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About 4Hdad

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  • Loss Type
    Wife, Ruptured Cerebral Berry Anuerysm
  1. Hi Dee, I am so sorry for your loss, and for the careless remarks from your family and friends. It seems that they feel as if, because you are familiar with the tools and have them in your toolbox, you are somehow immune to the emotional places that we find ourselves in, and that's just silly. You're human, and you'll feel the things we all feel, in your own time. I don't know if it's true or if it's just a myth that many therapists see therapists themselves, but there are some folks on this site who might recommend that you look for someone specializing in grief counseling. They are of the firm belief that those specialists simply have the tools we need at the time. My wife passed away suddenly from a medical issue last August with no warning signs. Before this, I saw my own therapist for years, and he was excellent in helping me work through a lot of garbage from the past. Now, he is my oldest daughter's therapist, and I am so grateful for his help. I feel like I've been able to take a lot of lessons I'd learned working with him and keep applying them to this new and unwelcome way of life. Of course it doesn't address everything, and it doesn't fix everything, but it helps me to come to grips with the absolute powerlessness of the situation. In any case, welcome to this site. You'll find a lot of great people who can relate to the things we are experiencing, having gone through it. I hope you're able to find some measure of peace today.
  2. Hi Ashley, I am only 7 months into this, and the only thing I know for sure is that we don't have to figure out how to move forward right away. We'll all have to figure it out eventually, bit by bit, but I know that for some of us, just getting through the day can be an hour-to-hour, even minute-to-minute thing. The only advice I can give you for when it starts to feel overwhelming is to give yourself a little bit of room to breath and remember that we don't have to come up with all of the answers at once. We just have to get through this moment. In my case, everything was all just shock for days, but even then, I had things to do: funerary arrangements to make, logistics to work out on how we're going to make our household function on a single income, and trying to figure out how to maintain some sense of normalcy for the kids. That busyness kept me from sinking too deeply into sadness and anger. Sometimes when it comes, I don't fight it, but I choose to feel it. I feel the sadness, and I feel the overwhelming anger at the injustice of it all. I feel like I can do that because I know I won't be able to stay there for too long. The world keeps spinning and I have to keep moving with it, not out of choice but necessity. I'd like to think that, if it had happened to me instead of my wife, she'd find moments of solace in the midst of the overwhelming powerlessness that the loss of our spouse brings to bear. I find them when I think of her. Odd that in the midst of the saddest times of my life, when I am missing her the most, I am reminded of how lucky I was to have found her in the first place, to have spent the time that I did with her. And yes, even though I miss her terribly, I'm finding that it is better for me to remember her warmly, and to know that she loved me, than to be angry for what I lost, because nothing will change what happened. It's not always easy, but I seem to keep coming back to that. I hope you find some peace, Ashley, and a way to return to that peace again and again in the future. Take care of you.
  3. Hi Bobbers, Wow, I'm sorry you're having to go through this alone. This is a safe place for working through these feelings. Feel free to vent here as often as you need. I'm almost at the 8 month mark, but I know that for the first month I was pretty much in a state of shock. I've found that the shock wears off and reality does set in, but that in itself isn't really comforting. The reality I've found is that none of this is fair, and life isn't fair. Religion, mysticism or metaphysics offers no comfort for me. All I know how to do is to put a framework around what, to me, is essentially a pointless existence. For me anyway, that framework is built around raising my kids and setting them up to be the best version of themselves they can possibly be. Their happiness is what's become most important in my life. That's not an easy thing, especially considering what's happened, and sometimes I screw it up, but at the end of the day, it's what is most important to me. It's what I use to keep me going. Is that enough for me to be happy, too? I guess it will have to be, because I'm all they have to depend on every day. I'll be happiest knowing they've got the best shot they can at being happy themselves. It's really all I can do. I've found that there will be moments when life is bearable. I will always miss her, and whenever I'm doing something I know she would have enjoyed, I feel incredibly sad, if not guilty. She's constantly on my mind. I'm still new at this too, but I don't believe that that feeling ever goes away. At this point, I'm not sure I want it too - I don't ever want to lose that connection. Keeping that alive in me is worth whatever pain comes along with it. People have tried to offer reasons or answers or explanations for why the universe does this or that. I've always been polite about it, because I realize that they're really only trying to help. People have their own beliefs, and that's just fine with me. My personal belief is never exactly in-line with what most people consider normal. They'd probably see it as depressing, or absurd, and that's just fine with me, too. Sorry to ramble. Just know you've got a bunch of folks here who've gone through what you and I are going through. Take care, Bobbers.
