Andy

Want to share my experience.

639 posts in this topic

Interesting what you say about past lives, KMB.  I do believe in the possibility of past lives and am keen to learn more about the spiritual side of life and death, but for now I'm content with the way it's unfolding.  I am savoring it. I am blessed, as are you.  

KayC, how wonderful it must have felt to feel your Georgies hand, especially when you were so in need!  I haven't experienced touch.   Gerry was only visable head to foot until the day we buried him.  I know his broken body healed very quickly. He is content.  Throughout the day he yaps away is his lovely accent (I've always loved the way he says my name) guiding and motivating me.  Forever advising me to break the many issues I'm dealing with, into small managable lots and not to look at the big picture or it will seem too much for me to handle. 

Yes Andy, awe.  It is that alright. I like the idea of a front row seat. 

And speaking of awe, I must share something else about my Mum.  My daughter and I stayed with her in the hospital for the last two weeks of her life.  Once she accepted she was dying, she shared a lot of what she was seeing and feeling, with us.  One afternoon she said she wouldn't see the night out so the family gathered and we said our goodbyes.  Come the morning she brightly announced that she'd 'decided to stay another day' !!!  Of course I asked, 'can you do that?' Her reply was she didn't know but she was going to.  And she did !!!!  My first Grandson was born that day which made her happy.  

I had a shitty afternoon but after reading the last three posts and sharing a bit more of my experiences, I feel so much better.  A big thank you guys for sharing :) Hugs

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16 hours ago, Andy said:

As complex, vast and filled with near incomprehensible energy as this universe (and others?) is, so much more so is God. And our beloveds have a front row seat to the most incredible and beautiful show in all of creation, because it is all of creation. I'm thinking we all have a nice seat saved for us.

love all,

Andy 

I love it!

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M88,

I probably wouldn't have believed it possible except I experienced it.  I think it takes a LOT of effort for them to make contact like that, that's why we don't experience things like that more.  And it took me eleven years to get that!  I don't need his signs to show me he's here, I know it, I have continued faith in our love and know he's awaiting my joining him.

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M88. This forum is so comforting because it allows us to express everything we are experiencing. There is no judgement or criticizing, for which I am grateful. The spiritual signs we have experienced would not go over well in public grieving support groups. I fear we would be told our grieving is causing hallucinations.

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3 hours ago, KMB said:

M88. This forum is so comforting because it allows us to express everything we are experiencing. There is no judgement or criticizing, for which I am grateful. The spiritual signs we have experienced would not go over well in public grieving support groups. I fear we would be told our grieving is causing hallucinations.

This is such an interesting position that people will take, asserting that whatever it is you experience is the result of trauma induced grief, a way to make ourselves feel better by believing death isn't the end, or that we are simple minded sheep led around by some fairy tale meant to keep us (society) in line. I've never understood why it's ok to demean someone's else's beliefs for no other reason than to somehow prove that ones "reason" is truth and our faith is a flimsy understanding of reality. What do they care? Why do they care? To hurt? To intentionally set out to crush ones faith or humiliate them? I don't understand. As I've said, I don't think any one person, group, theory, whatever, owns the truth, it's vast enough that everyone may well hold a piece. Leave me alone. I believe what I believe, it's my choice to do so, I'm not offended by ones lack of faith, I don't get outraged or lose sleep over it. Faith, belief, spiritual awareness, life after death, religion, consciousness as energy, all these things mean different things to different people. It's all a personal journey that takes on many forms, some born of experience, others from testimony, still others from research and study. Atheist? That's your choice, as is being agnostic, that's okay. I have no power to sway anyone towards any belief, nor do I wish it. Only by example would I wish to perhaps move someone towards something. This forum is great for that, no judging, no expectation of beliefs, just a place where we all can express our loss and our sorrow, a place where we look for help and offer it when we can. If you wish to tell us that God moved in your life in a way that has helped you, then share. If you have outrage at God and want to get it off your chest, then do so. If you've lost (or never had any) your faith and feel like God doesn't listen, then say so. Or you don't believe in a diety at all and you express it, then do so without fear of judgement. I'll pray for you anyway. :-)

Bottom line, regardless of what we believe or don't, loss effects us all. We all hurt, we all grieve and mourn. All of us cry and look for answers, we all walk in this valley, but here at least, we don't have to walk alone. We all just want to be better, and we want each other to be better. 

