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Tineke Tjepkema

What is next?

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Hello to you all.The club of people who are grieving, the club of people who are sad,the club of people who feel lonely and I can go on like this forever.I have been a visitor of this forum for a couple of weeks.Just visiting and reading how people feel after they have lost their loved one.It is comforting to know that you are not the only one who feels like this and for me that I 'have done' already over 9 months.

So I have done 9 months now and why do I still often feel so terrible?And feel that I 'should've feeling better by now and I am doing all the right things and I am even seeing a councillor.But when it comes down to it I still feel very lonely and sad,sad,sad and I miss my Steve so bad that I sometimes do not know what to do with myself.I am frantically looking for things to keep myself occupied with;lots of sport,working in the garden, seeing friends etc.But really, all I want is Steve next to me.To talk and to do things with.

I am 'giving' myself 2 years to get over him.I know it is rubbish to talk like that,but I don't want to be still grieving in 10 years.What I really want is to feel better now and to stop crying now!

I would like to hear from all of you.How you feel now and if the passing of your loved one has been a while longer, how did you feel at 9 months?

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Tineke Tjepkema,

It's been only 3 months or me; I'm still feeling very low, sad, miserable, anything negative, I feel.  My husband was my life and I was his.  We were married for almost 45 years and it felt like only yesterday when we fell in love and got married.  He was my world. The pain is still unbearable; so deep, it penetrate my soul.   My body literally hurts from not being able to touch him, kiss him, hold him; talk to him; just be with him.

36 minutes ago, Tineke Tjepkema said:

I am 'giving' myself 2 years to get over him.I know it is rubbish to talk like that,but I don't want to be still grieving in 10 years.What I really want is to feel better now and to stop crying now!

I can't put a time frame on 'getting over' the loss of my husband and if I'm honest with myself,  I don't ever want to.  I think the reality is that you grieve forever.  I'll learn to live with it; I'll cope; I'll survive but I'll never 'get over' him and I'll never be the same - I'm forever changed.  I believe we choose the 'change' we become.  We can give up and continue as we are or not; give in and let others dictate what we should do, or not; or give it all we got and go forward, or not.   We may eventually heal (if that's even possible) and rebuild ourselves around the loss we have suffered.  We might even be whole again (whatever that means) but I don't think we will ever be the same, nor should we be the same, nor would we want to be.

May God give you the strength, love and peace you need at this most difficult time in your life.

I hope you feel better and in time your tears will become less. I don't like to cry but sometimes we cannot control our tears anymore than we can control the weather and that's OK.  The most painful tears are not the ones that fall from your eyes and cover your face; they're the ones that fall from your heart and cover your soul.  I think that is because the heart can no longer handle the pain.

 

 

 

 

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Hi Francine,

Thank you for taking the time to reply.You were married for 45 years;I was with Steve for 'only' 22 years.Our lives were very intertwined.We had both stopped working at an early age and we were enjoying life to the full,living out of a suitcase most of the time.That nomadic lifestyle is suddenly not so appealing anymore on my own.

We can not describe to people how we feel.People will say to me :'I know how you feel', but they don't.The only people that understand us are people that are in 'the club'.It is sad but true.Still we can get a lot of support from people around us,even if they have not gone through a loss like we have.I find my councillor very helpful and some of my friends and one of my sisters are my life savers.We can not do this alone.Unfortunately there are many hours that we are alone and that we do not have a person near us.Those hours I find the hardest hours.I want to scream and cry and I call him to come back to me,I shout at him why did you leave just like that, leaving me all on my own..But I know that he won't come back.It was not his choice to leave life this early and I know that he much rather would be here with me on this earth.

I also get help from thinking :'what would he want me to do, what would he want me to do with the rest of my life'.I want Steve to be proud of me.You are right to say that we will never be the same , we will be changed for ever but maybe we will just come out at the other end that little bit stronger.I want to show my Steve that I can still make something out of my life even though I have to do it on my own.

For me writing down about my sad feelings help.I do not know about you but I know I can not always 'burden' my friends with my sadness.On this forum you can say what you feel, over and over again and people understand your sadness.We are all in the same boat and we just have to make sure that the waves that keep hitting our boat don't make the boat capsize.Riding the waves, that is what my councillor told me.Ride the waves of sadness;see it as a wave and after a little while the wave will disappear.We know that another wave will come but we will be ready to ride that one as well.

