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Just when my heart starts to heal...........
taktamp
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 8:48 AM
Joined: 5/13/2017
Posts: 37


Ten months since DH passed.  This summer I have been reliving his last days.  Determined to get out of my grief, I planned a 6 week trip visiting friends and family to convince them I am just fine.  Now I am back home, faced with the same heavy heart.  I'm sure I put on a happy face for everyone .  But reality is my heart is still broken.  George said in his post that "all we have is this moment.  Why hold back?  There is nothing to stop us."  Except every time I try to "use this moment well" I keep getting knocked back down.  Two steps forward and one back.
I just want to look back on our 43 years together and remember all the happy times.  I'm still stuck in our last days together when he didn't remember who I was.  It still hurts.  When will it stop hurting?

George K
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 10:41 AM
Joined: 12/16/2011
Posts: 2823


Hi taktamp, I never meant to imply it's easy, or permanent.  I waiver between living in this moment and reminiscing about the good times or regretting the times I was less than understanding.  For what it's worth, "two steps forward and one step back" is progress.  Progress is good.  I heard someone say: "It's OK to look backward; just don't stare."  That's what I try to apply to my life...celebrate the good times and carry that joy and warmth into today instead of dwelling on what is now lost.  I don't even know if any of this makes sense.

  


jfkoc
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 11:41 AM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21131


Never? Two years out and I think of it less and it does not hurt as much.
taktamp
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 11:42 AM
Joined: 5/13/2017
Posts: 37


For sure it isn't easy, but I was hoping that after I got through all the "firsts" that I could look back with a smile instead of through tears.  I just want this thing called grief to lose it's grip on me!  I have lots to look forward to and I am striving to go forward.  I just want to be strong all the time and don't like to feel vulnerable and weak when I continue to tear up so often.  Ugh.

I know that everyone posting here gets it.  It is a process.  So I thank you for reminding me I'm not alone in my grief. 


Last Dance
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 12:49 PM
Joined: 5/2/2013
Posts: 468


For me it’s been 13 months there are days when things seem better however the pain is still there. We put on a happy face and say we are Ok, but inside we are hurting more than anyone will ever know. It is so hard when you lose your spouse because when they go they take half of you with them. You have to let go of a life, filed with love, laughter, secrets, fun, sex, and the person that shared the highs and lows with you. The one you laughed with and cried with, the one that gave meaning to your life, and made it worth living. And then there gone, and your left all alone with memories that should make you happy, but they don’t, so you sit and look out the window and cry about things that could have been and should have been, and you wonder how will I ever survive without them by my side. You need the happy memories of them not be sad ones that make you cry. You need to forget the hard ships of taking care of them; you need to forget the last days of their life. Most of all you need to let go of the regrets, I just don’t know how to let that happen.

For me there are good days and there are bad days I go to the gym 3 days a week. I go to the mall and walk around, anyplace where there are people it seems to help even if I don’t talk to them there is still some one there, so I don’t feel all alone. I’ve joined a writers group and another group that gets together once a month. I do some volunteer work, and some days watch my great granddaughters. Anything to take my mind off of my lioness some days it helps and some days it doesn’t. Whatever you do just don’t sit and, stare out the window. go outside let sunshine into your heart, talk to yourself or anybody who will listen to how much you loved each other, how you found each other, talk about the highs and lows of your life let it all come out and, CRY DON’T HIDE YOUR TEARS. THEY ARE God’s way of cleansing the soul. Even as I write this tears flow from my eyes, believe me I know what you are going through. Know that things will never be the same unfortunately in this world we only have two choices, and that is to try to live life to the best we can or to die.  There are days when I can push it to the back of my mind, and there are days that no matter how hard I try, it wouldn’t stay there, it comes out and consumes me. I think that this is the life I will live until the Lord take me home to be with Linda.  

 God’s Blessings to you, I pray that you will find peace, and comfort in the memory of your dear husband.

  It’s hard taking care of our Love Ones, and harder yet when we lose them. 

 You never get over them you just have to somehow get through it.

