I'm new here and hope I can navigate around. My husband was sick for a few years, finally he passed on; with me by his side in the loving care of Hospice (for the both of us.) I don't have any unresloved conflicts or things to forgive, or be forgiven of.

My husband passed loving me and me him. He even told a neighbor shortly before he passed- "I'll love her forever". When this neighbor told me it lifted my spirits so!

I still recall this man/neighbor telling me this with tears in his eyes. And he said John  talked about me with love,as he once had to drive him to the VA hospital for and appt. when I couldn't.  It will be three years June 15th and I just can't get used to him not being here with me. All my family is in NJ and it is impossible financially for me to go north except 'a visit' each year. I plan this time to go for a few months.

I love this home my husband and I shared. He had improvements

done before he was bedriden;and had such pride that after years in the military moving around the world and country;he had a HOUSE and grounds that were everything he ever wanted.

I thank God every day for what I have, and I thank my husband for the years of service that made  it possible, and I thnk my government for the aid I've been given due to his agent orange exposure that may have contirbuted to his disease.

Something tells me I need to contact others in my boat so to speak. All my friends are married. I still feel married. Death has not taken that from me at least. A.B.

 

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Replies to This Discussion

Alanna, what a pretty name! Welcome, but sorry you have to be here.  Some refer to us as the club no one wanted to join. The good part is, there are so many wonderful people who share all you are going thru or more. I lost my Kevin amost 2 1/2 yrs ago, and didn't find this site until a yr ago. It has helped me more than anything else had to that point; plus I've made some wonderful lifelong friends. We also have a page on Facebook under "Bereaved Spouses."

Agent orange says Vietnam era to me, so guess we're the same age group. Sorry he had to go thru that. It sounds like it may be helping you financially, so I hope that means you are able to keep your home.

It is still hard after all this time. So many think we should be ok by now, but they just don't realize how alone & empty we feel. The best thing I've learned, to get by, is to think positive and take one day at a time.  I also try to remember all our good times together & can now smile at his picture instead of cry. - Not that I don't still have a good cry at times. We need that to heal, and we are still healing.

 

Linda thanks for your reply and understanding. I am 67 now. John and I had both been divorced after marrying very young. We weren't married at the time of Vietnam, I met him in 1981, we were married in 87, he was still in the Army. He was active duty at the time of Desert Storm retiring shortly after that. He spoke little about VietNam, but did tell me about having to don ponchos for incoming agent orange about to be used. As for my name - it rhymes with 'banana' Alanna. Many people pronounce it like I'm Hawaiian LOL "A- lah-na". My dad was Al and my mom had an Aunt Anna. I'm a combo of both names.

Knowing you have been widowed for as long as me and mention those that think we should be over it and ok , I think you undersand where I am. Most days are my new 'normal' but then something just throws me a curve. Like finding a gift card John gave me for Christmas or some small thing I'd forgotten about.
I'll stop in here and read some of the disscussions knowing I have company that has had or is having the same experience as me. Thank you again, Alanna
Linda O'Connor said:

Alanna, what a pretty name! Welcome, but sorry you have to be here.  Some refer to us as the club no one wanted to join. The good part is, there are so many wonderful people who share all you are going thru or more. I lost my Kevin amost 2 1/2 yrs ago, and didn't find this site until a yr ago. It has helped me more than anything else had to that point; plus I've made some wonderful lifelong friends. We also have a page on Facebook under "Bereaved Spouses."

Agent orange says Vietnam era to me, so guess we're the same age group. Sorry he had to go thru that. It sounds like it may be helping you financially, so I hope that means you are able to keep your home.

It is still hard after all this time. So many think we should be ok by now, but they just don't realize how alone & empty we feel. The best thing I've learned, to get by, is to think positive and take one day at a time.  I also try to remember all our good times together & can now smile at his picture instead of cry. - Not that I don't still have a good cry at times. We need that to heal, and we are still healing.

