Widowhood is a very dark lonely place

24

Comments

  • grandmafay
    grandmafay Member Posts: 1,633
    Griffon said:

    Being alone

    Hi, my wife pasted away six weeks ago from a battle with lung cancer.I can honestly say I feel worse now then ever.I am back at work now which can keep me busy for a while, but going home is terrible.There is no other place I would rather be at  then at home,but without her being there it's a lonely sad place.I call to ever day when I come home hoping to get a response, but no answer yet.I sit in front of her pictures telling her about my day,and what I going to do later.This usually ends up with me crying. The loneliness is very difficult for me to deal with.Not that I need company,it's I just want my wife back.People leave notes on my door asking how I am doing,but I really do not respond,I really do not know why,maybe I just want to be alone in my pain and sadness.I am sorry for your loss and your pain.I hope things will get better for you.But remember you are not alone, their are plenty of us here who are in pain and are your friends.     Bill

    Hard

    Your feeling sound so familiar. I can remember those very dark days. I can remember because I still have them now and then and I am four years out. My dark days don't come as often now and they are not quite as dark. One thing that actually helped me was when a friend at church who has been a widow for many years told me that it takes at least three years to really adjust to the lose of a beloved spouse. It helped because it took some of the pressure off.  I readily admit to people even now that I am still grieving and will always feel that loss. Time has dulled the pain. Each of us must grieve in our own time and way. I still talk to my husband. I had one friend tell me at her husband's funeral that she talked to his pictures, and people would probably think she was crazy if she told them. I told her that we all do that. It's ok. What ever helps is ok. Take care of yourself. Fay

  • ipetrosky
    ipetrosky Member Posts: 2
    widow

    I lost my husband to lung cancer in 2010.   Where has the time gone..........he had lung cancer that had spread to liver bone brain.  He had whole brain radiation which really took him down fast.  I love him and miss him.  We were married 42 years.  He was diagnosed the end of May and died August 2nd.......if I had it to do over again he would forgo the wbr.

     

     

     

  • Suitearia
    Suitearia Member Posts: 2

    Widow
    Before anything else, I want to say that I feel your pain. It takes me back to my first year as a widow. I didn't even realize that I was one until I had to check one of those widow boxes where it said marital status. I knew my husband had died. Knew? It was my first thought each morning and my last thought at night. I just hadn't applied the widow word to describe myself. I am not going to tell you that time will heal your hurt. For me, three years into this new life, I can tell you that I am adjusting. My pain is still here, but it has mellowed. I have charged some things. I no longer even try to eat at the table. For some reason that was just torture for me. I changed out our queen bed to a daybed. Our bedroom is small, so it didn't make sense to have a queen when I didn't need one. I am planning my first solo trip in 45 years. I need to do this for me. I love to travel and have taken several trips since Doug died, but I have done so with family. I'm somewhat terrified, but I'm also determined. I can only imagine your pain at your daughter's wedding. All of those family things remain hard for me. Doug lived longer than anyone expected, surviving a little over 6 years. During that time, we were blessed with our fourth granddaughter. Our sons both received promotions, and we took some trips with family as well as on our own. We also made it to our 42nd anniversary. I am still grieving. I will always grieve for him. Some days are still just plain difficult to live through. That's ok. I now accept those days. I guess that's what they mean by acceptance, not accepting the death but accepting the pain. Knowing that it is a part of our lives now. I am who I am today because of our shared life and his death. He faced his death with faith, love, and courage. My job now is to live as well as he died. Prayers and hugs, Fay

    Thank you

    Thank you Fay for your posting.  I just lost my husband a month ago and I'm feeling very detached and a bit blank. I'm not sure how I should feel or what I'm supposed to think about.  All I know is that I think about him all the time.  I found a short video clip that I like to listen too just to hear his voice.  Once I think I played it at least 5 times.  I know I told Ric that I would be ok but what did I really know about being a widow when I made that promise.  And I cannot wish him back if he cannot be well and whole.

    Fay, your words "he faced his death with faith, love, and courage.  My job now is to live as well as he died".  But I don't know how to do that ... 