 Richard

George K
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 1:54 PM
Joined: 12/16/2011
Posts: 2823


I'm not sure why, but today is a particularly hard day for me.  I just can't seem to get my wife out of my mind, I keep on thinking about how much she loved days like this.  We'd be in Cape May enjoying the sand and sea.  We'd have a picnic lunch on the beach.  We'd get ice cream cones.  We'd walk on the promenade holding hands.  We'd go to an outdoor concert.

When I go there nowadays I go by myself, but there's no joy for me anymore.  There's a saying: "Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional".  I like remembering, the problem is I start feeling sorry for myself.  I guess I bring the suffering on myself.  Richard mentions one of the best solutions for me: get out of myself.  There's something about talking to other people that gets me back into the present.  There's joy to be found then.  I'm gonna go to the local park and start a conversation with a total stranger, or maybe two.

  


taktamp
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 3:36 PM
Joined: 5/13/2017
Posts: 37


I've decided its because it's Sunday.  That was our day to be together.  We were always busy during the week and Sunday was our day to spend together.  So I can either take that one day to shed the tears I hold back all week, or I can devise a new Sunday plan.  I will know when that time comes when I can wake up on Sunday and not feel this heaviness.  Sigh......  At least I did know a great love in my life and I am thankful for that.  Monday can't come soon enough.
Vivilynn
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2018 11:11 PM
Joined: 8/15/2017
Posts: 215


Richard you described exactly the way I am feeling. Tomorrow will be only 7 months since losing my DH.  The happy memories are the ones that hurt the most for me. Of course at any given moment of the day I can have a flashback of the terrible last 3 months that will bring me to my knees. It kinda like suffering from PTSD.  I put a smile on my face and tell everyone I'm fine but the truth is I have this relentless feeling of profound sadness hanging on my heart all the time. No one wants to hear about it really so I just lie and say I'm fine, that answer is easier for me too because I don't have to elaborate. Time may soften the pain and sadness but for me I will NEVER get use to being without my Robert.  Each passing day brings me closer to him, where I want to be....
Tink4495
Posted: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 12:34 AM
Joined: 5/2/2014
Posts: 760


Sending hugs to all of you. We grieve because we love so deeply and there is no time limit on grief. We all grieve differently and  we all handle grief differently. Just like when we were all on this journey, just take one day at a time and remember to breath. The tears will lessen and the cherished memories will come more often. The hole that's left in our heart never goes away, but the memories live on forever. No matter how hard it is, try to find a moment of joy in each day.
Rockym
Posted: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 2:44 PM
Joined: 1/17/2016
Posts: 939


tak, it's been about 10 weeks for me.  I have thought about grief counseling, but right now I just don't have the time.  If you had Hospice, they give you a tad over a year of free counseling.  I can say that I cry less now, but still average every other day.  I will typically listen to music in the morning that brings up the feelings and allow myself to release.

The other thing I do is try my darnest to replace some of the bad, uncomfortable and difficult times with good thoughts.  So, for example, mom had a stroke and I had to move her within 14 days from her community that promised she could be there till end of life.  Well that was intense, frustrating, etc., but, I am more reminded of how she receive better care in her next place.

I also have a cruddy imagine in my mind when my mom passed of her expression about an hour before.  They gave her steroids and she was high and uncomfortable.  I am still working at replacing that memory with how beautiful she looked at the funeral and of course how peaceful and serene her passing was.  So, what I am saying is that perhaps if you can try to replace some of the poor feelings with more positive ones, things will feel better.

And of course time.


jb crick
Posted: Thursday, August 2, 2018 12:19 PM
Joined: 8/2/2016
Posts: 632


My wife, Anne, passed away in October last year and there have been many ups and downs ever since. I could have written everything Last Dance wrote, I know his feelings all too well. Recovery from grief is a long process and for me it isn't over yet, and although the emotional swings are not as frequent as they were initially, they are becoming a little less frequent although no less overwhelming.

I still find myself crying like a 4 year old who just had his favorite toy taken away for no reason. The triggers come unexpectedly; sometimes a smell, a sound, a sight, or a thought can trigger the grief response. It is so difficult to not feel like I have been cheated out of the best (golden) years that my wife and I planned for, and worked so hard to save for. She was taken far too early due to EOAD and those dreams went with her.

