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Found 12 results

  1. It has been almost a year since I have regularly posted on this specific topic of my journey through grief and healing. Next month it will be four years since my beloved wife(Rose Anne) died. This past year has been full of reflection, and real acceptance of her death. The time line is different for everyone of us and it has been full year of introspection. The loneliness and accepting the reality of all this is what my mind wrestles with daily. Irregardless, life continues to march on one day at a time. Initially, I was certain I was going to die from a broken heart but apparently it just felt that way. The purpose in resuming this topic is to express and show to others that come here that there is life after death for those of us that are still living. My wife loved movies and memorizing certain dialog. In the movie, "Shawshank Redemption", the character says... "Get busy living". I couldn't see or comprehend even how to do that. This forum , helped me and many of us to deal with this grief and given us tools, friends, and fellowship for us. None of us knows what the future holds but some of us do know who holds our future. Search for and discover your path, and begin to use the tools that we are given here. I plan to share what positive changes are happening on my grief healing journey and hope to encourage you to do the same. Shalom
  2. Hi, my name is Nikka. It feels strange to be typing all of this out since it is personal but sometimes you have to let it out and get a strangers opinion and support. About 2 weeks ago, my boyfriend of almost 2 years and I made the harsh mutual decision to break up after months of repetitive arguments and a failed attempt at a month long break. These have been the longest 2 weeks of my life and my (now) ex and I have not been able to hault communication for more then 2 days even when we both agree in order to find ourselves we need to stay apart. Let me back up a bit. In April of last year, my boyfriend lost his sister in an incredibly sudden fatal car accident. All his life, he resented her and said nothing but hateful things about her. At one point he told me he wanted to cut communication with her completely and said he hated her. He never had a concrete reason other then she was a trouble maker and was pretty unreliable. I only met her twice before she passed so I did not create a solid feeling about her. I figured it was meaningless sibling rivalry and told him one day he might change his mind. We had a wonderful relationship which shared its fair share of trouble in 2 years. We were our first loves and went through familial hardships, depression, and growing up together and thought we could overcome anything. At first, when his sister tragically passed, he pushed it away. He told me he was fine and needed to stay strong for his parents. He said he was the only one who could keep them afloat. He turned to me for distraction and I didn't want to pressure him into talking about things since at home, that was all he heard about constantly. He didn't want pity or for anyone to look at him any differently so I gave that distraction and comfort to him. But, summer hit and things took a turn. He started fading away. He stopped caring about things he normally would care about and in the midst of a pandemic it was hard to find any excitement. I stayed by his side and tried to slowly get him to talk about things but eventually it became too much. Around November, I started feeling this overarching fear that he was falling out of love with me but anytime I tried to bring this up it resulted in a fight. He would blame me for the fights and say I asked too much of him. I believed it and worked really hard to give him space but after months of us having this same fight, something in him snapped. One day, he told me he didn't know if he wanted to be with me and didn't know himself anymore. We decided to take a break for a month after a long conversation full of tears and hugs and after a week, we got lonely and got back together. We tried to go on break one more time in this same span of a month until 2 weeks ago, I broke up with him. It was mostly mutual but, I got fed up with him avoiding me and blaming me for everything. I asked and begged him to take me out on a date and took him out on multiple and did everything in my power to help him find happiness but ultimately realized he couldn't love me, if he couldn't love himself. Long story short, we still talk. And after these 2 weeks he has apologized for being so distant and avoiding me. He didn't wanna keep disappointing me and wants to find himself but doesn't know how to. I just don't know what to do. All I want to do is be with him and I am terrible at giving him space. Multiple times we have both said we should not talk for the better but then end up talking anyway. I know we can't find ourselves if we don't spend time apart, but I just don't want to be without him. It is a tricky situation and I just needed an outlet to tell my story in a long winded way. He has lost so much; his sister, his aunt, and now his grandma is looking to be heading in that direction. So much death for someone so young is a lot and it is reason enough not to know why you want to live anymore. I just wish he knew how loved he was and how much he means to me. I can tell him time and time again but he will never understand until he figures it out himself.
