The Journey of Grieving

Posted by liz223 @liz223, Nov 22, 2018

Traveling the road of grief is never easy. I lost my husband of 62 years 10/6/18. This is my first Thanksgiving without him. I’m fortunate that I have moved into a retirement community and will be able to eat with new friends in our beautiful dining room. I have a lot to be thankful for today even though I miss him and will love him forever. God gives me strength each moment to take the next step. I will be here to discuss my daily journey. If you are grieving for a loss in your life, please join me. Thank you.

Good morning, I am brand new to the group. I and bob were to be married on the day he passed away, after only 27 days of knowing that he had stage 3 lung cancer. We have been together for 18 plus years. Life As I knew it was changed overnight. Early in his diagnosis, I had had prayed so hard for healing, for a chance to continue our lives. My answer from God came swiftly, my heart knew He would be healed, not here on earth.
Today, my days are filled with so much sadness. I do everything I need to do. I try so hard to remember all of the times we shared, makes me sadder for I want so much more of him. I’m 62, Bob 70

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As I was getting ready to start my day and week I realized something..Everyday i do my best to make sure I'm out doing something even if it's for a few hours..Before I leave I put on my "game face cloak" to face the day…As I go through the day, this imaginary cloak becomes a bit heavier and heavier..When I get home, I can't wait to take it off, because I'm weary from the weight…however there is a part of me that doesn't want it off because that's when the raw emotion of grief and sadness is uncovered..I don't know if this makes sense, but it's how it feels…
I wish everyone the best day you can have…

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@maddiec

As I was getting ready to start my day and week I realized something..Everyday i do my best to make sure I'm out doing something even if it's for a few hours..Before I leave I put on my "game face cloak" to face the day…As I go through the day, this imaginary cloak becomes a bit heavier and heavier..When I get home, I can't wait to take it off, because I'm weary from the weight…however there is a part of me that doesn't want it off because that's when the raw emotion of grief and sadness is uncovered..I don't know if this makes sense, but it's how it feels…
I wish everyone the best day you can have…

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@maddiec Yes, it does make sense. Anyone else in our group have a "game face cloak" you would like to comment on?

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@marylulu56

Good morning, I am brand new to the group. I and bob were to be married on the day he passed away, after only 27 days of knowing that he had stage 3 lung cancer. We have been together for 18 plus years. Life As I knew it was changed overnight. Early in his diagnosis, I had had prayed so hard for healing, for a chance to continue our lives. My answer from God came swiftly, my heart knew He would be healed, not here on earth.
Today, my days are filled with so much sadness. I do everything I need to do. I try so hard to remember all of the times we shared, makes me sadder for I want so much more of him. I’m 62, Bob 70

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@marylulu56 I am so sorry. I too lost my husband to cancer in December. He had stage 4 stomach cancer. He was diagnosed late April, started chemo and fought as hard as we could and prayed even harder. We didnt have the outcome we wanted but understand it was Gods plan. The evenings and nights are the hardest because that was when we were together. I was able to be at home to take him to appts and care for him. I am grateful for that time. We were married 17 years but knew each other since the 4th grade. Needless to say my heart has broken into a million pieces. I too try to remember the wonderful memories we made but cry because we wont be able to make anymore. I try day by day to have a good day but when that doesn't work I try to get through the next 15 minutes. Through this group I've learned its ok to cry on your terms whenever you want. I pray for God to give you strength and peace. I am 54 he was 55. Praying for you.
Ruby.

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@hopeful33250

@maddiec Yes, it does make sense. Anyone else in our group have a "game face cloak" you would like to comment on?

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@maddiec @hopeful33250 I feel each of us have a cloak that covers several "outfits" that make up who we are today. It could be grief/sadness, or chronic illness/pain, or a form of mental illness, or social anxiety. We feel the need to present ourselves in a manner that society expects of us, or we do it to protect ourselves from the pervasiveness of that same society if we show how we truly are. I believe the cloak of protection may be like that Harry Potter cloak, to make things invisible until we are ready. It helps us survive that day.
Ginger

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@gingerw

@maddiec @hopeful33250 I feel each of us have a cloak that covers several "outfits" that make up who we are today. It could be grief/sadness, or chronic illness/pain, or a form of mental illness, or social anxiety. We feel the need to present ourselves in a manner that society expects of us, or we do it to protect ourselves from the pervasiveness of that same society if we show how we truly are. I believe the cloak of protection may be like that Harry Potter cloak, to make things invisible until we are ready. It helps us survive that day.
Ginger