  • Suitearia
    Suitearia Member Posts: 2

    Hard

    Your feeling sound so familiar. I can remember those very dark days. I can remember because I still have them now and then and I am four years out. My dark days don't come as often now and they are not quite as dark. One thing that actually helped me was when a friend at church who has been a widow for many years told me that it takes at least three years to really adjust to the lose of a beloved spouse. It helped because it took some of the pressure off.  I readily admit to people even now that I am still grieving and will always feel that loss. Time has dulled the pain. Each of us must grieve in our own time and way. I still talk to my husband. I had one friend tell me at her husband's funeral that she talked to his pictures, and people would probably think she was crazy if she told them. I told her that we all do that. It's ok. What ever helps is ok. Take care of yourself. Fay

    I talk to my husband too

    I put out more pictures of my husband and I talk to them too.  Sometimes I just talk to the thin air ... Sometimes I look at every picture remembering "this was our first vacation", "this was our last vacation".  A cruise I wasn't sure would happen until we walked onto the ship and how we were blessed that he was able to play poker every night and EAT.  Of course by the end of the week he was spending more time 'resting' but we had fun.  And we splurged on some professional photos while on board and I'm SO thankful everyday for those 4 photographs.  No one looking at those pictures realized he was 13 years into prostate cancer and that there wasn't anything else to be done for him ... the Xofigo soon put him into bone marrow failure within a month of the cruise.

    I appreciate reading the posts and your honest words.  I just needed to know that feeling empty and detached was normal.  I couldn't sleep in the bedroom for a period of time because I jumped at every sound in the house.  Now I sleep but with the help of ambien.

     

  • r o-w
    r o-w Member Posts: 3
    Suitearia said:

    Thank you

    Thank you Fay for your posting.  I just lost my husband a month ago and I'm feeling very detached and a bit blank. I'm not sure how I should feel or what I'm supposed to think about.  All I know is that I think about him all the time.  I found a short video clip that I like to listen too just to hear his voice.  Once I think I played it at least 5 times.  I know I told Ric that I would be ok but what did I really know about being a widow when I made that promise.  And I cannot wish him back if he cannot be well and whole.

    Fay, your words "he faced his death with faith, love, and courage.  My job now is to live as well as he died".  But I don't know how to do that ... 

    Needing today the support and solidarity of those who understand

    Today, I cannot identify why, is impossible to bear.  My husband died of MDS (cancer of the bone marrow) a bit more than two years ago after 15 years fighting for his life.  I just can't face the loneliness and don't know how to "start over" to "begin again" to "turn the page" and all the other advice that everyone gives me.  How do you, after 36 years together, doing EVERYTHING together, handle, survive, the emptiness and loneliness of each day?   I saw last week, with my daughter, the Brian Wilson/Beach Boys documentary film.  And seeing, hearing and reflecting on the song "G-d only knows what I'd be without you" has thrown me hard.  I just -- right before turning to this page -- viewed three times the youtube of the song, while singing along with them.  OMG  Who could have known in 1966 the poignancy of those lyrics to me in my life now (and to all of you on this page).   I just don't know how to start over.  And I am not sure if I want to start over.  I -- being fully open and honest -- just want to be with Bob.  

    When Bob's MDS converted to Leukemia and he had to be hosipalized (not surviving the treatment meant to save him), he pretended one day to be playing the guitar while we listened to a Muddy waters' song. He was so cute, so funny. I video'd him in that moment and play that vidoe of him over and over and over.   I just don't know how to step out of that world-with-Bob into a new one.  He told me that I MUST remarry.  I simply don't know how I'm supposed to be out there in the world jolly, cheery, happy and all that jazz.

