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Still mourn Husband after 5 years


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Hi Linda, and welcome. We're not big on labels here, but if you're asking whether it is normal that, as the title of your topic suggests, you're still mourning your husband after 5 years, I can assure you that the answer is Yes. If you loved your husband ~ and if you still love him despite his physical absence from you ~ I cannot imagine why you wouldn't continue to mourn his death for the rest of your life. We do not mourn those we do not love. That is not to say that your grief remains as acute and as sharp as it is in the beginning ~ but to expect it to "go away" some day is not realistic. Grief is not an illness that we will "get over" or recover from. It's a process that takes place over time, and something that in time we can learn to live with. 

Perhaps you can share with us a little more of your own story?

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I 'think' I know what you are talking about, Linda.  As Marty said above above about it not staying as acute acute and sharp.  I am going into my 4th year and it makes the first 3 look like a cake walk.  Something happened that I now feel it more than ever.  I’ve done all the legal, getting rid of medical reminders, destroyed all images of him in the ravages of his cancer and worked with therapists since.  I don't know if it’s the length of time now or it has taken a turn to something unhealthy.  I’ve read many articles about this as a disorder.  I am not adapting as I once was.  The years before were hell for sure, but nothing like this.  I have absolutely no personal support like family or friends so I know that takes a toll.  We are all trying to get used to not being someone beloved anymore or having our beloveds there to give what we still feel.  All I do know is the person I once was could find something to give life some meaning to keep living it and now I can’t.  And that truly scares me about my options.  

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Hi Marty,

Thanks for the welcome, I do have complicated  grief, see a therapist . My Husband Julian and I were married for 37 years, he was my rock and my soulmate. We did everything together.

He had colon cancer and with the help of Mayo Clinic in Florida, he survived 6 years because of his wonderful doctor, Elizabeth Johnson. He had a pretty good quality of life under her care.

He died on 5/5/2013 in our home as we had decided that he die at home, under the care of Hospice, they were wonderful.

I just exist each day without him waiting for the good Lord to take me so we can be together again. I attached some of my favorite photos 

 

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Me & Julian at the Big Mac.jpg

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17 minutes ago, Gwenivere said:

I 'think' I know what you are talking about, Linda.  As Marty said above above about it not staying as acute acute and sharp.  I am going into my 4th year and it makes the first 3 look like a cake walk.  Something happened that I now feel it more than ever.  I’ve done all the legal, getting rid of medical reminders, destroyed all images of him in the ravages of his cancer and worked with therapists since.  I don't know if it’s the length of time now or it has taken a turn to something unhealthy.  I’ve read many articles about this as a disorder.  I am not adapting as I once was.  The years before were hell for sure, but nothing like this.  I have absolutely no personal support like family or friends so I know that takes a toll.  We are all trying to get used to not being someone beloved anymore or having our beloveds there to give what we still feel.  All I do know is the person I once was could find something to give life some meaning to keep living it and now I can’t.  And that truly scares me about my options.  

Thanks Gwenivere,

From the day he died, life has no meaning to me, I do have a sweet dog named Babie J who is the love of my life, I rescued here at 9 years old and she is now 13, but has a lot of medical problems but my vet is awesome and she is still living a good quality of life, she goes everywhere with me.  I got her a year after Julian died.

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My sweet Babie J..jpg

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Me, Babie J and Santa.jpg

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Britttany, her groomer & Babie J..jpg

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Linda,

What a handsome couple you are, and your little dog is precious! I am so glad she is there for you. I also adopted a Shepherd-Lab-Husky after my Ron left. She is mostly glued to my side.

I lost Ron on 5-6-2013 and my daughter Debbie a year later, both to cancer. I  still wander aimlessly through each day and night with a small hope that the sun will shine once again. Many people seem to work their way through this grief maze and resume life.  Some of us have just been so blindsided that our pace is much slower. Some of us adapt less easily to this new, empty way of life. We are not yet able to "hitch up our britches" and get on with it. My hope is that some day we will be.

Welcome to our group. We understand and we care.

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KarenK,

Thanks for your input. I can't even imagine losing a Husband and Daughter, I hate Cancer and call it the devils work. I know in my heart I will never be a happy again, when Julian took took his last breath, I knew my life was over and I do not want to resume my life without him. Thank God for our beloved pets who care for us. 

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Linda,

It's been almost 13 years for me and I've learned this is a "rest of my life" kind of thing.  I think I love and miss him even MORE now than I did in the beginning, if possible...I realize what a rare and precious gem he is/was, and how lucky I was to have had him in my life.  There is no expiration date on grief, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.  You are not abnormal for grieving your husband.  Beautiful couple and the love shines through!  