  3. I'm not sure if this is in the right spot or not, but thought I'd share something I did in the wake of my father's recent passing from Covid. I'm an amateur photographer and have taken a ton of photos over the years. My younger sister is the "historian" of the family and has collected old family photos going way back. When my 88 year old father passed away, I found it helpful to create a video slide show using 41 photos dating back to his childhood and ending with photos from when we last got together with him. I then set it to music and uploaded it to YouTube for my siblings and others who were close to my dad. I found that rather than feeling sad as I created this, it was a way to remember happier times. Of course, when it was done it brought tears. I think the addition of the music is what did it. My three siblings really appreciated having this way to remember our father. Recently I did a similar project on a much larger scale for a man in our community whose wife passed away suddenly. The neighbors rallied around him and a few weeks ago one of them mentioned that I'd created a slide show for her after her dog passed away. I'd taken about 100 photos of them with their dogs on the local beach on a fine summer morning, and used many in my slide show. She convinced the widower to give me about 200 photos on a disk and I painstakingly edited most of them (cropping, fixing scratches and color, etc) and ended up with a nearly 12 minute retrospective on her life, set to three of her favorite pieces of music. When the pandemic eases, he'll use some of this during a memorial for his late wife. He called me and said how grateful he was to have this for him and their only child. Last time I looked, it had had over 100 views on YouTube (the link is private and not discoverable in online searches). Anyway, it's been a healing tool for me, even if it can trigger tears. It's a way to see our loved ones in happier times.
  4. Hi All, i don’t drop in often, but since discovering this forum about a year and a half ago, it’s very presence has been an enormous comfort for me. It is strange the way grief can leave you feeling alone—exactly at a time when that can hurt the deepest: your greatest time of need. So, my guess is that many of you can relate to that feeling of just knowing there is a place to come to—even if you don’t often do so!—where others voice what is going on in your own heart and mind. It is immensely calming and tremendously supporting. Thank you. It has been an incredibly difficult 10 years. Unfortunately, on top of a pretty incredibly difficult life, full of loss. Things have never felt “normal,” as i viewed it around me through the years, and I’ve spent a lot of time feeling pretty alone and dealing with grief when possible, only, and without much guidance or sense of understanding/support. When my Dad (whom i had a challenging relationship with) was diagnosed with cancer in ‘08, i felt i could truly navigate it all, with therapeutic support. If it had just been that, i likely could have. My kids were teens; I’d had a solid (2nd) marriage for the most part, for a decade-plus, and the kids’ dad (first marriage) was doing alright, it appeared. By Oct ‘09, I would learn how wrong my assessment of my life had been! Ten days before my son turned 18, I found my children’s father after a suicide attempt. Im not sure how to describe what happened to me after that moment. I don’t remember anything for about 3 hours that day. Then numbness. For months, even as i scrambled to keep us together. Their father survived his attempt; my father succumbed to the cancer less than a year later, though. And in the in between, my second marriage unraveled before my eyes. Not long after, my son moved out of state for college, and i cried in his bedroom for 3 straight days, without stop. Weeks later, my 16 year old and i moved into an apartment across town, and my absolute fracturing and disintegration began in earnest. Every significant man in my life had left. Not that my history supported my finding relationships with stable, available men, to begin with, but, i mean, they were literally gone. All of them, including my support—my partner of 13 years—in Work, play, and life, as well as my son; first born, and my dad and his dad, too. Even tho only one left by death, all of them—every day presence in my life, previous, were irrefutably disappeared; no metaphorical speak here. As my subsequent reaction indicates, it wasn’t only these few events, but so many more, unresolved, unacknowledged incidents and paradigms of my life—from growing up in a foreign country and never feeling i had ‘home,’ to multiple dysfunctional family dynamics; from too many suicides in my life starting in my teens (that Number currently stands at 14 as of June ‘17); and all the way to several years of family & schoolmate bullying in grade school. Even having to give up a beloved pet because of a move at 8 years old—the whole barrel of monkeys crashed down on me and i just started running, as fast as i could. To stand in it felt more alone than i could handle. There were honest moments