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Don't know how to cope

MissTodd's picture
MissTodd
Posts: 28
Joined: Jan 2011

My 42 year old husband, lost his fight October 13th 2010, diagnosed on march 13th 07. I don't feel like I'm ever going to get off the roller coaster. My husband was in the hospital at the end of June '10 for procedure. The doctors sent him home 10 days later July 2nd, with hospice saying, "there is nothing more we can do for you". That day is the day I know he gave up. He never wanted to go out for a walk with me or take a drive for no reason. He slept during the day, stayed up all night long. When it got to the point he was fading away, he realized it was to late and told me he wasted so much time.

There were days at the end that my husband would leave the house unlocked, walk 5 blocks for a news paper and walk back. Not thinking about what he was doing. He would put glass bowls on the stove top because he could not remember how to use the microwave. At some point I had to put my husband in a nursing home. I was so afraid for him.

My daughter, his step wanted to come home from college to help me but I never wanted to burden her. My husband didn't want her to see him like he was (always caring about others).

I know it takes time. Its now just over 3 months. I sat home crying on Thanksgiving, Christmas too. I can't talk to my family about my feelings. I don't think they understand. I haven't heard from his family since the funeral. Somedays are good, most days are not.

I miss him so much and I don't know what to do, or how to deal with the hurt in my heart. I've been to counseling a couple of times but always felt worse when I left.

Thank you for listening (reading), Amy

Beckymarie
Posts: 358
Joined: Aug 2009

Amy,
I sorry for your loss. I too lost my husband 7 months ago and I wish I could say it gets better but so far it has not. I've just returned from a support group for young widows/widowers. There were 6 of us, each with our own story but all dealing with the same pain. We all agreed that no one understood what we were going through unless they too had lost a spouse. I felt a connection with each of them. There is no short cut to grief. You probably will feel worse after counseling for awhile. I'm told it will get better with time. Hang in there.
Becky

JoycesSon
Posts: 6
Joined: Dec 2010

Amy,
I cannot think of losing my wife she is the rock of support for my grief. I lost my Momma on December 17, 1987 to breast cancer. I was a 19 year old boy who watched his Mommy slip away and I closed her eyes so my poor Dad who left briefly didn't have to see them. This year the loss of my Mom hit me more I guess due my Dads health depleating due to diabetas. Surround yourself with people who love you or at least talk with them such as your daughter as much as your can. Don't feel you are a burden to people they want to help. I talk to my Mom on a regular basis I know she is still looking over me that is my belief. Find people of support fiends who ever you can. One day recently my dogs Freddy and Cluso sat with me while I cried when my wife wasn't around at the time due to me feeling a bit more emotional this year. Remember the good times to keep him alive. I didn't think of my Mom very often for years and I am afraid I may have lost memories. I started remembering to keep from losing them. Memories such as my Momma reading to me at bed time, making me lunch the simple things. I found a Yoda hand puppet my mom bought me at my Dad's house. My wife wasn't so pleased I put it on the top of the Christmas tree as a joke :-) It will be hard but think of the good times to replace the recent bad times. This year I gave more to others during the holidays since I have struggled with the holidays for years. I find making others happy helps but also think of your own future happiness.
Take care of yourself, Britt

MissTodd's picture
MissTodd
Posts: 28
Joined: Jan 2011

Britt,
I love the Yoda puppet. I didn't want to even do Christmas this year but my Daughter and I thought it would be nice. We even went and got a live tree, my husband always liked live trees. I found his "Simpsons Christmas" figures and put them out this year.
It felt like they needed to be there. Amy

Hondo's picture
Hondo
Posts: 5601
Joined: Apr 2009

I too and sadden to hear about you lost, I fear everyday for my wife should something happen to me we been married for over 36 years, she is the best thing that ever happened to me and I thank God for her everyday.

