Writing the Christmas cards

I have spent the last couple of hours writing my Christmas cards, and it is the first time in 66 years that I have signed them just from me. I did think about sending them from the two of us but my children are already worried about my mental state so I thought better of it. It is already six months since Bill died but I am not really making much progress. First there was the funeral, then 3 weeks ago the inquest, followed last Monday by the internment of his ashes. Tomorrow I am going to a memorial service for those who have died this year in the locality. I wonder if, after all if that, and Christmas, I may be able to concentrate on getting better. Still no appointment from Cruse so I think I’ll look elsewhere for counselling. Best wishes. Eileen

Hi Eileen know what you mean about the signing just your name I feel the same and I’m four years down this dark lonely path, I don’t send too many cards now I give money to charity. It still feels to me sometimes that it’s getting worse instead of better. I don’t think it does get better you just get a bit stronger to cope with it. Cruse seems to be stretched to the limit I had the same problem four years ago and ended up seeing a private counsellor. It is difficult as you have to get a connection with them and I didn’t a friend of mine recommended a good one she found so if I get stuck in the future I will ring her but in the meantime just try and get through. There is no magic wand and no time limit on grief you mention you have a family I don’t so have found it difficult as I have no one to reminisce with. It is still very early days for you and this being your first Christmas will be a difficult one I hope you get through it the best you can best wishes Marilyn x

Thank you for responding to my posting, Marilyn. I’m sorry that you don’t have a family to turn to as it helps ease the pain a little. Mine have been very good to me but they have now gone back to their busy, working lives and seem to think that I should be over the worst by now. Little do they realize just how much I am lost without their father. Sometimes I feel as if I am turning the corner and then something very small happens and I am back to that very dark place again. I went to the memorial service this afternoon and it wasn’t too bad after all. Trouble was, my son brought me home, and I had to face the empty flat again. I find the loneliness unbearable as I live in a sheltered flat where I can’t even get a pussycat for company. I shall put on my best face over Christmas for the sake of the little ones but my heart isn’t in it and I just want it to be over. Best wishes. Eileen x

So many things that you don’t realise till you loose someone close how hard just getting through the day can be. If you where your husbands carer you might be able to get some free bereavement counciling via your local carers charity ours is NEWCIS in North Wales they give six sessions free .Ive learnt that a Close bereavement changes absolutely every aspect of your life so I try to do things things I haven’t done before and go to new places that don’t have memories I know this is avoidance but it’s the only way I can cope x

Hi Eileen, My sympathies to you. I am going through the same thing, weird signing just your own name in the cards isnt it. Its my first time after 46yrs, wife passed nine months ago. Further, its very strange, ive only received two cards so far, when most years theres dozens!. Thinking maybe friends think it inadvisable to send happy xmas cards maybe? …Its going to be hard to get through Xmas, but im determined to make of it what i can, as i know my wife would have wanted that, for the sake of the children and grandchildren. Best wishes to you…John.

I know exactly what you mean, Kunzlecake. When I’m out shopping, I still look round for my husband, who had a habit of getting lost. My life has changed so badly that it no longer has any purpose. I do have family but they have all gone back to their own busy lives and I get the feeling that they think I should be getting over the worst by now. I doubt if I will ever come to terms with it and hope that, at 86, I my loneliness won’t drag on too long. Best wishes, Eileen

Hi Eileen so sorry to hear about your husband I don’t think anyone understands unless they have lost someone who they truly loved. From my experiences of losing Dad four years ago and now losing Mum there isn’t a time limit on grief and it annoys me when people have that pull yourself together attitude as the pain is unbearable and some days i don’t want to get out of bed let alone carry on as if everything is okay. Its got to be done at your pace try going to places you didn’t with your husband do things you’ve never tried before thats how i am trying to cope. People keep saying remember the happy times well at the moment even the happy times get me in tears make a list of things to try I wish i could give you a big hug that would help both of us x . I have decided in the New year i am going to set up my own caring business in honour of Mums memory I am thinking along the lines of calling it “a new lease of life” or “young at heart” my mum was 82 but her mind was like a 30 year old i am going to treat my senior clients with compassion, fun outings companionship nothing rushed, home cooked meals and try to get my sense of humour back . I have applied for a advanced DBS check getting insurance and going to do caring courses even though i looked after Mum for 41 years i need to know i will be doing everything correctly and i am doing this as if i am still caring for Mum its given me something to focus on xx

