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I hate the holidays

JWren's picture
Posts: 12
Joined: Oct 2012

My dad sang in the church choir for 30 years. He died on Dec. 19, several years ago. My grand mom died on Dec. 17. Then my 12 year old nephew died on dec 19' three years ago. My Best friend, my husband of 43 years, died 2 years ago. I'm alone. I was in Bed bath etc. two days ago, they were playing carols on the speakers. One of my dads solos started to play. I lost it. I ran out of the store crying like an idiot, and I haven't stopped crying since. It is going to be a long month. I don't know how to stop.

Kathylr's picture
Posts: 8
Joined: Apr 2012

Thanksgiving was the first holiday since my dh died late August, shortly before what would have been our 30th anniversary. I wasn't particularly dreading Thanksgiving but just felt a sort of numb weariness, feeling the whole thing was too much effort, wishing it were behind me. It was very weird to travel to his parents' home for Thanksgiving dinner without him, something I did because our daughter (who started college a few days after her father passed) was home visiting and wanted to go.

But we've decided to do something very unusual for us--we are planning to be away from home over Christmas. We are spending the week before, and week of in Florida. We've booked a mini cruise and will be at the Harry Potter World section of Universal theme park on Christmas day. The Harry Potter thing is something she and her father shared, and this trip is one we hoped to take as a family last summer, but weren't able to due to my dh's chemo schedule, complications, generally feeling poorly, etc.

To be honest, this is not something that I particularly want to do either, but I'm putting that down to my ongoing numbness and weary feeling. My husband's memories will be all over in Florida, as we made several visits as a family during the years our daughter was growing up.

But this plan means we aren't doing any of our usual holiday traditions, and I'm hoping that skipping through decorating, shopping, gift wrapping, holiday meals with family and so on will be helpful.

JWren, hugs to you, I hope you can find some peace during this month to come. I've also had the experience of something triggering memories and grief unexpectedly when my guard was down, such as when you were shopping BB&B. If you aren't already, have you considered support groups and/or grief counseling? I haven't (yet) but these things have been suggested to me by several people who found them very helpful and comforting.

JWren's picture
Posts: 12
Joined: Oct 2012

We lived in Florida. I loved it there, but the house had so many bad memories for me, I really was lost. When I got cancer (again), my doctor advised hat I move to family. So now I'm living in a city as a total stranger. But I do have family here. I don't know yet if I did the right thing. I'm still alone.

But back to topic. Periodically I yell "ok, Hun, the joke is over, you can come home now." Even tho I know he suffered so, and I watched him die. I expect him to walk in the door. He was so strong, my Marine. He was never going to die. I was. I'm e one who has stage IV lung cancer. He was supposed to take care of me. I don't understand

I have to stop. I can't see. I'm crying again

grandmafay's picture
Posts: 1639
Joined: Aug 2009

I'm three years out and the holidays are still a little hard, not as bad as past years, though. The day after Thanksgiving was particularly hard for me that first year. I'm one of those crazy people who does
Black Friday shopping. I live in a rural area and it's not as crazy as the city. Anyway, after shopping, I'd always lay out everything I bought and tell my husband who I had bought for and how much money I'd saved. I went with friends and family that first year, but I then came home to an empty house. Looked at my stuff and fell totally apart. Who'd a thought? I also cried my first time grocery shopping. Right there in the aisle that had my husband's favorite cookies. For the first year or so, I never knew what was going to hit me. I still have those moments, but not as often. Decorating for Christmas is still tough. Last year was the first time I did anything, but I had a friend and her two children living with me. She did most of it. I had a hard time with the special ornaments. This year I will put up a tree, but I will decorate with new ornaments. I'm even dragging my feet on that. Grief is an interesting journey, not one I'd have chosen. I don't think it ever really ends, but it has gotten easier. Take care, Fay

JWren's picture
Posts: 12
Joined: Oct 2012

I had an awful couple of days, and I figured a couple of things out. I'm ok as long as everything goes perfectly, but I am not handling any type of problem well. I had a three hour discussion between my doctors office and the insurance company. I knew I was right, but the idiots really were incapable of independent thought. I wound up crying hysterically... Out of control. I called Hospice and asked if they had a counselor available. I talked to her for a while and I think she realized that I needed more than a phone call. Anyway, on Monday I am meeting her at noon. On Tuesday I'm getting an epidural to see if I can stop some of the pain I'm in. (I really was right) and Wednesday ill be back to let you know how I made out. If this shot doesn't work, I may wind up getting more surgery. (Boo). I'll keep ya posted. Judy

cindysuetoyou's picture
Posts: 514
Joined: Dec 2009

Just wanted to say that I can relate to your call with the doctor's office and your insurance. With all the terrible stuff I went through, seeing my son in his fight against brain cancer, it was the insurance company that brought me to my knees. They would transfer me around and tell me conflicting things...it was so frustrating and it made me so angry and it reduced me to hysterical crying too. I wonder if they were trying to wear me down and get me to give up on trying to get coverage for David....I felt like I was going to have an emotional breakdown. I was so bad that my sister came over every day for a week, just to hang out with me and keep me somewhat calm and rational. I spent literally hours on the phone every day and I finally got ahold of a compassionate person at Medicare and she walked me through the process of getting a supplemental insurance plan, and then things went a little more smoothly after that.

I'm really glad that you are seeing a counselor. I think it will be a big help. I am going to attend meetings with "Compassionate Friends," a group that is dedicated to helping people who have lost a child. They recommend that you don't start attending meetings until after 3 1/2 months go by because your emotions are still so raw. I don't think I could go right now without crying my head off the entire time.

Hang in there...everyone says it gets more bearable with time. I'm hoping and praying that it's true.

Love and blessings,
Cindy in Salem, OR

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