  4. I took the kids and mother in law out for dinner on her birthday. That was something we all needed to honor. Our anniversary came and passed, and I did not do anything special. She was on my mind all of that day and all of that night, much like every other day. Actually, I had intended to do something simple, just dinner alone then wander in a bookstore or something, but had forgotten that I'd had an obligation for that night. It was one made in advance and I was not thinking of the date at the time I agreed to it, but it didn't feel right to cancel. The day passed uneventfully. Work, kids and horses, then company when I didn't feel like having company at all.
  5. Tomorrow is our wedding anniversary. I've been sad and depressed every day, so tomorrow shouldn't be all that different, and I know I'll get through it the same way I get through every day. It's just another reminder that we'll never have another day together. Our anniversaries were always pretty simple affairs; a small gift and a card, a dinner date, maybe just walking around together in a bookstore afterwards (we were both bibliophiles). Once we got the horses they ate up a lot of her time in the evenings, and between them and her school, we hadn't been spending as much time together as I'd have liked. I don't feel as much regret behind it as I maybe could, but the truth is we just had too many responsibilities that got in the way. After all of the barn chores are done, I may just go out to dinner alone tomorrow night, maybe take the kids, maybe not. I feel like I ought to do something to honor this day besides sit around the house and hate the world. Some of us have been doing this longer than others. If you've passed milestone dates like anniversaries, is there something special you do to honor the day? This will be my first anniversary without her and I honestly have no clue what to do.
  6. Hi fzald, Thank you for expressing yourself here. I know the feeling of what you are going through in your last words, of just going through the motions and getting things done, but wishing on the inside that it would all just end. Having had and lost the most precious thing to us in life, where is there left to go? It all seems to be downhill from here. For me, though, while I feel that way quite often, I have too much depending on me to stay in that mode of thought for long. Two girls, one in college and the other in her first year of high school, depend on me for all of the same things they always have. As much as I think I am done with this world and everyone in it, it just isn't so. I've also got family that, while their dependence on me isn't an issue, I know my giving up would cause great, great hurt. And I'll tell you, I have no wish to hurt anyone in this way. I've seen the devastation that losing a parent has had on my own kids, and on my in-laws. As much sadness as I have, I just can't give in to it, no matter how much I wish I could. I don't know if I've ever really had a fear of death. It's not something I thought about much until I lost my wife. Even now I don't fear it, I sometimes even long for it, but that, to me, is an easy way out of my pain. I'd just end up transferring the balance of that pain to others, and that's something I would never want to do. I've never believed in an afterlife. I've never had a reason to, even after my father passed away suddenly in a car accident some 15 years ago. I sometimes wish that I did believe it, though, just so that I could have the hope of seeing my wife again. Plus, I like the idea of her being happy somewhere. It's comforting. While I still do not really believe it myself, I've found that I now have an appreciation for the idea that I never had before. On that note, I'd like to share something with you. The other night, I heard a song for the first time that really hit home. It's called Jealous by the singer Labrinth. It's somehow sad as hell and completely uplifting at the same time. It's quite a beautiful song; while it was actually written about a breakup, it captures the beauty and comfort in the idea that our loved ones are still somewhere, happy and at peace. If you decide to look up that song, be ready for the emotion in it - to me, anyway, it is very powerful and uplifting. In the meantime, please do take care of you, fzald. We don't need to have all of the answers right now. Maybe we will find those answers someday, and maybe things will eventually change for us. Who knows? Certainly not me. I keep going back to the line from Men In Black, when the guy says, "You know what they say, 'tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all," and his partner responds, "Try it." Peace to you, fzald.
  7. Lynneg, I sympathize and am sorry for your loss. Today is the six month mark from when I awoke to find my wife. She'd suffered a ruptured cerebral aneurysm and passed away during the night. She was 40, I am 48. I don't know how long it took me to accept this loss. For a long time, I would wake up each morning unaware of what had happened, only to suddenly remember that she's gone. For a long time, I'd anticipate her coming through the door each evening, only to remember that that's never going to happen again. I can't say how long it took to process, but now, it is only every once in a while that I'll catch myself anticipating her arrival, only to remind myself of the truth once again. Those moments have become more infrequent as the weeks and months have passed. I guess that's a good thing. I can say that at six months, I'm getting through each day intact. I get up and do what I have to do, and that is all. I have two daughters that, in all honesty, are the only things keeping my going. If it weren't for them, then basically everything worthwhile in my world would have disappeared with my wife. Until I lost her, I truly had no idea how much I'd taken for granted. I'm no longer a husband, or a best friend, or a lover. Now I'm just a dad, and that is all I'll ever be, and it will have to be enough. Nothing else seems to matter.
