I lost my husband Rob on Feb 3, 2005. It has been over three years and I dont feel that I am healing at all. He died in a motorcycle accident in Florida (we are from MA). He was only 40 years old. My life is so upside down. I dont know who I am anymore, it has changed me on every level. I have two boys ages 19, and 17. I dont want to do all of this on my own anymore. I dont want ALL the responsibility. I am in danger of loosing my house because he had no life insurance. I dont even know if anyone will care about this post but I am doing it because it is a way for me to release my feelings. So many people abandoned me when Rob died, everyone was always going to be there but no one is. In one phone call I was told that my husband of 18 years was brain dead and would not live. They kept him alive for 2 days so family could fly to Florida and then it was over. I was the one that had to make the decision to shut off the machine, I was the one that had to plan the funeral, I was the one that knew when that door at the funeral home opened that my love, my partner, my best friend was going to be on the other side on a slab......Jesus, how do you recover from this. How do you go on and live?
Dear Lynette, my heart goes out to you and I feel your pain and inability to face the future. My 26 year old son Jimmy was shot and killed by an escaped youth last August 29 in Albuquerque NM. My 24 year old son received the knock on the door at 5 a.m. informing him his brother had been found shot in his vehicle. Jason had the awful job of coming to tell me the news. Needless to say, my life was shattered. Jimmy had served in the US Air Force and put himself through college, earning his Master's Degree last June. He had his hole life ahead of him. He was a sweet, loving, giving young man. He called me all the time and came over for dinner and family game night each week. It doesn't seem fair that someone in a gang, out of prison, would take such a precious life. There is a lot of sadness in the world. One thing that helped me so much was joining a support group called Grief Share. It's a 13 week class, a small group of other people who have lost a loved one. In it you do daily reading and journaling and meet once a week. It is a huge help getting through the grief. Another thing I did was learn water color just to have a release that was constructive, rather than sitting alone with my thoughts. Something that jumped out at me in your post was the last sentence...Jesus, how do you recover from this, how do you go on and live? Well, for me it is Jesus who carries me through. I've always been a believer, but after losing Jimmy, my whole focus is on the Lord, on Heaven, and filled with hope and promise that I know I will see my son again. If you haven't already looked into any spiritual help, I pray that you take the step to do that. It will change your life for now and forever. I will keep you in my prayers. It's so hard, I know. But you can recover and even though life will never be the same, it can be good again. You have a purpose here, and your two boys need their mom to laugh again and not be sad. If for no other reason than them, try to move past the grief, don't get stuck in it. I lost my dad in 1999 and my brother in 2005, then my son in 2007. I know how hard loss is. But there is hope and help. God bless you as you seek to become a healed, whole person while you are still here on this earth. Barbara
Thank you for sharing your story. I have such a hard time reaching out to anyone, I keep myself alone to deal with these things. I have never been a deeply religious person but I did believe in a higher power. Since this has happened I really have lost all faith. I dont see the good, or the reason that this had to happen and I never will. I cant even imagine loosing a child, my heart breaks for you. My children are the only reason I am still here in this lousy world. They are the loves of my life. I am trying to hold the three of us together but its hard. They lost something too. I am not ready for help I guess. I am angry, so angry.
Thank you for your reply. Lynette
Try to let go of the anger, it will help you so much. Try to believe again. One thing that has helped me is when I take the focus off of my pain and realize that I'm not alone, that others have suffered too. Another thought, I don't blame God for what happened to my son. I know there is evil in the world, I know that God cries along with me in my pain. He loves me and my son and never meant for the suffering to happen to us. He lost his son too, he knows the pain of loss. Just knowing that you are not alone helps so much. Not that you want others to suffer, of course. Just that you are not alone. I am so happy that you wrote back to me. It's hard for me to open up and share my story some times. But when I am lead in my heart to do it, I always make a connection with that person. I would love to be in touch with you more and help you any way that I possibly can. Please do write back. Take care and reach out. I believe that you are ready for help and I know that you will find what you need. Check out the daily grief share emails I mentioned, it's a great place to start if you're not ready for a group. Sweet days ahead to you, dear lady.
Barbara, your ability to stay positive is something all of us can learn from. I agree with you that God is never to blame when tragedies befall us. In the Bible we see that when someone bothers His servants it as if they are touching his eyeball, and Jesus cares for us as well which he demonstrated so lovingly. Please e-mail me at email@example.com and we can discuss what you think that we can do to respond to the love that they have shown us.