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Hello, John and thank you for responding to my posting. I have had just one card so far, from my sister, and I hope that I don’t get any more. I suppose people feel that they must send one or else we will think they aren’t interested any longer. A difficult one for us all. I am heartily sick of Christmas and just want it to be over. I am also going to do my best for the sake of the little ones in my family. All I really want is my husband back but that can never be so I am trying my best to come to terms with it. Best wishes. Eileen

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Hey John your a hero I wish i could pull myself together to face Xmas but we don’t have kids or grandchildren. i know Mum would be shouting at me but feel like I’ve had the legs kicked from under me but then its only three weeks today

Hi Eileen, and Kunzlecake (thats a mouthfull isnt it!) It is a real nightmare we are having to endure isnt it. Im no hero Kunzle, far from it, wish i was!. We have been placed in this awful predicament and we have to endure it, theres nothing else for it.
Im the same…Hear songs on radio that bring on the tears, Photo,…tears…coming across personal items…tears…it goes on and on. Because they are not psychically here, doesnt mean they cannot be spiritually around us. Things ive found helps, is talking to her (they say they hear you) Meditation is very good, Wedding ring round my neck on a chain (wouldnt fit finger) also a small locket filled with some of her ash (could have a locket of hair) then they are with you always. It can help to light a candle in the evening as a memorial to them, each night, or weekly, maybe on the day of the week of passing?.
Another thing i have is a couple of very small toy teddys she had and took everywhere, Well i have them now in the car. I take them everywhere. I go to some of our favorite places now on my own, and am able to as long as i have one of the teddy s in my hand. May sound ridiculous, but it works for me, as before i thought of it, i just couldn’t visit places we had been.
Well, i hope you can find a path of peace for yourselves, it its difficult…John xx

Hello Eileen, as you know it is just over three years since my husband died and the first Christmas I did not send cards to anyone. I received loads wishing me a wonderful Christmas and they went in the bin (how can I have a wonderful Christmas 12 weeks after my husband died,) insensitive idiots. I signed all the gift tags on the presents to our family from both of us as the money in the bank was jointly ours and I bought the presents with that money. The year after I did the same, no Christmas cards just presents to the family with both our names on the gift tags, even our sons when they gave me their cards and presents signed them to Mum and Dad as they could not bear to leave their dad’s name off. I have since done the same even to this Christmas coming, I have bought a lot of new born baby clothes for our new grandchild due in January and signed the card from Grandma Sheila and Granddad Peter. As long as I live and receive my husbands private pension he is also paying for these gifts so his name is entitled to go on the card as he worked 50 years to give us a decent retirement. For the first time in four Christmases since Peter died I have put up a small Xmas tree for our young grandchildren, who are spending Christmas at our home with their parents so I feel it is something I must do for them. It still feels like yesterday when I lost him and I still hurt so much. I just want to be young again with him and live our lives all over again. I do what I feel is right for me, I don’t want his name to be wiped off the face of the earth, I want his name and him to be remembered. All my money I save on cards goes to The British Lung Foundation and a little bit more besides. So Eileen do what you want, put his name on the cards and to heck what anyone thinks about it, for me it was a way of keeping him involved in what I was doing. Take care. Sheilaxx