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

HI,
You say you've been to counseling, but has it been in a group or one on one? I've been going one on one since April. My husband died on Mar. 25th and it was traumatic and felt like I was going to totally crack up! I'm also taking Zoloft which has helped alot and have been slowly decreasing the dosage. Hate taking drugs, so hopefully I'll be off in spring.
Try to get out with friends also. It helps so much to talk to someone about it. Can't believe you haven't heard from his family. Do they live close to you? Maybe they're waiting for you to call them. Keep in touch! "Carole"

bingles
Posts: 120
Joined: Mar 2010

I wish I could say it gets better and maybe it does...I lost my husband this passed April...he died of Lung Cancer.....it was a six week time span from diagnosis to death...a frightening roller coaster for sure.
The holidays were hard...but they are over...and now we look to the spring when things are new and bright again.
We are in a new year.
I tried meds and for me they just didn't work....I went to a berevement group sponsored by the hospice that took care of us....that helped some.
Now I just go day to day...I do something that the berevement counselor suggested....pick a time in the day that was special for you and your husband....mornings over coffee....evening watching tv..whatever was special for you and go there often and talk to him....or journal....just speak to the heavens..and than move on with your normal activity...she calls it purposefull grief..its helpful.
I had a funny thing happen in the grocery store...met a gal I hadn't seen in awhile...we had one of those impromtu catch up sessions right next to the ground round...anyways..I ended up telling her about Bills passing...and it was the first time I was able to tell the tale without crying....it was a magical moment and for me told me that I was moving forward.
You don't get passed it..you have to though it....it hurts....but its just lifes circle !
Come here often...this board is full of folks just like us !
Pat

MissTodd's picture
MissTodd
Posts: 28
Joined: Jan 2011

Thanks Pat..
I'm not sure what I need for myself. If I did would I be here?
I have a journal but haven't been there for a while. I do alot of talking to myself. If my dogs do something wrong, I say out loud to my husband, "look what your dogs have done".
I go outside in the evenings and talk to the stars. I tell my husband good night, or if its early in the a.m I tell 'um good morning.
I just need to find myself, again. (any hint on where to start?)...
Amy

lilli1020
Posts: 114
Joined: Jul 2010

So sorry for your loss...I know you've heard that 100's of times, but I mean it hon! Journaling has helped me tremendously...even if it's just copying a poem or quote or favorite song..it just helps. Of course the drugs help, but I've been on them so long for depression, I guess I always will be. Crying helps you heal...for some reason it helps to just let it out and you usually feel better afterward. The absolutely best thing for me is exercise. I work out at a gym but what I love most is zumba and yoga. You meet really nice people there and become a group of new friends that don't know about you and you kind of escape it all there. You just have to get through it, no way around it and come out on the other end sometime a better person who goes on with your life. Best of luck to you and take care of yourself and do what makes YOU feel better...the hell with everyone else right now!

Blessings, Gayle

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

Pat,
It's great that you could talk to someone and tell her about your husband without crying. I never thought I'd get to that point, but it really does get better. I lost my husband the end of March from lung cancer also. He had been diagnosed in January, so survived about the same time as your husband. Only he had a rare side effect to one of the chemos, "Avastin".
When it first happened all I did was lay on the couch and cry. But found out that when I finally did venture out of the house and saw friends, that I started doing better.
I'm so happy today cause I've been seeing a counselor since April. Had gone every week for quite awhile, then went to once a month. Well today when I saw her I said "hey, I don't think I need to come here anymore"! We talked for an hour and she told me how proud she was that I have come so far in only 10 months. I'm still on 25mg. of Zoloft, but am decreasing that also and by March should be off completely.
She also told me that if I start thinking of the traumatic death he had, to try and think of happy or funny things that we did. It does help!
Anyhow, now I'm rambling, so I'll just say "hang in there". Take it one day at a time!!
Keep in contact so I know how you're doing. Carole

