Widow at 52

Hi
I have never joined anything like this but I am finding coping with the loss of my husband, sole mate and partner very hard.
My husband sadly at the age of 56 lost his battle with lung cancer on the 7th August 2017.
After sorting out funeral, ashes in a fireworks party and all the other clerical joys after loss I have attempted to try and move forward. Accepted all invitations from friends, stuck on the makeup usually cried to the event and cried home but with the belief that things would get easier.
My mother sadly died in 2016 and had been with my father for 59 years so his grief is still strong and I see him daily, have dinner with him most nights and try to help him
I do try to be strong but the run up to Christmas has pushed me back to the pain I felt when my husband first died, I find it so much harder to be strong and am crying and feeling so low.
Friends have been great but seem to feel I need to make a new future for myself but this is too hard to contemplate when all I really want is my old future back. The plans we had, the joy we felt being together and the fun we shared,
At the moment moving forward seems impossible and the loss seems more intense .
I am praying that this is just because of Christmas and once it’s 2nd Jan I will feel stronger and have more energy.
Help community will it be better after Christmas as at the moment the pain and loss is so strong
Thanks xx

Sorry to hear this taity and I hope things start to get better. I lost my partner 4th Augtust 2016 and I still cry every day but I dont have any family to help me I just find talking to his photos a help and when I go to his grave I pretend he is there just asleep and pretend he can hear every word im saying I am retired so dont work I do help in a local charity shop a few hours a week but because they are all younger they resent me being retired (true they do) so THAT isnt working out for me so I dont know how to move forward either. All my friends live apart and miles away so life is very lonely for me too -what keeps me going is knowing thee are other people in the same situation so we can support each other on here I Hope your Christmas isnt too sad I have booked into a hotel alone and just hope it goes ok for me.

Christmas always stirs the emotions. I lost my husband 18 months ago and my daughter 4 months ago. most of the time I keep myself busy but every now and then the tears catch up with me again. I have joined a sunshine 60s club and walking group ,both of which have increased my circle of friends. its just a case of finding a new way of life. I`m not the same person I was a couple of years ago!

So sorry to hear of your loss,

Hi Taity,
I too have never joined anything like this and your message is the only one I have read - not sure I want to read any more!

My husband died the day before yours from a very sudden illness.

I don’t know that I am in a position to give you any advice or to promise you that it will be better after Christmas. It sounds that you and your husband - like me and mine - were living a wonderful life and had a brilliant future to look forward to. I feel the same as you - life now is unbearable and a future without him is almost incomprehensible.

Maybe that is because it is not time to think about the future yet.I don’t think enough time has passed for us to even really adjust to the fact that they have gone. I am going through the motions of normality. From the outside I look like I am coping but inside I am numb. There is no joy any more, everything I do sits on top of the sadness that I carry everywhere.

I, too, accept all invitations in the hope that somehow I will find a solution. Crying all the way there and back is so familiar.

I have just recently been worrying that I am never going to cope with it, that I haven’t actually moved on at all - if I allow myself to examine how I am doing I still feel as bad as I did at the beginning. Maybe that is a common feeling.

My friends advise me to live one day at a time. That is so hard to do - it feels like I have no direction or control over my life at all. But it is about as much as I can do

I live from one ‘event’ to the next. I can’t look any further ahead than that.

Only this week I thought that perhaps I should have some counselling because I am not sure how to move forward - I feel stuck - how can I move forward when I don’t want to let go of what I had.

My wise friend suggested that I make a goal NOT to try and plan a future yet - maybe for six months just give myself time to adjust and then see how I am feeling and maybe give myself another six months.

I think she meant six months from now but I can’t even think about that far ahead so I have not put a definite time on it but know that vaguely, sometime in the new year I will take the future ‘off the shelf’ see if I can face it yet and if not I will put it back up there for a bit longer.

Another thing she said to me was to be kind to myself. I will say that to you too. You are allowed to do and to feel however you want to. It is only 4 months! Look at how much you have coped with that I bet you never thought you would. And you have coped with it while you have been feeling devastated and alone and without half of you by your side. You are strong! But you are also allowed to grieve and be sad. For as long as it takes you. It is your journey - not your friends’.

I think that it isn’t just because it is Christmas that you are feeling the loss more intensely at the moment. I think it is because you feel like you ‘should’ be moving forward and you aren’t actually ready to do so! You are trying to make yourself let go of something that you don’t want to let go of yet. Take the pressure off yourself and hold on to him for a bit longer. There are probably practical things you need to make sure are in place for your life, but emotionally you do not need to move on until you can. If in a few years you are still in the same place then maybe you will need some help but …4 months - that is nothing! (it does feel like it has been an eternity though doesn’t it!)