  8. I did the exact same thing, for the exact same reasons, with the exact same results. None of that was interesting in the least. I've played it out some in my head and realized that not only am I so not ready for anything like that, nor convinced that I ever will be, but that even if I found a new relationship, it wouldn't be fair to that other woman. I've already had and lost everything I ever wanted. In the spirit of 'never say never,' I cant say what the future will bring, but it just doesn't feel like that is ever going to change. About a decade ago, a friend of mine lost her husband. They were in their 50's, together since high school, and had never dated anyone else in their lives. Over the years since, I never expressed but always hoped that she'd get to a place where she could find someone, just so she wouldn't be alone. She's a lovely woman and a wonderful person, and I wanted to see her happy again. Of course that never happened, because she'd already had everything she ever wanted. It took my experiencing what she had experienced for me to even begin to understand what she felt. I can't tell you if it's ever going to change. I just don't know. But, even if I don't believe I'll ever get there, I'm going to try to be open to the possibility that I just might someday. We're both still very new to this, and we don't have to have the answers just yet.
  9. Fzald, you don't have to apologize for expressing yourself here. Nobody here will tell you not to feel what you're feeling. For what it's worth, I am right there with you. All I can say for certain is that you don't need to make sense of any of this right away. I can't offer any advice on how to regain the passion you once had for making this world a better place, but I'd say it's better to keep yourself open to the idea of someday finding something that can spark that passion inside of you once again. Staying open to the possibility that I'll someday give a damn about something other than my kids, is about as far as I can open that particular door. I try to stay open to the idea of it, but that doesn't mean I'm convinced that that day will ever come.
  10. Fzald, I hear you and I feel for you. After one month I was still spinning. Everything was an unknown. I had no idea how I was going to move forward, in any respect. I'm still there in some ways. And, I'm with you still on the feeling of having a suddenly pointless existence. All of these things like the house and the job have only become means to an end - but it's an end to which there is no longer any meaning, other than the kids. They're the only reason I have to go on, honestly. I'm not a suicidal person, but if I didn't have those kids, I'd just as soon be done with it all. I do my best to keep up appearances, for them and for everyone else, because nobody wants to hear how meaningless and empty the world truly feels. I avoid the platitudes that way, for the most part, that well meaning-folks can sometimes offer when they're trying their best to lift us up. I appreciate all of it, I really do, but none of it does a thing to relieve the emptiness for someone like me. My wife wasn't perfect, but she was mine. We married young and went through a whole lot together, the very good and the very bad, across a couple of decades where we both grew into the people we were. I have no idea where I'd be if I didn't have her in my life, and I know in my heart that if our roles had been reversed and it had happened to me instead, she'd be feeling the exact same way I am - lost and alone in the world.
  11. Tomorrow will mark 6 months from the last night I got to spend with my wife. I went to bed before her; she stayed up late, as she was enrolled in an online college. That had become something of a routine for us and I'd gotten used to going to bed alone most nights. In a sense, I'd already been missing the intimacy of having her there with me at night. I still hear her in my mind. She was funny and opinionated. So, as much as I miss her every day, I still have that part of her with me all the time. In that sense, she's still with me and always will be. Physical intimacy, though, is something I've had to mourn every day and every night. As everyone agrees, it's not just sex (although that is a part of it), but her touch, her smell, just her presence, is very, very hard for me, because it's not something I can ever have again. I will admit to the thought of what it would look like to date again someday. That day is a very long way off, if it ever comes. Never say never, they say. But you know, there's just nothing out there that I want. I had what I wanted and it's gone. I am human, and I desire companionship, and so I'll leave the future open for that possibility someday. For now, though, there is simply nothing out there that could take her place, and for me it feels like that's what it would be - a poor substitute for what I truly desire, which is forever out of reach.
  12. My wife and I shared an appreciation for twisted humor, and so I don't feel ashamed or bad in the least when such things enter my mind, and they do - even from day one. I hardly ever share those bits with anyone, and for good reason. This story is a bit long, but I wanted to set the scene: The morning I found my wife, having passed away in the night of an un-diagnosed cerebral berry aneurysm, I was a wreck. The kids were in shock. Her mother, who lives with us, was in shock. The EMT's had moved her from where I'd found her to the living room floor. The house was buzzing with strangers; police, maybe half a dozen EMT's and firefighters, a couple of very nice ladies from a local organization who come to console and guide survivors, and the coroner. The coroner informed me that she had two assistants en-route who would be taking my wife away. Two well dressed young men arrived. Very respectfully, they told me that I may not want to witness them removing my wife from our home. While the kids and the mother-in-law had no desire to be in the room with her, I was by her side for the last time, and I told them I wasn't leaving. I stepped aside to let them do their jobs. They have to roll her to get her into the plastic bag, which is the part I guess that they think people don't want to see. They get her into the thing and are going to begin lifting her up onto a gurney. These two well-dressed, very respectful young men then bend over at the waist to pick up my wife. In my mind, I shout; "LIFT WITH YOUR LEGS, NOT YOUR BACK, ASSHOLES." Of course I didn't say it out loud. Their job must be difficult enough without some distraught idiot telling them how to do it. But still - proper lifting is, or should be, pretty common knowledge. I was baffled at how they could do what they do every day and not know this. I have other, more shocking, examples of this dark humor we shared making appearances in my mind. But, I don't share those with most people because they wouldn't necessarily understand or appreciate it, and I don't want to have to feel like I need to explain anything to anyone. Leisha, my wife, would have laughed at them, and I've spent more time consoling others than being consoled. You get a sense very quickly of when to keep things to yourself. Honestly, I have some that I'm hesitant to post here, not because they are disrespectful in any way to my wife (though they may easily be taken, erroneously, as such), but because, as I said, you get a sense on what to hold back.
