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Mrs. Pishner

Lost

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I lost my husband of 28 years unexpectedly and suddenly December 8th. He was the love of my life, and I do not know how to go on without him, I am not sure that I can, I have many people who love and support me, but I feel so lost and alone. We have a son who just turned 18, and a daughter who is 31, three beautiful grandsons and if it weren't for them I would just give up. Nothing even looks, feels, smells or tastes the same, everything seems useless. I try and hold myself together but the pain is just too great. We had plans, we were coming into our time. I can't imagine a life without touching him, seeing his smile, assuring me that everything is going to be ok. Nothing will ever be ok, nothing will ever be the same, I will never be the same.

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I’m so sorry. My husband died suddenly on November 6th. I joined this forum and it has been a great outlet. We were at your point too. Our youngest is a junior in high school and we were planning college visits and our empty nest time. It’s not fair and i have no words for you. There are others here who  have better insight than I. We did attend church and i have found comfort in scripture but everyone is different. I also joined a bereavement group that starts January 10th. The shared sentiment around here is one day, hour or minute at a time. Whatever you can handle. God Bless! 

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Sorry for your loss. On December 6, I to lost my husband. He had went into cardiac arrest in September at home. He was making good progress in the nursing home for rehab. They were working with him in getting him weened from the trach tube and feeding tube. He was only 58 years old, we were married for 26 years. I got the call from the nursing home that he passed away in his sleep, from another cardiac arrest. I am in shock that he is gone. I just don't have the will to live. I miss him very much. That was the second loss of this year for me. Back in July this year we had to put our 12 year old golden retriever Lucky to sleep unexpectedly, he had abnormal stomach tumor, and loss the use of his back legs. I am still grieving about that also. Taking both of the losses extremely hard, I feel very loss, without them both being here. Sometimes I wish I was with them. My heart is aching is bad it hurts.

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Mrs. Pishner,

I am so sorry for your loss.  Mine was 12 1/2 years ago.  I understand your feelings, having felt them myself, as everyone here has.  My husband had just turned 51, his birthday banner still up in the family room.  It was unexpected and shocking and I didn't see how I could live a week without him, let alone the rest of my life.  I'm glad you found this place, it was a forum such as this that was my lifesaver.  I wrote this article for those newly going through this, based on what I've learned in my 12 year journey and I want to share it with you in the hopes there will be something you can take from it that will be of help to you.

TIPS TO MAKE YOUR WAY THROUGH GRIEF

There's no way to sum up how to go on in a simple easy answer, but I encourage you to read the other threads here, little by little you will learn how to make your way through this.  I do want to give you some pointers though, of some things I've learned on my journey.

  • Take one day at a time.  The Bible says each day has enough trouble of it's own, I've found that to be true, so don't bite off more than you can chew.  It can be challenging enough just to tackle today.  I tell myself, I only have to get through today.  Then I get up tomorrow and do it all over again.  To think about the "rest of my life" invites anxiety.
  • Don't be afraid, grief may not end but it evolves.  The intensity lessens eventually.
  • Visit your doctor.  Tell them about your loss, any troubles sleeping, suicidal thoughts, anxiety attacks.  They need to know these things in order to help you through it...this is all part of grief.
  • Suicidal thoughts are common in early grief.  If they're reoccurring, call a suicide hotline.  I felt that way early on, but then realized it wasn't that I wanted to die so much as I didn't want to go through what I'd have to face if I lived.  Back to taking a day at a time.
  • Try not to isolate too much.  
  • There's a balance to reach between taking time to process our grief, and avoiding it...it's good to find that balance for yourself.  We can't keep so busy as to avoid our grief, it has a way of haunting us, finding us, and demanding we pay attention to it!  Some people set aside time every day to grieve.  I didn't have to, it searched and found me!
  • Self-care is extremely important, more so than ever.  That person that would have cared for you is gone, now you're it...learn to be your own best friend, your own advocate, practice self-care.  You'll need it more than ever.
  • Recognize that your doctor isn't trained in grief, find a professional grief counselor that is.  We need help finding ourselves through this maze of grief, knowing where to start, etc.  They have not only the knowledge, but the resources.]
  • In time, consider a grief support group.  If your friends have not been through it themselves, they may not understand what you're going through, it helps to find someone somewhere who DOES "get it". 
  • Be patient, give yourself time.  There's no hurry or timetable about cleaning out belongings, etc.  They can wait, you can take a year, ten years, or never deal with it.  It's okay, it's what YOU are comfortable with that matters.  
  • Know that what we are comfortable with may change from time to time.  That first couple of years I put his pictures up, took them down, up, down, depending on whether it made me feel better or worse.  Finally, they were up to stay.
  • Consider a pet.  Not everyone is a pet fan, but I've found that my dog helps immensely.  It's someone to love, someone to come home to, someone happy to see me, someone that gives me a purpose...I have to come home and feed him.  Besides, they're known to relieve stress.  Well maybe not in the puppy stage when they're chewing up everything, but there's older ones to adopt if you don't relish that stage.
  • Make yourself get out now and then.  You may not feel interest in anything, things that interested you before seem to feel flat now.  That's normal.  Push yourself out of your comfort zone just a wee bit now and then.  Eating out alone, going to a movie alone or church alone, all of these things are hard to do at first.  You may feel you flunked at it, cried throughout, that's okay, you did it, you tried, and eventually you get a little better at it.  If I waited until I had someone to do things with I'd be stuck at home a lot.
  • Keep coming here.  We've been through it and we're all going through this together.
  • Look for joy in every day.  It will be hard to find at first, but in practicing this, it will change your focus so you can embrace what IS rather than merely focusing on what ISN'T.  It teaches you to live in the present and appreciate fully.  You have lost your big joy in life, and all other small joys may seem insignificant in comparison, but rather than compare what used to be to what is, learn the ability to appreciate each and every small thing that comes your way...a rainbow, a phone call from a friend, unexpected money, a stranger smiling at you, whatever the small joy, embrace it.  It's an art that takes practice and is life changing if you continue it.
  • Eventually consider volunteering.  It helps us when we're outward focused, it's a win/win.

