I don't know how I should be feeling

My beautiful husband of 38 years passed away 18 days ago after a long and painful illness. We knew very early on that his diagnosis was terminal and I think my grieving started then.
He died at home as he wanted to with his girls, but suffered dreadfully.
Our girls have not left my side and we have been out for walks, meals and cinema which I can do because I just feel numb and hope I stay this way.
My life alone will start next week after the funeral as my daughters both need to get back to work and resume their lives. I know they will always be there for me as are our friends and family but am scared that my numbness will go and I’ll start to feel again.
I’ve been advised by a friend to try to get some structure to each day by planning to do something admin, something domestic, something physical, something social and something kind to me. It already feels like too much effort but keeping busy is how I survived my husband’s illness so maybe this is how I now survive.

Dear She

You will survive
It will be painful
You will stop feeling numb
And there will be days when you cry buckets
When you are having a really bad day come on here and tell someone and someone will reply because we have all been there and understand
My husband died suddenly last summer
We have three daughters
We all try and support each other and thankfully we don’t all have bad days on the same day so there is always one of us to pull the others through
I am so sorry that you are going through all this
I have to say it is the most painful experience ever but you learn to get by
I did what your friend suggested
I split my day into three parts and tried to do something constructive in each of them …morning , afternoon and evening
Weekdays are not so bad but weekends are torture for me …especially when I finish work Friday night and then again Saturday lunchtime . We have our own business so that has distracted me because I have had to get much more involved in it since my husband died
I hope you and your girls are managing today because it being father’s day doesn’t help one bit
We have just sorted out the headstone for my husband which was upsetting and emotional and you have still got the funeral to get through
You and your girls will do it for your husband , their dad
Let him be your strength
Sending you hugs and understanding
Romy xxxxx

I lost my husband last September who died at Leckhampton. He was just 38 years old. I have two children age 5 and 9 and they keep me busy. I too found it easy to keep busy. From diagnosis to death was only 10 weeks. Sometimes I want to sit and do nothing and then feel guilty about doing it, like I should be out enjoying every moment doing something with my children. It’s not got any easier yet and some days it feels like yesterday and other times it seems like a life time ago. Xx

I’m so sorry Shelly
Sending you hugs
Romy xxx

Thank you Romy, we got through the funeral which we managed to make a celebration
of his life and couldn’t believe how many people came.
I’m now so empty and my heart hurts and I can’t stop thinking that he no longer exists. I dreamt last night that we were walking along a beach with maraton runners all around us and he was holding out his hand to me and said he needed to talk to me. I think I woke then but just want to get back to my dream to be with him.
Planning my day now feels so irrelevant.

Dear She
It’s a terrible feeling …trying to carry on without our favourite person in the world . I do understand . No one else will do no matter how kind

Grief can get very physical . Funny turns , aches and pains you’ve never had before and just plain exhaustion from the thinking and missing

Your husband may not be a physical presence any more but he will always exist in your heart and mind and soul . You will carry him with you . Let him be your strength

Dreams can be both comforting and upsetting can’t they ? I haven’t had many but the ones I have had of my husband have had a very powerful effect on me

Planning does seem irrelevant but I have found not having a plan is even worse . I think about my husband if I’m doing stuff or if I’m not but I prefer to do stuff unless I’m very tired . It’s better for my self esteem .

Losing our favourite people is the most painful experience in the world . Every day is torture and no matter how sad we are or upset or angry or depressed we are nothing changes the fact that they are not coming back

It will be a year since my husband died in a couple of weeks
I miss him just as much as ever
I have to stop myself from crying some days when I am in work because it doesn’t help
Sometimes I feel like throwing the towel in and giving up but what would I do with myself then I wonder

It’s a whole new way of being when your other half has gone and what’s left of you is barely functioning and yearning for the person has gone

