So sick of feeling so vulnerable...

Hi, is anyone else extremely tired of feeling very vulnerable after their loved one’s death? I know it’s inevitable - you can’t go through a close bereavement without feeling blown apart by it. But god, it’s been a full year now of feeling completely devastated, exhausted. Some positive changes too but I feel often like when I’m having good days or whatever that I’m like a human sponge and soaking up other people’s emotions, good and bad… I don’t know how to rebuild my life because I still can’t comprehend what’s happened. So sick of it all. Just want to feel a bit more resilient again.

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Hi, you do sound feed up and miserable. I wish I had a magic wand so I could make it all go away. Enjoy the good days and try to ignore the bad. My thoughts are with you. S xx

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I know what you mean about feeling vulnerable. I had a builder doing some work in my garden and when I queried some of the costs he (who is a neighbour) got very sensitive about it. I just couldn’t cope. Part of the reason I was checking it was because I knew my husband would have and he would have not have wanted me to be ripped off. Also I felt very sensitive about the job as it was a project my husband had started before he got ill. I have no resilience at the moment the slightest problem really throws me.

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Totally get why you would feel upset by that, it sounds so wrapped up with your husband. Well done for looking out for yourself. It really doesn’t matter if your builder was offended, you did the right thing. I am just pinging around from one upset to another… I have always been very sensitive but things have reached another level in bereavement. Sending hugs x

This sounds very familiar. I feel like I spend most of my time managing my grief: reading blogs, meditating looking for reassurance that I am not a lone crazy person because of how I’m going through this. Yet when I try to meet with friends I am not interested in their small talk. So sorry this vulnerable feeling is hurting us all so much. Wish I had some good advice.

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Pinging from one emotion to another is just right. My experience too

Yes I do a lot of grief work too, there is so much out there and I find it does help a bit with the isolated feelings. Hard to know what else to do as friends haven’t really been very good about it. You’re definitely not crazy, we just don’t have many ways of grieving openly in our culture so we all feel totally alone with it. I sometimes like to imagine if all us bereaved people could all have a collective howl, it may not be a pretty picture but I’m sure we would feel a lot less alone afterwards!

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Totally true with the emotions, just when you feel a very slight feeling of I’m doing ok I do something that easily reminds me of my mum ( who I lost 7 weeks ago) and the emotions start, guilt, sadness and anxious, I’d brought my mum some cappuccino sachets to have as she wasn’t eating, so I thought anything to keep her drinking she did have one of them, after she passed I brought the rest home for me to use, I’ve just had the first one this morning and it reminded me straight away of my mum, so I sat crying while I drank it with those horrible feelings of guilt and sadness, life is so cruel sometimes, I don’t know how people get through the loss of a loved one, I miss her so much, being on here helps to Express how you feel and people understand which is so comforting, it’s a sad journey were all on together.

Sorry to hear that Lynn. I’ve been there with food and drink - after she died, we brought home the elderflower drink that my Mum liked in the hospital, it’s still there on the counter at my parents’ house a year later! It just means so much doesn’t it, the things we were able to feed them to bring comfort. But it’s all mixed up with the pain of seeing our Mums so vulnerable. But yeah, I don’t know either how anyone gets through. All I would say is I’m still alive a year later so I suppose I must be getting through somehow even if I feel like I’m not. It’s so good to connect about all this x

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A collective howl. You made me smile. It would be a great release for all of us. But that’s only a bandage isn’t it? The pain returns at some point and we would once again find ourselves hurting.

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Glad it made you smile Barb11. Nothing is even a bandage for the pain, even howling. But it would be nice to be able to grieve openly, not feel like the pain is somehow taboo for others…

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I know what you mean about foods, I find I have to keep busy, when I have the energy and I started going through my kitchen cupboards, thinking they would be relatively safe from reminders but I found sauces and chutneys that only my husband ate. Hard to throw away but also hard to keep. All triggers to remind me he is never coming back and things to make me cry again.

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It’s hard to toss perfectly good food, but they are painful reminders. I kept one freezer item that he labeled and dated. Don’t want to forget his handwriting. How pathetic is that ?

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It’s not pathetic. You will throw it away when you are ready or maybe even eat it. There are so many reminders around us when we have shared a life together. I am finding I have to get rid of some of them to make it less painful to see them daily. Other people seem to want to keep everything as it makes them feel like they are still around. I am keeping special moments which I can look at in the future when it is less sore. The wierdest thing I could not through away was an iliostomey bag. My husband already had a stoma when I met him and it beacame part of our lives and I got so used to it being part of him. He had quite a stock of bags as he was always scared of running out so of course they seemed an obvious thing to dispose of but I have had to keep one as it was so part of him.

All the little connections. We took home from the hospital a few of the little oral sponges that Mum had her last drinks from. They’re obviously not used but just the feeling of the sponge on my fingertips is so transporting to those last few days. I’ll never chuck it out as for some reason its comforting. Do what you need to do I’d say. Comfort comes from the most unexpected places!

I completely understand about feeling vulnerable. My husband died of Cancer in March this year and I remember looking at the people around me as though they were strangers. I put an extra lock on the door and questioned everybody’s motives. I couldn’t sleep at night for fear, yet I was constantly exhausted and could fall asleep in the day at the drop of a hat.

I find comfort in the oddest things. Yet there are triggers that come from left field too. One thought that gives me comfort, is the fact that the amount of pain I’m feeling, means I was so lucky to be in such a loving relationship. Bitter sweet but it works for me.

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Hello
I feel extra be vulnerable as O felt my mum and I were a team, who backed each other up and discussed things, and made decisions afterwards.
It’s the knowledge that it’s all on me now, I am totally responsible with no one who knows me so well to discuss it with. Even if we disagreed, even if we annoyed each other; even though I know the last few years as she became more Ill I tried not to trouble her so much, I just miss her company

I’m so sorry to hear about your husband Musician. My sleep has been rubbish too. Definitely been on hyper-alert for the whole year, like I don’t really understand how anything or anyone works anymore…

As torturous as the pain can be, for me it’s kind of slowly becoming something that is just with me all the time. I don’t think it will go away and yeah strangely there’s comfort in that. Not that I want to suffer but I loved my Mum more than I can say so that’s just the reality of still loving her.

You sound like a good team Helencl, I’m really sorry for your loss. I don’t know if me and Mum were much of a team but she was my mum and I have felt desperately lonely without her.

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Hi Treehugger,
“The amount of pain I am feeling means I was so lucky to be in such a loving relationship”. Oh, how I agree with that. All this pain I am feeling now cripples me, but I would rather be suffering this than have missed out on 57 wonderful, loving, amazing years with Tony. The memories of our life, the love, the friendship, the caring etc. will long outlive the pain.
I am not a fan of Shakespeare, but I think he said something on the lines of ‘it is better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all’.
So true! I wouldn’t have missed it for the world!

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