 

 

 

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Tineke,

I am only a little under 3 months into my grieving process, so I won't be able to tell you anything about how I will feel at 9 months.  I am currently doing ok.  I am very sad, and have frequent breakdowns.  If I had to guess I would say about once to twice a day on the average, for about 10 to 30 minutes, and each time I am inconsolable until it passes.  I think of her every minute of the day, which I hope continues.  I never want to forget her, or even get to a point where I don't think about her very often, if not all the time.

What I want is to get to a point where those memories are happy more often than sad.  where the knowledge of our relationship and the love we shared is a source of strength for me.  I have those positive moments now, and they are becoming more frequent.  I doubt they will ever be exclusively good emotions, the loss will lurk, waiting for me always.  And I am ok with that too.  We have all suffered a horrible loss, and while I can see the good that came from my relationship, it is also perfectly reasonable and understandable that I will always miss what I once had.

I am progressing everyday to a point where my grief is not all consuming.  I can experience other things, and while the grief is still present, it doesn't overwhelm the other feelings I have.  I could try to move past the grief, but in reality I don't want to.  For me, moving past the grief would be like denying the love I had, and I never want to do that.  I can however put the grief in the appropriate place, beside the love I still feel so deeply for my wife.  The grief is powerful, but compared to that love, it is minor.  The grief is the result of how powerful our relationship was and indeed still is, and as a result it is only a part of what I now have.  In time will be the smaller part as the realization of how unique and special our love truly was and is continues to come back to me.

There are also new emotions, very rare at this point because I am so engulfed by the loss, which is still very fresh for me.  But they are there.  Moments of new happiness, sorrow, and even occasionally hope.  As I continue down this path, more of those emotions will occur, and they will likely become more frequent and vibrant.  These new emotions are not an insult to my relationship, they are not a replacement for it.  They are a continuation of it.  These feelings are what my relationship brought to me and my wife, and while she is no longer here to share in them, in many ways that makes it even more important for me to grasp them firmly for both of us.  So that is where I am, an occasionally happy basket case that cries when the wind changes direction and has become comfortable with that.

Now let me say how sorry I am for your loss.  Steve sounds like a wonderful man and husband.  I know how empty our lives often feel without them, and wish you didn't have to experience this pain that we all share.  It sounds like you have a good support network in place, and I am sure your counselor is helping.  I am also sure Steve would be proud of you for making it through this difficult time, and I think he is proud of you, as I believe they watch over us though I have no proof of that.  Please come and post here if you want to, we are all strengthened by one another.  Hoping you find peace and comfort,

Herc

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Tineke,

I'm sorry for your loss.  It IS hard, like a club we never wanted to be part of but for which we're thankful for.

I'm sorry, but two years...we don't get "over" them.  This is a long journey is which we learn a lot.  And do a lot of adjusting.  Grief work is exhausting but it can be done.

Welcome to this site, I'm glad you finally "spoke up" so we could meet you.  

You're seeing a grief counselor, that is a start, so is coming here.  Keep posting, we're here, we'll be listening.

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Tineke---Thank you for posting and sharing. I was blessed to be with my soulmate for 25 years. Those years seem to have gone so quickly, but now, time crawls. I am so sorry for the loss of your Steve, your soulmate. No matter what we choose to do to help us cope, family, friends, counseling, grief books, etc., we are going to miss our loved ones. We are still going to cry, be sad and have depression like symptoms. We are always going to love and miss them. I have been without my husband for a little over 7 months. It has not gotten easier and I don't think ahead. I'm taking it day by day. I still have a hard time comprehending his absence. He passed from sudden cardiac arrest. The longest we were ever apart was a week. I'm not putting a time frame on my grieving. My broken heart, my emotions, are always going to be there, under the surface of survival. There is a lot of hard effort, adapting, carrying my loss with me.

Keep posting. There are many of us here, to listen , to share.

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Hi KMB, KayC and Herc, my husband also died from sudden cardiac arrest.He was in bed next to me asleep.Suddenly he had a few strange gasps and that woke me up.And then he stopped breathing and I knew straight away it was not good.I dragged him on the floor and started CPR.Well we all know that that did not work.I would not have been on this forum...PM showed that his coronary arteries were totally blocked.He was super fit and had done over 100 km on his bike in the hills the day before he died.His nick name was Sports Billy.He was the last person in the world that anyone would have thought to die just like that.And he was only 51 years old.What a waste.

