Grief support groups, condolence advice, funeral etiquette and more
A continutaion of the "When a Spouse or Partner Dies" thread.
Latest Conversations: Nov 2
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 Julie. Last reply by DJ Dec 6, 2020.
Started by Bonny Jones. Last reply by Diamond Jan 31, 2020.
Started by Tim's Mom, Vickie. Last reply by Michele Jul 21, 2019.
Hello Mary Jane,
I've missed so much the conversations here, always finding some common topic or experience that reassures me that my emotional reactions to certain occurrences aren't "out of line".
I've been avoiding watching the video I have of Larry, even though several times in recent months I've had the desire to do so. I can't actually forget his voice because, and this may be the first time I've said this here - our voices were nearly identical. This was especially true over the phone, prompting the same comments from our families and friends alike - "OK, which one am I talking to?" In most cases it was funny, but sometimes being mistaken was annoying or verging on insulting.
When Larry's youngest daughter Kerry would call she would always reply to my "Hello" with a questioning "Dad?" When I said it was Chuck, she wouldn't say hi or ask how I was - just "Is my Dad there? after this went on for years, I finally started playing with her (especially when I was in my cups as it were). I'd say "Yes, he's right here, but tell me - how are you? and your husband and kids - tell me all about them!" This was met with a brief terse reply and asking again for Larry, but I'd persist for minutes until Larry would catch my eye and make a slicing motion across his throat, meaning "Cut it out!"
After their conversation he'd ask why I was doing that, and I'd tell him I loved aggravating her, forcing her to acknowledge the fact that I lived there too, whether she liked it or not!
I know it was small of me, but I was sharing that story with my cousin who is sadly having great difficulty coping with the loss of her long-time companion this year. His family is treating her as if their relationship was less than it was, and she's hurt, angry, and felling guilty for being bitter about it. I have told her she has the right to have whatever emotions and feelings accompany her grieving, and having their love diminished in the eyes of his brothers is a valid reason to feel dismissed and angry. I hope I did the right thing there.
Anyway Mary Jane, we will both watch and listen to our guys when we're ready and strong enough - that knife in the heart is unfortunately something I'm beginning to get used to - but that doesn't lessen the shock or pain.
Much love and a hug,
I just saw your post last night and am hoping that you took the trip with your family. Seeing the Fall colors along with seeing the family farm would be heavenly for me - I would practically give my arm to see the leaves in Mass. and see my grandparents' farm in Hancock in the Berkshires once more!
However, I also understand your feelings, and have found myself also being somewhat detached and withdrawn from the world at times over the last month. I went the opposite route, and became obsessed with working on my dolls and monster figures for Halloween setups in my china cabinet and on the mantle - even inside the unused fireplace. That place has become the "family room" of my Addams Family dolls, although I only have Gomez and Morticia done so far.
Steve has been also incredibly busy making diorama backdrops, furniture, and even fashioning working lamps, all in the same 1/6th scale as my collection. He has found there's a gaping lack of this size merchandise available for serious collectors looking for quality, so hopes to begin offering these items for sale through some online venue. I may also offer some of my creations too, but currently do it just for my own satisfaction. I'm quite the perfectionist, so end up redoing things often when a costume, face design, or hairstyle doesn't please me. For Halloween I customized a Wolfman figure, applying faux fur carefully row by row with glue to his entire head (which took the better part of a week).
I will ask Steve to share some photos since my phone isn't linked to this site - he can explain about his work better than I, and hopefully will show you my Frankenstein's monster and his bride, who are two of my favorites on the mantle!
However you do it, I have faith that you will come through all of your darkness you are experiencing currently. My sympathy again on the loss of your sister, which undoubtedly has had aa depressing effect on your mood. When you make yourself do something it sometimes breaks through a self-imposed block, or at least it can work for me. Just come here and share when you want, and I 'm sending a hug that reminds you that we are still here for you even when long periods of silence occur.
Hi Deborah ... It's so good to hear from you. It's been so quiet on here. I am so very sorry your sister May passed away. I was not aware.
Isn't it odd how quickly we can forget our sweetheart's voices. I have a few on CD's, but my CD player isn't working. I just can't remember Ernie's voice. It makes me feel otherwise when I can't play the CD's that I dreamt up our marriage.
I can understand after your sister passing away and then the Covid doesn't help (too much time to think) that you have lost interest in many things and don't even want to go out. Right now I'm in the same mode. I live alone with my dogs and of course not many visit with the exception of my sister-in-law every 2nd Saturday mainly because of Covid. People here in B.C. are getting so paranoid. Also so many of my friends are not well and that includes my younger set of friends. Just found out that my friend Karen's husband who is only 59 had a stoke and he is in such good shape so it came as quite a shock. Thankfully he came home on Thursday and is doing well. I have to admit it brings up my own mortality. Then my dear next door neighbor Dan who has always been here for me to fix things around the house has been extremely ill and is not doing well at all. I do phone just to be sure he is OK while his girlfriend is at work. He is that ill. I seem to get nothing, but bad news and sometimes afraid of opening my eyes in the morning. Like you I have just shut-down right now and hope I can shake my head and come out of it. Find I don't want to do much of anything. I know it will be hard for you to take that small group trip BUT DO IT! You will feel much better and nature seems to calm us down. Without warning I'm sure that you will have a sign from May. For all you know this trip to see Fall leaves is a sign from May. Telling you to enjoy yourself.