i was certain i was losing my mind, but i didn’t realize worse was coming. Terrible choices and worse consequences ensued for a few years. When an incredibly bad boyfriend choice, in the first place, betrayed my trust in ‘13, i became suicidal, myself. The knowing how that effects my kids was what saved me, as well as strapped me into sometimes-unbearable pergatory. I cried every night, through the night. I isolated. I drank. I also worked a menial job interfacing with the public, which was absolute torture with my heightened anxiety, in new situations. Until, it wasn’t. Looking back at that time, is hard. I also have some of the most wonderful snippets of memories, too. I clung to every moment that wasn’t tinged with shades of loss and despair, like making my way across monkeybars, rung to rung to rung, until i found my way through it and onto the couch of my therapist. I still see her today, and it is still changing me into who i am. I have worked through much, yet i do still have my moments. I see the effects of it all at times, in my penchant to withdraw, perhaps a little too much sometimes. Yet, in these darker times, my art has flourished, and I’ve set on a new career path I’m excited for, which is a downright miracle, to me. <—- And, In this way, there is deliberate changing of thought patterns. And, i am aware, just now, that despite some mornings, like this one, when i wake up with a jolt of panic, and look out the window, unsure what day it is or if i am still ‘in it’ or not, there are but few genuine moments of true despair and helplessness, that were my only reality just a few years ago. I am so grateful. Grief, though, IS a reality that never goes away, even as the thoughts are redirected and replaced, and i learn to navigate my feelings through it. My own personal creative births in the form of my art and new ventures, that have come from the darkness and ashes of loss, seems like a good physical manifestation of the inner grief process for me today. It feels to me like a balancing act of sadness, which brings a sort of joy, or perhaps, peace, on its heels, if i can make space for each as they appear. Like a see-saw, or a teeter-totter, there is rhythm to it, and I’m sure it is uniquely my own. If i can step back (not run away!) and observe the whole of it, and even see its wholeness in light of The Human Experience, as i feel each emotion in a moment, it develops clearer meaning, now, too. It has simmered passion in me for speaking about and generating awareness of the current culture’s tendencies to leave little room for anything but Happy!; Great!; I’m fine! and to look for opportunities to listen or merely sit with someone experiencing loss. It isn’t talked about really. Most are deeply uncomfortable showing up for someone experiencing it, and that can make it all that much more difficult to get through, as we all know. And, it’s ironic really because not one of us escapes this life without meeting grief on the road, often many times. I know first hand how incredibly crucial support is in the grieving process, and the personal devastation that can occur without it. I am so glad you are here and i was compelled to Google “multiple losses grief,” that morning, and click the link to Marty’s blog. You are helping so many. Thank you all, again. Peace and ཨོཾ་མ་ཎི་པདྨེ་ཧཱུྃ 🙏🏼
  5. As I was driving to my riding lesson I was thinking about healing and felt something was coming to me but I couldn't explain it. Then, a dialogue began and it was as if I was watching two actors on the stage. It was between a character named Grief and one named Life. The experience began with Grief dominating, and Life being dormant. As time went on Life opened up a little crack, but Grief said, "NO, there is no place for you. This is too tragic." Life said in a quiet voice, "I think I feel myself breathing again." Grief responded, "How could you, you've lost everything." As time went on and healers appeared the dialogue got stronger. Lifesaid, "I want to live and breathe." Life became passionate, I want you to stop hurting" Grief responded,"I will never stop hurting, the loss is too profound, you need to let me bleed." And Life said, "You need to let me live." And so the conversation continued. Life believing that living would never be possible with Grief around and Grief afraid that Life would push away the need to honor the profound loss. Life wanted to breathe and dance, Grief wanted to collapse and cry. Soon Life and Grief faced each other, they dropped the tug-o-war rope. Life said, "it is ok for you to cry and hurt for the rest of your life." Grief said, "it is ok for you to live." And so they moved closer to each other. Life knew it did not have to wait for Grief to go away in order to live. Grief knew that it was ok to hurt while Life was opening up. Grief and Life embraced and locked hands and existed side by side. I can't sit and wait for grief to end in order to start living. Grief does not have to go away in the presence of abundant life and growth. When the two can exist side by side, and it is not one or the other, well, that is healing.