Love you all, 

Andy

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7 hours ago, AceBasin said:

Hello Andy. This is a little off topic but I thought you'd find the link about nearby alligators to be interesting: http://www.postandcourier.com/news/alligator-climbs-to-a-second-story-mount-pleasant-porch-through/article_62f3764c-238a-11e7-9bb4-eb7197b7df98.html

That's pretty amazing, I had seen that story mentioned on a news site, but I didn't read the content. Like sharks, I consider them one of the "machines of perfection". They do what they do better than anything else in their world, and thus have remained unchanged for eons. 

Its unfortunate the animal had to be destroyed, not sure I understand that policy. Deep wilderness relocation would seem a bit more humane and simple. I think they, along with all the crocodilians, are incredible animals. True survivors. Don't want one in my house, but still amazing. 

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5 hours ago, KayC said:

M88,

I probably wouldn't have believed it possible except I experienced it.  I think it takes a LOT of effort for them to make contact like that, that's why we don't experience things like that more.  And it took me eleven years to get that!  I don't need his signs to show me he's here, I know it, I have continued faith in our love and know he's awaiting my joining him.

I had something quite similar happen to me, about two weeks after Tracie passed over. It was not shocking, it didn't frighten me, it was something that I instantly knew what it was, but still unsure of what I was to do, so I did nothing. I didn't move, didn't say anything, but it was incredible. I'm like you, I don't need signs, I know she's here, but I'll take them when I get them. 

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M88,

I glad you're afternoon got a little better, not so "foul". It's a resource of immeasurable value this forum, I can be having a terrible, all is lost day, and after venting here and receiving the always touching and loving responses, I always come away feeling better. These people here are just so wonderful.

You know, if every single head of state on earth was a widow or widower, fighting, wars and petty squabbles would cease. All their energy would be ensuring everyone was living a safe, productive life, filled with happy children and peace. No time for, you know, killing and stuff. Okay, that's my "hippie" rant for the day. 

A Chinese proverb or saying says "there are no winners in war, only widows" 

  

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Andy, It is an inspirational pleasure to read your posts. I feel that we will all vote for you as our support leader on that train ride!

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I lost my husband unexpectedtly a couple months ago. He was in his early 50's ,at the height of his career and at the crest of what was supposed to be the best years of our lives.I also have a daughter that was too young to witness her father dying on our floor. She is only 18. Too young to lose a parent.Too young to lose the security of always being taken care of... Her father will never see her accomplish the many milestones most fathers do. He will not be there for her graduation or help her with her transition into college. He will not be there to counsel her on bad boyfriends and heartbreaks that will heal. There will be no father to walk her down the aisle or share a dance with. No proud granddad holding his second miracle. I too struggle with what to say and do since I am paralyzed by grief and fear. Everyone tells us to show our children the courage and strength we have to survive. Who will show us how?   

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7 minutes ago, LalaLee said:

I lost my husband unexpectedtly a couple months ago. He was in his early 50's ,at the height of his career and at the crest of what was supposed to be the best years of our lives.I also have a daughter that was too young to witness her father dying on our floor. She is only 18. Too young to lose a parent.Too young to lose the security of always being taken care of... Her father will never see her accomplish the many milestones most fathers do. He will not be there for her graduation or help her with her transition into college. He will not be there to counsel her on bad boyfriends and heartbreaks that will heal. There will be no father to walk her down the aisle or share a dance with. No proud granddad holding his second miracle. I too struggle with what to say and do since I am paralyzed by grief and fear. Everyone tells us to show our children the courage and strength we have to survive. Who will show us how?   

Hello LaylaLee. Welcome to the forum. You will find much good advice and many sympathetic persons at this group. There are not any strict rules here about what to post where. If you start a topic such as "Husband died unexpectedly in early 50's" you will receive many replies and helpful information. Everyone here has suffered a similar loss, and all really do understand. Everyone welcomes all replies in any thread, but many will scan for new topics by new members and provide a special welcome and special attention.

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LalaLee, 

I replied to you in another thread, got to that one before this one. But ditto, AceBasin is spot on. This is a "club" unlike most. Nobody wants to be part of it, the price is to high to join, and there's no leaving. But here we are, alone perhaps, but not alone. Here, we're all friends and family. 