It helps to have this place that "gets it" and understands, others who can relate to our feelings.  My family is supportive but they can't begin to understand what I go through, not having been there themselves.  They still get to snuggle with their husbands, still have someone that leaves the garage light on, someone that drives them to/from surgery/procedures and takes care of them when they're sick.  They still have their person and we're still missing ours.

PS, I'm glad you have your dog, here's a picture of my love, I got him a few years after George died. (The one on the left is my Arlie, the one on the right is Bruno, my son's dog)
 

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14 hours ago, Linda E said:

  I hate Cancer and call it the devils work. 

I couldn’t have found better words.  It stole the most important person in the world from me and most of the other people I truly loved, including several dogs.  I asked to be removed from all mailing and call lists about it.  Many take up the fight.  Usually because they have someone to fight for.  It’s left me alone in the world and I don’t want to discuss it or see it’s ugly face again.  But I know I will.  

 

12 hours ago, kayc said:

It helps to have this place that "gets it" and understands, others who can relate to our feelings.  My family is supportive but they can't begin to understand what I go through, not having been there themselves.  They still get to snuggle with their husbands, still have someone that leaves the garage light on, someone that drives them to/from surgery/procedures and takes care of them when they're sick.  They still have their person and we're still missing ours.

So, so true, Kay.  After over 3 years people REALLY don’t get it.  As we get older we face more issues healthwise and to have no one to hold your hand or make decisions about treatments is so very hard.  I remember talking Steve out of some I knew would not help but were the standard flow of what medicine did.  Now I have no one to bounce those options around about myself except seeking 2nd opinions which mean more doctors that don't know me.  And if you do make a tough decision, it so helps to be able snuggle with and feel someone will be there watching out for you as a loved person, not another body just in need.  I know one couple with upcoming surgery and at least they can be together.  Not as scary for them. Life without love like that is so terribly cold.

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I try to give myself my best possible chance for living optimally...which is not necessarily the same thing as longevity.  But to have quality of life it means taking care of myself, including going to the doctor, getting exercise, eating healthy, spending time with my pets and nature, de-stressing, and doing my best to get a good night's sleep.  Unfortunately the sleep part isn't always cooperative...I was awake at 1 am today and never did get back to sleep.  I usually try for a couple of hours and then get up and doing things rather than continue to fight it any longer.  Hopefully I'll get a nap in this afternoon.  At least I cooked several pounds of meat and packaged, froze it, made Arlie a batch of food, did the dishes, fed the animals, got a load of wood in.  In an hour it'll be time to tend the wood stove and then fix breakfast.  It amazes me how there are always things to be done!

Gwen, I get it, I really do.  And as for longevity, I hope mine is shorter than my mom's was!  I've been widowed since I was 52, I really don't want 40 years living alone!

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Hi KayC,

I also do live optimally, I run, take of my dog, eating, the only exception is the doctor's because if I do get cancer or any other disease I will not treat it to keep on living, I have had enough  of this crazy world anyway. I'm 70.

 

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Well, if you get cancer, and the doctor tells you, you STILL have the option not to treat it.  My MIL started out taking chemo but it made her so incredibly sick...she elected to discontinue it.  She was put on hospice and when she was sent home from the hospital, given about three weeks to live.  She lived nearly three years after that!  I've never seen the kind of suffering she went through, but she did it bravely and stoically, they said she literally willed herself to live...for her grandchildren.  She didn't want to miss a moment with them.  That time with her was very precious for all of us.  

I just hate to see you go through something treatable unnecessarily...I'm not talking about cancer.  70 isn't that old, I'm only five years behind you!

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Hi Kayc,

You MIL was a very strong woman, I am sorry for your loss.

Thanks for your concern, but I really died the day my Husband did.

I had memorial bricks put in at the St. Augustine Lighthouse which was our favorite place.

We visited many Lighthouses along both coast where we retired. 

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Welcome Linda. I relate strongly to what you say, tho I'm at an earlier stage with the 1 yr anniv of losing my other half coming up on 3/31. I think I'm doing every thing possible and have support of a wonderful therapist, friends and family, especially friends who are also grieving. I have OK moments and then some thought of Susan's unconditional love and amazing sweetness will come to mind and the pain of its loss will stop me cold. The only purpose I still have is making sure Susan is remembered. I'm having a 1 yr Memorial get-together and also intend to set up some more permanent Memorial.