  • r o-w
    r o-w Member Posts: 3
    annesound said:

    My husband died 3 years ago

    My husband died 3 years ago after a rapid form of cancer.  He only had his diagnosis 4 weeks before he died.  I didn't cry for 2 years.  He was gone, but somehow it wasn't real to me.  I'm partially blind and had to put my glasses where I could find them.  The firsts were hard but even now I find Sundays terrible.  I stay in the house alone, looking at his empty chair.  I tried the going for walks, but then you just see other couples holding hands and it reminds you of the happy times that cannot be replaced.  The love is still there and always will be.  The loneliness is terrible though.  Coming home from work on a dark night and finding that the lights are off and the surprise hot meal isn't ready.  You can do it for yourself some days, but other days, like today, easter sunday, It's hard.  Hearing that I'm not the only person feeling that I have to eat my dinner away from the table makes me realise that I'm not going crazy.  Thanks.   

    the impossibility of eating alone at the table

    There are few who truly "get it", understand what we are surviving on a daily basis.  Your remark about the trauma of eating dinner at the table without ... strikes to a deep place.  Since my husband died at the end of April 2013, I have been unable to eat at the table.  I usually eat sitting on the floor, next to my St Bernard, watching a movie.  The dinner table evokes so much, memories, traditions, togetherness, "nromal life".  The dinner table symbolizes the world-with-...; that world cannot be re-created and sitting there to eat is just not possible.   I understand.  

  • r o-w
    r o-w Member Posts: 3
    3Mana said:

    It gets easier, but never goes away
    Hi,
    So glad your daughters wedding went okay. That had to be such a hard thing to go through for her too.
    Today is the 25th which is the day my husband died on. It's over 2 & 1/2 years now, and he died in March, but the 25th of every month is always a hard day for me to get through.
    It's not easy having to check the "widow" box on forms, but we are no longer married. I still wear mine & my husbands wedding ring on my right hand and probably always will.
    The holidays are going to be hard too. I always had Christmas at our house, but haven't been able too since Tom died. My 3 kids have taken turns having holidays as they know I have a hard time doing it.
    I saw a counselor for almost a year & it helped alot. Plus I had to be put on meds, because of the terrible way he died.
    Hope you're doing okay & remember we all understand what you're going through, so we're always here for you. "Carole"

    Now I understand! You helped me "see"

    I am so glad to have read your post! I could not understand why I am so blue, so sad, so empty today.  Of course! It's the 27th of the month, the date on which Bob's life ended.  It is just two years two months since he died at midnight between the 26th and 27th.  Now I understand why today is so traumatic, why I am so blue.  Thank you for helping me "see".

  • CliffDweller
    CliffDweller Member Posts: 1
    Suitearia said:

    I talk to my husband too

    I put out more pictures of my husband and I talk to them too.  Sometimes I just talk to the thin air ... Sometimes I look at every picture remembering "this was our first vacation", "this was our last vacation".  A cruise I wasn't sure would happen until we walked onto the ship and how we were blessed that he was able to play poker every night and EAT.  Of course by the end of the week he was spending more time 'resting' but we had fun.  And we splurged on some professional photos while on board and I'm SO thankful everyday for those 4 photographs.  No one looking at those pictures realized he was 13 years into prostate cancer and that there wasn't anything else to be done for him ... the Xofigo soon put him into bone marrow failure within a month of the cruise.

    I appreciate reading the posts and your honest words.  I just needed to know that feeling empty and detached was normal.  I couldn't sleep in the bedroom for a period of time because I jumped at every sound in the house.  Now I sleep but with the help of ambien.

     

    I talk to my husband too

    Suitearia, your story sounds like mine--11 years w/prostate cancer in my husband's case--Provenge, Xofigo, and an array of others.  He died mid-treatment 21 months ago as prostate cancer ravaged his body.  I have become a great actress during the day but nightly still cry, talk to him/thin air, and kiss his photo.  Most nights sleep doesn't happen until 1-3 am--and that's with the help of Ambien + Unisom.  My husband died at home--memories are everywhere here.  The nightly ritual is viewing photos/videos and listening to saved voice messages--taking me back to when he was himself and still healthy--a comfort.  Private grief counseling is helping--a place where I don't need to act.  Just thought you'd like to know that you are not alone. 

  • pcebelak
    pcebelak Member Posts: 4
    Suitearia said:

    Thank you

    Thank you Fay for your posting.  I just lost my husband a month ago and I'm feeling very detached and a bit blank. I'm not sure how I should feel or what I'm supposed to think about.  All I know is that I think about him all the time.  I found a short video clip that I like to listen too just to hear his voice.  Once I think I played it at least 5 times.  I know I told Ric that I would be ok but what did I really know about being a widow when I made that promise.  And I cannot wish him back if he cannot be well and whole.