I don’t cry as much as before
I have learnt that it is pointless and makes me feel even weaker physically
I have taken to seeing signs everywhere that my husband is with me …if I see a particular bird , hear a particular song etc etc . I even went through a phase of hugging a particular tree for comfort on my daily walk with the dogs . Sounds crazy I know but do whatever gives you comfort .
I still kiss the cuff of my husband’s favourite shirt hanging in his wardrobe by our bed when I get out of bed in the morning and before I get back in in the night and say I love you

I am going to see a medium at the end of the summer . I have never done anything like that before . I have monthly bereavement counselling . I don’t know if it helps but the counsellor is comforting , let’s me speak and tells me I am doing well under the circumstances
I have had my husband’s wedding ring made smaller and wear it everyday with my own . I am proud to have been his wife and am trying not to let his death change me as a person …a person he loved just the way I was , flaws and all

Our relationships with our loved ones don’t stop when they die
You will find a way to carry on
Let people on this forum help you too on very tough days . They have helped me a lot when I have been feeling at my worst . They will help you too

Sending love and understanding
Romy xxxxx

Dear Romy, I can tell from your words that you too had a wonderful husband and keeping them in our hearts must be the only way to get through this torture.

At the time I thought nothing could be harder than living the daily hell of his cancer with him, but it doesn’t come close to this because we were together. I know I’m being selfish to even think about wanting those days back because he was in so much pain but I’m struggling to remember the good times .
Although I’m still numb a lot of the time, when the waves hit I can’t breathe and I just feel so empty. Another day to get through now. I’ve kissed his picture, put his aftershave on my wrists and I’ve got it planned so I’ll breathe deeply, put on a false face and turn myself into the actress I didn’t know I was.
Hope you have a good day. Xxx

Your post could be my story, same amount of time with my husband, same torture of prognosis and sounds like the same journey myself and my family had.
It’s so very raw when the end u thought u expected does come and nothing could of prepared us for that pain.
I was numb when my husband died 101/2 months ago, then I was very busy as we had Christmas and 2 of our children got married, unfortunately I think I shut everything out and coped wonderfully so everybody tells me ( we have a disabled son) who I am sole carer of now.
Very recently I began to feel anxiety and realised what I had bottled up and got thru was in fact a running away strategy.
I’ve realised now that it really is a journey albeit a very painful one, I thought it would be painful but just never realised how painful.
I think I’m trying to say , like I’m feeling it’s going to be harder than I thought especially as we expected it but as opposed to being super organised etc I’m now taking one day at a time, these sites are wonderful just for moral support when everything else is making no sense, I also went to bereavement counselling yesterday and have opted to join a grief support group, which I’ve been told is a great help by someone who used them
Sending love and hugs to u all on here , and we must believe and I’m sure we will, get to a better emotional place eventually , sadly it’s time and that’s what I find hard and the biggest thing for me is the huge shift from being a happy wife to being on my own, it’s awful xxx

Oh Romy, What a lovely dream. Amongst all that activity he still wants to talk to you. ‘No longer exists’? All the time you are alive, and after you will feel his love just as he now feels yours. Talk to him. I talk to my wife and often get answers in my mind. My love for her will never die and she will never not exist. Take it easy. The next few days and weeks may be hard, but ask what he would have wanted. You miserable? I very much doubt it. Blessings.

Sorry, the post should have been for Romy. I must be losing it.!!!

I woke this morning after a bad night, went to have a shower and the water was cold. I just felt like crawling back to bed but gave myself a shake and decided to just get on with it. Many of you will probably find it ridiculous that it was only a drop in the pressure which the plumber talked me through in minutes but I felt so proud of myself for just doing a simple job that my husband would have done without thinking about.
It’s given me a boost of energy for the day which I’ve used gardening so am now hot, tired and sweaty but at least I can have a hot shower!