I'm in good physical condition so far as I know. I'm a competitive  swimmer. Nevertheless except for getting the Memorials done I absolutely would not mind checking out with a sudden heart attack in the pool,  being hit by a car, etc but the prospect of hospitalization without her by my side is a nightmare. DNR!

Anyway assuming I make it to 3/31 I'll just see what yr 2 brings. My therapist tells me that at some point the warmth of the memories will be greater than the pain of the loss. If she's right I may have a life. We'll see.

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Going into year 4 I am still waiting on that 'life' thing.   I hope your 2nd year goes better than mine, Tom.  That is when it started becoming really real.  We’re all so different.  The pain is so intense, but how we react is so unique. Family and friends will help.  I had and still don’t have any of those so it makes the journey tougher.  

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Yeah, last summer I was with a guy and his long-term girlfriend and he was crying over his wife who he lost 10 yrs ago, in front of the girlfriend. My therapist says I may just have to accept being sad. I know it's a no-no to compare griefs, but in my heart I'll never believe anything is as bad as losing a soulmate. Not every marriage has two people literally becoming one being, and when one leaves this life the pain of the one left behind is indescribable, as can be seen on this board. I was part of Tom & Susan and lived in the sunshine of her unconditional love and sweetness for 48 yrs. The HaLevy poem nailed it, "Tis a feraful thing, to love what death can touch"

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12 hours ago, kayc said:

Well, if you get cancer, and the doctor tells you, you STILL have the option not to treat it.  My MIL started out taking chemo but it made her so incredibly sick...she elected to discontinue it.  She was put on hospice and when she was sent home from the hospital, given about three weeks to live.  She lived nearly three years after that!  I've never seen the kind of suffering she went through, but she did it bravely and stoically, they said she literally willed herself to live...for her grandchildren.  She didn't want to miss a moment with them.  That time with her was very precious for all of us.  

I just hate to see you go through something treatable unnecessarily...I'm not talking about cancer.  70 isn't that old, I'm only five years behind you!

There are many natural alternative to treat, and heal cancer.  Check out the "TRUTH ABOUT CANCER".  Discover what causes the cancer and what cancer THRIVES on and AVOID it.  The allopathic doctors are trained by the Pharmacy companies.  If you only have a hammer everything looks like a nail.  As KayC, says we need to care about the quality of our health.  We have to live with our decisions the rest of our life.  There are many natural treatments that work.  Check it out. Search " Natural treatment alternative treatments for.....(_____________fill in the blanks)  - Shalom

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Tom, it's funny that you mention you wouldn't mind a sudden heart attack, etc.  Last night my Carbon Monoxide detector went off, half of a short beep then nothing.  I didn't even get up to look at it, too tired from too many sleepless nights.  I'd already contacted the maker and they said it's a battery issue (it was installed a year ago and supposed to be good for ten years), it's not that I have a carbon monoxide issue.  Nothing in the booklet described one short beep and it doesn't have a red light coming on, no messages, it still shows green and on.  So I already knew it was of no concern.  HOWEVER the thought did occur to me that that would be a quick and painless way to go.  It's weird how we view death differently now, NOW it's a quick passage to reunification.  But I don't want to leave my grandkids and kids just yet either.  ;) 

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12 hours ago, iPraiseHim said:

There are many natural alternative to treat, and heal cancer

The doctor that started the Hallelujah diet healed herself of cancer by eating organic, juicing, juicing, juicing.  She was at it full time, but it worked!  Someone tried to talk to my MIL about alternative treatment naturally but I think she was just too exhausted/sick to consider it, in fact it upset her for someone to bring it up.  I think she thought of it as some quack thing and it irritated her.  Perhaps if she'd learned about it before cancer struck she might have considered it.  Back in those days we didn't have internet and information available at our fingertips.  She was fed organically though, elk and venison, produce from the garden, etc.  Perhaps that helped account for her living beyond their predictions, but I do know a person's will to live plays in heavily.

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On 3/23/2018 at 8:48 AM, kayc said:

HOWEVER the thought did occur to me that that would be a quick and painless way to go.  It's weird how we view death differently now, NOW it's a quick passage to reunification.  But I don't want to leave my grandkids and kids just yet either.  ;) 

I have not been on here as regularly as I used to be, but still pay attention.  My daughter is here, my granddaughter, my sister needing help, and sometimes I wonder how long I can go on,  and I keep remembering Robert Frost's poem, and I am not quoting it exactly, but the gist of it is "I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep."  Do not want to let my family down, but then I think, neither did Billy.  

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