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So many reminders


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I met my brother and his wife for lunch today.  It was at the same restaurant where Al and I met them many times.  I saw the booth where I sat with Al.  My brother ordered the same thing Al always ordered.  I parked in the same place where we always parked.  So many reminders.  ONE thing was very different.  Al was not there with me.  Oh, what a difference!

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Gin, I have found out I can go by the house (twice in last nearly 19 months, actually)  Then my daughter moved back to  Hot Springs and I had loved it so much.  Every place I looked was like being given a small electric jolt.  It was unreal.  Our son is fixing to move back up there too.  He moved down here thinking he could feel his dad's essence in some way, but I think it made him depressed.  At least his long time girlfriend is up there around him, and his sister, but he still thinks he has to take care of me so he is pulled.  He is an artist though and his dad would want him to continue that.  He has had the artist block for so long and it is just now coming back to him.  That is why we moved to Hot Springs, to get him off drugs nearly 20 years ago, and he did that himself.  It is a small artist colony and even though he has lost many of his friends to drugs and Hep-C, he still has a chance in that city.  We don't have the art appreciation down here like that city does.  I did not find Billy either, but it was long ago that we lived here.  I have had massive sadness down in Louisiana, cannot quantify it with the place he left me in.  I know he did not do it on purpose and he would have stayed if he could have.  I am going to miss him (my son), but my sister is here and my granddaughter attends school here.  I do miss Hot Springs.  Really cannot leave my sister, I'm all she has.  I wish she had found a companion, but it sure hurts to lose them. We have the empty feeling where ever we go anyhow.

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Isn't it amazing how one person can make such a difference to our lives!  Everything took on a whole new meaning with George, doing the same things without him just loses it's sparkle.

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Does it never end? Everyday I see hundreds if not thousands of things "before"...the jar of jam we had bought but hadnt opened yet, the last time we used the weed sprayer, the last time I used the iron for his shirt. Yes, ONLY five months but it goes on and on. I really would like to sell everything and move to a new town ans start over without these reminders. There are plenty of reminders in my heart which are always there but I really would like to get away from all this. I know we are all different...some want to stay, others want to go.I will not do anything for at least anyear and see if my son retires so would move closer to him. Our daughter is in Canada so that is not an option. How does one get thru days where so much of what you see is another stab in my heart. Yeah,the jam this morning really got to me.

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It goes on and on, dear Autumn2, because grief is a process that takes place over time. It's not as if you can turn a switch so that "on" is before and "off" is after. Learning to live with a significant loss takes time ~ a lifetime, really ~ and each time you encounter one of those "before" things, you are confronted with the reality of what you have lost. Facing this reality all at once is way too much to take in. And so you might think of these moments as reminders ~ sometimes gentle and small, sometimes brutal and huge ~ that you must encounter over and over again as you come to terms with this death of your beloved. And eventually, over time, the pain diminishes, bit by bit, until it doesn't hurt as much as it is hurting now.

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9 hours ago, Autumn2 said:

Does it never end? Everyday I see hundreds if not thousands of things "before"...the jar of jam we had bought but hadnt opened yet, the last time we used the weed sprayer, the last time I used the iron for his shirt. Yes, ONLY five months but it goes on and on. I really would like to sell everything and move to a new town ans start over without these reminders. There are plenty of reminders in my heart which are always there but I really would like to get away from all this. I know we are all different...some want to stay, others want to go.I will not do anything for at least anyear and see if my son retires so would move closer to him. Our daughter is in Canada so that is not an option. How does one get thru days where so much of what you see is another stab in my heart. Yeah,the jam this morning really got to me.

Autumn2,  short answer.. Yes.. and NO.

Reading your pain so reminds me of mine at the same period of time of my grief...4-5 months.  I couldn't see or make sense of the futility of it.  Then, I was reminded to write down what I am grateful for in each day.  I learned to embrace the pain (from a book I read) which just sounded nuts.  I cried, grieved, journalled, and wrote many post on this forum.  People listened and shared the burden. Logically, it didn't make sense to my head but somehow it slowly and gradually did a work on my heart. 

At 25 months, I still grieve, still cry, and still feel the pain yet I can remember so much more of the good times we shared our lives together. Recommend reading the book, "Option B", by Sheryl Sandberg.  It helps me to see there is a future beyond this immediate grief. We are still alive and learning how to live with loss.  You are in my daily prayers. - Shalom 

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4 minutes ago, iPraiseHim said:

People listened and shared the burden

Nineteen months today.  I think this forum has taken the place of any counselor for any type of our grief.  You all/us/we listen, we share, we share grief.  You know that others hurt and someone in their life is gone, just like the person is gone from your life.  We adjust as best we can.  As one has said, we put one foot in front of the other, as Marty has said, we get out of bed in the morning, and as George says above.  Maybe Rose Kennedy was correct, in time we develop scar tissue.  And lots of times we just feel guilty because we might have had an uneventful day.  Maybe we did not cry as much as we did the day before.  I remember the idea of going to see the band Journey made me, for a few minutes happy, and then SPLAT!!!!! the guilt hit me.  How could I be happy?  Even though Billy would have rather had teeth pulled than go with me to see this band.  They were my music, he never cared much for music.  But the guilt hit me in the face, and I honestly have not felt like going to see them after that.  We are grieving, we are never supposed to feel good again, no happiness, but for some reason, some times there is a strange feeling like "Damn Billy, why did you leave?  Don't you know I cannot live without you?"  And somehow you are living, simply because you did not take those 50 morphine pills into the deep forests of Arkansas where no one could find me.  "The one that is left must stay."  Prophet Billy said that.  Not sure how long I will stay, not in my hands like I intended it to be.  Time does not heal the wounds, but as RK said, you develop scar tissue.  And then the next minute you are miserable again.  But you had a minute or two that you weren't.  

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Autumn,

You described it...something as innocuous as a jar of jam sets us off.  At 12 years I don't get hit with a lot of new triggers, but I still have memories that hit me...like the last time we went for a drive to pick autumn leaves...whenever I go down that road it hits me.  I remember things, it hits out of nowhere.  It's not like I'm not fully aware he's gone by now, yet it still hits with a pang all over again.

Marty's reply is so true...

 

Marg...you too, I know it's rough. :(

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