twggnr
Posts: 1
Joined: Jan 2011

Amy,
Our stories sound so similar. I lost my 42 year old husband on September 5, 2010 after a two year battle with colon cancer. The only way to move forward is accepting the change that is happening in your life and to move forward. I have three boys, 7, 12 and 14. The holidays were brutal. I have prided myself on traditions that we have had for the boys since they were born. This year I couldn't face those traditions. They don't fit without my husband. I am trying to find new ways and the new me. I have been in counseling for the two years we fought this horrible disease. I live in a small town and have access to an incredible cancer center for families. They provide counseling and any help we need for free. Check your neighborhood. I am sure there is a similar program. I have recently joined the gym and began swimming. I take the kids with me and we have a great time. I have put myself on the list again. It is very hard to figure out what I enjoy. My husband was always most important in the last two years and my childrens needs were always next. Medication also helps. I had to go on an antidepressant the last 6 months of his life. I hope to be off by this summer, however what ever helps us get through another day is okay. One day at a time and some days that is to much and I focus on one minute at a time. I lost my best friend, lover and so much more on September 5, 2010. Others can say they understand but until you are in our shoes watching the strong, wonderful man you love be consumed with this illness you can not understand. Just stay focused on yourself and today. The reason for all this will come to light one day. Good luck. Tanya

MissTodd's picture
MissTodd
Posts: 28
Joined: Jan 2011

Thank you, everyone for the encouraging words. As I sit with my thoughts, I know part of the issue I am dealing with is being alone. Again!! When my daughter went back to school it was bitter sweet. I am able to do things, but on the other hand I'm alone doing them.
I carry my journal with me to work everyday, its a start now all I have to do is open it and write. I also made a mental note, (which I had to write down) to call the cancer center that has helped in the past. I think its time to talk to someone.
I got a message from a friend of my husband that if I need to talk he is there. I know, I know before anyone tells me, I will take him up on that offer. I just don't want to feel like a burden to anyone. Plus, I have asked for help in the past. Help to take my husband to treatment, a drs appt. I (we) have been let down, mainly from his family.
I'm strong willed, a stubborn individual with a hard candy shell..(humor). Accepting help is NOT easy for me to do.
Tanya, thank you for sharing your story, it helped, really. I know what you mean about the holiday traditions. I was not able to do this year what we have done in the past, it wasn't right. I wish you and your boys the best.
I don't want to sit and let the world pass me by because my best friend is not here physically, but I know he will always be with me.
Forever isn't is long as it used to be... Amy

ktlcs's picture
ktlcs
Posts: 360
Joined: Jan 2010

Being alone just s&%@s! I lost my love, my best friend, the person I cared most about in mthe world on July 17. I don't know how I feel or what to do. Becoming reclusive and spending my time crying on the couch didn't make me feel better (though sometimes I can't help it) going out and trying to have a good time didn't help, I wished he could have been with me and then felt guilty. I finally went to the Dr for meds, between those and a counselor I've begun to see I think I have just started making some progress. Baby steps and sometimes 1 step forward, 2 steps back, but moving forward in inches. Maybe it does get better? I hope so for all of us!

Kathy

junklady's picture
junklady
Posts: 88
Joined: Aug 2009

We are all alone with grief. I agree it's tough. The moments you just start to cry when you hear a song or see some little thing that reminds you of them. My husband passed away Aug. 29th., Hasn't been that long, but I'm trying hard to move forward. Good days and bad. Haven't heard from anyone since the service, sad to say, guess they are involved in their own lives. I continue to write in my journal, go to the gym, zumba dance is really good. Learning to shoot pool, target practice, restoring an old camp trailer. My kids have been my only support, trying to keep me involved in as much as possible. That's good, but when night comes and you are home alone, that is when the hurt begins. I really don't have any answers, just wanted to share what I do. Remember, that the love of our life will always be with us.
Thinking of all of you and take care.