(((hugs))) Praying for you today.

 

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On 12/29/2017 at 8:21 PM, Mrs. Pishner said:

I lost my husband of 28 years unexpectedly and suddenly December 8th. He was the love of my life, and I do not know how to go on without him, I am not sure that I can, I have many people who love and support me, but I feel so lost and alone. We have a son who just turned 18, and a daughter who is 31, three beautiful grandsons and if it weren't for them I would just give up. Nothing even looks, feels, smells or tastes the same, everything seems useless. I try and hold myself together but the pain is just too great. We had plans, we were coming into our time. I can't imagine a life without touching him, seeing his smile, assuring me that everything is going to be ok. Nothing will ever be ok, nothing will ever be the same, I will never be the same.

I am so very sorry for your loss and the shock you must be experiencing.  I know you weren't prepared for this, nobody is. You lose someone you love more than you love yourself and you think you won't make it through or if you really want to; I certainly did.  I was so broken and sad, I literally shut down and for a moment, I felt I didn't exist.  Losing your spouse is the ultimate marriage crisis and one of the most stressful events you will ever have to experience. One day you are married. The next day you are a widower, alone and grieving. Nothing is forever. And you go through all of the emotions; the shock, loneliness, anger, confusion, fear, a broken heart, and depression .   It's very painful and can get even more painful before it starts to get better; after all, your entire life just changed in a matter of minutes.  So if you need to cry, cry, it helps and for me is a healing device.  With the lost of someone so dear, pain is necessary and so are tears - I think of them as sort of  "emotional first-aid."  One of the true ways to mourn your loved one is to take care of the living who belong to them.  That means, as hard as it is, you must take care of yourself during this difficult time; physically and mentally. 

Loss isn’t past tense; it’s always present. Always with us.  When my Charles died, I came face to face with mortality; the ugly reality of life. Something I always knew but never wanted to see. I’ve experienced the deaths of family, friends and acquaintances but no loss, no ache, nothing at all could prepare my heart for losing my Charles.  I have traveled through it all and felt nothing made any sense. Still nothing has ever jolted me, halted me, stopped me in my tracks, like losing my Charles. 

Being a strong believer in God, my faith did falter following Charles death because I felt God was punishing me.  After much prayer I realized HE wasn't.  HE was preparing me; HE prepares us for things that we do not see coming.  HE doesn't want us to stay wounded; we are supposed to move through our tragedies and challenges and to help each other move though the many painful episodes of our lives.  I think in all HIS wisdom, through our wounds, we enter the hearts of one another teaching us to become compassionate and wise. 

Because your husband affected each of you differently, each of you will mourn him differently and that's OK.   Take all the time you need to heal you emotionally.  Moving on doesn't take a day; it  takes a lot of little steps to be able to break free of your broken self.

I hope you continue to post here;  we're like family trying to help one another along the horrible journey.  The journey may be long, dark and freighting, but the goal is in each step we take.  Know you are in my prayers.

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14 hours ago, Francine said:

Loss isn’t past tense; it’s always present. Always with us.

I never thought of it like that before but it's so true!

And it challenged my faith as well.  I tell people to not worry about it if your faith has taken a hit, it's normal in grief.  God doesn't abandon us no matter how much we rail at Him, and when we come to, He's still ever there, faithful, and will see us through this.

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