 

Linda I'm having some prpblems with getting used to this 'reply' thing. I thought I just did that?!

any way- where ever it went I was grateful for your response to my first post here. I'll continue to stop in and read other's stories and remarks. I know this is a journey, a process that is a day by day thing. Actually I can remember the earliest days when I had no sense of time at all. At least I'm out of that. Now I have the 'emptiness' and loneliness you mentioned. Most of the time I feel unfit for human companionship. By that I mean very undependable. Like I may make arrangements to do something with a friend on their day off- and then the day comes and I'm dreading it, whishing I never made those plans. Just want to curl up with a book or my knitting. Don't get me wrong. I'm lucky to have the lady friends I have- they are all like sisters. But I'm aware I am a reminder of the worse that can happen to a couple. Dealing with our parents demise is much different than with a spouse I find.

Thanks again- alanna

Linda I'm having some prpblems with getting used to this 'reply' thing. I thought I just did that?!

any way- where ever it went I was grateful for your response to my first post here. I'll continue to stop in and read other's stories and remarks. I know this is a journey, a process that is a day by day thing. Actually I can remember the earliest days when I had no sense of time at all. At least I'm out of that. Now I have the 'emptiness' and loneliness you mentioned. Most of the time I feel unfit for human companionship. By that I mean very undependable. Like I may make arrangements to do something with a friend on their day off- and then the day comes and I'm dreading it, whishing I never made those plans. Just want to curl up with a book or my knitting. Don't get me wrong. I'm lucky to have the lady friends I have- they are all like sisters. But I'm aware I am a reminder of the worse that can happen to a couple. Dealing with our parents demise is much different than with a spouse I find.

Thanks again- alanna

Hi Alanna and welcome.  I am sorry you have to join our "club" but know that we are all here for each other and I can attest to you how helpful this group has been.  My husband died last June 18th and the past 91/2 month have been very hard for me.  My husband was only 48 when he died and we have 3 children (a son 19, and 2 girls 16 and 12) and I have to tell you everyday is a challenge.  My husband died from a rare cancer that they think was due to his exposure at the World Trade Center on 9/11 (he worked for a brokerage house and was swept up in the cloud when the towers collapsed), so I understand if you harbor anger that your husband got sick from agent orange.  My days arent bad most of the time because he was only home from work 3 weeks before he died and so in my mind hes at work, its at night that I have to take a xanax to stop the panic attacks from coming.  The loneliness is unbarable some nights as that was "our time".  We used to lay in bed and watch tv and talk about our days with my head in his lap and above everything I have lost this is what I miss the most.  I have gone to counseling sessions, church bereavement groups and spoken to my pastor and nothing has helped me like this site.  We can vent without worry that were doing something wrong.  I have spent the last 9 months trying to act the way so called friends and family think I should act.  Most of my friends avoid me now because we were all couples and I dont fit the bill anymore and my family is distant now.  My father says I am bitter and I guess I am at times.  My father was not a nice person when I was a kid, he ran around with women, physically beat my brothers and smoked 4 packs of cigarettes a day.  He got lung cancer and they did surgery and chemo and he is fine today.  My husband would have given me the world if he could have, he was my "yes" man.  Anything I wanted was Ok with him.  He didnt drink never smoked a day and his cancer couldnt be helped.  Am I bitter??? Maybe.  I am convinced that evil never dies and only the good die.  Believe me I never wish anything on anyone and dont wish my father illness but it just makes you ask why?  I can say these things here and not feel judged..if I said them anywhere else I would be labeled a rotten person.  What I am trying to say Alanna is feel free to say anything here and someone will listen and help.  I hope you find comfort and peace here and if there is anything personally I can do for you please let me know.  God Bless.  Renee

Alanna,

You have definitely found more friends who understand you here than anywhere.  I am sorry that you had to find us, but we will all take care of you and lift you up when you need it and listen if that's all you need, too.  It's funny that you say you still feel married.  I say that all the time...I am no less married now, than I was 2 years ago when Tom left.  I get mad at people who address me as Ms. or write that on an envelope.  I am STILL Mrs. Forever!!