Andy

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2 hours ago, KMB said:

Andy, It is an inspirational pleasure to read your posts. I feel that we will all vote for you as our support leader on that train ride!

KMB, 

You're far too kind. I don't consider myself accomplished at much anything, but I do try putting thought into my words. I think language can be beautiful and that words can carry meaningful influence. 

Not sure about "support leader", but I'd give driving that locomotive a try. 

Love and hugs,

Andy

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LalaLee,

I wanted to also relate to you my empathy for you concerning your 18 year old daughter. It was the morning (2:42am) my wife passed, probably close to 4am, my daughter and I were driving home from the hospital. We were both crying, in shock, stunned beyond understanding, when she spoke to me. She said "daddy, mom won't be there when I get married, she won't be there when I have a baby". Those words will never leave me. That crushed me, they still do, I tear up just typing those words. As a dad, I fix things, I make things better, but this is beyond me. Daddy can't fix this. 

I just want you to know, even though your daughter lost her dad and mine lost her mom, at similar ages, I get a great deal of what you agonize over, how you grieve for not just yourself, but your baby girl. It's all so difficult, so complicated, but you aren't alone. It's bad enough, but watching our children suffer is just added weight. 

Peace and comfort,

Andy

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7 minutes ago, AceBasin said:

You will be our "Brother Conductor"

I'll sign on for that! As long as I get the cool train conductor hat. 

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14 hours ago, LalaLee said:

Everyone tells us to show our children the courage and strength we have to survive. Who will show us how? 

It is not in something we say or do that they will be shown.  It is in our very existence, our continuation in the face of adversity, they will pick up on that.  What greater strength could there be than that, particularly in the face of absence of courage or desire to go on.

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Sometimes, the mere act of getting up, dusting ourselves off, and continuing on is the greatest "lesson" we can impart on not just our children, but those around us. Life can be very stubborn, it will fight on, even in the face of insurmountable odds.   So fight, I will.

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1 hour ago, Andy said:

Life can be very stubborn, it will fight on, even in the face of insurmountable odds.   So fight, I will.

I've always agreed with this to the highest degree.  when playing my brother in axis and allies (or risk) for example I never surrender.  I make him take the last territory no matter how many more hours it takes.  I've always been a fighter, however, for the first time I have no fight left in me.  At 4 1/2 months every day just gets harder for me.  She is really really really gone.

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48 minutes ago, bradley1985 said:

I've always agreed with this to the highest degree.  when playing my brother in axis and allies (or risk) for example I never surrender.  I make him take the last territory no matter how many more hours it takes.  I've always been a fighter, however, for the first time I have no fight left in me.  At 4 1/2 months every day just gets harder for me.  She is really really really gone.

And that is completely expected and understandable. I myself feel that way, though not as frequently. As I said, my daughter provides a source of motivation, for without which, I don't know where'd I'd be. I'm not necessarily "wired" for a predilection towards depression, besides which, I've spent a greater part of the last 10-12 years  seeing it firsthand. I'm fully aware of its insidious nature, so I actively guard against conditions that facilitate its hold.

You have lost your key reason for "being", the love of your life has been taken away, removed without your ability to do anything about it. What's left is a sense of helplessness you didn't think possible. We all live with this idea we have power, we can influence the greater world around us, until we're shown rather dramatically, we don't, we can't. I know. Life has been particularly unkind to us this last decade or so, repeatedly showing my wife and I that we are at the mercy or whims of forces beyond our control. BUT, I still held out hope, held onto the notion that I STILL had some measure of leverage. Life was hard, so now it's time for things to ease up, we deseverve it. Especially my wife. My poor, fragile and long suffering wife, how she endured one illness after another, one heartbreak after heartbreak. Surely, it was time for her to be whole, to gather back some of who she was, to find health and happiness. Out of nowhere, without due warning, without visible cause, without MY SAY SO, she slipped away early morning, New Year's Eve. Not a d@mn thing I could do about it. My wife was dying as we spoke what was to be our last words together, expecting her to return to me after this emergency surgery. Dying. If I had known, I would've still been helpless to save her. And I think, just perhaps, that some of what you're experiencing is from this feeling of utter helplessness. I was thrown down and crushed by that singular thought, that no matter how much I loved her, how much I wished it not to be, how loud I begged and pleaded, I am powerless. That's a terrible feeling, and as men, when aren't especially good at accepting that. I was made to realize, all at once, that my parents, my daughter, my closest friends, they were beyond my ability to save if ever I was called to do so. How can this be? What good am I if I can't protect my most cherished love? I took a vow before God to care for her, to protect her. And I failed. I felt accordingly, I was a failure, I was weak, I wasn't capable, I wasn't good enough. 

