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Gwenivere

Grief removes all guard rails

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I had a day from absolute hell yesterday...forget the fire and brimstone, dealing with hair-pulling tech issues all day, all evening...THAT'S hell!  Glad it's over.

Gwen, I wish you a better day today!

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I've had many days like that, dear Kay. Beyond frustrating! And exhausting! Remember the days before we had all this wonderful technology that has made our lives so much easier?!

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Marty, I am probably one of the few adults in the U. S. that does not have a cell phone. I carried a Tracphone when Ron & Debbie were alive, just to communicate with them. Last year, I wondered why I kept it up, so I just let it go. I don't travel more than 5 miles from home and times are rare when I would find one useful. The Internet, however, is indispensable. It's handy for finding my way through life and without it, I wouldn't have met all the wonderful people here.

When I get to the point of needing an electric potato peeler, I'll quit cooking.  LOL

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Yes, Karen ~ "Social Media" I could do without ~ but I thank heaven every day for the gift of the Internet. In a recent interview I watched online with Mike Rowe (the "Dirty Jobs" guy, whom I just love) he made the point that years ago, people who went to college were exposed to information, knowledge, arts, sciences and different cultures via their professors, their campus libraries, and their classmates. In other words, what a college education offered to those fortunate enough to get it was access. Today, thanks to the Internet, we don't necessarily have to go to college to get an education or to learn more about what interests us. ALL of us have access to that information and more! What a profound observation, I thought! And what a magnificent gift! 

As for kitchen gadgets, I hear you. I think I have every gadget known to man for opening a bottle or a jar, and my arthritic hands still find them to be useless. :P

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3 hours ago, KarenK said:

When I get to the point of needing an electric potato peeler, I'll quit cooking. 

I have a cell phone, a flip phone.  I am not smart enough for a smart phone and my fingers shake, so using one of them is like trying to use a lap top.  I bought a wonderful Dell lap top, keys are all almost on a smooth board, sometimes if you look closely (I catch them if they are red underlined), my shaking fingers will put two commas, two periods, etc.  Cannot use a laptop, need old fashioned keyboard.  

They will advertise all these gadgets on TV that will do all these wondrous things, I order them, and honestly the Ninja mixer for health drinks is a keeper.  All the others end up in Kelli's yard sales.  Some I have bought twice and twice in yard sales.  I cannot use the Ninja, cannot have the greens or anything with seeds, even after the Ninja has obliterated them, but for health drinks, it cannot be beat.

I just opened something that was telling me I had to, from Microsoft or something important, Norton said at first it was safe and something piggybacking what was safe got installed also.  I spent all morning trying to get rid of "gumdrop."  I am so computer dumb, Norton and Lifelock are expensive, but the hospital I worked for in Albuquerque would not let us use anything but Norton and knowing the sensitivity of the reports, I figured they were the best ones to trust.  

I am computer illiterate. 

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My cellphone is my son's cast off 15 year old Droid before they started numbering them.  It's too old to update so it won't go on line anymore.  Most of the time it can't even get my email from the server, whoever the server is!  But I can call for a tow truck or locksmith with it and that's all I need it for since there's no cellphone service where I live.  

I can't live without the internet.  It's hard to believe we ever lived without it!  Back in the day we had encyclopedias which were all out of date depending on what year you bought yours!  But FB enables me to see my grandkids, if nothing else.

Gosh if I couldn't use a technician though, I always said if something has two parts or more, I'm in trouble!  Especially if one of those parts moves.  I'm a user, not a Techie.  

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It’s been crazy since I was released from the hospital.  I’ve been back to ER and the Urgent Clinic.  Good news is the antibiotic seems to have worked so far.  I was worried because they were talking about a pic IV at home.  Bad news is I am so stuffed up I can’t taste anything and it makes hard to use the oxygen.  Have to request a humidifier to help.  If anyone has gone days with a bad cold or such, you know how unappealing food becomes.  

The hardest part is being home now for over a week and overwhelmed with limitations I have to adapt to.  Every day is medically centered so I try and go out to do anything that is not.  Waking up is so hard because we are so vulnerable to all the fears when you see your life again changed in a huge way.  I haven’t been able to volunteer in weeks so that’s tough.  It was my social contact and I miss all the residents 3 times a week.  A social worker came by today.  It’s a free service to stop by every week, but it’s not the same.  I like getting out among the living.  Plus I didn’t like talking about Steve and all the things that have changed again.  They talk to you about all kinds of disability accessories which is a downer.  It’s tough enough I have housekeepers coming Friday to do what I can’t.  I’m trying not to think this will be permanent.  I tried asking my dogs to vacuum thier fur up and shake out all the stuff they lay on and they looked at me like I was insane.  Thier job is to look cute, eat, sleep, play and remind me of these needs.  🙂

The smoking is a toughie.  The lozenges work, but I’m still sneaking a few drags of the real thing now and then.  As every smoker knows and one recently told me, once a smoker, always a smoker.  But I’m giving myself credit for less than 2 a day.  I sure notice it in shows and movies and unconsciously reach for some. They’re becoming less appealing which is a good thing.  