When I said in a post I give myself 2 years to get over him I mean that I hope that in 2 years I will have found some sort of happiness again, some sort of closure.I really,really do not want to feel like this for ever.Steve will be in my heart for ever, but I sincerely hope that he eventually will be in my heart without any pain.That I can think about him with a smile on my face in stead of with tears in my eyes.

We all feel that our spouse was the best ever and they were.That is why we are all so sad.Because we loved so much we now suffer so much.

We are all in each others thoughts and that helps.Writing here in this forum helps.

Lets keep writing and lets keep caring

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Tineke,

I've learned you can't tell a person's insides by their outside.  My husband had five completely blocked arteries, I don't know how he did what he did or lived as long as he did!  He also appeared the picture of health, not an ounce overweight, big broad shoulders and chest, strong, 32" waist...when I picked up his ashes they commented on how lean he was.  So why then were his arteries so clogged!  I have watched my cholesterol for years so was careful what I fed him.  I guess genes play heavily into this.  We'd just went on a steep hike two weeks before.  He had just taken charge of a move by our disabled friend, he'd done heavy lifting, etc, all the hard work he'd taken on himself.  And he'd just had his 51st birthday that week.

I don't think there is such a thing as closure when it comes to grief, but more like we adjust to what is.  Two years isn't giving yourself a realistic period of time in my opinion, but we are all different.

In the beginning thoughts of George brought immense pain, but over the years it evolved into comfort and a smile, so it does definitely evolve throughout our journey.  Try not to put time constraints on yourself, it is what it is and we can't hurry ourselves through this.

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I too never want to "get over" the loss of my wife. What I want is to be able to life a happy life. I don't have that in me now but that's what my wife asked me to do. I want to remember the happy days more than the day she died. I want to be only half as positive towards life as she was despite all her health isues. I want to live a meaningful life so when I meet her again I don't have to tell her, I just wasted a life she wasn't even meant to have.

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1 hour ago, KayC said:

Tineke,

I've learned you can't tell a person's insides by their outside.  My husband had five completely blocked arteries, I don't know how he did what he did or lived as long as he did!  He also appeared the picture of health, not an ounce overweight, big broad shoulders and chest, strong, 32" waist...when I picked up his ashes they commented on how lean he was.  So why then were his arteries so clogged!  I have watched my cholesterol for years so was careful what I fed him.  I guess genes play heavily into this.  We'd just went on a steep hike two weeks before.  He had just taken charge of a move by our disabled friend, he'd done heavy lifting, etc, all the hard work he'd taken on himself.  And he'd just had his 51st birthday that week.

I don't think there is such a thing as closure when it comes to grief, but more like we adjust to what is.  Two years isn't giving yourself a realistic period of time in my opinion, but we are all different.

In the beginning thoughts of George brought immense pain, but over the years it evolved into comfort and a smile, so it does definitely evolve throughout our journey.  Try not to put time constraints on yourself, it is what it is and we can't hurry ourselves through this.

KayC

You are spot on in your post.  You can't judge a the book by its cover.  While my husband wasn't the pillar of health, we had no idea a heart attack would have taken his life.  We had just went to the hospital the day before and things appeared to be fine.  In less than 24 hours, he was gone; and from the look of him, you wouldn't (at least I didn't) know he was experiencing anything, or if he was feeling anything.  The doctor said it was instant; and while it is comforting knowing he didn't suffer, it still hurts like hell. 

I agree  - I think we never have closure, we learn to live the life we have been dealt and we adjust.  When I look at pictures of him, of us, and think bake, I do smile, but then the realization that I will never see him again in this life comes back and so does my tsunami.  It is what it is, but does it have to feel like your insides are being rip out of you body?

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Francine, It does feel like our insides have been ripped out. Why is my heart still beating when it is broken? Figure of speech of course, but how else can you describe the emotional torture? If this pain was coming from my mind, wouldn't I be suffering a migraine?  Why do I still need to eat and drink? Where is this pain originating from? If not our hearts------

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18 hours ago, Francine said:

You are spot on in your post.  You can't judge a the book by its cover.  While my husband wasn't the pillar of health, we had no idea a heart attack would have taken his life.  We had just went to the hospital the day before and things appeared to be fine.  In less than 24 hours, he was gone; and from the look of him, you wouldn't (at least I didn't) know he was experiencing anything, or if he was feeling anything.  The doctor said it was instant; and while it is comforting knowing he didn't suffer, it still hurts like hell. 

I agree  - I think we never have closure, we learn to live the life we have been dealt and we adjust.  When I look at pictures of him, of us, and think bake, I do smile, but then the realization that I will never see him again in this life comes back and so does my tsunami.  It is what it is, but does it have to feel like your insides are being rip out of you body?

