I too am one of the "Invisibles" but I became that way about 2-3 years before my wife passed to Gods hands. She was ill and all of my time was spent with her or on her behalf. She could not go out (sometimes even missing physicians appointments). I got so used to that lifestyle that when Rose passed on it was like I was losing my last friend. Luckily I still wake up wondering where she is in the house (she used to fall, and also go unconsious), also when I spend too much time on the computer (I am a Systems Analyst) at home it hits me that I haven't checked on her in a while.
In all cases it doesn't take too long before I realize that she is not here and that is when I hurt for just a while. All in all though I appreciate the "episodes" because it brings her back just for that little while. I have coworkers and friends that try and get me to go to social events but I know how I will feel like a "third wheel" as everybody else is either married or has a significant other, so I don't.
We were together for 32 years and I am so reclusive that my son, daughter-in-law, and grand kids are in town for 10 days as of yesterday. They typically stay with her parents since they have rooms prepared for them and the kids, and I will probably force myself to go over there to visit and see them so I can see how big the grand kids are getting. The grand kids hardly know me and the first of the two was born 3 months after Rose passed away which tears me up as she was so looking forward to being a grandmother (she was 49, died on May31st and her 50th bday would have been Aug 10th). Our first grandchild was born 9/7 and while I was so happy for them I was torn up and even balling at work.
Work is my reality check and I can normally keep my composure there and it is my only social life even though I don't go out to eat or go to their parties unless they are at work. Lately my neuro problems have been acting up so I am on FMLA and ordinarily miss anywhere from 1 day to the whole week. Luckily I had a lot of sick and vacation time and just started earning more since I have been there 25 years.
I don't know how anybody else celebrates their spouses special days but I donate funds in my wifes name so that nobody will forget her. I feel so bad for her since she lost her friends after becoming ill and not being able to get out.
It's not like I'm wealthy, rather I am a poor philanthropist and usually wind up with less than $100 at the end of the month which doesn't bother me any bit at all.
God bless and help you all,
PS - let me apologize for any grammatical or spelling errors in advance as I took my meds about 45 minutes ago.