    Fay, your words "he faced his death with faith, love, and courage.  My job now is to live as well as he died".  But I don't know how to do that ... 

    Lonely too

    I am so sorry for your loss.  I can relate to the detached , blank feeling.  I can't find my keys or my glasses and it takes me forever to get ready for work in the morning. My husband passed in May.  I cannot sleep in our room, I have moved to the guest room.  One of our children said they would come and we would clean out his closet; no thank you!  I even washed his clothes that we took to the hospital and folded them and put them away after his death.  I do not want to get rid of anything.  I want to keep his toothbrush and toothpaste right where he left it.  I had a meltdown over toilet paper.  He always did the shopping and purchased items in bulk.  When I went to the garage and there was no more toilet paper I just spazzed.  There has always been another roll of toilet paper for 22 years!  I went without for 2 days and a friend left some on my front porch so I still haven't purchased any.  I could not face the fact that his provisions for me were running out.  This is just one story about how irrational I have become.  I have cobwebs in my house.  It looks like the haunted mansion in Disneyland.  There is stuff stacked everywhere, my kitchen table is cluttered, the bed I sleep in has two or three books in it.  My yard is so bad that the next door neighbor asked me last week if I needd to borrow his mower.  I said no, I have two in my garage.  My house has always been clean, my yard was my pride and joy, my flower beds beautiful.  Not this year.  I just don't care.  I come home from work and sit and do nothing.  I always cooked dinner for the two of us.  The other day I had tater tots and a can of beets for dinner.  How wierd is that?  I find myself ill tempered and rude at times, not my normal self at all.  I have always took pride in my work.  Now when I am at work I can't wait to be home and when I get home I wonder why I was in such a hurry.  I don't want to be here either.  I just don't want to be anywhere.  

    That being said, God has shown up in ways so unusual that I can't pass it off as coincidence.  He gives me what I need every day. I am thankful for my friends.  They have been life savers. Sometimes I feel guilty because God provides but it is not what I want.  I just want my husband back.

    It helps to read others stories.  Especially the ones where they have survived for a few years.  They give me hope.

    I hope that you find some peace and joy in your journey.

     

  • mom1222
    mom1222 Member Posts: 5
    Griffon said:

    Being alone

    Hi, my wife pasted away six weeks ago from a battle with lung cancer.I can honestly say I feel worse now then ever.I am back at work now which can keep me busy for a while, but going home is terrible.There is no other place I would rather be at  then at home,but without her being there it's a lonely sad place.I call to ever day when I come home hoping to get a response, but no answer yet.I sit in front of her pictures telling her about my day,and what I going to do later.This usually ends up with me crying. The loneliness is very difficult for me to deal with.Not that I need company,it's I just want my wife back.People leave notes on my door asking how I am doing,but I really do not respond,I really do not know why,maybe I just want to be alone in my pain and sadness.I am sorry for your loss and your pain.I hope things will get better for you.But remember you are not alone, their are plenty of us here who are in pain and are your friends.     Bill

    I feel your pain

    My husband just passed away july 2015. I just don't know what to do , where to go, who to speak to.People say they understand but they really don't unless they have lost a spouse.He was my best friend  the only person I could speak to and not get any negativity from .He was my backbone Im so lonely afraid lost. Im hoping that reading these letters it will help. You have me deepest condolences. 

  • mom1222
    mom1222 Member Posts: 5
    ju1ia said:

    Widowhood is a very dark lonely place

    Hi,

      My husband had liver cancer and in other places we didn't know he had cancer until 2 weeks before he died.

    It has been two months and i am having a hard time I am so sory for your loss and I can't even Imagine what you were feeling when you walked your daughter down the aisle.