As time creeps by, I realized that no, I don't have control, but that also means I'm not responsible for those things BEYOND my control. That's a hard thing, to let ourselves off the hook, we need to blame something, and who better than ourselves? It allows us to hold onto the idea we have power, but yet we somehow dropped the ball. Fact is, we aren't in control of all this, only a few things we truly have command of. I wanted to blame "me". I needed to, or so I thought. My sweet, sweet wife succumbed to multiple organ failure due to stage 3 sepsis, or simply, septic shock. Cause, unknown. We had no idea this was going on, I'm not a doctor, I have no medical training nor am I a sorcerer wielding healing magic. I'm just a husband who did his best, and that's all ANY of can ever do, our best. 

Bradley, I'm not suggesting I can help you nor am I arrogant enough to presume to know where to begin, but, if any of the anger, the hopelessness you feel is in any way tied to guilt, loss of control or feeling as if you didn't do enough, then please know, you are not to carry these burdens. They aren't ours to carry. You are a loving husband who obviously adores his wife, who cherished the life you had together, your sorrow speaks volumes to that. I'm cheering you on, she's cheering you on, to see in a week, a month, whatever, that you're still here. You are alive, you have things to live for, even if you can't see them now. We don't have much control, but we have choice.

I hope I haven't overstepped any bounds, I'm not at all suggesting that I have any insight into your grief, I just see a fellow traveler hurting much as I did, and still do from time to time. I want everyone here to find reasons to move forward. I hate the suffering of others, and I sincerely wish to only help. 

Hang in there, peace and comfort,

Andy  

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Andy, You are a wonderful person with such a huge, giving, generous heart. I was reading your post and the tears are falling. Despite your own pain, you still have the willingness to give to others. I can imagine your wife watching over you with a huge, beautiful smile of pride and love.

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2 hours ago, Andy said:

Life has been particularly unkind to us this last decade or so, repeatedly showing my wife and I that we are at the mercy or whims of forces beyond our control. BUT, I still held out hope, held onto the notion that I STILL had some measure of leverage. Life was hard, so now it's time for things to ease up, we deseverve it. Especially my wife.

Andy, thank you for the well thought out and generous comment.  First I want to comment on this comment.  I felt this way.  Nicole had lost her father 5 years ago and we had a hard time finally getting a home to call our own (we moved from the usa to Asia and moved around a lot until 2014).  Nicole loved cats and I "approved" (as the budgeting partner) two new kittens near the beginning of 2015 as Nicole was in love with cats.  In the middle of 2015 we married (profile pic) . She adored the new kittens (and me) and I felt like the king of buckingham palace.   2015 was the greatest year of my life and I thought we finallly had kicked the bad times.  Not so.  January 1 2016 cat #1 died from a disease we overlooked when getting them immunized.   Sad, but we dealt.  55 days later cat #2 was ran over on our own curb at our house, basically right in front of us.  Sad, but we dealt.  Surely thats the worst of it I calcluated using the fair-ometer.  Then her grandmather passed away.  This is the woman who raised her.  Still she was very old and her death was expected.  Now, I think, surely thats GOT to be the end of this.  We finished with our company and one week before she passed away we finally met our goal we had been working towards for 3 years.  So one week before she died I "KNEW" the bad times were finally over.  Not to be.  On to next quote below.

 

2 hours ago, Andy said:

Bradley, I'm not suggesting I can help you nor am I arrogant enough to presume to know where to begin, but, if any of the anger, the hopelessness you feel is in any way tied to guilt, loss of control or feeling as if you didn't do enough, then please know, you are not to carry these burdens. They aren't ours to carry. You are a loving husband who obviously adores his wife, who cherished the life you had together, your sorrow speaks volumes to that. I'm cheering you on, she's cheering you on, to see in a week, a month, whatever, that you're still here. You are alive, you have things to live for, even if you can't see them now. We don't have much control, but we have choice.

