr-plum described the effect of the loss so well. Good advice laurajay.

Without a doubt, i will be thinking of everyone here as we all return to the classroom in the fall.
Comment by Seeking peace in VA on July 6, 2014 at 1:40pm
I too am returning to teaching in August, after missing most of the last nine weeks last year- my husband died 5/27/14. So, I did not return to close out the year, pack my classroom... I teach 8th grade Language Arts at a small center, so I'm the only Gr. 8 ELA teacher. In some ways I'm hoping the routine will help make things easier day to day. And, I have to work, so I don't have the choice if I wanted it. I am also worried about returning, for a million other reasons- breaking down during the school day, being able to focus...
Comment by laurajay on July 6, 2014 at 10:42am

As a retired elementary teacher and widow I understand.  Teaching takes tremendous energy to be effective and to do the job well.  No sitting around online at a office desk. No breaks when you need them.  The job goes home with you everyday unlike a 9 to 5 job. Widowhood takes every bit of energy just to make it from day to day. Grief drains in every way possible.  Parenting is another 24/7 job that never really ends.  Your plate is full with no easy way out.  At 2 yrs  3 mo I have no answers but suggest the following for you at three months. 

Sleep- you must sleep to heal and give your body time to rebuild what has broken down.  Eat nutritiously and throw away all the crap.  Never in your life will what you eat matter as much as having to grieve, teach and mother at the same time.  You need  nutrients for energy,  rebuilding and prevention.  Before school starts  get going in menu planning and ideas for cooking when you return to school. Ask your child to help and cooperate with a plan. Get a check up. Take at least one good multi vt. mineral supplement depending on lifestyle.  get vit D levels checked. What do you love?  music? hobbies? reading? crafts? sports?  find something you still like and schedule time for it everyday- even a short time. You need the mind clearing distraction of happy activity.

Listen to your heart.  Allow the tears.  Journal/write.  Recall every memory you had with your husband.  Dream.  Tell your story here and to friends or write it down  until you've told it all and the need to share subsides,  Understand this truth----there is NO  timetable to grief--you do not get to pick an ending date.   Your body and mind  can be assisted in going through this experience but there's no quick way to get through it... I thought by now  2yrs+  I would be way past all of this.  I was wrong. It takes time .  Unexpected death takes longer because the griever had to first build an ending to the life of their spouse an understanding before they can process the death experience.  You can do this but you must be your own best friend.  You must at least block out a lessen plan for your days' activities not only at school but at home as well

The hunger and longing is not easily dismissed  The pain from not having your husband there for the joys of marriage will come in waves of extreme anguish but let them come and pass.  You will survive.  Your  life has changed forever.  You will never be the person you were.  But because life goes on in a million ways, you can move forward with hope for renewal-  for a way to expand love in your life-  love always expands.  fear contracts.  The classroom will mean even more to you now.  The children more precious.  The responsibility a true blessing.  Why are any of us here if not to love and serve?  The gift we are given as teachers  to mold minds, teach skills and encourage creative thinking and inspire desire to know is awesome.  You have not  lost that!  Embrace your future.  One step now followed by one more step...slowly in faith... remembering as you  keep on keeping on.   My reply is long because it also reinforces my beliefs and  every holiday alone I need to remember what my truths are as well... thank you for your post.   love laurajay

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