 I am looking into the advertised portable units that weight about 3 pounds compared to these little tanks I have now that weigh a lot and are cumbersome.  Have to keep changing tanks and the advertised ones make their own oxygen and just need charging at home.  Not cheap, but sometimes acceptance means saying your worth it.  I also try to think about investments like Steve taught me.  How much does that really cost me per month to buy over a year?  Not as shocking then.  

I don’t have many wants as it is.  A little more freedom, tho, is one I do.  

Well, the closest I come to a 'normal' mood is ending.  I don’t know if I will ever get used to that.  Steve on the brain and heart as the night grows later.  That means sleep and another day coming without him.  Know I will never get used to that.  💔

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Gwen, what you are going through is similar to what my sister is...she will be coming home tomorrow and her life as she knew it is changed.  How permanent or not remains to be seen, I'm sure some of it isn't, but some of it may be.  I'm worried about her smoking not because of the smoking itself but because I'm afraid it will cause her another fall if she goes down the steps to smoke outside, her porch is very small.  I wanted to have her porch enlarged and a ramp put in and my BIL refused and she goes along with whatever he decides.  If she smokes inside the house, not only will I not be able to be there, but it will get her put back on oxygen and then she'll be back to the going outside to smoke which will increase her chances of falling.  I don't know any way around this.

I'm worried about her being stuck in the house as Bert will have sports on 24/7 LOUD and it will drive her nuts.  Maybe with headphones on she can read.  Always before he's gone to his store which gave her some relief from the noise, but now he'll be there "taking care of her" 24/7 until Spring and I'm afraid it'll drive her bonkers. When she was at the rehab, at least she had her evenings quiet as he went home.

I'm afraid all of this will further depress her and I worry about her MAKING it until Spring!  

I know your not being able to get out is one of the harder side effects of what you're going through, as well as your loss of independence and not being able to do everything for yourself.  I feel like crying as I think about all of the changes that means to you, and to my sister, Peggy, life just seems so hard sometimes!  I hope you can hang in there and that these things are not permanent.  And you're doing well to cut down to 2 cigs a day, that's a big change for a lifelong smoker, I know, and coming at a time when you most need the calming effect...that is all the harder!

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What a difference a day makes.  Laying in the ER again as I couldn’t breathe again and slight chest pain.  Was feeling very confused doing things this morning.   Went to my counseling appointment and began to panic.  Went home, packed my ER bag and now waiting on tests.  So much has been thrown at me in the last 3 weeks, I wonder if I just reached a breaking point.  I’m not saying this because I want a gold star, but I see how Steve had things less stressful not having to think about not only his care, but the house, dogs and general road bumps that inevitably come up.   

Releasing me now.  Said I may be back if this doesn’t change.  Tests were OK but this could b a revolving door with the lungs.  Lot to think about regarding quality of life once again.  Make that quality of an empty life.  

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Gwen,. Sorry you are having such a hard time  these last few weeks.  Sure hope things improve for you.  

Gin

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12 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

What a difference a day makes.  Laying in the ER again as I couldn’t breathe again and slight chest pain.  Was feeling very confused doing things this morning.   Went to my counseling appointment and began to panic.  Went home, packed my ER bag and now waiting on tests.  So much has been thrown at me in the last 3 weeks, I wonder if I just reached a breaking point.  I’m not saying this because I want a gold star, but I see how Steve had things less stressful not having to think about not only his care, but the house, dogs and general road bumps that inevitably come up.   

Releasing me now.  Said I may be back if this doesn’t change.  Tests were OK but this could b a revolving door with the lungs.  Lot to think about regarding quality of life once again.  Make that quality of an empty life.  

Gwen, oh no!  You are right, they didn't have to go through this, they were cared for, they didn't have to worry about what to do with the dogs, etc., you were there for Steve and now that you need it you feel so on your own, nothing fair about it.  Hoping and praying for your breathing to improve and anxiety attacks to subside.  