A ton of my anger and hopelessness is tied to guilt, loss of control and feeling as if I didnt do enough.  Its almost like you read my mind here.  I didnt reconcile cat#1s vaccination record with cat#2 and this is where guilt and "didnt do enough" begins.  After cat#1 died I suggested we keep cat#2 inside the house going forward but Nicole disagreed and cat#2 was ran over.  Now I feel responsible for two dead animals as i "knew" better.  I have never lost a young pet my entire life!   Now, I find I cant keep not just one but two cats alive.  At this point complete loss of control is now all over me.  I proceed to tell Nicole that if she needs ANYTHING for her diabetes or any kind of check ups please let me know as I was astonished we lost two pets 55 days apart and bad luck seems to brewing and I am scared.  I insist on taking Nicole to the hospital and getting her checked out.  Everything checked out ok.  We do another checkup in August.  Everything is ok.  Then, months later, she dies suddenly from a diabetes related stroke the night before we are flying to another country for a beach vacation.  

I know her death is not my fault.  But the loss of control after thinking I was trying to do everything right is gut wrenching.  Thank you for pointing this out.  I also feel very guilty for not doing more research on type 1 diabetes.  I was putting this off as I thought she was so young and wouldnt have problems until much later.  I had no idea plaque builds up on diabetic arteries.  Just no earthly clue.  So when she had the stroke,  I didnt even consider it could be a stroke and I behaved as if it wasnt.  Not at 33.  I didnt know.  I just didnt know and it eats at me every day.  I wish I would have known about this risk.  Its discussed in some of the ada literature but its difficult to find and understand and Nicole never told me about it.  She never told her sister, her mom, or her grandmother.  None of us knew!  I feel like the worse husband in the world for not better understanding my wifes disease.  However, I am not even sure she understood this aspect.   Now please realize I only mention the cats so you can understand my frame of mind.  I dont "grieve" for the cats and we recovered from their loss in a short time.   But the whole year's episode left me feeling like I cant take care of anything or anyone.  Or no matter what I do I have no control.  So guilt, loss of control, and feeling as if I didnt do enough are my burdens.  I would like to let go of them but I cant.  

I am sorry for such a detailed account but your message was worded very well and I had to get this out, even if nobody reads it.  I needed to say it.  Thanks for a comment that was so helpful I was able to cement my thoughts.  Andy

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Bradley, no apology ever for any response, detailed or brief, you need to express about an idea or a feeling, it's what this site's for. I'm glad I was able to impart some comfort, or at least letting you know that what you feel is perfectly "normal". 

Letting go, or accepting our role in things, is a difficult thing. I became attached to this notion that as long as I felt bad, I was still very much grieving, and that's all good and proper. Or so I thought. There's an odd little movie, Babadook, that you might want to watch. If you haven't seen it, it's a small, independent film about a recently widowed mother who's living this pain filled life while seeing to the needs of her young son. It's a "horror" film, but it's much deeper than that. There's a metaphor that examines grief, how we deal or not deal with it and how we choose to live with it, that's fascinating. It's a slow burn movie, an intentional pace of dread, but ends with a revelation of sorts. You may wish to watch it, it might provide an unusual vista of insight. 

I think it's not so much "letting go" of our pain as it is learning to live with it. It's a part of who I am now, like an unwanted nuisance, though that simmering melancholy always reminding me of what I've lost, forcing me to appreciate life. 

Things happen to all of us, every single person alive this minute will one day be gone. Just last week or a few days ago marked the anniversary of the beginning of WWI. All those soldiers, they're gone. Titanic survivors, gone as well. Your wife, my wife, gone far too early, but really, everyone lost is gone far too early. 22 years old or 122 years old, it's always too early. I'd live a thousand lifetimes with my Tracie, but 24 years, 5 months, 20 days, 2 hours and 42 minutes was what I had. I want more, she deserved more, but it wasn't to be. I'm scared without my wife, I don't know who or what to be. I'm 45 and without my best friend, lonely and frightened. 

Remember, you don't have to feel a certain way at a specific time, but you don't deserve to beat yourself up over this. You love her unconditionally, you did what every good husband does, you cared for her the best you could. Like me, you see the weeks and days leading to your wife's passing through the lens of hindsight. That's not fair to you, you don't have to live by assessing blame for yourself. By letting go of the IDEA of control, you may start letting go of the peripheral emotions. Guilt, anger, whatever, but it's a start maybe in the right direction. 

Peace my friend,

Andy

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