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Brad

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    295
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About Brad

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 08/19/1952

Previous Fields

  • Your relationship to the individual who died
    husband
  • Date of Death
    07/29/2015
  • Name/Location of Hospice if they were involved:
    Lund Family Home Hospice of the Valley, Gilbert AZ

Profile Information

  • Your gender
    Male
  • Location (city, state)
    Pinetop, AZ

Recent Profile Visitors

666 profile views
  1. Well, I start tomorrow and although I've already had forty first days of school, this one seems to have created a bit more anxiety than they did in the past. I'm still amazed at how one of the side-effects of grief is what a beating my self-confidence has taken. I've decided that if I can handle three years of teaching, and if I can learn to live a more spartan life, and if I can save enough, then I'd like to spend a year in Europe, sectioning the continent into a dozen regions and the spend a month in each region. Of course, that is a lot of ifs, but the last trip was so good for me, it proved to have a significant impact on my frame of mind. But then I always go back to the old saying: "If you ever wish to make God laugh, tell Him your plans."
  2. It's been two years and eleven days; we, our, us, are all still active parts of my vocabulary. I am striving to make that transition from BradnDeedo to Brad. I am finding success but it is, and always will be, a struggle.
  3. Not to gloat but we've been in our monsoons since mid-July. I personally haven't seen anything over 80 in three weeks. You all are invited to come on over and cool off, lots of hiking in the area.
  4. For me, I still feel like I am stuck in someone else's life. This can't be mine now....but it is. I've never had to make such a conscious effort to move in any direction as I do now. I was just talking to a dear friend whose husband is late stage Lewy Body disease and the discussion turned into how shaken our confidence in ourselves has become. I used to know where I was headed in life; now it seems to have swallowed me.
  5. I've heard from so many how much work it takes to have a good relationship. For Deedo and I, it was as easy as slipping on an icy sidewalk; it just happened and it was wonderful.
  6. Well, life is indeed interesting. So many changes, so much to process, so many emotions all colliding and leaving me feeling in and out of the twilight zone (cue Rod Serling). All in all, things are significantly better than they were a year ago and yet I still find myself crumbling for now apparent reason other than a moment of reflection. I probably will for the rest of my life. You know things are better because I seldom report and contribute, I still lurk in the background but not with the frequency of the past. I made it through the dreaded two-year anniversary; it was a struggle that started about ten days before that horrible date. I had actually been rather good since my return from Europe, and then... For the next ten days, it was a daily struggle to stay focused on the present and not the past; lots of tears keeping my cheeks wet; the distance between my mind and my heart growing galactically by the minute. But I survived last Saturday, not as I would like, but I survived. And then Sunday I got up and decided to return to teaching! The teacher who replaced me is leaving and I had the opportunity to get my old classroom back. Those who know me know I had four major loves in my life: first, foremost, and always, my Deedo; second and thirdly, my kids and grandkids (not necessarily in that order); and then there were my classes. Oh, how I loved teaching. For the past two years, every time I felt the need for help, I would walk. So I walked and walked and walked some more; I've covered nearly five-thousand miles walking since my wife passed. Needless to say, very few of those miles included walking with others. I have a friend who enjoys hiking as much as I do but she lives two-hundred miles away; so we hike when we can but that's only a few times a year. I tried a hiking club but it didn't work out (six water/potty breaks on a five-mile hike). So my time has been spent largely by myself, talking to myself (frankly I'm not that interesting and I know all of my stories by now) By throwing in the towel on retirement, for a few years, I will be forced to leave the house in the morning and interact with humans (if you can call teenagers that) for a significant part of the day. Since the decision was made, I haven't had time to think about the past, only about how many hoops I need to jump through to get my certificate renewed. Once I'm good to go it'll be back to something I really enjoy, something that will help me to focus on being Brad, no longer BradnDeedo. I do want to thank everyone here. By sharing your pain, you've helped me experience and cope with mine. I truly hope it has been reciprocated. For those who are just joining us, I share your pain and hope you know that someday, life will be better. My gratitude extends far beyone my limited skills to express; know that I truly appreciate everyone here.
