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feralfae

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About feralfae

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday January 26

Previous Fields

  • Date of Death
    7 February 2012
  • Name/Location of Hospice if they were involved:
    Wonderful Rocky Mountain Hospice, Helena Montana

Profile Information

  • Your gender
    Female
  • Location (city, state)
    Helena Montana
  • Interests
    Archaeology, art, alpine climbing, classical music, Common Law, exploring, adventure, poetry, reading.

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2,115 profile views
  1. Glen, thank you for your sharing here. I am so sorry you have lost your mother and I so thankful for you that you have your wonderful Trish and dear friends with you. Your heartfelt account of your mother's last days is truly touching, and gives us all the opportunity to share this time with you. Your mother was a remarkable and determined woman, and you have, with your beautiful recounting of her struggles, brought her alive her for us all. Peace be with you as you go through this time of grief. You have my deepest sympathy, from my heart to yours.
  2. Dear Glen and all, I often think the time we spend here, expressing the feelings which seem to surround loss, death, and grief is the time we are journaling among caring people, who can read our words and validate our feelings. I still carry some guilt that I could not save Doug from cancer. We went to extraordinary measures—clinical trials, special doctors, diets, cancer consultants, trips out of the country—willing to try almost anything that we thought might save him. Realistically, we gained three more years for him than the oncologists thought he would have. But still, I felt a lot of guilt that I could not find a way to save him, although I have no background in cancer care or medicine. Somehow, I felt I could have done and should have done more. Even now, eight years later, I still have attacks of guilt about not being able to save his life. Yes, there has been great sadness and grief about his leaving, but there is also some part of me that finds it hard to let go of the guilt. And so I want to say a word of solace and caution: when we lose someone very close to us, it is easy to feel guilty that we could not overpower death. Sometimes, we are able to escape death and live longer, but sometimes, it is simply time for that person to go. While we are feeling guilt, out of balance, lost in the world, and have that huge gaping hole in our heart, we are very vulnerable. Be careful to not make any big decisions, do not let bad people take advantage of you, and stay close to those you know you can trust. especially because of the guilt, we often attempt to compensate of make things better by making changes, even seeking out a new social group. Our best resources are our family, church, close friends, and coming here to share and vent, to be among others who are grieving and sharing their stories of loss. Take time to plan before making decisions. Discuss major decisions with family or your financial advisor. So many time I have been ready to run away from my home and all that is here, just because the memories of Doug still live here. Now I am glad i waited all these years, gaining my own balance back, able to make my own decisions above the fog of deep grief and guilt. So, come here, journal here if you'd like, share your sorrow and your feelings of guilt and being lost. We hold each other together here, helping each other to find balance, helping each other put our lives back together in this new pattern that often has no partner, parent, sibling, or other loved ones. But here, we can vent, share, support each other and find peaceful ways to go forward with our lives. It is a slow process—and wanting out of the pain makes it seem even longer. This is a wonderful place of support. It is a sanctuary against the demands of life and the world. Here is a safe place to share and heal. I am very glad we have found it. *<twinkles>*
  3. I have finally finished (I think) going through Mother's papers. I'm still sorting Doug's papers too, and so this whole process of going through Mother's things has brought back a lot of the sadness and grief from Doug's death as well. I'm glad I had a break, a respite from it all to go out in the field, but have been back home a few days and while I rest, I have been sorting more papers. I spend a couple hours on Doug's papers, then a couple hours on Mother's papers, then I leave both asks and do something else. But the grief is so strong here in the house, where there are reminders of Doug all around me, as well as stacks of Mother's books. I think the hardest part is still wishing I could have had better visit and talks with Mother. Thank you Kay, for knowing how hard it can be to break through and communicate with someone who is mentally ill. I am so sorry you could not communicate with your mother either. Yes, it is a great comfort to know that they are both safe, out of pain and confusion and fear, and at peace now. To have that assurance that things will be all right for her now, and that when I see her again she will be free from the fear and confusion is something I can look forward to having happen. *<twinkles>*
