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I hate dreading EVERYTHING!

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Sometimes I feel like I have been able to defeat this grieving beast. I want to. And some days I feel like I do see a significant improvement in the way I handle things. But...then I face the reality of it all and realize that I'm still the same basket case that I was by this time of day on  January 1st, 2016. I have one huge monster riding around on my back. And In the almost 2 years that have gone by since my sweet, beautiful Cookie passed, every once in a while I still feel the weight of that monster on my shoulders. You see, I was raised to believe that it is not right to intentionally end the life of another human being. In the belief system I grew up in, it was just that clear, and just that cut and dried. But that is exactly what I did in the case of my wife. I intentionally terminated my wife's life. I know what all the justification sorts of reasons are. I have thought them all. My wife and I had had the conversation more than once over the years. That conversation where you promise to do for your mate what he/she is not able to speak up and do for him/her self. I wanted to keep my wife around with me.  Oh God, but how I wish she was still here with me. But I also know that if I had kept her around, it would have been for all the wrong reasons. That wonderful, beautiful, red headed, passionate, strong willed, bull headed woman was my rock. My anchor. My reason for being willing to swing my legs off the bed each morning and go through another day with a smile on my face. I could smile every day because God made me the luckiest man that ever occupied space on this crazy planet. Our paths crossed on a day in October, 1974 when I went to apply for a job at a motel in Oklahoma City. I met that special woman I had been hoping would come along one day. She came along that day, and we were still together 41+ years later when I had to end her suffering and misery. We were made for each other, and meant for each other. And I miss her every day so very much. I miss her physical presence. Oh yeah, she is and always will be in my thoughts. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about all the special things she was or did that made my time with her so wonderfully special.  One thing that I will eternally be so very grateful about is the knack she had of always making me feel like I mattered. Nobody else in my life had ever even tried to make me feel that way. But my Cookie did it every day so effortlessly.  I know she loved me. I never doubted that. And I can honestly say that I never took her love for granted. I loved to make sure she always knew how easy it was for me to love her. And then the day came for me to speak for her when she wasn't able to speak the words herself. I knew I was setting myself up for the remainder of my live being lonely and miserable. And so far that is exactly what it has been. I intentionally and voluntarily ended her life when my own life wasn't endangered or threatened. I did it to put an end to her misery and suffering. I did it because I had made a promise to her to do it if the need should ever present itself. When that need presented itself, I ended her life because it was the only right thing to do under the circumstances. And her physical presence is what I miss so very much. Being able to enjoy a TV show while holding her hand. Or ditto while reading a book. Or look over at her and tell her I love her. And hearing her say it. Or wrapping my arms around her, and giving her a big ole hug and kiss just because I felt like doing it. Spontaneously. Those little things were always the things I treasured the most, and thus they are the ones I now miss the most. Just being able to be ourselves around each other. Now all I can do is to live in  the past and re-live all those things mentally---with the memories. This coming New Year's Day will be the 2nd anniversary of her passing. I wish I could just stay in bed and sleep through that entire day. But I know I won't. I'll get up that morning and bounce off the walls the same way I have for the past 102 weeks. And then at the end of that day, I'll crawl between the sheets of this bed the same way I have every evening for the past 102 weeks---ALONE. And then I'll get up the next morning and spend the entire day doing the same thing I have done every day of the past 102 weeks, which is to put...

One foot in front of the other...

Darrel

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Darrel,

Wishing you some peace...

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Darrel, please always remember that you traded her suffering for yours.  I wish you strength and grace.  My story is similar to yours, even to the timing.  I lost my dear Mary Kay in January 2016 when I traded her suffering for mine.  I know in my heart that I acted based on her desires without regard to the cost to me.  Strength to you to travel your road, brother.

Bill

 

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16 hours ago, olemisfit said:

I have one huge monster riding around on my back

Darrel, I have not finished reading your writing.  I read the first few sentences and the  horror of what I did fell on me like a brick, only worse.  We did not have DNR's.  Even after 43 years working as a medical transcriptionist, typing so many death notes, they were totally impersonal.  They were not me.  They were not "us."  I was there alone with Billy when he passed.  I won't go into our last minutes together, it still hurts and I still feel guilt.  But, not as much guilt as what I saw happen next.  Our kids were not there.  A nurse said she felt a pulse.  I heard this from out in the hall.  I guess it is up to them, since there was not a DNR, to let me know they could try to revive him.  The oncologist came and told me that there was no hope, but a pulse to a wife meant "hope."  In my melted brain I knew his kids would want to tell him goodbye.  Darrel, I let them do unspeakable things to his body that he would not have wanted. (I watched from the hall wanting to yell STOP!!!!) I cannot believe I let them take that little pulse and do so many "life saving" unspeakable things to his little body.  I cannot believe it even as I write this.  I have trained myself not to "see" the things that were done.  My son would not have wanted me to  do this.  My daughter, the nurse, did want me to.  You did not end her life.  You gave her rest.  You and the rest of us took on the pain that Billy told me he and the rest of the family would have felt if I had given up during the cancer treatments.  I had my miracle.  I lived.  My melted, mush for a brain thought I could make him live.  Instead, I can only hope and pray, pray so many times, I did not hurt him further.  But I probably did.  You gave her release.  I wish I had done the same.  Now, I will work the rest of the day to get this picture out of my mind.