    My husband & I married when I ws 15 and he was 18 was married 33 years  Thanks for posting it helps to see how other people are coping.Smile

    Fellow widow

     I hate that word but that's what I am.at the age of 54.my husband died from pancreatic cancer.it wad a painful death I saw him die in my arms that's the hardest thing I've ever grad to live through. But losing him not having him hear calling my  name Or me taking care of him. It's driving me crazy not doing for him. He was given months to live and lasted 11 months..I took care of him lovingly carefully, and would do.it again if need be.I just need some advice on how to cope how to adjust I fell I shouldn't be here .he was a good man 29 years together. And to top everything I was also diagnosed with breast cancer.went do.I get to bee here and not him ..someone answer that. Please help

  • soul-mate
    soul-mate Member Posts: 82
    mom1222 said:

    I feel your pain

    My husband just passed away july 2015. I just don't know what to do , where to go, who to speak to.People say they understand but they really don't unless they have lost a spouse.He was my best friend  the only person I could speak to and not get any negativity from .He was my backbone Im so lonely afraid lost. Im hoping that reading these letters it will help. You have me deepest condolences. 

    Lost

    Mom,  talked to you on chat and please come back there for any reason you feel necessary ,vent ,concerns ,etc. there will always be someone that will listen and share their personal experiences to make your days ahead a bit easier. One day at a time is mentioned alot and it's a start. Take care and tty again soon.

    SOULMATE

  • mom1222
    mom1222 Member Posts: 5

    I talk to my husband too

    Suitearia, your story sounds like mine--11 years w/prostate cancer in my husband's case--Provenge, Xofigo, and an array of others.  He died mid-treatment 21 months ago as prostate cancer ravaged his body.  I have become a great actress during the day but nightly still cry, talk to him/thin air, and kiss his photo.  Most nights sleep doesn't happen until 1-3 am--and that's with the help of Ambien + Unisom.  My husband died at home--memories are everywhere here.  The nightly ritual is viewing photos/videos and listening to saved voice messages--taking me back to when he was himself and still healthy--a comfort.  Private grief counseling is helping--a place where I don't need to act.  Just thought you'd like to know that you are not alone. 

    me too

    I talk to my husband about everything. The news sports kids bills.how can't I we did it all together for 29 yrs. Everything in my home is him.from the moment u walk in .I too have had a rough time sleeping.I t too kiss his photo listen to his videos but stopped cause it's just to hard. My grand daughther looks just like him in many ways and when I look at her its so hard. All of my grand miss him dearly. My baby daughter  was with us through every chemo surgery radiation doctors appt with us I know it's even header for her. But she strong for me not me for her. I'm so glad that bi have a group of people that understand what I'm going through. May God bless us all. We need all the support we can get. 

  • mom1222
    mom1222 Member Posts: 5
    Griffon said:

    Being alone

    Hi, my wife pasted away six weeks ago from a battle with lung cancer.I can honestly say I feel worse now then ever.I am back at work now which can keep me busy for a while, but going home is terrible.There is no other place I would rather be at  then at home,but without her being there it's a lonely sad place.I call to ever day when I come home hoping to get a response, but no answer yet.I sit in front of her pictures telling her about my day,and what I going to do later.This usually ends up with me crying. The loneliness is very difficult for me to deal with.Not that I need company,it's I just want my wife back.People leave notes on my door asking how I am doing,but I really do not respond,I really do not know why,maybe I just want to be alone in my pain and sadness.I am sorry for your loss and your pain.I hope things will get better for you.But remember you are not alone, their are plenty of us here who are in pain and are your friends.     Bill

    I feel you

     I read your board and you and I have something in common.we both just wanted our loved one without pain. That's the one thing that's driving me crazy everyday I think why so much pain for such good people. I used to ask god to give me the pain I can handle it. But I did everything I could to make him pain free but he always had pain .I think when I die that's the one thing that I will take  with me that I couldn't do more for him .He was my one true love, my best friend, the one person that never turned his back on me .I just hope that when he left he knew how much I LOVED HIM.You and me have that . Thank u for letting me read your board now I know I'm not alone

  • dojodu
    dojodu Member Posts: 1
    coping at church

    i have been widowed for 3 1/2 years and am handling it for the most part.  i do have many moments of deep loneliness and sadness but work hard at keeping a smile on my face and being active.  However, I can't seem to attend a church service without getting emotional.  I just don't understand why.  I go to the same church that I went to with my husband but have switched to a later morning service.  Of course, I sit alone and when I feel the emotions building I slip out early.  Is anyone experiencing this and do you have suggestions to overcome this?  My son says maybe I should just quit attending church, but I feel guilty doing that since it is my faith that has seen me through the last 3 1/2 years.