  4. Doug left on February 7, 2012. So I recently passed the eighth anniversary of his escape from his cancer-ridden body. I remember the fifth anniversary was at a time when I was first accepting that I could let go of more of his things. That he would not need them any more, ever. I realized then that I needed to begin to build my own solo life, and that it needed some direction. I think Doug is with me most of the time, and certainly when I need him to help me with some question or issue. But every anniversary, every birthday, and every time something reminds me, then I am back with Doug for a second, and then we are only a memory again. Although I see our life now through a lens of sadness, I can also see and feel the joy we had, and the great marriage we made together. I celebrate with you these fifth anniversaries, and all that joy you remember, and all the love you continue to feel, for always. *<twinkles>*
  5. Dear Yoyoma, I am so very sorry that you have lost your dear mother. I am glad you have found this caring place. I am so very glad you are having these moments of respite. I remember when I first had them, and also felt guilty, as though by having moment of joy, I was somehow abandoning my heavy cloak of grieving widow—which I then felt I would wear always. Mind you, it was almost two years before I had my first moment of pure, distracted joy–I was admiring a cloud. And I almost did not let Creation give me a tiny dose of joy because of a sense of guilt if I were not in deep sorrow always, forever. I learned an incredibly valuable lesson: I could hold on to those tiny bits of the Light of Joy, even as I walked through the "valley of the shadow of death" which we must walk if we have loved. I began to see these moments of joy as little reminders of the Promise of G*d: that as long as I stayed on my Path, and did not try to lead from my emotionally shattered spirit, I was going to be okay. I could not yet imagine that time from my broken place of bottomless grief and despair. I could be able to smile at the clouds scuttling across the Divide, enchanted by the endless beauty of this Earth. We are the stewards of the Earth, so I am back to teaching about that when I can find an ear. Cherish those little bright moments as medicine pills from your future joyful self. You are taking baby steps of healing from your grief. Your healing has begun. Brava! *<twinkles>*
  6. Dear Marty, ♥️♥️♥️ right back to you and Much love *<twinkles>*
  7. Dear Kay, thank you for your very kind and caring words. I can feel their warmth, and know these words come from your heart. Your presence here is a gift of comfort to us all. Thank you for your loving compassion for those who are grieving. I know you carry your own empty places, and that only makes your words mean much more. Much love, *<twinkles>*
  8. George, I am so very sorry you have lost your beloved Rose Anne. I will be thinking of you on the 16th. I hope it is a day of peace and love for you. Yes, under the care of our Creator, we somehow carry on, on the Path where we are led. Peace to your heart. *<twinkles>*
  9. today, or rather tonight at 10:20 PM, it will be eight years since Doug escaped from his cancer-infested body that no longer worked for him. I have taken the day off from everything so I can just think about Doug, our life together, all we enjoyed and learned from each other, and all the great things we did together. I still miss him every day, and think about Doug a lot each day. My home and all the things he did in and around the house remind me of him. My desk and my art remind me of Doug. When I step out into the garage and see his work bench, it reminds me of Doug. My own life reminds me of Doug, because he is no longer here physically to be a part of this life. But I am making it. This weekend is training for Destination Imagination assessors (I am one of those) and next week is a meeting with other anthropologists/archaeologists as we prepare a resolution to our governor about destruction of sites prior to proper assessment of those sites. Most states have a fairly strict protocol, but somehow, Montana seems to have adopted a very lax set of standards, resulting in the destruction of many sites by contract "shovel bums" who have not a clue... But today, I am watching videos of Doug, going through some photo albums of our climbs and other adventures, reading some of his beautiful love letters to me, and just letting myself indulge in the happy memories while holding our love in my heart. When Doug left, I never thought I'd live through his absence. Now I know that I can survive even losing Doug, although it still hurts and sometimes still brings tears and sobbing. But he is still worth it, and so am I. My mother's death brought up many of those same feelings of loss, but I have survived her leaving as well. But Doug's death was such a huge loss that nothing else compares. Life can seem very dark and shadowed when our beloved leaves us here and goes on. But we can make it. I have not felt my heart sing the way it did with Doug, but at least now it hums sometimes from the joy of life. I think that will only get better. I still feel Doug here with me often, especially when I have big decisions to make or am feeling very alone. And life keeps handing me lovely surprises. I know now how much I have been loved and am still loved by Doug, as I read his notes and letters, watch his videos he made at my request, and walk though our forest he tended so carefully. I remain surrounded by his love, and always will be until we are together again. I am wonderfully blessed to have been the one he chose. I am wonderfully blessed to have shared my life with him. And I am going on, living the life I want to live, and doing the things I want to do. I will always love Doug, and his spirit will live always in my heart. I have survived and I carry on. Peace to us all. *<twinkles>*
