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Silence

mswijiknyc's picture
mswijiknyc
Posts: 421
Joined: Oct 2010

I hope I'm not the only one who has experienced this. Out of all the things that I've been dealing with and working through, this one seems to be the one I just don't know what to do with.

My house is officially too quiet. The TV downstairs is off, I'm not running the humidifier any more, I even turned off the fan upstairs. And I thought the silence would drive me insane. There isn't any more appointments, or doctor calls, or people coming by. It's almost like a bomb went off and the only survivor is me.

For now, me not having anything to do during the day is a nice change of pace. If my body got any more tense from all the stress I thought I might break a bone. So taking a day or two to stay in my PJs and do nothing is great. At some point next week I will start to job hunt, and get myself back into the world at large.

I never had to sleep with the TV on before and now I do. I've never felt like hiding in only one room, but now I do. Everything is too big and too quiet.

Oy.

skipper85's picture
skipper85
Posts: 231
Joined: Sep 2010

At first the silence was deafening so sometimes I would have to keep the radio on and/or the tv. I am fortunate to have my dog Jessie. We grieve together. I am constantly talking with Paul though - asking his business advice - telling him how my day went - what the kids are up to. The change was so radical and so quick. Sometimes I feel like a fish out of water. At first I felt like I was living in a vacuum. Now sometimes I like the quiet.

I have no choice but to be busy. We have a home based business that I'm working twice as hard at. Although sometimes the pressure of not knowing something that Paul always took care of can be overwhelming it's a blessing in disguise. I don't have time to think about my loss or feel sorry for myself.

I would like a day or two to just do nothing but there's always something that has to be done. I never realized how much Paul did around the house until now.

I'm starting to adjust and you will too. You're well-grounded. You're going to be okay but take the time to recover. I didn't have that opportunity and I paid for it by getting sick myslef. Baby yourself for a little while. Then you will be ready to take on the world.

We girls (on this board) have been through a lot. We all need to spend some time recovering.

Here's to a warm climate and an umbrella drink. Who's with me? We can all go to a cyber tropical island :-)

Take care April.

Skipper

zinniemay's picture
zinniemay
Posts: 534
Joined: Mar 2009

April,
I am not in your shoes, but followed your struggles. I know that now it is a different road you are going down,But we are still here for you and have bonded with you.
I hope you go and follow the nursing school , we chatted about. I still want you in my life and your friendship.
You have my # if you ever need to just talk or anything

Hugs
Jennie

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

April,
Remember the song by Simon & Garfunkel called the "Sound of silence"?? That song goes through my head many times since Tom died. I think that's the worst part is Silence! I have a TV in the kitchen and as soon as I walk in the door I turn it on. Or turn the radio on just for noise. Don't have a dog but kind of thinking of maybe getting one, just so it barks when I come home. Crazy huh??
Like many of us have said this is a new life for us and it takes time to adjust. You were so busy with Patrick you didn't have time to relax. So try and do it. Have a glass of wine & read a book. I don't ever think you mentioned if you had kids or anything. Of course ours are grown, but do have 3 beautiful grandsons. One is 6 years old and love having him over to spend the day. There's never any silence when he's around!
So hang in there and remember take one day at a time. Carole

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

April,
Remember the song by Simon & Garfunkel called the "Sound of silence"?? That song goes through my head many times since Tom died. I think that's the worst part is Silence! I have a TV in the kitchen and as soon as I walk in the door I turn it on. Or turn the radio on just for noise. Don't have a dog but kind of thinking of maybe getting one, just so it barks when I come home. Crazy huh??
Like many of us have said this is a new life for us and it takes time to adjust. You were so busy with Patrick you didn't have time to relax. So try and do it. Have a glass of wine & read a book. I don't ever think you mentioned if you had kids or anything. Of course ours are grown, but do have 3 beautiful grandsons. One is 6 years old and love having him over to spend the day. There's never any silence when he's around!
So hang in there and remember take one day at a time. Carole

