Grief support groups, condolence advice, funeral etiquette and more
A continutaion of the "When a Spouse or Partner Dies" thread.
Latest Conversations: yesterday
This might be a rough time for many of you. Do what you feel you need to do to get through it. Remember, someone is here almost all the time to talk to you.
Started by Susan. Last reply by Marsha H Sep 2.
Started by Mary Clough. Last reply by Marsha H Sep 2.
Started by denise. Last reply by Jeanette McSherry Aug 31.
We all feel the same way about you, and thank you for letting us know you are OK - we are indeed an uncommon family here, and one that I am grateful for every day of my life.
Today would be Larry's and my 35th Anniversary - we celebrated this as it was the day we met. We also celebrated the day in August when I proposed to him. Greedy weren't we, wanting 2 anniversaries? At least we had 2 excuses for expensive dinners out in places we normally couldn't afford!
I have been thinking about this all week, and my emotions have been kind of all over the place. Then this morning, as Steve and I were driving to an appointment, "Claire De Lune" started playing on the radio - a piece with very special significance for Larry and myself - and I felt a quiet sense of calm and peace that I know was Larry letting me know that he and Steve's Mark were watching us every day and were going to help keep us safe from harm.
Kudos on your mechanical skills - I can barely pump my own gas , and that only after asking for directions every time. In short, when it comes to cars I have "hopeless" tattooed on my forehead.
Have a peaceful day today dear friend, and feel the hug I'm sending -
Dear beautiful family, I had a post and some how I lost or erased.
My car broke down, so I had to put my mechanic hat on!!! It took a lot of hard work and sweat to fix it, but finally got it on the road. It's the only car I have, so I had to repair it, I'm finacially am not able to hire help and only depend on myself. I've learned that lesson along time ago.
Marsha, Mary Jane, Sara, and Chuck,. You guys are the most beautiful, compassionate people I know. I honestly feel like family here. You don't understand, you all probably saved my life!!!
Much love, Patty
Dear Patty ... Sara gave you very sound advice and between Mary.Jane, Sara and I we are worried about you and if you can please just leave a post 'I'm OK.' We'll understand that you may be in part of your grief where you just want to be alone, sleep and forget or just have peace. We all love you and we're praying for you. What Sara said about knowing her spouse is there, I feel the same way Sara does.
Hope to hear from you soon.
Ok I hope Patty is reading these replies...I tend to be concerned when someone reaches out, with a disturbing post, and then doesn’t respond within a few days. Should we b worried? She seemed pretty down..I hope she’s ok.
Patty.....I can't add much more to Chuck Mary Jane and Marsha's advice other than please be kind to yourself and don't put too much pressure on yourself. It's only been 2 months which is like 5 minutes compared to the amount of time you and Basil spent together. Please don't feel like you need to "be better" or be stranger or be anything other than a person who just suffered a major trauma. Unfortunately It's going to take quite some time for the pain to lessen. One thing I wish I knew when I lost my husband 2 years ago is that I had a right to be selfish and think of me instead of other people.
Right now a couple of things that help me (although I have to remind myself every day) is first, I know Ken is with me. I too catch the shadows in my house and although it should be scary, it's comforting to know he hasn't left me and keeps watch. The other is that I know when it's my time to join him, we'll be together for eternity. It may take some time to get there and it's not easy pretending that I'm not eager for that day but there are still some people who need me here and the same is true for all of us. Somehow we need to push through each day. We will all get our eternities with beloved spouses.
Prayers for a better day today.
Dear Patty ... Like Mary.Jane and Chuck I have felt the same way and it's been 7 years since Ernie passed away, but for the last 2 1/2 years there is a dull roar when special occasions come up that included Ernie. Oh yes, a few tears and knowing I will always love him and miss him dearly, but he has handed the torch to me to carry on. I have learned much wisdom from him and I try my best to use it in his honor.
What helped me the most was I would buy a Helium Balloon and write love messages on it; then go to our favorite place, have a little conversation with him, kiss balloon and send it sailing to the heavens. I could imagine he would up there holding out his hands to catch that balloon. Even though some tears feel I also felt at peace. I hope you may think of doing the same.