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I would not want Billy to have this grief pain, but I think he could handle things better than I do.  I get mail in and don't want to look at it.  It's not bills (well one was), but just stuff I don't want to go through.  My son gave me a waterfall machine thing for my birthday so I could listen to the water and I don't want to put it together.  Gave my daughter the big vacuum, got a smaller one.  Gave my son the hand vac and bought me another.  Have not used it yet, had it a couple of months.  Don't seem to want to do anything but I do have family that needs things done for them or I might never leave the house..  And, I think of those that have it so much worse than I do, and I've lived my life, and I wish he had not gone first.

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Thank you, Dee.  We’re not far apart in location or timeline.  I’m in Seattle and my loss was 10/14.  🦋

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Gwen, I am so sorry you are having such a hard time.  I hate it that we all have so many problems.  

Sometimes living in apartments seems like assisted living.  No steps if we go to the back, about six steps in front.  One of the "boys" left, moved in with his girlfriend and the people around me say she treats him terrible.  He is so sweet, but does drink a lot.  I was getting in my little car and saw two new people that moved in.  They are my age, or older.  She was on a walker (he was carrying, behind her.  She pulled herself up the steps, it was such a halting operation I was afraid she was going to fall back on him.  He is skinny, like my Billy was and I hope I am not as big as she is.  I find that I don't like "leaving," and I mean anyone leaving me.  I wonder why this is so hard.  My little grandmother would say "I get so hungry to see you" and I just thought it was sweet.  She lived to be in her 90's like all my female relatives.  My son stayed about two weeks and it hurts him to leave as much as it hurts me for him to leave.  He always lived with me and Billy.  This morning my daughter was talking about her dad and I see the pain they all are suffering almost three years after he left.  The new elderly couple in the next building, he brought in two bags at a time of groceries.  I still line the bags up on each arm and take in lots more than I should.  The effort it took both of them to get inside their apartment reminded me of the old saying about crying because I had no shoes until I met a man with no feet.  My next door neighbors are my age (around about) and he rides a scooter out back to get around to the front, but someone has to load and unload the scooter, so with the "boy" gone, he has to make it up the stairs like the woman in the next building.  He is a large man, not so much "fluffy" as tall and big.  He is gruff and loud.  His little wife is fighting throat cancer with a brave temperament and has undergone radiation.  I know not to ask questions.  She is so courageous that I feel totally foolish complaining.  But, both couples still have their mate.  

My daughter told me this morning that we would just have to tough it out until we see him again.  My hardest time is mornings and that is mindless of me.  Billy never got up until close to noon.  He stayed up reading into the a.m.  Now I do  that and have to quit as I have to drive most mornings.  

Sorry, just musing, just another word salad.  This is the day we found out Billy was so ill.  He was not going to die, I was not going to let him.  

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My son works security three or four times a month at night for his apartment building in downtown Hot Springs.  Last night the little woman who kept reporting people for stealing her food (they weren't), she came down with a flip phone and told Scott she could not fix the time and date.  His patience has not been good since his breakup with long time girlfriend but he thought, if this was my mama, I would want someone to help her, so he tackled the old fashioned flip phone (like I use), and she was so thankful.  Thing is, he is very computer savvy.  He is also bipolar.  Last night this 82 year old man said "Is your name Kelli" and they know Kelli (daughter) at her building, and it goes by how much money you get a month.  She is on disability and the building is beautiful, washer and dryer furnished, and is kept up where there are flowers all around, the grounds are kept up  beautifully, but like all apartments, they have people that have a hard time getting around.  He (82-year-old) had been in a coma at the hospital last week, and he told Kelli he needed help getting to his apartment.  She is going to ask the manager about helping him get a wheelchair next week.  

I do not wear makeup, I just sometimes am not thankful for being alive.  Then I think about how my family needs me, and they do need me, and I have to fight to stay here to help my granddaughter, by beautiful granddaughter who is afraid of people but with the help of a counselor is making baby steps.  She does not have the confidence to drive but I need to get her out on these country roads and teach her.  The car drives itself, but she is now 19, and I have a reason to live until I can't.  I miss Billy so much that sometimes I cry when alone and keep a roll of towels beside me cause I cry at commercials, crime and drama shows, animated movies.  Any reason.  

I just thought.  I do not resent the two elderly couples for still having their mate.  I feel sorry for them for what one of them is facing, and soon.  I guess I am still living because I have those that need me, and for that reason, I guess I need them.  I'm not happy, I'm just the knot on the log.,  I ache for Senator McCain's widow.  

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Sorry there are so many pot holes on this journey Marg.  All anyone can do is try their best to live each day.  Some of your best is showing your beautiful Granddaughter how to make the best of things and to appreciate the good things.