  13. While it's not always the first thing I think of when I wake up every morning, it always sinks in before I step out of bed. She's gone, and she isn't coming back. I'm alone. It isn't going to change. Sometimes during the course of the day I'll pull out of that mental nosedive and get things done. Sometimes it's with me all day and I can't shake the reality that I'll likely spend the rest of my life like this; missing her, being angry at the world, and shaking my fists at the gods. It's an exercise in futility, I know, but I just can't seem to get past it. Things seem so unimportant. My job seems unimportant, and worse, uninteresting. I used to love my work. Now I do my best to just plow through the day. Other than the kids and the animals, I'm having a hard time actually caring about anything.
  14. I spent the day avoiding human interaction wherever I could. Took the day off of work. Washed the truck. It was her truck. Took care of the horses. They were her horses. I logged on to Facebook long enough to see the hearts and flowers and happy couples, and then avoided it for the rest of the day. People kept 'checking in' with me and I'm like, "thanks for checking in," as I usually am much more grateful for their concern, even if I sometimes don't want it. Yesterday was one of those days; on the outside I was pleasant, but inside I was incredulous, like, "Do I look like I am inviting this attention, hiding out in my house and taking a day off of work? If I wanted to interact with a bunch of happy assholes, I would have left the fucking house like every other day." I kept it all to myself, or course. People try to do the right thing, and they don't always know what that is. It's difficult and it's not their fault if I don't want or need to 'talk about it' on this day. I have a sister who is awesome, but she asks me how I'm doing all the time and yesterday was no exception. I say 'fine,' and she sits there and stares at me like she expects me to break down in a flood of emotion. I just sit there and stare back. I just let it get awkward until she comes around to the understanding that I don't want to discuss it. I didn't invite this uncomfortable silence, and I don't have any responsibility to elaborate on my feelings at all. It's weird.
  15. It's only been 5 months for me, but I have fond memories often. They are bittersweet because when they come, I am always reminded that the memory is all that's left and we will never make more. I try to stay away from the 'could have/should have' as it's not going to do any good. When a particular happy memory comes to mind from a photo, or a song, or a place, or whatever, I try to enjoy it and be grateful for having that experience with her without going too deep into the sadness. There were some very happy times, and that is what I want to remember. Of course it doesn't work every time, and when it doesn't, I don't ignore the pain or anger or sadness, or deny it and treat it like it doesn't exist. I try to recognize it but not let it take over. The world sucks and I'm angry, and there's no place to take it out. It wasn't an accident or a crime or anybody's fault, it was an un-diagnosed medical condition. Who is there to take it out on? Who deserves to be the target of my anger? Nobody. Not even me, even though I'd give anything to have our roles reversed so that it happened to me instead of her. Occasionally I let that anger have it's moment. To be non-destructive, I use a heavy bag. Just a few minutes at a time really helps let a lot of bad stuff out. We used to practice martial arts, different disciplines, so we both used a bag and rarely practiced together. Just thinking about it brings up memories. It's weird how the happiest memories can bring sadness, but sometimes the ones where we were at odds with each other make me smile, because that was us, too. I was taking a class with her once, Krav Maga, and we were doing this drill parrying jabs. Jab/parry, jab/parry, reset. Jab/parry, jab/parry, reset. She could be very competitive, So, that turned into jab/parry, jab/parry, rese-JAB!. Clocked me right in the mouth. No words were exchanged, no feelings too hurt. She got a bare-knuckle dirty punch in and I walked away from the drill. I'm sure it felt good for her, not so much for me. But now, I think back to that afternoon and it has me smiling - because that's who she was. A competitor at heart. She didn't mean to hurt me (she really didn't), she didn't mean to offend, she was just frustrated with me and with the drill and took a cheap shot to get some satisfaction. I fucking love that woman.