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

April,
Remember the song by Simon & Garfunkel called the "Sound of silence"?? That song goes through my head many times since Tom died. I think that's the worst part is Silence! I have a TV in the kitchen and as soon as I walk in the door I turn it on. Or turn the radio on just for noise. Don't have a dog but kind of thinking of maybe getting one, just so it barks when I come home. Crazy huh??
Like many of us have said this is a new life for us and it takes time to adjust. You were so busy with Patrick you didn't have time to relax. So try and do it. Have a glass of wine & read a book. I don't ever think you mentioned if you had kids or anything. Of course ours are grown, but do have 3 beautiful grandsons. One is 6 years old and love having him over to spend the day. There's never any silence when he's around!
So hang in there and remember take one day at a time. Carole

luz del lago's picture
luz del lago
Posts: 452
Joined: Jul 2010

My daughter has moved in with me. Everyone was so worried about me being out alone in the country. I felt that I would be fine, as I spent days alone while my love worked. But I am so happy that she has moved in. We give each other space, but when I need her, or visa versa, we are there for each other. I also feared that staying with mom would not allow her the freedom to move forward in her life. But we have agreed that we do this for as long as we are both happy.

When she had to go back to work, the lonliness, quiet and solitude hit me! TV noise actually gave me anxiety. Music made me so sad, especially when I heard one of "our songs". Still working on that silence thing. Sometimes all I can hear is my mind going through everything we went through, what I still have to get done, how I miss him so much... I am glad the weather has been warm enough to sit outide some, the sound of the birds or our pond, I like!

Also love the visits from my 2 yr. old granddughter, but there are still times that I just can't do it for too long. Mainly because I am still trying to get over the exhaustion.

Paperwork can be a distraction, but annoying and aggravating! I have spent hours, collectively, on hold, listening to bad music and going from option 1-7, never really getting to the right person or department! Fortunately, I am very close to be done with this part, and hoping soon all affairs are in order.

Sending all, hugs and prayers for peace at these moments. Or maybe some happy "noise"!

Lucy

Pennymac02's picture
Pennymac02
Posts: 336
Joined: Aug 2010

I never noticed that my refrigerator makes really weird noises at night! A lot of times I have the TV on in one room while I'm on the computer in another, just to combat the deafening silence. And I haven't been sleeping well, but reading your post made me think that its perhaps becuase the house is too quiet. At night when I go to bed the quiet rings in my ears. I have also closed the back bedroom and bathroom off in the house, because with only me here, theres no reason to heat/cool that much extra space. Sigh.

You'll get through this, April, but theres no avoiding it. The only way to get to the other side is to, well, get through. Its a daily adjustment that most people don't understand. And at the risk of sounding snotty, it's different for those of us who lost spouses versus those who have lost other family members. That's been my experiance, anyway. Something about that "two becoming one flesh" thing. The type of grief and sadness I had over losing my mom is completely different that what I fell over Mikes passing, and I was caregiver to both.

P.S. I'm still filling out forms and sending in paperwork daily, and its been six weeks!
Penny

neverquit
Posts: 221
Joined: Oct 2010

Coming from a big Italian family that was really close (and crazy - in a good way), silence was not in my vocabulary growing up. With no kids (although we had a furry one for 16 years, Maggie - a dog) and our dog having passed away in 1999, Mike and I managed to fill the house pretty well with noise for our 31 years of marriage. When we were home, usually we would either be talking or more likely, listening to music (Mike loved music, knew songs and artists names and had a super collection of CD's) or just chilling watching TV. So the silence thing is something that I too hate.

The other two things I hate are that now I realize that when I talk about the things Mike and I do, I must use past tenses (like did instead of do); how that makers me sad. The second thing I hate is that now I find myself having to go back and say "I" instead of "we". For 36 1/2 years it was we (we went together for 5 1/2 years before we got married) and how I still wish it were we.

I have not said it lately here, but I hate cancer; it sucks!!!! As I read the various posts, the devastation, sadness and heartbreak it has caused, and continues to cause, it pisses me off even more (hopefully, that was not offensive). I hope that sometime in the very, very near future, there is a major break though and cancer gets wiped out. It may be too late to have saved Mike and our other loved ones, but it sure would be nice not to lose anyone else to this beast.