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I think generally people don't want to see or deal with our grief as it makes them uneasy. My husband died of Stage 4 small bowel cancer at age 62 almost 5 years ago, so I can attest to the fact it does get somewhat less painful but it never goes away and of course your life is changed forever. I constantly felt at the beginning of this unwanted journey was now what am I supposed to do. There were too many difficult decisions I didn't feel confident to make such as selling my home buying a condo and moving to a new location. Somehow things came together and I am now more settled in my new reality. I think what helped especially at the beginning was attending bereavement groups . When the 1st one ended I joined another group as talking about your loss is so important and is a big part of working through it. My friends were supportive but did not want to talk about it and see my tears of grief after a while, at least that's how I felt. There is great societal pressure to be strong and not burden people with your sorrow. I now have my own cancer diagnosis and feel I am handling it with strength from knowledge about my diagnosis ,family and friend's support as well as knowing I survived my husband's illness and death. I also feel a sense of responsibility to my children to handle this as well as I can and to show them that you are stronger than you know.

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@hopeful33250

It is so good to hear from you, @georgette12.
Are you doing well?

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Well I'm not so great. I work as a home health caretaker for an agency and my husband recently had open heart surgery. I'm surrounded by sickness and I live in a small town with little support system. So I haven't been on the forum for a while as I'm so negative and tired. Oh gosh..I am sorry to sound this way!

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@georgette12

Well I'm not so great. I work as a home health caretaker for an agency and my husband recently had open heart surgery. I'm surrounded by sickness and I live in a small town with little support system. So I haven't been on the forum for a while as I'm so negative and tired. Oh gosh..I am sorry to sound this way!

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Please don't be sorry about feeling down, @georgette12. We have all been there and it is nothing to be ashamed of. Feelings are just that, "feelings." Sometimes feelings are more comfortable than at other times. It sounds like you have been through a lot of stressors with your husband having heart surgery. How is he doing? Is he home now or in rehab?

Will you post again and keep in touch?

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@rlealsan

Thank you for your prayers. Although I may seem strong I feel so weak and broken. At times I feel like my faith is failing because I wonder how we ended up at this point in our lives. As happy as we were I cant believe how it turned out. I understand Gods plans for us but I just want to turn back time. I pray for acceptance, strength, and peace.

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I relate to this as well. It seemed like we had just reached the stage of our lives to enjoy life together. Our children are grown, we had bought a house in the country with a pool to relax. We had a garden we enjoyed working together and canning the vegetables. We were finally able to afford to travel a couple of times a year. Life seemed great… then bam! He is diagnosed with liver cancer and died within 23 days. My world was completely shattered. I have no idea how to do this thing called life by myself. But in that 23 final days we talked ALOT. He did everything he possibly could to help me prepare for the days ahead. Through my faith, prayers of friends, and alot of tears I am trying. But there are moments I wonder why. I really wanted to grow old together. These posts I am reading here help me to know others have walked this journey ahead of me. I can do it too. Just not the journey I thought I would be on at 51 years old. 😢

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@fara67

I relate to this as well. It seemed like we had just reached the stage of our lives to enjoy life together. Our children are grown, we had bought a house in the country with a pool to relax. We had a garden we enjoyed working together and canning the vegetables. We were finally able to afford to travel a couple of times a year. Life seemed great… then bam! He is diagnosed with liver cancer and died within 23 days. My world was completely shattered. I have no idea how to do this thing called life by myself. But in that 23 final days we talked ALOT. He did everything he possibly could to help me prepare for the days ahead. Through my faith, prayers of friends, and alot of tears I am trying. But there are moments I wonder why. I really wanted to grow old together. These posts I am reading here help me to know others have walked this journey ahead of me. I can do it too. Just not the journey I thought I would be on at 51 years old. 😢

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You must still be in shock! I remember after my husband's diagnosis I kept feeling or was it hoping that none of it was real. I would sometimes close my eyes and wish that when I opened them it would all be different. Also when he told me his diagnosis I remember that the whole room lost it's colour, everything was just white. I still think back and remember how anxious I became, lost 30 lbs. and yet still could not quite believe it was real.