  6. My word for this time in my life is "courage." It takes so much of it to live each day. Courage is not the absence of pain, but the ability to recognize it and allow it to flow as profoundly as it needs to. Every day seems to be an act of courage. Get up, move forward. Just put one foot in front of the other. That is enough for now. In time courage begets courage and grows strong and fierce. Fear begins to cower in its presence and pain never needs to hide. Courage is really trust. At times I wanted to lay on the couch and stare at the ceiling all day or allow myself to fall into the deepest darkest pit and sometimes that is what was needed, but courage will move out into the black not not knowing what is there or if it will lead you into any light at all. It just steps out because it trusts. ~But courage isn’t about being fearless— it’s about feeling your fear and stepping out~ http://cindyweaver2015.blogspot.com/
  7. I feel like I'm entering a new stage, a new time. I feel immobilized on one level and functional on another. I think I am withdrawing a little more as a realize what a solo journey from tragedy to transformation it is. It is not for lack of loving family and friends, it is just the need to resolve my own loss. I dream about people dying and being at Chloe's service, feeling very sad. It is almost as though the reality of the magnitude of the loss is very sharp now. I am feeling things about her death that I could not feel in those first days. I can see it all, and with that comes a new wave of grief. And yet, I can feel moments of light and life. I look the same on the the outside, but my foundation is tilted. Inside there is that stream of sorrow and processing where I'm at and who I am, what planet I've landed on and how to accept and adapt to it. I find a greater weariness from the work I am doing. But I have hope and courage that I will find my way. "May I be at peace. May my heart remain open. May I know the beauty of my own true nature. May I be healed." -Joan Borysenko, Fire in the Soul http://cindyweaver2015.blogspot.com/
  8. Healing? Is that what I can hope for? When a wound heals, sometimes it closes and is no more, other times it heals and leaves a scar, either way there is restoration, repair. Does that mean I will “heal” from this deep gaping wound festering around my heart? How could there be healing, how could that even be a word in this journey? The whole idea angered me, but staying in my initial torchered state was not an option either. A wound closes in time. My heart would never close, and I would never mend or be restored to the person I was. Although Webster’s definition is an appropriate definition for healing after physical injury, it is not accurate for what happens in the context of emotional loss. So what does happen? The wound remains open, but it is that gap that propels you to dive deeper, that raw exposure that makes you long to transform. There is no waiting for the wound to close in order to step into life. ~Healing is holding and accepting the pain while allowing life to open up at the same time~ http://cindyweaver2015.blogspot.com/
  9. Healing comes by stringing the light together, one at a time. You won't feel like you're pursuing light, you won't even see it as light. It may all feel like darkness, but when you choose to meditate and clear your mind for 5 minutes, one light goes on in your soul, no matter how small. When you take a restorative Yoga class, another one goes on. When you walk in the woods instead of staring at the ceiling, another goes on. You probably won't see it as light, you'll see it as an act of desperation, survival. When you touch a horse, read a book about spiritual growth, read a holy book, learn about angel stones, you are stringing light together in your soul, even without your awareness. In between each light there may be darkness, hold it, weep, feel it. But if you keep stepping out of the darkness, soon the collective light starts shining brighter and you feel it, you see it and you move from surviving to thriving. http://cindyweaver2015.blogspot.com/
  10. So my dad died on Sept 7th and I completely missed the 3 month mark. I realized it today. Given it is finals week and I literally spend 12 hours at the library studying and didnt go to bed until 7am, I still feel awful. I was upset and to my mom about it and she thinks its progress. She says that I didnt forget the date but I am not counting the days since he passed like I have been and there will be a day where I stop counting the months. She says that he wouldnt mind but I feel like I am almost forgetting him in a way. She says Im not but I feel like hes so far away. Just now, I was hugging one of his pillows I have that I put one of his shirts on and pretended it was him. I dont feel progress. I dont feel like Im healing. I cant believe its 3 months and I dont want to think about it. I feel like he has been gone for so long but I was just laughing with him a couple months ago. I just wish he didnt feel so far away. I know that may sound stupid as he has passed and I cant actually reach out and get him but I feel like I am not loving him enough or missing him enough because I missed the 3 month mark. What if I forget his birthday? Or little things that he used to say that were unique to him? Im so scared Ill forget.