You are so right.  I wish George had been gone in an instant, but unfortunately he suffered greatly that last weekend, and went the way he always said he did not want to go. Me, I'd pick cancer or something as the way I didn't want to go, but he picked heart attack because he'd seen so many go that way, and wouldn't you know, that's the way he went, it seems unfair, but as I've been reminded so many times, fairness doesn't seem to enter in.

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19 hours ago, KMB said:

Francine, It does feel like our insides have been ripped out. Why is my heart still beating when it is broken? Figure of speech of course, but how else can you describe the emotional torture? If this pain was coming from my mind, wouldn't I be suffering a migraine?  Why do I still need to eat and drink? Where is this pain originating from? If not our hearts------

Hearts can break and often do,   Sometimes I think it would have be better had I died when my Charles did; I think the worst pain is when you can physically feel your heart breaking.  A heart breaking isn't always as loud as a bomb exploding; sometimes it is as quiet as a feather falling and the most painful thing is nobody hears it, except you.  We should be proud of our hearts; they been  stabbed, cheated, ripped out of our chest, and broken but somehow, someway, they still work.  Hearts broken, but still beating; arms empty, but still open, eyes filled with tears, but still seeing.   God given strength we didn't know we possessed, even when it hurts.  

We have definitely been damaged, we've already been through hell; so whatever is given us, we not only will survive, we will endure.   My God, we are strong.  Sorry for being so word, but you know me :D.  Keep strong and be blessed.

I'm sending prayers your way!

 

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Francine--Thank you. It has been a tough day. I found myself laying down for a bit. I thought a short nap would help, since I have insomnia. Close my eyes and memories flood in and the crying starts. I usually go outside in the afternoon, but it is one of those gloomy, windy, rain/snow mix days .So, I come back to the computer to get my mind somewhere else.  Thank you for the reminders that we are strong and God hasn't abandoned me, even though it feels like it at times.

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6 years ago my husband was murdered. N I do not feel over it, in a better place, or anything close. I've even found love again years later, unfortunately he passed away in an accident 1 year ago, but even with having found love again, I don't think you can move on from love that is stolen from you. You just move with it. I'm 31, buried the only men I've ever loved, the pain is always with me. I always wondered when will it not hurt. When will have not cry at the drop of a hat. Never. Thats love.

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6 hours ago, Kistylisty said:

I don't think you can move on from love that is stolen from you. You just move with it.

It is true, we never get "over it", but we can learn to carry it with us.  Please get some help, you deserve it, you are worth it.  Murder and suicide are much more complicated, Lord knows just losing someone to death is magnanimous to deal with, but add in murder or suicide, and honestly, you need that extra help.  Value yourself enough to make that call.

I am very sorry for your losses, Kistylisty.  No one should have to suffer like this.  My heart goes out to you.

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Hi to all of you.I have 'been away' for a few days.I am so desperately filling my days with doing 'stuff' that i did not make time to read the forums and/or write something.I know that my keeping busy is a form of escape.When i keep busy i don not think too much about my Steve.When I am alone at home, thats when the thinking starts and it rarely makes me feel better.

Yesterday was a bit of a milestone for me.I scattered a little of Steve's ashes and my friend made a 1 min video of it.Steve would have loved it.A little of his ashes on the soil in front of our old windsurf boards that are dug in the ground there.Windsurfing and riding his bike were his passions.I honour his passions and I have  continued to windsurf on my own and ride my bike on my own or with friends.It is not the same, but I want Steve to be proud of me.I want him to say : 'Well done girl, you still have it in you, even without me'.

To refer back to your comments.I agree we will not 'get over our loved one', but we will learn to live with their absence not live despite their absence.Our hearts are broken,but broken things can mend themselves.There will be scars, no doubt.We are all on this forum,so our pain is still raw, our hearts are still broken,our minds are still full of thoughts of our loved one.They will probably stay full of these thoughts for a long time and most likely forever.But eventually these thoughts will not cause pain anymore but when will that time arrive.I would love to know.