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@gingergirl

You must still be in shock! I remember after my husband's diagnosis I kept feeling or was it hoping that none of it was real. I would sometimes close my eyes and wish that when I opened them it would all be different. Also when he told me his diagnosis I remember that the whole room lost it's colour, everything was just white. I still think back and remember how anxious I became, lost 30 lbs. and yet still could not quite believe it was real.

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I think some days I am still in shock. I have never witnessed anyone go from working to dying in a months time. My husband worked up til his liver biopsy on Aug 27th and was gone by Sept 29th. There are times I cant hardly breathe from the overwhelming grief. But he told me almost daily "it's okay to cry, but you cant stay sad all the time" He very much wanted me to be ok. So I am trying. I have 3 young grandchildren who have little understanding of what just took place. I have to continue to be the Nana they need. Something precious he did do before passing was write out cards for each holiday that he entrusted to a friend to give me at the appointed time. I treasure those.

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@fara67

I relate to this as well. It seemed like we had just reached the stage of our lives to enjoy life together. Our children are grown, we had bought a house in the country with a pool to relax. We had a garden we enjoyed working together and canning the vegetables. We were finally able to afford to travel a couple of times a year. Life seemed great… then bam! He is diagnosed with liver cancer and died within 23 days. My world was completely shattered. I have no idea how to do this thing called life by myself. But in that 23 final days we talked ALOT. He did everything he possibly could to help me prepare for the days ahead. Through my faith, prayers of friends, and alot of tears I am trying. But there are moments I wonder why. I really wanted to grow old together. These posts I am reading here help me to know others have walked this journey ahead of me. I can do it too. Just not the journey I thought I would be on at 51 years old. 😢

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We too were in our early 50s with a lifetime of travel, and so many things that were left undone. I close my eyes and pray that this is a dream and that when I wake he will be lying next to me. There was many a time that we couldn't believe how this could happen to us. We thought we had lived our lives well and yet here we are in the middle of this nightmare. Now I'm expected to move forward. Dont know how and if I want to. The pain, the hurt is unbearable.

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@rlealsan

We too were in our early 50s with a lifetime of travel, and so many things that were left undone. I close my eyes and pray that this is a dream and that when I wake he will be lying next to me. There was many a time that we couldn't believe how this could happen to us. We thought we had lived our lives well and yet here we are in the middle of this nightmare. Now I'm expected to move forward. Dont know how and if I want to. The pain, the hurt is unbearable.

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I totally get it. I feel the same way at times. I'll keep you on my prayers

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@fara67

I relate to this as well. It seemed like we had just reached the stage of our lives to enjoy life together. Our children are grown, we had bought a house in the country with a pool to relax. We had a garden we enjoyed working together and canning the vegetables. We were finally able to afford to travel a couple of times a year. Life seemed great… then bam! He is diagnosed with liver cancer and died within 23 days. My world was completely shattered. I have no idea how to do this thing called life by myself. But in that 23 final days we talked ALOT. He did everything he possibly could to help me prepare for the days ahead. Through my faith, prayers of friends, and alot of tears I am trying. But there are moments I wonder why. I really wanted to grow old together. These posts I am reading here help me to know others have walked this journey ahead of me. I can do it too. Just not the journey I thought I would be on at 51 years old. 😢

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@fara67 I hear you…I have been grieving since my husband's diagnosis in 2016..life as we knew it ceased to exist..I felt like my life was one big hourglass watching the sand fall through..
I was in the midst of retiring when he was sick..thankfully he had been retired for 20 years…like you and your husband, we had plans..not big ones, but plans nonetheless..so now I'm finally retired, but without him..life is a bit dim now, but I have faith and hope that will not always be the case..
It is nice to have others understand this godawfull journey…

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@fara67

I think some days I am still in shock. I have never witnessed anyone go from working to dying in a months time. My husband worked up til his liver biopsy on Aug 27th and was gone by Sept 29th. There are times I cant hardly breathe from the overwhelming grief. But he told me almost daily "it's okay to cry, but you cant stay sad all the time" He very much wanted me to be ok. So I am trying. I have 3 young grandchildren who have little understanding of what just took place. I have to continue to be the Nana they need. Something precious he did do before passing was write out cards for each holiday that he entrusted to a friend to give me at the appointed time. I treasure those.

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How thoughtful of him to write out cards, @fara67. He does sound very special!

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