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I had to make the decision on when to take my Mary off life support Jan 9 2015.  I now live with the suffering.  But I know she is at peace and holding our babies and grandchildren in her eternal arms. 

Butch. 

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Making these decisions are the hardest ones someone can be called upon to do.  We never talked about the DNR, it seemed so remote it never entered in.  We did talk about death, but honestly we thought it was years and years away.  We weren't old yet.

Honoring their wishes, balancing giving them every chance to live with not wanting them to suffer, it's all hard.  I know I would have wanted George here no matter what but he would not have wanted to be disabled and unable to do things, I guess we don't always get what we want.

My heart goes out to each of you.

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The DNR(Do Not Resuscitate Order) is an interesting document.

 

My Mother-in-Law had one and the emergency room did not want to treat her because they FELT Mom didn't want extra measures taken.  Mom's heart was in a fast heart rate and just needed to be slowed down to resume function.  I had to yell at the nurses to treat her.  She lived for another two years.

My Mother had a DNR which spelled out her wishes.  10 years ago, when her body failed, my father as her Durable power of Attorney executed her Living Will.  My mom did not want to be kept alive on mechanical machines. It was a tough decision based on love for his beloved wife of 50+ years.

 

I am updating my Will, Living Will, and Durable Power of Attorney now to make it clear what my wishes are when I get sick and/or die..

Irregardless, our loved ones that are left behind will continue to live with the grief that we all face now when our beloved loved ones died.  It is a harsh reality of life that most of us were ill-equipped to face.  I wonder if there is some way we can prepare them for their future shock. - Shalom

 

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George,

My doctor broached this subject with me (I guess that's a sign you're getting older, LOL!) and I wouldn't sign a DNR but I fully trust my son to make the right decision on my behalf so put his name down for making decisions.  I made it clear in the paperwork that if I have a chance to recover any quality of life I want measures taken, but if it's prolonging life and I'd be left a vegetable, no heroic measures.  My son understands my wishes and would convey what I want.

Sometimes there isn't time to reach someone for input and then the medical team has to make the best decision they know and we have to live with it.  I have a copy of my papers and so does the doctor and it's registered with PeaceHealth, the common medical organization here in Oregon.

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My son is in charge of my wishes.  I too do not want heroic measures taken is there is no hope and I’m on machines.  I don’t want to be on those.  I made the decision when it came to My Mary.  It was the hardest thing to do.  But she didn’t want to exist like that anymore.  😔

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Sometimes when I dwell on the life’s greatest difficulties, hardships and trials I get overwhelmed leading me to confusion, unsettledness, despair and despondency.  I don’t know if you have a faith system, but this Bible verse brings me peace, even in the midst great pain: For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord, ‘plans for well-being and not for trouble, to give you a future and a hope.

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Went to the ER yesterday for my never ending digestive distress.  Didn’t find anything obvious, but endoscopy was the next step.  Vague reference to plaque in arteries but the ER doc didn’t mention it, just was on the discharge papers report.  Where I volunteer had called needing help with Christmas parties.  It was nice to really be needed, but I wouldn’t have gone as being in happy, happy, joy joy with people with their families would be shooting myself in the foot.  I keep thinking when the holidays are over. I’ll feel bettter, but I know that isn’t really true.  Another year totally alone and right back to it.  Just more of maladies and treatments I can’t muster the reason for.  I keep finding solutions to problems Steve and I pondered in a dream.  I get so excited. To tell him things and the balloon is popped waking up.  Off to another dreary day in Seattle.  

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Gwen,

I assume they have you on a specialized diet to help control digestive issues.  It's hard to understand why they haven't found the cause for it.  A little like putting on a bandaid when they still don't know where the wound is!

I went to our church's Christmas party last night, lots of talk and laughter and it was good for my soul.  It helped me feel a little like Christmas hadn't totally passed me by, it was fun.  I get tired of being so alone...