Cyndi

Beckymarie
Posts: 358
Joined: Aug 2009

I think keeping busy is the key in dealing with this grief process. Not always easy to do, hard to get motivated sometimes. Coming home to an empty house is a &%@&>!Not sure I will every get used to that. My Terry has been gone 7 months and felt I was doing better early on, but having a tough time right now. Will make my list of things to get done today and get started. Peace to all.
Becky

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1560
Joined: Nov 2009

Hello Amy
I too am sorry for your recent loss. I lost my dad to esophageal cancer in March. I just wanted to say that you look at Bingles, Junklady, and my posts. We have all gotten a little better as the months have passed. We have learned to move on and give a little time each day to talk or write to our loved ones. So happy to hear you are journaling. I love my journal. I often think and know that coming to this site and posting is also a journal. Give yourself time, come here often, keep up that journaling! Welcome to our family. We are always here for you. Pat and Junklady I am so proud of you!
Tina in Va

bingles
Posts: 120
Joined: Mar 2010

...we could all sit in the same room?? share a pot of our beverage of choice ( meaning coffee or tea... ; )) and see both the pain as well as the hope in each others eyes.
We all seem to share the exact set of horrific circumstances....and have lost people that were and still are as vital to our exhistance as the air we breathe.
We are all some pretty tough ladies and I know that the loved ones we have lost would be incredibly proud of us.
I had one of those funky moments of lose today....Verizon was here to trouble shoot my DSL and I was a nervous wreck that they were going to mess something up and I felt very alone....but handled it well....obviously they fixed my DSL and no they didn't mess anything up....but a short appointment turned out to be 3 hours...thought I was going to have 2 guys for dinner....been awhile since I shared a meal with a man let alone 2... ;)
Keep moving forward...
Pat

grandmafay's picture
grandmafay
Posts: 1610
Joined: Aug 2009

If you are ever in Northern California, give me a call. Just PM me and I'll email you my phone number. Fay

PS I like chai.

lilli1020
Posts: 114
Joined: Jul 2010

Yes....that would be awesome. Anybody near Grand Rapids Michigan????

Beckymarie
Posts: 358
Joined: Aug 2009

How about around Boston, MA?

bingles
Posts: 120
Joined: Mar 2010

Close but no cigar....Becky....Central Jersey here....oh and Fay....I love Earl Gray...

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1560
Joined: Nov 2009

Hey Pat and all the "Tough Ladies"
I was born and raised in Central Jersey Pat! Ocean Township/Asbury Park area. My parents retired to Virginia in 2004, we followed them! If any of you are ever in the Virginia area let me know. Let's see my beverage of choice would have to be some Lemon Zest Tea! Love and hugs to you all. Keep up the good work moving forward! See you soon.
Tina in Va

debbieg5's picture
debbieg5
Posts: 168
Joined: Nov 2010

As I have been reading through this thread (came upon it a little late) i was thinking the same thing...wouldn't it be great to have all of us in the same room to talk, share stories about our loved one and encourage each other.

I guess it shouldn't be surprising considering the board we are on, but it still just seems eerie that so many of us have lost our husbands in the last few months. the start of 2011 has been a rough one for many. My husband, Ken, passed away on January 8. He had been battling throat cancer for the last 8 months. this was his second fight. the first one was in 2007 and although it was tough, he made it through. I expected no different this time but it wasnt' meant to be.

It has only been 5 weeks so things are still a little raw some times. I think keeping busy is the key to sanity. I have no choice since I have 3 kids (2 at home, 1 at college) and am trying to catch back up at work. Focusing seems to be one of my biggest problems right now. I know what needs to be done but just can't seem to get the mental focus to do it some times.

so here's to our virtual, widow support group....you ladies can raise your cup of tea if you like, I'll raise my glass of Riesling. :-)
Hugs to you all.
Debbie

grandmafay's picture
grandmafay
Posts: 1610
Joined: Aug 2009

I can assure you that having trouble focusing is normal, whatever normal is. I lost my husband almost 16 months ago. I still have trouble focusing at times. Those first few months were particularly hard, though. I had to be particularly careful in the car. I figured that out when I scraped the car on the garage. After that I made a mental note to always center myself before driving. Take care, Fay

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