What an amazing feeling to know that your husband loved you so much, not that you didn't already know, but to have that validation from your neighbor..that is awesome.

Thank you to your husband for the time he served.  

You have come to a good place to get the support you need...you will never be alone here.

Hugs and Blessings

Hello Alanna, such a pretty name.   My husband's name was also John, and he has been gone for 7 1/2 months now.   I just wanted to say so many of your words echo how I feel.   We are so blessed by the words of our loved ones, "I will love you forever".   Such amazing and comforting words, words that allow me to continue with my life here on earth, because I know I am being loved from just a short distance away, if I close my eyes...:)  It is such a gift and it gives me strength to get up each day, which I am sure helps you in your knowing your husband loved you so very much!  I too, will always consider myself married to John, forever and it is always Mrs. Kayser to anyone who asks me.  I will never give that up.  Almost made it to 40 years, almost....but each year is precious, so precious and a gift we will not forget.

Please continue to visit the site, it is the best place to share and to find out that you are not alone, never.

 

Hugs,

Carol

 

Alanna, I was told by one of the Vietnam veterans that if I could prove that my husband was in Vietnam there might be compensation because of the Agent Orange.  It seems they are finding more and more coronary artery disease by those who were subjected to AO.  With the trouble our country is in right now, I'm not so sure that bill will ever be passed - at least in my lifetime.  I guess one can only hope.  If anyone on here knows about that, please let me know.  thanks.  Joan

Sorry to hear of your loss,but glad that you found this site,it does help.As fas as the loss of a spouse or parent,there is no comparison. I was close to my Dad,when he died 17 years ago, it hurt,but I got over it . My Mom  passed away 2 months ago,and although we were real close

,I was with her a few times a week and the last year almost daily,it it  did not hit me like the loss of my wife.It may be just in my mind,but I feel people that knew me before my wife passed away look at me differently now,maybe they feel pity for me,I dont know. I just try to take it one day at a time,I am lucky that I have grandchildren that lift my spirits. It may be that it is natural for us at some time to expect the passing of our parents,but losing our spouse at an early time in our lives is a shock. All the plans that were made during our marriage are gone. Maybe the saying that love hurts is true,the more love had the harder it is to deal with the loss.

Alanna Bellflower said:

Linda I'm having some prpblems with getting used to this 'reply' thing. I thought I just did that?!

any way- where ever it went I was grateful for your response to my first post here. I'll continue to stop in and read other's stories and remarks. I know this is a journey, a process that is a day by day thing. Actually I can remember the earliest days when I had no sense of time at all. At least I'm out of that. Now I have the 'emptiness' and loneliness you mentioned. Most of the time I feel unfit for human companionship. By that I mean very undependable. Like I may make arrangements to do something with a friend on their day off- and then the day comes and I'm dreading it, whishing I never made those plans. Just want to curl up with a book or my knitting. Don't get me wrong. I'm lucky to have the lady friends I have- they are all like sisters. But I'm aware I am a reminder of the worse that can happen to a couple. Dealing with our parents demise is much different than with a spouse I find.

Thanks again- alanna

sorry for your loss. all i can offer you is if you can find the strength to look forward while still never forgetting your spouse things will get better   .     i based this on my personal experience

Alanna, I am so glad you found this site, but sad that another person has had to join the "club".  The love of my life, Neal, lost his battle with cancer 6 months ago.  He was 60 years old. He found out he had lung cancer and 5 months later he was gone. I can't believe it has been 6 months. I go through the motions of everyday living, but feel so empty inside. I also make plans with friends and family and then dread following through the event. Lots of times I just tell them I don't feel well and to give me a rain check. I tried counseling and it did no good. Someone told me to try to keep busy, but I just have no energy to do anything.

Like a lot of others, Neal and I had made all kinds of plans for us. Our sons were to take over our companies and we were going to do all the things we had always dreamed of, but that was not to be. We did not get to do anything.

This is a wonderful site. It has been good for me to be able to post my feelings and know that I will not be judged. Keep coming to the site Alanna.  HUGS to all in our "club".