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They want to do more invasive tests.  Hard to face those alone.

glad you caught some holiday spirit.  I skipped volunteering at the Christmas parties because I couldn’t handle it.  This is the first year since 2014 I have done nothing for the holidays except put up our tiny tree and it does nothing for me.  My counselor reminds me I only think everyone is happy.  Just haven’t run into anyone that isn’t.  

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I’m forced into the Christmas spirit because I don’t want to let my son DIL and grandsons down but after losing Noah and Gracie on top of not having Mary here it’s so unspeakably hard.  

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My heart aches thinking of the sorrows of such incredible losses.  To make it through the days moment by moment is the only way I'm managing this season.  My dreaded date is Jan 6.  ❤️

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1 hour ago, Widowedbysuicide said:

My dreaded date is Jan 6.  ❤️

You are in my prayers.  My dreaded date is Jan 9.  Hugs. ❤️

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18 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

My counselor reminds me I only think everyone is happy.  Just haven’t run into anyone that isn’t.  

Oh they're there, trust me.  My Christmas is turning out as I feared.  A snowstorm and lowering temperatures arriving tonight on.

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Butch,

It's okay to show sadness when you are sad.  We don't have to put on a smile to the rest of the world.  There will be times we feel a smile and sadness together at the same time.  I reckon that's as good as it gets from here on out.  I don't want to lose the joy that is there even if it's momentary, but it resides alongside the grief when it does appear.

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19 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

They want to do more invasive tests.  Hard to face those alone.

glad you caught some holiday spirit.  I skipped volunteering at the Christmas parties because I couldn’t handle it.  This is the first year since 2014 I have done nothing for the holidays except put up our tiny tree and it does nothing for me.  My counselor reminds me I only think everyone is happy.  Just haven’t run into anyone that isn’t.  

That's the way I feel.  Everyone is so busy, planning to see family, traveling, etc.  I feel very alone in this.  I'm sure others like me are out there, but don't know where.  Clenching in the pit of my stomach...will try to enjoy whatever I can of the holidays but boy this hurts every time it comes around.  So sorry about whatever these tests you are having Gwen.  It is damn hard to face alone!  I am having knee surgery on the 21st; had to do it all alone...the doctor's visits, tests, etc.  It is really hard....but it is what it is as they say.  Good luck to you in whatever you're going through....hugs, Cookie

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On ‎12‎/‎14‎/‎2017 at 8:53 PM, olemisfit said:

Sometimes I feel like I have been able to defeat this grieving beast. I want to. And some days I feel like I do see a significant improvement in the way I handle things. But...then I face the reality of it all and realize that I'm still the same basket case that I was by this time of day on  January 1st, 2016. I have one huge monster riding around on my back. And In the almost 2 years that have gone by since my sweet, beautiful Cookie passed, every once in a while I still feel the weight of that monster on my shoulders. You see, I was raised to believe that it is not right to intentionally end the life of another human being. In the belief system I grew up in, it was just that clear, and just that cut and dried. But that is exactly what I did in the case of my wife. I intentionally terminated my wife's life. I know what all the justification sorts of reasons are. I have thought them all. My wife and I had had the conversation more than once over the years. That conversation where you promise to do for your mate what he/she is not able to speak up and do for him/her self. I wanted to keep my wife around with me.  Oh God, but how I wish she was still here with me. But I also know that if I had kept her around, it would have been for all the wrong reasons. That wonderful, beautiful, red headed, passionate, strong willed, bull headed woman was my rock. My anchor. My reason for being willing to swing my legs off the bed each morning and go through another day with a smile on my face. I could smile every day because God made me the luckiest man that ever occupied space on this crazy planet. Our paths crossed on a day in October, 1974 when I went to apply for a job at a motel in Oklahoma City. I met that special woman I had been hoping would come along one day. She came along that day, and we were still together 41+ years later when I had to end her suffering and misery. We were made for each other, and meant for each other. And I miss her every day so very much. I miss her physical presence. Oh yeah, she is and always will be in my thoughts. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about all the special things she was or did that made my time with her so wonderfully special.  One thing that I will eternally be so very grateful about is the knack she had of always making me feel like I mattered. Nobody else in my life had ever even tried to make me feel that way. But my Cookie did it every day so effortlessly.  I know she loved me. I never doubted that. And I can honestly say that I never took her love for granted. I loved to make sure she always knew how easy it was for me to love her. And then the day came for me to speak for her when she wasn't able to speak the words herself. I knew I was setting myself up for the remainder of my live being lonely and miserable. And so far that is exactly what it has been. I intentionally and voluntarily ended her life when my own life wasn't endangered or threatened. I did it to put an end to her misery and suffering. I did it because I had made a promise to her to do it if the need should ever present itself. When that need presented itself, I ended her life because it was the only right thing to do under the circumstances. And her physical presence is what I miss so very much. Being able to enjoy a TV show while holding her hand. Or ditto while reading a book. Or look over at her and tell her I love her. And hearing her say it. Or wrapping my arms around her, and giving her a big ole hug and kiss just because I felt like doing it. Spontaneously. Those little things were always the things I treasured the most, and thus they are the ones I now miss the most. Just being able to be ourselves around each other. Now all I can do is to live in  the past and re-live all those things mentally---with the memories. This coming New Year's Day will be the 2nd anniversary of her passing. I wish I could just stay in bed and sleep through that entire day. But I know I won't. I'll get up that morning and bounce off the walls the same way I have for the past 102 weeks. And then at the end of that day, I'll crawl between the sheets of this bed the same way I have every evening for the past 102 weeks---ALONE. And then I'll get up the next morning and spend the entire day doing the same thing I have done every day of the past 102 weeks, which is to put...