I was invited to attend some presentations/workshops on grief through Hospice after Anne passed away. Following that I also attended a series of group sessions, also provided by Hospice. They have truly helped me to move forward emotionally. In the group I learned through conversations with others that I'm not alone in this grieving process. There is just some aspects to the group setting that seemed to be more robust in helping sort through the emotions and develop better coping mechanisms.

That isn't to imply that these discussion boards aren't helpful. To the contrary, everyone here also is traveling the same path. Some are already leading the way, some are following, but all are seeking help. There is just something that's different about sharing your time, your stories, your fears and frustration, and your sadness face to face with others. We even had a pot luck dinner where everyone made their spouses favorite dish or desert. I strongly recommend finding a support group if you haven't already. It helped me tremendously, and hopefully will do the same for you.

The first thing we did in the support group was share a little history of our lives;  the second was to bring ONE picture of our loved one to share. Sorting through decades of pics the first time brought me to my knees. But by the third attempt I was able to narrow it down to about 50 pics. By our next meeting I found that ONE pic, and it has become one of my most cherished. Today I can look through the pictures and recall vividly all those many happy memories we made and even laugh at some of the goofy things we did.

Although I still have many sad moments, I cling to those happy thoughts the most. And I honestly thank God that I was able to know the wonderful person who became my wife and soul mate. I hope I get to be with her again in the next life. I miss her so much.

John


Merinda
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2018 1:18 AM
Joined: 2/3/2018
Posts: 100


I guess I can't add anything else here as you all have covered my feelings quite well too.  It's only been two months since losing my beloved hubby and one month since losing my youngest brother.  And here I've been upset and complaining about all the crying I've been doing.  How unrealistic of me to expect the worse pain to have lessened by now!   How naïve to think I should be beyond the worse part of the heartache. Ha!  And I certainly agree, time will hopefully and prayerfully soften the pain and heartache but always I will be missing him, and always the tears will fall.

My heart goes out to all here.  Hugs.


jb crick
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2018 10:55 PM
Joined: 8/2/2016
Posts: 632


 

 

Merinda,

Hugs back to you. You have been hit with a double barrel. I lost my oldest sister about three months before my wife passed on. Because I was 24x7 caring for my wife I was not able to attend my sister's funeral. My family (nephews & nieces) understood my situation but it still hurt that I couldn't be there to say my good bye.

It is a double heart break for both of us, I feel your sorrow, you certainly have all the rights to grieve. Be kind to yourself and take care of yourself. If you need help in this time of overwhelming sadness, don't be afraid to seek some counseling. If your husband was in hospice, they usually offer grief counseling through their organization.

God bless you, and take care.

John

 

 

 


Merinda
Posted: Saturday, August 4, 2018 8:38 AM
Joined: 2/3/2018
Posts: 100


Thanks so much John.  Oh how hard that had to be for you, unable to attend your sister's funeral.  Very hard.  I'm so sorry.

 Me too, taking care of DH 24/7 but thankfully I was able to get some help in the last month for 2-3 times a week for 2-3 hours each time so I could do errands when DH was no longer able to come with me.  That plus just do things around the house without having to tend to his needs every waking moment.  I was also blessed in the help I had because it was from a friend who had done caregiving in her past and DH was very comfortable with her.  Little funny thought is he seemed to need a little break from me as I needed from him.  Smiles.

Unfortunately I had to handle all my brother's funeral arrangements and all during his last days before his death.  Very hard to do one month after losing DH but thankful for my great support from family and friends from our congregation.

Still, I may just take up your caring reminder that counseling is out there to help us.  It may just have to be my next step in helping myself.  As you and everyone else in this group knows, this is really hard to live through, to cope with, to endure.  Really hard.

There was no hospice because idiot doctor at the hospital said DH death was not impending.  Goes to show what he knew but then he was mad at me for not putting DH into a nursing home right then and there.  So maybe he knew but chose to treat me like an idiot even explaining to me what hospice is when I asked if DH was ready to go on hospice.  DH had aspiration pneumonia and Afib so I expected I'd be losing him within 2-3 weeks at that time due to all I've learned on this caregiving forum from everyone going thru caring for their loved ones.  But he ended up in rehab and they got him back to walking and doing stairs and getting in and out of the car too, so I got fooled into thinking maybe I'd have him for another 2-3 months and make some more nice memories for me and nice times for him to enjoy.