  • Momfixit
    Momfixit Member Posts: 1
    edited December 2016 #37
    New widow - we were active in church

    My husband passed away in October of an aggressive form of cancer at the age of 56. He battled the cancer for 15 months. How everyone described their loneliness is exactly what I am experiencing. I even pray that I see my late husband in my dream to make me feel better, but of course I end up disappointed either because he was not in the dream or if I do dream of him, waking up to just getting reminded that I am a widow (although it does make me feel better when he comes in my dream). We were a husband and wife team in church, he was the cantor and I played the piano/organ. Since his death, I could not get myself to play the piano at home. It is too sad. I don't know if I can go back to playing the organ in church where they are in need of someone to play. It has always been the two of us up front. It's hard to explain to people why I have not been going to church. I hope the pain goes away. Thank you for this forum, it helps for me to type out my thoughts. I try to be strong for my adult children who are also grieving.

  • Noellesmom
    Noellesmom Member Posts: 1,859 Member
    edited December 2016 #38
    Church is a Safe place

    For many of us, it is a safe place where expressing our emotions is not only okay but welcome.  

    My husband has been unwell for about six years. I don't think anyone is surprised when I tear up. I am exhausted, worried and anxious.

    Is there a widow's support group near you?

  • JerzyGrrl
    JerzyGrrl Member Posts: 760
    edited December 2016 #39
    Brand new...

    Your loss and grief are quite new. One day you may feel like playing the piano or the organ. Give yourself some slack, be gentle and patient with your spirit. Let people know that you just need some time and space to grieve. And do allow your adult children the grace of seeing you mourn and of sharing your and their grief. You'll get through this. 

  • kimblegf
    kimblegf Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2017 #40

    My husband of 23 years passed away at the end of July.  He had fought prostrate cancer since 2004.  Last year in June he bacame ill and we found ourselves between hospital and rehab for 2 months.  I watched as his health declined not knowing how to best help him.  The whole time his only thought when he was lucid is would I be okay.  Finally I was told nothing else could be done for him and he was placed in hospice.  We were referred to a very caring and beautiful facility.  I remember during intake the nurse asked me who did I want to pick up his body.  I lost it and could not respond.  I guess in my mind I was praying for healing and never thought about the fact this was it until he transition.  He passed away 8 days later.  He was having a hard time breathing and we had experieced 2 extremely hard sleepless nights.  I remember a friend telling me he was hanging on for me and needed me to tell him it was okay to transition.  I leaned down and told him I would be okay.  With that he took one breath and was gone.  Thinking back I thank God for allowing me to be with him during his transition.  Although we had only been married for 23 years, we had spent over 39 years with each other.  I know he is no longer suffering and that gives me peace, but the loneliness is killing me.  I went back to work just to have that company during the day, but sometimes the nights are hard.  I pray and ask God to help me and I find day by day things get better.  The hardest was our birthdays, anniversary and the holidays.  I just wish I did not have the check the box widow and the loneliness would go away.  

  • kimblegf
    kimblegf Member Posts: 2
    dojodu said:

    coping at church

    i have been widowed for 3 1/2 years and am handling it for the most part.  i do have many moments of deep loneliness and sadness but work hard at keeping a smile on my face and being active.  However, I can't seem to attend a church service without getting emotional.  I just don't understand why.  I go to the same church that I went to with my husband but have switched to a later morning service.  Of course, I sit alone and when I feel the emotions building I slip out early.  Is anyone experiencing this and do you have suggestions to overcome this?  My son says maybe I should just quit attending church, but I feel guilty doing that since it is my faith that has seen me through the last 3 1/2 years.

    Coping at Church

    I remember the first time I went to Church after the death of my husband this past July.   I sat on the pew where we would normally sit.  I cried from the time I sat down until the service was over.  I wanted to leave but something kept me from moving. Some of the church members would hand me tissue and console me. After that Sunday I didn't attend for about 3 weeks.  Finally I got up the strength to go back and again I cried.  That was a couple of months ago and I have not stop attending church.  I still cry in and out of church and the one thing I would not suggest is to stop going.  It will get better and I believe that my faith in God has allowed me to keep going.