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Hello Marilyn, it is me again, Sheila. I saw your comments about not having anyone to reminisce with and it is exactly how I feel, I have no-one who remembers me as a young girl/woman apart from all my family who have now gone, no-one to talk about going out dancing, the clothes we wore, riding pillion on a massive motorbike and giving my parents a bad headache. I think that is why I spend so much time thinking about the past and looking at photos and watching our wedding video because we were young and in love with the world at our feet. Our eldest son asks me a lot about what we did in the 60’s and what it was like, he says he wishes he had experienced that era. I tell him about the eight net underskirts I wore under my circular skirted dress to go bopping at the local dance hall, wearing my 4 ins heels, my hair lacquered so high it would not move in a gale force wind, the Teddy boy boyfriends I had before my dad put his foot down, and most important, the night I met his dad. It is as clear as a bell, I close my eyes and see everything, even the style and colour of the clothes I wore. I just want to live my life all over again. Love Sheila xxxx

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Hi Sheila. yes, know what you mean there, born 1951, so loved the mid to late sixties era, girls in there mini skirts (including wife) Bell bottom trouser, Winkle pickers, and platform shoes, colourful cloths. Sixties music. Disco dancing. Top groups of the time that actually visited towns for concerts! Mods and Rockers. Scooters and Bikes.
Love to be able to relive some of those wonderful times. The nearest one gets to the times is visiting YouTube…John x

Hi John, yes, you are so right, god bless You Tube. Funnily enough I have been downloading some songs from the late 50’s and early 60’s tonight as I convert them to MP3 or MP4 and put them on my SD card so I can play them on my Bluetooth Speakers. I downloaded Joe Brown and the Bruvvers, Tommy Roe and many more, as I can sit and listen to the ones they used to play at the Mecca. I saw the Beatles live, Roy Orbison, Cliff Richard, Billy J Kramer. and many,many more. You are 8 years younger than me so like you say you were more towards the back end of the 60’s. I got married in 1967 when my late husband was 21. I will say though, I loved Glam Rock. I wanted a Lambretta scooter, but my dad said I could not afford it and would not let me get it on Hire Purchase. They did not wear helmets in those days and if they did it would never have gone over my beehive hair do. The mini skirts, I was 9 months pregnant in 1970 wearing a mini dress and 4 ins heels, what was I thinking. Take care.

Im a sixties baby but still remember mini skirts in suede Mum and i both had a fringed waistcoats and i remember doing a dress up photoshoot of Mum when i was seven and I still have the images . I am now a professional photographer 50 years later thanks for giving me a chance to reminisce some happy times its been hard to think of anything other than the last four horrible weeks miss her so much …

Hi Sheila 4" heels I remember them, can’t walk in1" heels these days!! Sometimes Brett and I would sit down to watch a film and get chatting about things and reminisce and the film would be forgotten. That’s what I miss we had nice holidays and I go through the photos to keep the memories fresh.
We have dreadful weather in the midlands at the moment and I have been out today coming home to a dark empty flat is depressing but hopefully the weather will improve. Take care love Marilyn x

Lol! Sheila. (I know its off topic, but oh well) I am doing the same. Downloading, converting to MP3, and burning to disc, for car player Ha!.
Roy Orbison I love! specially the new album out now. Lol! can imagine a helmet on a beehive! what a thought that brings up. .I have photos of my late wife taken 1971 in a really short mini when she was about 7 months pregnant and high heels, she could hardly walk in them!..Take care…John x

Hi Marilyn. Yes, you have had it bad up there haven’t you!
It is horrible coming home to an empty home. I usually keep a light on, and radio playing when out. It does help, and my Budgie appreciates it to lol! :slight_smile: …John x

Sounds like your mum had a lovely devoted daughter, I have two daughters who lost there mum nine months ago, and are finding the going very hard too. We have been going through hundreds of photos, laughing and crying. They tell me they so miss the only person they could ever confide anything to, which I so understand.
Keep the memories alive…she is always with you…John x

Hi John it snowed from 1.30 in the morning till about 6 last night and today it is freezing the path is like a skating rink. 4" heels not advisable Sheila. Role on the summer x