  11. To everyone that has lost a beloved pet, I am sorry. To everyone experiencing this grief during the holiday season and/or another special occasion, I am sorry. It is tremendous to get through such thoughts and emotions and move forward. Never did I appreciate this before losing Sir Greysby to pancreatitis on November 25th, 2014 after a 30-day fight wherein he tried to live and my husband and I tried to help him win the battle. Never have I gone through such - let alone his passing 2 days before hosting Thanksgiving at my house, which I did do in an almost an out-of-body manner and excusing myself to go cry silent away from the guests. 3 weeks and 2 days later, I am healing, but have moments wherein I feel sucker-punched in my gut once more and I let-out primordial cries of anguish. Why? What could I have done differently? Why didn't I recognize the 2 earliest behavioral changes in him as signs he was becoming ill? Would those 4-5 weeks have made a difference in his ability to recover before I took him to the Vet? What have I done to work through and move past such grief? I downloaded 4 e-books to read on pets going to heaven and the grieving process. I learned that my grief and guilt are very "normal," although I have felt anything but normal. I created a beautiful photo journal book of him - from the days he was a stray and we took him in and up through the day of his departure from this life. I kept a swatch of his hair and his foot-print and his collar with the heart-shaped tags. His remains were cremated and placed in a nice oak urn that displays a picture of him making "soft eyes" at me on his last day here. I have gone to a Christian psychologist twice to help me process the void. The void is not as huge now, but the first week after he left, my stomach hurt, I cried a lot, and I did not know what to do with the spare time that Sir Greysby use to fill-up when he was well, but especially during the last week of his life. I had gone into a panic mode in trying to get him to eat all forms of chicken and/or treats ... anything! I woke-up in the middle of many nights wondering if he had passed away and got up to check on him. When he lapped his ice-cold water, I was so thankful and hopeful. But then, the battle ended. My momentum was still going forward and wanting to help him, but he was no longer here. I've played back the video, from the last morning of his being with me, several times. He loved my ankles and feet, then sat in front of his food without touching it once again ... after 3-days of his not doing so. He had come full circle. This is what had caused me to take him to the Vet to begin with ... he did not eat his favorite warmed, soft cat food for 3-days. The Vet placed him on steroids and an antibiotic, and for several weeks, it seemed he might have a fighting chance. Sir Greysby never resumed eating his food at the level he had done before falling ill, but at least he nibbled. The fact was that he was anorexic and continued to lose weight during those last 30-days of his life. 3-days before his departure, my husband and I decorated the living-room for the holiday season. Our minds told us that he would not make it, but our hearts hoped he would. We played Christmas carols for him, took a photo of him, and struggled with thinking it might be his last holiday season with us. Barely have I been able to hear any Christmas music since then. However, I do not regret giving Sir Greysby one-last Christmas with us, and I know that with time, I will smile and feel good about those memories. My other cats and their adjusting to his not being here has been awkward. The routines changed for them, too. Sir Greysby ruled our home during his 2-1/2 year stay with us. :-) However, I am adapting to their new routines and am spending more time loving and appreciating them. They have had numerous pictures taken of them in their favorite areas of the house, at play and at rest. Now, I fully comprehend they are my family that love me unconditionally. There are "those" people who are thoughtless for whatever reasons. I have chosen not to be rude to them in return, but rather to ignore them and move through my grieving process as I see fit. I know that one-day I will feel better. It is a process and a journey. I will always thank my God of understanding for allowing this beautiful soul to grace our home with the last 2-1/2 years of his life. We learned so much from him and I know that Sir Greysby is in a much better, heavenly place that affords him happiness and peace. May your soul find peace and comfort during this time and know that this lady is praying for your wellness and healing, too.
  12. I had an songwriter and an singer so I could make this final tribute to my beloved Chinook. Unknown to the talent parties, this song was completed on 2-22-14, 2 years to the day Chinook went on to the Rainbow Bridge. Everyone on this site has been so kind and loving, I wanted to share this with you all. Everyone has been so helpful, guiding me to books and sharing your own wisdom and insight. God Bless Tim Smith Phoenix, Arizona. ************OMG, NOVEMBER 4, 2015..... I have been reading some old posts because I was very a little blue missing my Chinook and just realized now after all this time I put in the wrong video in my original post, "The Cat From Outer Space"... Below is the video and song of Chinook the Ferret. Funny, well it is not funny but sometimes I feel myself not grieving for Chinook then I go into this fit of guilt like I am forgetting him which I am not. Even this past Halloween, they say its the day "when the dead return to their loved ones by a camp fire", we have all heard that saying so I took pictures where his cage was and is favorite playing spots which of course has changed with rearranged furniture a new carpet almost like he would not recognize the place. There were no balls of light not even a reflection of dust or a light bulb to humor my sense of hope. Chinook has moved on I am told may-be I am starting to too but feel guilty doing so... Thank you again for always being here allowing me to vent my most private hurtful memories and of course joy. ODE TO CHINOOK THE FERRET LINK TO SONG http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1d3fir_ode-to-chinook-the-ferret_animals
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