  10. Needless to say, I've been busy with my grandson's trauma, and just talking-to him so he has a way to vent about how scared he was. He is doing a little better, and the physical therapy is working. But my mother's estate stuff is still going on. So many memories of my early years, remembering all the confusion when she would go to the hospital, not knowing what to do, and still, today, knowing that there was nothing I could do to make her happy or better. Her life was such a tangle of confusion, fear, periods of being functional, then watching her slowly lose her grasp on reality again. It seems as though every time she was gaining ground and getting better, something would trigger her and she would be far away in some other world again. I am sorting all of this out, learning a lot about how it shaped and colored my own view of life and of people. Much confusion, but also some strengths that I built from her illness, and some threads of life that I still carry. I'm glad I have time right now to ponder all of these memories and sort through them. *<twinkles>*
  11. I am skipping Meeting this morning, because my friends are having a birthday party for me this afternoon (I'm now officially 73!) and I need to get some things done before then. Yes, Sterling called laughing and said there was no way we could go to China until we learn more about this virus. He thinks it will compromise the health of elderly and malnourished people more than "regular people." But we decided to take no chances. I am not sure what we will do or where we will go instead. I do think I need to get him away, and of course he thinks he needs to take care of his Nana by going on trips to far-off places with me to carry my luggage and protect me. And we are very close, so he can talk about his fear and vulnerability with me. It all balances out. I think he may go back to MD Anderson and do his research work there. He will lose money, but gain safety and peace of mind. Right now, he must heal and take time to sort things out. I just think he needs to get away, rest and heal, and have time to sort out his own feelings about this tragedy, as well as to finish his healing and physical therapy. But of course we are all most grateful they could save his leg, because that was in question for a while. So, yes, I am glad we are not going to risk China until the virus contagion is over. Not going anywhere in Asia while the virus is spreading. We have rain here too, Kay. It is supposed to be sunny and pretty warm (40s) for the next few days. After that sub-zero cold spell, I am enjoying these warmer days. Yes, it was a healing time to talk about our Mothers and Grandmothers. Linda is very dear, and a long-time friend, so we have lovely visits. She will be at my not-so-much-a-surprise party today. The flowers from Darcy and clan are lovely, and the living room is filled with their fragrance. This is a great birthday so far. I am so glad you are not shoveling! How nice that you can rest your body and relax for a few days. I hope the snow stays above 5K feet, so we all get a great snowpack without much shoveling. Here, people are still fly fishing the rivers, delighted by the open water and active trout. I now have more fish in the freezer from Jason. *<twinkles>*
  12. Kay, all your recommendations are so very wise that I think we could all use them when we feel grief is taking over our lives. I know it does, but everything you say shows us ways to add something back into our lives that we may have lost. Thank you for those wise words. Linda and I went to Missoula again today for further tests. She is 80 later this year, and has had a lot of health issues these past several years, but is holding her own with Pilates, volunteer work on community/charity boards, visiting her grandchildren, and had a new one-level custom home built just for her in an area with lots of retired widows just like her. Lots of lovely architecture out there in many of the custom homes. I may end up building up there if I stay in Helena, but a smaller, less costly house, not custom and special as hers is, which is beautiful. On our drive over and back, we talked a lot about our mothers and grandmothers, and things they had taught us. She is Canadian Welsh, married a Montana chap, lived their married lives on the wind-swept plains of Havre, Montana. He has been gone quite some time. We love to go have tea together, and just natter. I know how abandoned and alone I felt, when going through medical procedures after Doug was gone. She would probably have gone alone if I had not been able to go with her. I love that I am able to give back a small bit of what she gave Doug and me during his final year with us. She put us on the jet ambulance to go to the good surgeon. It is good to spend time with her. And as we talked about our mothers, and the things they gave us, we both recognized gifts we had not considered before, as we realized both our mothers gave us many of the same gifts. And if we threw in our Grandmothers, well, that was stupendous! So we both cried some that our Mothers' and Grandmothers' spirits have left those worn cloaks, and escaped this time frame, and tears for our pain of missing them. It was a very healing time for each of us. I am glad we had such a good day. I learned a lot about the good things my mother gave me, and I am glad I have more understanding of her now. Sterling and I are not going to China any time soon. He called me, laughing, about how every time we plan to go, something happens. True. We will get there. But I think I need to get him away to somewhere so he can heal more from this trauma. He can sketch, maybe do some watercolors. He is a good artist (David influence)(and Nana's). I am nattering. Have a lovely weekend, everyone. We have had a bit of snow on the roads today, but mostly rain here at home. Today was something I really needed, and it helped to ease my heart a great deal. Peace to all our hearts. *<twinkles>*