I apologize for the rant and going off track here. And I hope that anyone who has lost a loved one finds peace and healing.

Cindy Bear
Posts: 563
Joined: Jul 2009

ah yes, the sound of silence .. it can be deafening. I am so sorry for your loss and can only imagine how hard it is for you. It's a slow painful process, losing someone and then coming to terms with that loss. I think you need to just take care of yourself right now. If it helps, spending a couple of days in bed, in your pjs lounging, or going online and doing some retail therapy or curling up with an old movie, or a good drink.. I think you should turn the tv on or the radio on or the humidifier. .even if you're in the other room, it will comfort you.. and I also think getting out and job hunting will do you a world of good.. right now you just need to keep moving and breathing and get your mind off of things..
Hugs,
Cindy

SamsWife
Posts: 51
Joined: Sep 2007

Hi April-

I hope you're really doing okay - I know you just said the silence gets to you and I loved your quote "I feel like a bomb went off and I'm the only survivor."

I can't relate to a lot of you because I wasn't in love with my husband - and it was his fault - some of you know all of this - I think you do April so I won't go back over everything. I don't have the loss of the love of my life to deal with but I have the unbelievable betrayal to deal with. Having said that, his passing was still such an abrupt change - I spent half of my life with him and then I cared for him through his illness - I wanted to and I wanted to do that for him and the kids - I wanted to love him and have our family whole but he wasn't interested.

Everything changes in an instant - all of a sudden like you said, no doc app't.s, no caregiving, etc. All of a sudden, life is back to "normal". All of a sudden "normal" is so insignificant. How do you just jump back into life without making life and death decisions everyday? It changes us as people doesn't it? It will be a year March 1 since my husband died. I'm still struggling with what to do with myself - I have got to get back in the game - I just can't understand sometimes why I just can't seem to get things done the way I used to - it's driving me a little nutty - I'm trying to stop thinking about everything, past and present, so much and just get "back on autopilot" and take care of stuff. I'm handling the necessary things well but, aside from that, I'm not getting much done. I guess I'm struggling to find meaning in my personal life.

Sorry, April, I'm really trying to be supportive here and relate to how you'e feeling - I think other feel this way too.

What I really want to say is this: I really, really wish we all lived close to one another so we could get together and go out and have a drink and sympathize with each other. This board is great but I want to hang out with all of you - I really do!!! I want to be with people who understand the depth of what we've been through - the amazing, loving, caring, selfless people that we were and how much depth our souls have now after going through these terrible things. I do want to be with people who understand the real suffering out family members had to endure. It's one thing to talk about it and try to understand and an entirely different thing when you witness it first hand. I know there are support groups in our areas and I'm sure they're great - probably a good thing to do - I'm still thinking about it.

I'm kind of tired of hearing my friends talk about their problems as if they're really important - I know this sounds kind of mean but I do get tired of talking to some of my girlfriends about their marital issues - they really aren't that big of a deal - I really want to shake them and tell them to straighten up and appreciate their wonderful husbands for who they are before possibly some terrible thing in life takes them away! Of course you don't say these things (sometimes I do), you have to play polite society ha ha! Oh well - I really just want to be around good, authentic people who really value life and what it's all about.

It's really hard to make the transition from caregiving 24/7 to just taking care of yourself (and for some of us, kids too) - we didn't do that for so long and it's pretty difficult to get back into having time for yourself. It takes time - it's been a year for us and we're doing much better but it's step by step.

Hang in there, April - I wish I could spend some time you.

Take care,
Tina

mswijiknyc's picture
mswijiknyc
Posts: 421
Joined: Oct 2010

yes I remember your post, I remember commenting on it too. My marriage to Pat wasn't rainbows and sunshine, but dammit it was us. We loved hard, fought hard, played hard, and stuck together. In the end the only person he wanted was me. If I stayed out of the living room too long he started to look for me, and to me that says it all. Do I know the future? nope. All I know is today I woke up and I need a shower as my hair is a fright.