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19 hours ago, Marg M said:

I just thought.  I do not resent the two elderly couples for still having their mate.  I feel sorry for them for what one of them is facing, and soon.

Yesterday I went to yet another funeral.  His widow has been holding up well (so far) and has no idea what she is about to face.  She has been care-giving and I imagine relieved she made it through that, for she has been exhausted.  She has no idea her (grief) journey has just began and it's yet another hurdle.  I just visited them a month ago, on their 67th anniversary.   She was barely 18 when they married.  She's fortunate she has kids nearby that will help her.  But the nights alone without your spouse to talk to...those are just beginning.

Marg, I don't resent those that still have their spouse either.  I'm glad for them, I really am.  But I also realize they have no idea what this is like.  None whatsoever.  My sister Peggy's husband is doing everything for her.  Cleaning, pruning, dishes, meals, helping her to the bathroom, helping her to bed, helping her get up, everything.  What would she do if she were like me, without anyone?  Most likely she wouldn't be home, she'd be in a facility the rest of her life.  I'm still worried about her, I don't see her getting better, she's weak, she's tired, 

You're there for your kids, for your granddaughter.  I guess we keep going as long as we have to.  They're lucky to have you in their life.

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On 8/30/2018 at 8:33 PM, Gwenivere said:

Thank you, Dee.  We’re not far apart in location or timeline.  I’m in Seattle and my loss was 10/14.  🦋

Gwen:

We are not far apart in location at all.  I am a North westerner only because back in 1964 I married my husband who was born and raised in Tacoma.   After having my 7 year old granddaughter stay with me the last week for three nights, I regained some energy, (she is a little chatter box),  and decided I needed to get outside and enjoy this beautiful NW September day.  I took my dog for a short walk and was glad I did cause a dear neighbor, also a widow,  and we visited for a few minutes.  These unplanned events always help on these lonesome weekends.   Dee

 

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11 hours ago, widow'15 said:

I took my dog for a short walk and was glad I did cause a dear neighbor, also a widow,  and we visited for a few minutes.  These unplanned events always help on these lonesome weekends.

Dee, I've been walking my dog every day, twice a day, all his life.  One thing I've noticed is it's allowed me to get to know my neighbors as they're outside sitting on the lawn or doing yard work and they talk to me when I go by, especially this time of year.  

Maybe if one can't get out and walk their dog, they could sit out on their porch and greet those who do.  It's nice to get the fresh air (even though we've had our share of haze this year) and hear the birds calling.

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Babbling below......just a warning.  

I’m not adapting well to this new challenge of oxygen.  It has created so many limits.  Not having volunteered in a month is taking a huge toll to isolation.  There’s only so many things I can find to do to fill that void and they are pretty much solitary.  Errands are very cut down being alone.  To make it worse is he increasing leg and hip pain.  I have the option of surgery, but that means rehab and boarding the dogs.  I saw my doctor yesterday and she said for each day in the hospital, adding in the 2 days I left early, expect a week for each.  So 3 months of. So 3 months of this hell.  Barely thru one.  I ration my energy now as being home presents all kinds of things to do that just wipe me out.  That in itself is depressing.  I feel for my dogs as I can only do basics.  They don’t complain, but I get frustrated wanting to do more.  I feel like I could just sleep the day away except it hurts to do so.  Meanwhile, life keeps moving on with its challenges and I am losing interest in just about everything.  I try and read, watch some excellent movies but all I see are people free to move about like I was. The stopping smoking has some serious demons to wrestle.  Today I am going to get my hair trimmed.  It’s very long but I think will have them take off more than usual to delay doing this again.  Have to lug in my tank and hope getting it washed doesn’t hurt my neck.   I saw a friend where I volunteer and he said. It could always be worse.  Truer words were never spoken.  I know there are people in worse shape than me, but I can’t do the comparison thing because I am me and have to deal with my reality.  I want to cry but the tears won’t come.  It’s more a feeling of why do I bother?  When you live a day with no enjoyment or contentment it seems all hope is gone.  My motivation for the hair?   A lot of money so i don’t have to wash it tonight.  Just in and out to shower my body.  Trying to do something I normally would enjoy.  Now it’s just to simplify hell for a day.   Cancelled social worker as I tire of talking about adjustment.  I also feel Steve turning into some dream. Was he ever really here?  I see this mans picture all thru the house.  Find him so attractive and sometimes wondering who he was.  Am told I’m not going crazy, but you could fool me.  I talk to myself a lot and don’t even make sense.  Or lose a thought midway.  I try and look at all I am dealing with and say this is normal.  I hate normal.

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