One foot in front of the other...

Darrel

Darrel:  Am so sorry for your pain and feel for you.  It is very similar to how I feel after 2 1/2 years; just when I'm hoping I might be navigating this better, more neutral, it cycles around and I've realized that this is probably what it will be for a long, long time, if not always.  You loved Cookie so much; you did the right thing by her.  I have this terrible feeling at times that I failed John is some way at the end.  He woke up in the middle of the night he died which woke me up but I checked him in a half asleep daze and went back to sleep; I heard him breathing heavily but he had been doing that off and on for a while.  He died at 4:00 that morning; I woke up to his last breath at that time.  I wouldn't have been able to save him, but I've wished many times that I had woken myself up completely and been holding him, talking to him up until he took his last breath...it hurts still.....take care, Cookie

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Cookie, I wish you the best on your knee surgery.  I can’t even comprehend taking that on right now and I know I need some surgeries too. I hope you have someone  supportive to help you thru this.  That is my obstacle.   I never was a fan of medical procedures, but it sure helped to have Steve here so I could truly zone out when I got home.  They told me at the hospital I could hire someone.  That made it more depressing.  But I digress......

for you...."🌹🌹🌹

 

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4 hours ago, Cookie said:

I had woken myself up completely and been holding him, talking to him up until he took his last breath.

I will regret that forever Cookie.  I was angry at him, he woke me up, oh, I won't go back into that.  Nothing I can do.  

I'm so sorry about yours and Gwen's tests/surgery, and I hope that Gin is doing okay.  We have some people that we have not heard from in awhile, unless I missed them.  I hope they are okay, as okay as any of us can be.  My heart is with you.

hugs1.jpg

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Gwen,. Hope they figure out your digestive issues.  So lousy to feel ill and be alone.  

Kay,. Yes, it is awful to be so alone.  I have no clue on how to solve that problem.  I spend most of my time all alone.  I even look forward to going to the dentist.  

Cookie,. Is your knee surgery this week?  If so, I wish you well.  Will someone take you?  Will you have to go to a rehab place or will you come home?  These things are so hard to do without that special person.

Marg,. I still feel guilty that I did not change doctors or hospital near the end.  Al really liked his doctors and told me that no one could help him.  I did not want to hear that.  I am having a particularly bad time right now.  Al loved Christmas. My sciatica is getting better, but not THAT good.  Physical therapy really hurts.   I still can not do much  and feel really isolated.  My daughter and grandkids are coming Sat. My other daughter might come Sunday.  Sure not like it used to be.  But, what Is?  

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11 hours ago, Gin said:

 I still feel guilty that I did not change doctors or hospital near the end.  

Gin, I think we all have those feelings from time to time.  I know in my mind, I did everything I could to have Tammy in my life forever. Yet, she did die. I realize her body simply gave in to the ravages of 25 years of severe Lupus and other illnesses. But she did die. And I'm here. And all alone. Missing the world we shared and the love we shared. She loved Chrismas. She was so passionate about the joy of the holiday. Now alone, this time of year feels cold and empty. There's no joy to be found.

Sure Tammy will be in my heart forever. She's etched on my soul. She's always on my mind and each step I take has her still beside me. But, it's not the same without her sweet smile, soothing voice, soft skin and that twinkle in her eye. My life will never have the happiness it had. Tammy elevated my world to a place of true bliss and contentment.

I wish all of you "happy" holidays and hope that all of us can find some meaning (and make some sense of all of this) in the new year.

Mitch

 

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