It was not to be, within two hours after getting him home from rehab where he'd been for a week and a half, he was gone, cardiac arrest.  Knocked us all off our feet as my daughter and I let everyone know that morning how well he was doing.  Sigh, great sorrow of course, sigh.  And look, this is the first time I am able to talk "write" about it without falling apart overwhelmed with tears!  Maybe I got them all out last night, smiles.  Of course just kidding. 

  Oh well, thanks for allowing me to go on and on and on.  And thanks again John for your kind hearted caring words of support and guidance.  Your thoughtful words have helped me.  I have the similar hope you have, enjoying a future life with DH, but for now missing him SO much.  For me the future I'm looking forward to is to welcome my DH back on earth during the resurrection and enjoy forever life with him on a restored paradise earth.  The resurrection hope and my comforting happy thoughts these days.  Take care, and thanks for the hugs!


Gleason
Posted: Saturday, August 4, 2018 8:12 PM
Joined: 4/15/2015
Posts: 3


It’s been only 10 weeks and I just cannot believe Jim is gone. It’s like he is in the hospital and I will go in the morning and night to be with him.  Just when I thought he was going to get better all hell broke out.  Alzheimer took away a very kind loving man and gave him aggression and he had no idea what my name was or how to eat   No one could find the drug that would calm him down so he got sedated and sedated to the point he could not stand he would fall down.   Why can’t a nursing home find the drug that calms this disease without sending the patient to a psyc unit.  It’s alzheimer disease and no one could treat this disease without giving the patient drugs to keep him still. So still he could not eat or swallow.  My heart is broken that this is no way for a 71 yr old to die.   Alzheimer is so cruel to the family. Thankful the patient does not know just how sad they have become.
taktamp
Posted: Monday, August 6, 2018 8:38 AM
Joined: 5/13/2017
Posts: 37


So sorry that your journey took that turn.  My DH was also 71 and he also became so lost and confused.  He was having hallucinations and ALZ robs them of their ability to function.  My DH didn't even know who I was for months and kept asking me to take him home.  So very typical as I have learned on this site. But now that I am reaching that one year mark, all the terrible memories are knocking me down.  It's like PTSD.  It wasn't a peaceful passing and Hospice warned me it wasn't going to be easy. Now I'm reliving those last two months that were so stressful and I kept trying whatever I could to keep him in the present, but he left me long before he left this earth.  It is a cruel disease and there are two victims.
jb crick
Posted: Tuesday, August 7, 2018 12:11 AM
Joined: 8/2/2016
Posts: 632


Taktamp,

Sorry to learn that your husband's passing wasn't peaceful and that, that made it even more difficult for you. My wife's passing was difficult for me even though for the most part she was comfortable.  I am ten months into being a widower and I still have good days and bad days, and moments when I am awash in grief.

In your opening entry you said, "At least I did know a great love in my life and I am thankful for that." That is the same conclusion I arrived at in my grief process. It seemed counter intuitive at the time, but I found myself starting to reflect on that "great love in my life" and the anger became joy and the pain lessened considerably.

In your last entry in this thread you said, "But now that I am reaching that one year mark, all the terrible memories are knocking me down." Yesterday I heard a comment by Steven Tyler (American Idle judge) in an interview, that both amused me and caused me to take pause. He said with regard to some of the rough times in his life, "It's OK to look in the rear view mirror, just don't stare." Now I look at pictures of my loved one, all the places we went, the things we did, and I reflect more on those happy times much more. This is just something I learned my support group.

Perhaps in time you will be able to see more of those happy times you spent with that great love of your life. Until then, I pray that He will bring you peace and comfort.

John

 


SuperSewer
Posted: Friday, June 10, 2022 7:04 PM
Joined: 1/18/2021
Posts: 3


Thank you Richard. Reading this has helped more more than you can know.

My DH has been gone only a week, I'm still in the "shock" stage.