Thank you for posting on here - writing to you has helped me to process things a little bit (today - tomorrow I might feel differently again!)

Keep plodding on and keep the hope that things will get a bit better - eventually.

xx

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Hi Taity & Ju

I read your posts and feel exactly the same as you. My husband died unexpectedly in October. I miss him so much. We had been married for 32 years and known each other for 40 years. We were together 24/7 as we ran a family business. A couple of weeks before he died I found a lump. We knew immediately what it was because a best friend (Brian) had been having treatment for lymphoma for a year. We were both scared and anxious. Geoff knew how to distract me and we visited all the places that were Special to us. We talked about our lives and all the things we were grateful for ( especially our two sons). We spent a lovely day at the lakes. That night Geoff went to sleep and never woke up. I had to close our business that day. We also heard Brian died unexpectedly the same morning. My stress and anxiety levels went off the scale. I went along to hospital appointments in a trance. Sobbing all the way through. I had a panic attack and collapsed on the floor when I went for a scan. How am I now - paralized with fear most days. Some days I,can’t move from the sofa. On a good day I try to go out for coffee with friends but it always ends with me in tears. I know we had a good life and were lucky to have had so long together but like everyone else on here we didn’t want it to end. I too am struggling with Christmas and telling myself I will ‘get going’ in January. I feel I have lost everything and carrying on seems so hard but I know I have no choice I have to stick around as long as I can for my sons.

Sorry this post is so long and depressing - hope we can all find the strength and courage we need to face the future.

Yvonne

I am sorry this post is so depressing but I am feeling low today.

You sound exactly like me, Yvonne. My husband died in June and we had been married for 66 years. Never apart except when one of us was in hospital. I cannot describe how I feel, and wish I knew how to come to terms with my loss. I do have family living fairly close but they have gone back to their busy, working lives and I feel as if I am being a pain to want to keep talking about their Dad. They must be grieving too as they thought the world of him. Sadly, I am not able to offer you much in the way of comfort as we are both, along with many others on here, in a very dark place. All we can hope for is that once this Christmas is over, we may start to feel a bit better when the evenings get lighter and we can look forward to spring. Take care, and maybe consider counselling. I have been on the waiting list for Cruse for three months and still have another month to wait, but I will try it to see if it works. Kind regards. Eileen

Sorry, I have posted this onto the wrong thread. Eileen

Hi Eileen

I have considered Councelling because I was feeling so traumatised. I found a lady who helps with ‘loss’ bereavment, cancer etc. I went for a session and told her my story - sobbing all the way through it. She didn’t say a word or ask any questions. She then said ’ time is up, that will be €50.I can book you in next week but then I have 3 weeks off over Christmas.

I decided I couldn’t go back. She can’t change the situation and I’m getting ‘fed up’ telling my story and getting so emotional. I have now got some books about ‘Grief Recovery’ and am hoping to work through them over Christmas to see if they will help.

I have read your story on here and know you live in a retirement flat. I wish I was close by I would come round for a cup of tea and a natter ( as I have done with others in the past) I’m sure talking about our memories to people who understand is a much better therapy.

Sending you a big hug.

Yvonne X

Your posting is very interesting to me, Yvonne, because it was suggested to me that I go for private counselling instead of waiting for Cruse. No way am I going to give my money to anyone calling themselves ‘counsellers’ when they have no idea how to deal with the bereaved, so I am waiting for Cruse. It is free and I have had one visit from them to assess my needs. The lady who came was excellent, and I felt better after talking to her even though she didn’t do any actual counselling. I am sure there are good people out there but also a lot of charlatans.
Yesterday I visited an ex-neighbour of mine who knew my husband well as they used to play cribbage together (I don’t like card games). It did me the world of good because we were able to talk about my husband, and I even found myself laughing at recalling some of the funny things he did. So talking about it is beneficial I’m sure, and this site is the next best thing to face-to-face. i have read several books at the library on grieving and find that it helps me to understand that what I am going through is normal. I began to think I was going mad at one point, and even considered ending it all until I realized how dreadful that would be for my family. I miss my husband so much but he would not have had any quality of life had he recovered so I try to think that he is now at peace and I will see him again one day. With love and best wishes, and a hug for you too. Eileen xx

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