  7. My Dear MBBH- I am so sorry to hear you have reason to join our group. The emotions you feel are so raw and so new. Seven months is such a difficult time. I understand you being there at this moment and will be there for a very long time to come. It sounds as if you are doing all you can at this time. Grief is such a challenge. You wrote of "We" and, for me, that was a difficult challenge. Since 1978 "we" were "BradnDeedo". It's been nearly twenty-three months for me and I am just starting to learn how to become "Brad" again. I can tell you this: It does get better. Someday, you will realize you went an hour, a few hours, maybe a whole day without crying. Someday, you will find yourself smiling or even chuckling for a bit. Someday, you may even find a modicum of peace with where you are and where you are heading. Until then, hold on. Until then, understand that the sorrow will never end, but you will find a way to find a future without him. I wish you peace. I wish you comfort. Brad
  8. My Dear Janka - I am so sorry we weren't able to get together. You live in a spectacular part of Europe by the way and I would have so much enjoyed meeting for lunch. I love your poems and choice of music. Brad
  9. Hello All, I'm back and am starting to settle back in. The trip was better than I ever hoped for. It was a journey Deedo would not have enjoyed as it was centered around all of my interests and passions like operas, concerts, museums, history, and churches; and walking and walking and climbing and more climbing. It was wonderful for me and allowed me to put my life in a different perspective; I hope. I met many wonderful, kind and caring people everywhere I went; eleven countries, seventeen cities. Once I catch up on my sleep and doctor appointments I'll participate more. Hope all is well and know that more than once I lurked in when I couldn't sleep. Plitvice Lakes, Croatia
  10. Ana - I can't imagine going through what you face daily. You're right; the thirties are for building for the future, not facing the end of dreams. I want to believe that you will someday be strong enough to find genuine joy in what your friends are finding but then I also believe that it will always be tainted by what you lost. Espero que usted encuentre paz mi amiga. Brad
  11. Gin - What a nightmare. I personally believe that those of us who are struggling with intense grief should be exempt from all of the other miseries of daily life. I am so sorry! Brad
  12. Oh! Butch - I am so very sorry. Please share my condolences with your family. You and they have been through so much.
  13. AB, It has only been a few months for you. You are still so early into this journey. If I may, I'd like to caution you about second-guessing the past. What you did, you did because you were looking ahead. Your fiancé had health issues and you knew that the best thing you could do would be to create a stable environment. Otherwise, your actions were based on love and the best information you had. What was lacking was knowledge about the future. I don't know if "those things" are meant to bring us happiness but they are meant to bring us security. Happiness is found in sharing with others experiences that enrich our lives. At least that is what I've always found for me. Now we are missing that one special person life does seem empty and lonely. For my trip, I booked various operas, concerts, and musicals in the cities I will be traveling to. For each event, I booked two tickets with the hopes that I might be able to find someone on the tour who would like to go to an event with me. I did this simply because going alone sounds daunting. I want to share this with someone. My hope for you, today, is that you can be kind to yourself. You spent time concerned with your future and that isn't a bad thing. My marriage was about as perfect as any I have ever seen. We sailed through thirty-seven years without a hiccup. Deedo loved me and I her; unconditionally. And yet, if I allow myself, I regret the times I spent on the computer, reading, working in the yard; times that I wasn't worshiping her. But then these times were all part of who we were; they were also what made our relationship so unique.
  14. Cookie - Of course, you adored him and everything you did, you did out of love. I know from experience how difficult it is to watch someone you love so deeply suffer. Those last months, weeks, days, we were caregivers. We were doing everything in our power to provide love and comfort. You were providing CPR to keep him with you longer. I have guilt from those last days because I knew Deedo was dying and I hated so much to see her suffer; I hoped that she would pass in her sleep. It wasn't that I wanted to lose her, it was I wanted her pain and misery to end. The fact that you were fighting for his life indicates the depth of love and adoration you felt for John. Be kind to yourself, you did all you could and loved John deeply.
  15. Maryanne - My children are very protective of me but they don't call me when they get to work. My youngest son calls every day, either on his way to work or on his way home; depending on his schedule. My daughter will call most days, but not always, on her way home. My oldest will call sometimes weekly, sometimes a couple of times in a week. I would feel smothered if any of them called twice daily. I don't think Deedo ever called her mom twice every day. So to answer your question "Is that wrong?" In my opinion: nope; I think those feelings are fully justified, I do think that your relationship with her is more of a crutch for her. I understand your need to "stand on your own and face grief". If there is one thing I've learned is that although we all share this common denominator, each of us needs to face grief on our own. There is no consigning it to anyone else.
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