Yesterday I went out to get the girl stuff done for his service Monday - tips toes and hair. As I'm getting my feet done, I overhear a woman say "today is my one year wedding anniversary." I wanted to tell her to enjoy every single second, even the crappy ones. When I was getting my hair done, the stylist and the customer behind me were having a long invloved conversation about marriage.

Oh the irony of it all. For months when he was sick, everytime we turned around all either one of us heard about was cancer. Now that he's gone, marriage and spring and weddings will be in every conversation. I'm praying like he'll I don't break down in public.

I have good days and I have bad days. I try to hide the bad days as best I can until I get home and can let it out without fear of being taken advantage of (New York City - trust no one! ha ha ha)

As my FB quote says, one day I will make it. Just watch and see.

luz del lago's picture
luz del lago
Posts: 452
Joined: Jul 2010

Good morning, ladies. Dennis and I loved each other to the ends of the earth! But that love didn't come easy. April, we too, loved hard, fought hard and played hard, together. There was a time, 12-15 yrs ago that I really believe that if the Holy Spirit hadn't intervened, we would not have stayed together! We made it through, forgiveness was given and were the better for what we had experienced.

Days before his burial, a very wonderful female co-worker of his and I spoke over the phone. At some point she told me of the time we were having "problems" and how he had shared with her how much he loved me and could not live without me. She asked him why I had wanted to divorce and he told her he did not know why. She also told me how he sobbed while they spoke. I managed to finish our talk with out saying anything in response to the whys and show my anger! 1) Throughout our marriage, he always told me that he never spoke to anyone about our personal life, in fact many times he would say that he didn't have anyone to talk to about troubles or difficulties, outside of me, and that was really the only person he cared to share his feelings with. 2) Sobbing, please! I just spent the last 8 months of our lives together asking him to share his feelings with me, to open up, so together we would know each others hearts, fears and joys. He never did. He died never having told me that he understood what this would do to my life, that he was afraid and angry that all that we were would be gone. He never shed a tear for himself or for me or for us! The therapist tried so hard to help him through the denial so that he could let that go and live the rest of his days in some peace and joy. 3) I felt as if he had lied to me when I heard this! 4) He damn well knew why I wanted a divorce! I think he did not want to "mar" his image around his co-workers! She shared it with me to say how she knew how much he loved me. It took me a few days to get over the feeling, forgive him, knowing that my love for him did not change. I just pray that those little "things" that come up, little bits of info about him, are not painful or shocking to me or any loved ones. Honestly, I really don't want to know, at this point.

Tina, so I can't imagine having to get through the grieving process with the infidelity issue! If this little thing brought on so much anger in me, how must you feel with what your husband did? I pray that your heart is healed, for the loss and betrayal. That peace comes to you and you are able to move forward and know that you are worthy of all that is good in this life.

Lucy

ketziah35
Posts: 1151
Joined: Jun 2010

I broke up with a guy that I loved deeply, but new he wouldn't marry me. Same time of year when everyone was planning a weDding or having one I went to get my beauty things done in the middle of the week to avoid the brides, since I felt like I was going to have a breaking point if I had to sit and hear wedding stuff or stuff about families and vacations.

Additionally when my husband leaves town the silence is nervewracking. I turn on the radio so that I can hear it in every room of the hose. Somehow it helps me.

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1561
Joined: Nov 2009

Hello April,
The silence you are experiencing is the "peace" that you and Pat finally now have. Breathe it in, deep inhale, nice slow exhale. Pat is telling you that he is also feeling this wonderful, peaceful, silence.
May God continue to help you through this difficult time. Good luck with your job hunt. Please do not stay hiding in that one room for too long! Love and many hugs.
Tina in Va

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

I spend all of my home time ( I work full time) in my bedroom in my pjs, I sleep with the TV on until the hard drive shuts it off and I only go to the laundry room or kitchen on occasion. I spend weekends in bed with my pjs and TV unless one of my friends practically drag me out of the house. Mr Dr and therapist says this is normal behavior and with time will change. I don't know but I hope so

Kathy

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