I hope you have a good weekend too my friend. We've had weeks of horrific rain on the south coast of British Columbia, Canada. This weekend is going to be sunny and my great niece is turning 6 and wants me at her party. Of course I'm going, but it's a long drive and as I said have little energy, but will get there. Of course she was born on Halloween. Boo! LOL I will be back home at 4:30 PM before the children come knowing on the door.
You have a good time! Enjoy!
Hi Deb...I am happy you posted...it’s been awhile since much has happened here. I was going thru some pictures I had on my computer about a week ago..and one video of Bob popped up. It was his BIRTHDAY, May 2015..he was opening a box of Sees candy...he was laughing and happy, and it was a HUGE shock to hear his voice, and the jokes he was making. I was NOT expecting ANYTHING like it..he was SOOOO happy..8 months later he would be gone. I Still cannot watch it...it was such a shock.I had no idea it was there..I had forgotten his voice, and his laughter.But, I think Imwas MEANT to see it when I did. I had forgotten his laughter. It was actually a knife plunged into me heart.
I love listening to a few videos that I found on Gregs phone, its so great to still be able to hear their voices. I have been in a dark place since my sister passed away in May, no desire to do anything, not even play in my craft room, tried forcing myself to make plans and go out only to cancel and stay at home, am supposed to go on a road trip tomorrow wth my other siblings to look at the leaves and revisit the farm my grandparents had, am praying I actually do it. I love gettinng signs from loved ones that have passed but have not recieved any from my sis so keep praying I do soon, have a great weekend all
I too believe as you do, this world is full of surprises and mysteries that we mere humans have yet to unlock, let alone understand.
Yesterday I and Chuck were sitting in the living room talking and enjoying our morning brew, Chuck had just come in from feeding the birds (our flock of bluejays, cardinals, doves, sparrows and assorted others). The weather has been non stop rain for the past 4 days and they were all so hungry for seed they didn't push each other away but quietly ate side by side. Then a lone hummingbird sputtered into view at the top of the window and hung there looking in at us, For only just a few seconds, then off he went just as suddenly. That is the second sighting since I have put in 4 hibiscus plants in the backyard, the nursery tag indicated that they attract butterflies, honey bees and humming birds, All I could think was what a wonderful way to start the day, sunshine, birds, low humidity and lower than normal temp by a few degrees,
The memories you found on the video are truly special, I know you will keep them safe, for they truly are a gift.
To my mind, Steve and Trina finding those memories was an actual GIFT from beyond...from them...I take nothing for granted. About a month ago, I was clearing out so,e old pictures on my computer, and found a video of Bob, on his birthday the May before he died. It took me awhile to be able to view it..and it wasn,t so much the video part, but his VOICE and laughter! I had forgotten what his voice sounded like. Wonderful, yet heart breaking, to hear him speak again after 5 years.
Steve, what an amazing story! You must have been over the moon at coming upon this unexpected gift from Mark! You gave Mark your camera, and what a gift he left for you! And for you to just come across the precious memories and hear Mark's voice after so many years. It's a precious and at the same time a bittersweet gift from beyond. I know you will cherish the recording for as long as you live.
It's only people like us who understand the value of "useless" things left behind by our beloved spouse/partner. For those who have not experienced loss as we have, it is junk that we are holding on to. Like you say, these are things that only mean something to each of us. I keep Joseph's bedside box on my nightstand; it holds a few cuff links, tie pins, and his wedding band. Once in a while I open the box and look inside, and it brings back so many wonderful memories of my life with Joseph.
Stay well, my friend, and say hello to Chuck for me.
Big hugs, Trina
You never know what you may find when cleaning out stuff.
I have all of Mark's favorite jewelry, nothing of any value and mostly cuff links. One day (sometime in 2019) I was going thru old photographs and papers that were from before Mark passed; at the bottom I found a camera that I was awarded at work. I got to looking at it and remembered the day I brought it home and let Mark have it. It was a digital camera with a separate storage card. So I took it out and uploaded to my lap top. There were pictures that Mark had taken of me and out dog Bella. an a short video he had accidently started the day I gave it to him. He was pressing buttons and talking, I started crying when I heard his voice as I could not remember how he sounded. "It doesn't look like much of gift for you from your company, me and Bella will have fun". All the while the video was recording while he was turning over and looking at it. I still have the little chip from the camera and doubt I will ever toss it.
There are just somethings I guess we all cannot part with, besides, who cares really. These are things that only mean something to each of us.
Sara, your message made me laugh. Even though we are talking about something solemn and serious, your comment about the upside of not throwing things away is very funny. I am also a pack rat--it would seem like you--and Joseph would tease me about it. But as you pointed out, sometimes you come across a treasure from 11 years ago like you did when you don't throw things away when you should, as you did with Ken's handwritten paperwork. It sounds like something from a movie: finding all the letters needed for the tattoos from the old paperwork! Equally funny I found your comment that your project for a rainy day is to shred Ken's papers (now that they have served their purpose).
It's a very sad thing to have to do (I still need to take Joseph's papers to FedEx or UPS to be shredded), so I wanted to let you know your sense of humor helped bring some comic relief to this dreaded task that lies ahead for me. Your message cheered me up. Thank you!
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