Raw grief is the hardest, but please, realize it is normal and we are going through it in our different ways. You are NOT going crazy and we are gaining strength each day we get out of bed even if, at first we do little during the day. In time you find yourself doing more and yes, even smiling. The first time I laughed out loud after Ernie's passing I scared myself! LOL
Try to surround yourself with family or a good friend where you can just talk about how you feel. It helps. I also found walking each day helped my mental state.
It is also normal to be angry at our spouses for passing away and leaving us in what we feel is hell. Then I come to my senses and realize Ernie didn't want to go and certainly had no idea he would pass away at 65. We were unable to have children, but we have 2 small dogs and those dogs were my saving grace making me get up and get moving and walking every day. Also Legacy and the wonderful members on it kept me glued together.
I surely understand keeping busy up-grading your home and I'm doing the same although I live in a small rancher and have a fair-sized amount of property, but nothing like yours. You have two options; either hire a young man to do the difficult work or, consider selling, but please don't make any decisions selling for a good year. I am determined to stay in my home and thankfully I do have a male neighbor that has been so good to me mowing my lawn and fixing a few things around here that I can't fix. I amazed myself that I can do much more to fix then than I ever thought capable of. I also have a young man on call when I need heavy things lifted, etc. It helps, I'm stubborn and between being angry at the state we are in and stubborn is often a good combination and gets us going. I am so proud of you for what you are doing. Remember, Basil is always near you, you will survive and there is a future for you. Hang onto that thought and you will do just fine.
Oh how your words speak directly to my heart, as I know they do to everyone here. Mary Jane is so right in saying that many of us here have been to that hopeless point in our lives where the will to go on seems to evaporate. Some after our tragic losses, some who have dealt with this before at some time in our lives. Perhaps for us it is especially worrisome and concerning for people around us. I count myself among that number.
I was in hospital when Larry passed, and went from there to another rehabilitation facility to relearn everything from walking to dressing and bathing myself. I was asked repeatedly by psychiatrists in both hospitals I was in at the time of Larry's passing if I was feeling suicidal. My only honest answer I could give was that I was feeling nothing. Before being released to go to our empty home, where I am sure they weighed the possibility of my harming myself, I had numerous interviews with a team of doctors evaluating my readiness for release. In one I commented that they didn't have to worry about my jumping from the roof...I couldn't even climb three stairs! I think my somewhat morbid "joke" got me released as much as anything else. There was a previous attempt many years ago of which I had made them aware, so I have a history.
Once home for a few weeks, I had a serious episode - a health emergency while I was alone in my kitchen. I knew from visiting nurses that I had to keep the phone with me at all times, so there it sat on the table. Patty, I stared at that phone and thought "OK, so if I don't call then it's finally over, and I'll be with Larry."
What made me reach out finally and dial 911? I believe God, and Larry, and the many angels that were watching over me since it all began prompted me somehow. Why? I believe now that there was some way in which I was to be useful here in this world still, in one way or another.
I tell you all this my friend, because I want you to know that you are not by any means alone in your situation. Like you, many people around me who knew of my past were reluctant to bring up the possibility of my going through all that again. They worried about all the meds I had there especially and one nurse even counted my pills when she came by. Those of us who have been there know that it makes people very uncomfortable to discuss, and I tried to reassure everyone that I wasn't going to do anything foolish. I guess when I reached for that phone, I flipped a small silent switch into the off position somewhere inside myself. I now know that whatever takes me from this world, it won't be with any help from me.
Thank you for being open and honest with us - if we can't do that here in this family, then where? I just ask one thing of you Patty - if you find yourself where I did in your own personal way, reach for that phone.
Love, a big tight hug, and prayers for a peaceful day -
Oh, Patty, I think we have all been near “that dark place”, albeit I get the feeling you were closer...but SOMETHING kept you alive. So, apparently, you are MEANT to be here. We all are. That thought helps me, thinking there is something in the future, so I had better stick around and find out what it is...:-) Lately I am having some bad health issues..and I have always been pretty healthy...so I think about it on occasion...but I have ONE thing in my day to day life that keeps me getting out of bed each day...it is my CAT!