 

 

 

 

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Tineke Tjepkema,

I lost my wife of 22 years this past may. Its been 10 months, I'v been veery busy insuring that all our affairs are in order. I retired came home to get the kids through collage. when looking back I can see that Iv taken very little time for me. I am very logical person (I worked with computers to long). I have tried to push my self through the grieving process, thinking that if I can reach the final step I will fell better maybe even happy. I have pushed my self to go to online dating sites, talk to and even meet ladies. It was extremely difficult in every way (I talk about that later). What have I learned: I still miss my wife and their is no replacing her, their are real people out their with real life's that I'm not ready to be apart of. nor do I want them to de apart of my family. I have little to no motivation for doing any thing even tho I am capable of doing almost anything. I to want this grieving to end and I will continue to look for answers to unanswerable questions, it's what i do. so the short answer to your question is How do I fell after 10 months: Lonely : Sad : and with out purpose.

Sorry If I'm to abrupt 

Autocharge

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Autocharge,

I'm sorry for your loss as well, but glad you found your way here.  This is quite a journey, it takes time to work through this.  It took me probably three years just to process his death, finding purpose and building a life I could live with took way longer.  Wishing you well on your journey.

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I don't want to derail this thread. Thanks for your reply. From the threads that iv read so far one thing seems to be reoccurring in most of them. Everyone is looking for answers. it's to bad theirs not a one answer fit all. maybe people on here can find something that they can relate to but understand that every experience is unique. I just saw the question of "how did you feel at 9 months?" and Im at 10 months so I thought I could answer just one question out of the many questions out their.

Autocharge

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Autocharge----I am sorry for the loss of your beloved wife. What struck me in your post is that you are looking for the final step in this process. For me, there is no final step. I cannot *push* myself through this lonely journey. I take it one day at a time. I'm going to be on this journey the rest of my life. There is no forgetting my husband and our past. I will carry him and our memories in my heart forever.

It has only been 10 months for you and I feel you are finding out that your grieving cannot be rushed. You mention the online dating and have realized you are not ready. Please, slow down and let the emotions express themselves. Grieving has to be faced head on and the feelings, emotions, fully processed. I understand your personality in wanting to deal with logic, but I don't feel it quite works that way. We can use logic in processing death itself, but the rest of the process is purely emotional, from the heart. The grieving doesn't end, it just evolves over time into something that we can coexist with. (HUGS)

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Again My intent was not to derail this thread. I can see their are many people out their that do care. So I will start a new thread with my experiences and see were it goes.

The question remains " how did you feel at 9 months?" please try and answer this for the original poster.

thank you

autocharge

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Sorry, most of us have responded to the original poster. Everyone has their own time line. Where one person is at in 2 months, someone might still be there in 6 months. There are different stages to grieving. Someone might go through all the stages, while another might *skip* stages. I've heard of people who are so lonely for companionship that they get remarried within the first year of grieving. I guess it all depends on the grieving person, their circumstances, how close they were to the spouse that is no longer here.

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Hi to all again.All the questions we ask ourselves....We know that they can not really be answered.When I asked the question :' How did you feel at 9 months' I could have received 100 different answers. We all have our own ways of grieving, we all have our own time line.Some people start dating in the first year or indeed even get married in the first year.For me personally that would be way to early.I genuinely am not interested in a close relationship with a man at the moment.General advice is not to take any big decisions in the first year or 2 and marriage would definitely fall under that category.

What I learn from my counsellor and from books and from family and friends is that we have to be kind to ourselves and that we have to give ourselves time.Lots of time.We all would want this time in our lives of feeling awful to be over, to be over quickly, but it does not work like that.And it is not only time what we need.We need to do something with that time.We need to use that time for healing for becoming whole again.We all have our own ways of doing that.What helps for me is accepting and asking for help from outside.

 

 

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On 3/24/2017 at 2:38 AM, Kistylisty said:

6 years ago my husband was murdered. N I do not feel over it, in a better place, or anything close. I've even found love again years later, unfortunately he passed away in an accident 1 year ago, but even with having found love again, I don't think you can move on from love that is stolen from you. You just move with it. I'm 31, buried the only men I've ever loved, the pain is always with me. I always wondered when will it not hurt. When will have not cry at the drop of a hat. Never. Thats love.

I'm so sorry for your losses.  How strong a person you are at your young age.   Strong women need not declare they can carry all the burdens in life; they just quietly do it and survive.  They love, cry, forgive, let go, try again, persevere...no matter what life throws at them.   A funny story comes to mind when I think about a 'strong' women.  -

  • The devil whispered in a 'strong' woman's ear - "you're not strong enough to withstand the storm" - She whispered back in the devil's ear - "Hell, I AM THE STORM"

Stay Strong as you are and God Bless you. 

 

 

Edited by Francine
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