Well done!! I’m cooking. Yes, me cooking. My dear wife would say it’s unbelievable. It’s amazing what you can do when push comes to shove! The laundry too. Now there was a puzzle. How much powder do you put in? What temperature should it be at? My neighbour was a great help with that.
But the big thought that came to me was how we take things for granted. I did. I never saw my wife as ‘old’ until a few months before she died. I suppose we all think life will go on for ever, well, if not for ever perhaps a little longer. I wonder why we hardly ever face the inevitable. Perhaps it’s too painful. When my wife became poorly in the beginning of her illness I realised what was happening. I knew it would not be long befoere she went, but even then it was so difficult to face up to.
No, it’s not ridiculoue, nothing in bereavement is silly or ridiculous. I often find myself doing silly yjinhgs.

Oh yes, " when push comes to shove…" i too have to do things myself that my Richard automatically done…Well I too had no choice this morning ( the weather forecast warned of very windy ) but to climb up to our sloping garden to rake up the grass that was left after our parkhome manager mowed the grass a few days ago…The only way I could actually get up there and do it was t take my rollator, keep putting the brakes on, holding onto it for dear life as I took each step then with my rake outstretched it as far as my arms would let it go but, oh dear, I came unstuck, the rollator being on sloped grass almost went down sideways nearly taking me with it, how I never went down was a miracle as if i had of went down in the centre, I would never have gotten myself back up…With MS we would have to scoot our backsides or turn onto our knees and get up that way, well with nothing to hold onto to grab, shan’t be doing that again in a hurry…
My Richard done all these jobs, I so took him for granted but now I am having to do, or at least give them a try, but as and when I do mange this messes up my MS even more from the waist - stomach, and the legs, and takes some time for me to recover to my usual MS daily norm…
I had always stated n humour to Richard that with his now breathing problems and my MS walking problems " we were the blind leading the blind…"

Jackie…

I know what you mean Jackie, struggling with an autoimmune syndrome. I push myself until I am in a lot of pain, but my counsellor has suggested slowing down and having a break in between doing things. I am trying but I need to do a bit of cementing between the paving slabs to stop the weeds. Might take me a while and never done it before but I’ll try. I hope Simon would be proud of me. Just wish he was here to tell me. Take care Jackie, love Janet xx

Janet…
…it is really hard, my brain says i must do this and that, and at one time I would not have hesitated as I was always a hard worker, and not afraid of hard work, or hard grafting as my father would have said but, my body lets me down, as MS cannot be controlled, I cant control my body, my body controls me but my mind is still very much on the ball as my late father would have said, Oh how I wish my father was here to support me but sadly I lost him 31 years ago, when I was 37, I lost my mother when I was 26…

Yes we seem to be at that stage of wanting to make our partners proud of us, proud of how we are making our-his home, all we want now is for him or her to walk through that door and see the happy and surprised look on their faces to say they approve and how nice our home is now looking…

Jackie…sending a ((( hug )))

Do you get frustrated with yourself Jackie, not being able to do what you used to be able to? I do. I worked full time at the same job for 26 years, then left to look after Simon. Everything was ‘normal’ and we were content. I was able to do all the housework on my day off, now it takes me days. I’m sorry you lost your mum and dad at a young age. I was 30 when I lost my mum, my dad passed six years ago, but I hadn’t seen him since I was little. I used to be devastated when we lost one of our dogs, and he would always say, even though you can’t see them, they are here with you and always in your heart. Now I’m saying it to myself but I wish so much he was here. Take care and no more daredevil stunts. Love Janet xx

Janet…
…yes frustrated and angry…my life was going along just like anyone else’s, then MS came along out of the blue at the age of 64…This is the time myself and Richard should have been enjoying our retirement years, and together…MS has taken away one of my greatest pleasures, walking dogs…well just generally walking in a manner that most people walk…

Jackie…

Jackie,
Both of us would have still been at work, as I just missed out of retiring at 60, if nothing had changed. I know changes happen but I never dreamed that Simon would not be with me. We were together everyday the last two years, 24/7, as I left work to look after him. So part of me has gone with him. I just do the same things everyday. I’m really sorry about how your ms is stopping you doing what you enjoy, walking and having a dog. We can only keep going as Richard and Simon would want us to.
Take care, Janet. Xx

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