I don,t know if you have pets...but caring and loving something that depends on me is the joy I get daily. Yeah, I know, people say “it’s just a cat...” but it is so much more...this little guys life depends on me...and after Bob died, it is like HE KNEW I would need love...yes, he is an indoor only kitty, but he sleeps with me, plays with me, and brings me joy. Yes, I know he is getting older, and someday he will be gone, but the daily love people can get from an animal is unpresidented.
My SIL has 2 little dogs, and she says they are her life, but I don’t have the energy for a dog. With all the upkeep on your home, would it be possible to hire some help?
Or, as far as upgrading, would it be easier to move to a different place.? It seems like ALOT of work..and in a year or so, perhaps moving to a different place with less upkeep would b an option? NOT NOW...with Basil only gone a short while, I understand it will be quite awhile before you are ready for any change...but consider it for the future.
i sat on my a$$ for 2 years, unable to function, but now everything in my life is, or soon will b changing. I am 71 years old, and don,t have to energy for keeping up a larger house, and I don,t want to die in Oklahoma..where we retired to 13 years ago. I want to move back to the SF Bay Area..and hope for at least 10 good years. Besides the tornadoes, the summer heat and humidity here is going to kill me. LOL. I want to live near my daughter, and somehow make a life for myself b4 I die.
BTW, if you are a senior, and have so much land to care for..isn,t there somewhere you can ask for volunteers to help you,maybe once a month?
Thank you Mary Jane for your words of what might help me through this Horrible time I'm having to endure life without my love. I too keep a journal of what I am going through on a daily basis, but I've done this almost my whole life. I sometimes go back and read how I was feeling at certain times throughout my life. I have probably 50 journals!! I now keep one where I'm speaking directly to Basil to let him know what is going on with me and our girls. I do feel like he is with me cause I swear I can catch a SHADOW out of the corner of my eye. At first this scared me, then I started feeling comfort everytime I would see this shadow. I am retired, so I'm here at the house daily. I wish I was still working now. I do try and stay busy by cleaning and upgrading our home. There are so many things that was neglected the past year due to me caring for Basil. I have almost 2 acres I care for, weed eating, mowing, and cleaning. I feel like I'm a work horse. I'm just tired and sometimes I get angry with Basil for leaving me with all this work. I then get angry at myself for even thinking and blaming him for this!! I know he did not want to leave me. I'm just scared I will do something stupid and am working with my therapist on this issue. I have already done a real stupid thing to myself a few years ago and am now suffering from the effects of it today. My whole body cramps up and I have trouble sleeping because the minute I lay down, every muscle I have cramps up and I have to get out of bed and try to work the knots out. I'm just telling this because I don't want to go to that dark place again because it is a horrible place for your mind to go!!! I feel like I can say things on this site and not be judged. A lot of my family and friends don't want to talk to me about this Horrible time in my life. They say "Patty" please you don't want to go there again. I say"no kidding" because I was put away for quite a while. I just feel very weak and sad. I want to hear his voice and have him hug me and tell me that it is going to be okay!!
So sorry for this rambling, I know I'm all over the place and apologize to you for that!! Again, Mary Jane.. thank you. I truly appreciate you responding to me.
Oh, Patricia, I wish I had some majic words to help you...but I don’t think there are any. We just have to EXIST one moment at a time. Just try to get thru each day as best you can. I don’t know if you have to hold down a job...if not..just try to treat yourself with anything that gives you any small measure of comfort..sleep all day, eat sweets, cry, scream...whatever. Two things I find comforting: I keep a journal..when ever I feel like it, I write down what I am feeling..not every day...sometimes I go for weeks without writing, whatever works for you..but the BIGGEST thing that helps me..I imagine BOb is standing by my side all the time. So I talk to him all day long...seriously, who's to say he ISN’T there? I feel he is here beside me, ok, I some days I really feel like he is still here, but on a different “plane” so I can’t see him...also, when he died, my addled brain DIDN’T accept it..and I spent the first year waiting for him to return...I just knew he was going to walk in and ask if I missed him..and life would go on..and, yes, I talked to him al day that first year too...so, get any comfort u can, and do anything thT gives you any comfort..if you can. I wish you comfort.
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