Losing my parents was very sad, but at the time dad had cancer, and 2 yrs later mom was deep in alzheimers when she passed- both health conditions were reasons to let go of this earthly life and move on. They were both 81 at the time I lost them. My husband on the other hand, inspite of an ongoing feeling of just not being well at times, was not even 62. Very different scenerio. Way harder.  The last year seemed hopeless for my husbands recovery, and that proved to be  so.

I did everything I could for my dear husband while he was sick,  then later in the process of transition to the other side (as some say). My relief that all his worrys and pain of sickness was over filled me at the momment he was pronounced. Then the flood gates of MY loss came crashing in. I'm certain you all know intimately what I'm saying.

The other day I had conversation with a person that actually didn't tell me anything I haven't read; or know about dealing with  grief- but for some reason the words sunk in.

I have one more thing to do for the Love of my Husband.

Let him go. When we hear these words it may seem to mean= eliminate, get rid of, clear out...and we recoil in horror at the mere thought of such a thing . But I beleive I can take that step, because now I feel I understand it/letting go better.

In my heart I feel that when I do this, I will then be able to feel the love he still has for me clearer and  fully.

Already the last 2 days my depression has lifted. Anyone who knows me personally; knows I can't or never will forget my John. I am making a conscious effort when the slightest saddness at missing him comes upon me, to force myself to smile ( looking at his picture if necessary) and Thank him from the heart for the 21 yrs we had together. One of the last things he said to me was, "Don't grieve for me long".

I haven't fulfilled that request for him because "I" have gotten in the way.

When we're here together on earth, we know how to show our love with the slightest touch, smile, look or caress. When our loved one is no longer in the physical- we don't know what to do. How do we bridge the gap - that terrible endless abyss of a gap that we feel between us? Maybe it's in the 'letting go' we learn.

I'm so tired of being grief stricken, unable to get motivated, feeling the most simple household task is a huge chore.....I'll try it. At this point I now feel I can do it ....for John . If only to be sure he can KNOW I'm ok.

Easter is coming. For those that hold beliefs that there is Everlasting Life it's a wonderful time. This is how I will spend my Easter. All my family is miles away, but I'll have a hopeful  Easter knowing I've done the last, and maybe the most important thing for my husband.

This is just my way. But I wanted to share it with anyone who may be on the threshold of 'letting go'.

 

Alanna+

Jerry said

Sorry to hear of your loss,but glad that you found this site,it does help.As fas as the loss of a spouse or parent,there is no comparison. I was close to my Dad,when he died 17 years ago, it hurt,but I got over it . My Mom  passed away 2 months ago,and although we were real close

,I was with her a few times a week and the last year almost daily,it it  did not hit me like the loss of my wife.It may be just in my mind,but I feel people that knew me before my wife passed away look at me differently now,maybe they feel pity for me,I dont know. I just try to take it one day at a time,I am lucky that I have grandchildren that lift my spirits. It may be that it is natural for us at some time to expect the passing of our parents,but losing our spouse at an early time in our lives is a shock. All the plans that were made during our marriage are gone. Maybe the saying that love hurts is true,the more love had the harder it is to deal with the loss.

Alanna Bellflower said:

Linda I'm having some prpblems with getting used to this 'reply' thing. I thought I just did that?!

any way- where ever it went I was grateful for your response to my first post here. I'll continue to stop in and read other's stories and remarks. I know this is a journey, a process that is a day by day thing. Actually I can remember the earliest days when I had no sense of time at all. At least I'm out of that. Now I have the 'emptiness' and loneliness you mentioned. Most of the time I feel unfit for human companionship. By that I mean very undependable. Like I may make arrangements to do something with a friend on their day off- and then the day comes and I'm dreading it, whishing I never made those plans. Just want to curl up with a book or my knitting. Don't get me wrong. I'm lucky to have the lady friends I have- they are all like sisters. But I'm aware I am a reminder of the worse that can happen to a couple. Dealing with our parents demise is much different than with a spouse I find.

Thanks again- alanna

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