  13. Dear Gloria Jean, I am so very sorry that you have lost your mom. There are others here on the forum who are much better than I at helping you, but I read your post and wanted to say welcome. I am glad you found this wonderful healing place. I know you will find some comfort here, and some help in letting go of the guilt. I lost my own mother a few months ago, and I am still coming to terms with her loss, with all the things that were unresolved when she left, and especially with the relationship I did not have with my own mother. You have been through a long and difficult roller-coaster of a ride with your mother's death and all the guilt. I know guilt after a loved one dies is common, and when my husband died, I felt a lot of guilt because I could not save him from the cancer. You loved your mom and you did the best you could while holding it together and managing your own deep grief. I hope you can be gentle with yourself, and understand that you were not responsible for her leaving. There are a lot of resources you can access through this site, and I encourage you to see what fits for you. I know others will respond and offer more suggestions and solace. Peace to your heart, and I am glad you found this wonderful healing place. *<twinkles>*
  14. Gwen, Just reading about your situation and what you are going through. I am sure you must feel vulnerable, isolated, alone, and not able to do what you want. Added to that is the problem of not being able to take a shower when you want one—that would be awful, feeing the need to be clean and not being able to wash. Can you begin now to arrange for home health care? I will remember you in prayers today, and will be thinking of you as you recover and get back to your fur babies. Just reading about the conditions in the rehab place gives me fright. First, because you deserve better care with more attention and better monitoring of your medications. Thank goodness your brain is working well and you can let them know when they make mistakes. But I know you want to be home, and I hope that will happen soon. I am so sorry that things are not going better, and that you are so very alone. I'm glad Marty sent big hugs, because I know you need them right now. I hope the care gets a lot better starting right now, and that you will soon be well enough to be at home with your beloved pets and in your own space. I am sending you lots of {{{hugs}}} and *<fairy dust>* for happier and healthier days very, very soon. *<twinkles>*
  15. I finished going through the last box of Mother's books this morning. I did not realize it, but going through Mother's books and notes has been a gentle and good way to help with saying goodbye to her, of letting go of any lingering hope of every seeing her whole, or having a coherent conversation with her. She was brilliant, but so very broken. Her notes on her students, on her classes and lessons, were fun to read. Some of her poems were lovely. She wrote poetry about roses, flowers, the sky. Grandson Sterling and I are planning a trip to China when he is entirely healed. My worry is lessened because he is in daily therapy at the hospital—both antibiotics for sepsis and physical therapy exercises—but they have saved his leg, which was in question for a while. He is doing well, still a bit in trauma, but articulate and made a joke when we talked yesterday. He said all the bone and bullet splinters in his leg "could have been arranged in a coherent pattern if the surgeon had been on his game" But instead the surgeon "just gave up and took all the introduced metals and reorganized organics out and tossed them." Only my genius grandson would think of having fragments made into a connect-the-dots image in his leg. But he was laughing and that was very reassuring. The investigating officer told me that the robbers were after the IDs of people who work in the research park, because the robbers can sell the IDs for quite a bit of money. They sell the “package” of drivers license, credit cards, SS#s, so the buyer has a whole set of documents, not just one piece of ID. Who knew? And all these research science people are a “soft target” according to the detective. Thus the series of robberies in the quiet research park. Meanwhile, my daily physical therapy is paying off and I am getting stronger. I have real biceps muscles again. Kay, we had more snow last night, so as soon as my GF gingersnaps (for an upcoming tea) are finished baking, I am going out to shovel the snow. The local plow guy will come and plow the drive if we get another snowfall. I hope you are taking it easy and that you and Kobie are having a good snug time there by the cozy fire. My mother is gone at 93. I am now an elder in the family, and as such, I will get more involved in family matters. Life has a way of pulling us back in even if we would rather be isolated in our little ivory tower doing research. Sterling and I agree that we cannot avoid life as it is. *<twinkles>*
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