Hi Latasha, thanks for writing. I stay positive because I fill my mind and heart with God's promises, with pure good thoughts and I avoid negative thinking. It's easy for us humans to get wrapped up in wrong thinking, and it takes conscious effort to do the opposite. It's a personal choice that I make daily. When my son was killed and we had no idea who did it, there were many of us praying for a conscience to come upon the person who took Jimmy's life. My prayer was for that person to come forward and turn their self in. Two weeks to the day, on 9/11/07, the police pulled over a car with three young men inside. They all ran. Two were caught, the third shot himself with the gun that killed my son. That boy was only 19 years old. We believe he was the murderer, but also that others were involved. No one else has come forward. We believe God ended this boys rampage (he had committed several home invasions and shot two other people who survived) and He spared us having to go through the trials, etc. We did meet with the boys family this past February. They requested an opportunity to meet with us to tell us how sorry they were for what their brother had done. It was a tough time, but we spent a few hours in the pastor's office talking, crying, sharing, and at the end of the meeting, hugging and forgiving. That was a big step toward healing. I know my son was looking down from heaven and smiling. I've attached a photo of Jimmy taken a few weeks before he died. You can see his beautiful smile. He was such a happy young man. I know now that he is even happier, in a place filled with light and with Jesus. And I know one day I will see him again.
Barbara, your son was handsome and I can tell he was happy. I'm glad you could forgive and move toward healing. It can be hard to forgive someone who hurt you or someone you love but it will only hurt you to hold on to it. We also see that in order for God to forgive us for our imperfecton we have to forgive others, and you have forgiven a grave transgression.
Lynette, I can understand your frustrations with this world and why we should have hope because I used to feel the same way, but what encouraged me is knowing at 1 John 5:19 we see that the true ruler of this world is Satan and God promises us at Psalm 37:11 that he is going to remove him and his authority so that people on earth can be peaceful and not have to worry about death and can even see our loved ones again( Act 24:15). It is also comforting to know that in Job we see that "with evil things God cannot be tried nor does he himself try anyone". So he never causes these bad things to happen to us. Granted, he does allow them but has a very good reason for doing so. I keep you in my thoughts because it hurts me to know you are suffering so much. Please e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can continue talking about why God allows suffering now and what his plans are.
How are you doing? You are in my thoughts and prayers again this morning. I know what you mean about not seeing the good or reason that this happened to you and your family. What I had to learn was that I don't need to know why or understand, I just have to accept because there is nothing I can do about it and knowing why won't change a thing or bring my son back to me. Accepting something, and liking something, are two totally different attitudes. Accepting allows us to move forward and in order for you to be a whole person again, you must accept the reality that your life is different, that your husband has gone on. There really is a place where we go after we leave here. This time on earth is very short compared to eternity. You and your husband will be together again some day, that is a gift Jesus gave to us. It's not anything you have to earn, it is a gift. All you have to do is believe in Him. You've probably heard it before, but this truth will set you free. The anger will diminish, I promise.
Have you looked into the grief share on line yet? You said "I am not ready for help I guess." But I bet you are ready or you wouldn't be reaching out. There is a hunger inside that you are trying to deny, it's being covered up by the pain. I urge you to take the steps, baby steps if necessary, to reach out further and seek healing and forgiveness.
Here is a copy of today's daily email message from grief share. I hope you read it with an open mind and accept what it is saying:
Do Not Try to Do It Alone
One of the benefits of being a part of a church is that you do not have to move through this process alone. There are friends and companions to go on the journey with you.
Gretchen says, after her husband's death, "When I got in Bible study, that just really opened up my whole life. That is what has really made me a different person. I met new friends there, and one of them is my praying friend. We just call up each other and cry on each other's shoulders and pray for each other and open our hearts to each other. Things like that are really what keep me going."
Get involved with a local Bible study or church group. You do not need to be alone.
"Every day they [the believers] continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts" (Acts 2:46).
Father, with You I am never alone, but I need the companionship of friends who will carry a portion of my grief as they listen to, laugh with, and cry with me. Amen.
(Barb again) I know a lot of people shy away from church and if you haven't been in a while, you will be pleasantly surprised at what you will find there. Pick a non-demoninational Christian church, this would be one that is based solely on the word of God, no man-made rules and regulations. Nothing to make you feel bad about yourself, just filled with love and acceptance and new friends. I know the first time you go can be scary, but it gets easier and before you know it, you won't want to miss being there. Pray and ask God to lead you to the right place. I have already said that prayer for you as well. I see good things ahead for you, not because I see the future, but because I see in your words things like "your children are the loves of your life" and how you are trying to hold the three of you together. God is the glue that will hold you all together. I know He can help you like nothing else can! I hope you write to me again. I won't stop praying for you.
Thank you for thinking so much of me. I am just lost right now and do not know what to do so I keep ignoring everything and going day to day. I will put thought into what you said about going to a church, not positive I will go but will think about it. One of these days I am sure I will face what happened head on and seek guidance. I just dont know when that will happen. You are such an insightful and strong woman. Thank you again. I will try to keep in touch.