I read your original posting and for some reason it made me stop and think. Your reference to the doctor was the ‘hook’ that made me stop and write.
I’ve sat here for a while trying to find the right way to express my feelings and relate them back to yours, I have found that very hard to do so I have decide to just tell you what’s happened to me and hope that you find the right path for you through the turmoil’s of loosing a loved one.
My wife Josie died just under 4 years ago after a 6 year hard fought battle with cancer. She was 42.
My daughter (then 12) and I where at her bedside at St Johns Hospice when she died. The hospice gave Josie the dignity she deserved and us the support we craved. I have said so so so many times how wonderful the hospice was, I still spout it from the rooftops to anyone that will listen. And to a few that wont listen.
The point of this was that when Josie died. I did too. I fell apart.
I hated everyone. I pushed everyone away, I was aggressive, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t stay awake. I couldn’t be alone and hated being with people. I just became one giant contradiction and fell deeper and deeper into a long dark tunnel. But secretly, looking back, I was comfortable there. Being there confirmed my loss, it gave it validity, Jo died, I was sad,” Look how sad I am!”.
My family with the best intentions in the world took me to the doctors for anti depressants and sleeping tablets. I had months and months of counselling. I never really ‘bought’ into it at all. I would tell people what I thought they wanted to hear, I guess I lied to them and myself.
The lowest point was 3 days in Weller wing at Bedford Hospital. I was sectioned because of my mental state.
Again another round of counselling and more damn tablets. And more lies.
I then met a lady who after a few weeks of private one to one sessions asked me to imagine my life as a window, “Sit in front of the window and describe what you see”
I said to the left of the window I see Josie being diagnosed, in the middle I see her death and to the right of the window is now. She said “Walk up to window, Open it,lean out the window, and look left”
That was a pivotal moment. I had forgotten about life before Jo’s diagnosis. I had forgotten the many good times, the fun the giggles and the love. I had forgotten it all, actually I had chosen to ignore it but the result was the same.
My ‘look left’ moment was such an obvious thing for me to do, but the pain and the desire to stay in the dark had clouded me.
The chemical help offered by the doctor and the counselling offered seemed to push me back in to the darkness. I think it was because I fought against it all, I never really believed it would help, therefore it didn’t.
The other realisation was that Josie dying was sad. It bought out my depression. I fought against my depression. Recently I have decided not to fight it. I embrace it. I get depressed from time to time and I feel the desire, the need for the darkness. For me those periods last moments hours or weeks…but they pass. When they pass the light returns. From the moment I ‘accepted’ them, they haven’t come back. I’m waiting for them but the haven’t. Maybe my depressive periods have had their own ‘look left’ moment as well and left?
I know that this doesn’t really offer any great panacea to how you feel at the moment and for that I apologise but all I can say is…try to find your look left moment. Its there, somewhere.
Best of luck Pete.