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I am not liking myself anymore.  It seems that 3 and 1/2 years out instead of coming to some kind of peace about losing John, I'm moving more toward anger, resentment, jealousy of others....hate it, but that's what is happening.  I'm trying really hard to be positive, loving, etc., but these little devil feelings keep coming up.  So tired of all of this.  I have tried everything to move on and nothing is taking.  Didn't know this was going to change me into someone I wouldn't like.  Was wondering if anyone else has had these feelings or am I the only one....does it pass.  Oh God, I hope so.  I don't want to live like this.....Cookie

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Hi Cookie,

It has been about the same time for me, also.  I have not found peace with this, either.  I keep trying things that do not work.  I joined a book club, knitting club, grief group, etc.  My biggest problem is the extreme loneliness.  I go to the health club 3-4 times a week.  Nothing.  Most of the time I am alone.  I do not see any good coming from this.  I feel useless and wish I could find something to give my life meaning.  I recently joined a Bible study group and that has been good.   Days go by when  I do not see any people.  I wish you well, Cookie and hope things start looking up.   Gin

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For me, it will be 2 years on March 22.  My emotional states are at often at war with one another.  In the middle of all this heavy snow and extreme cold weather, I'm very glad that Mark no longer has to go out in it, and doesn't have to get up at 4:30 AM 3x per week for kidney dialysis and be driven many miles to his unit for treatment and back home later in the day, that I don't have to worry about him being stranded somewhere or in an accident on the highway, or slipping and falling on all this stupid ice, nor do I need worry about getting a call that he's been hospitalized, etc.  It's such a relief, but at the same time I am tired of this.  I am tired of him being gone.  What a strange sensation.  It even sounds ridiculous when I say it out loud.  But it's true.

And like you, Cookie, i have the same emotions you described, as I hear from others how their loved one was placed into hospice prior to death.  We were never given that option.  Not one time did anyone propose that he enter hospice, not until the ICU doctor declared his quality of life to be zero.  THEN, hospice began.  I didn't even get to bring him home to die.  He would never have survived the trip.  Looking back, I can see the trend of his decline, and the social worker at that 'rehab' center (what a joke) utterly failed to recommend hospice.  He ended up deteriorating in early March and all she  really had to say was "Well,. he's not doing his rehab exercises in the physical therapy center of the residence, but we can't make him do it.  Blah blah blah."  And because I didn't know better, I didn't know what to do.  I remember him looking miserable when I sat in on one of his sessions in physical therapy.  He was just so over it, didn't care anymore, and I didn't know what to do.  When he ended up in ICU again after being basically allowed to deteriorate, and my requests for more intensive attention that last day before he was sent to ICU were met with responses like "I think you should just calm down" from the charge nurse... well, that's a whole other story that maybe I will tell some other time.  Essentially, he didn't enter hospice until 2 hours before we took him off life support.  It was a catastrophic FAILURE of the system across the board.  And now I'm running into people who say "Oh, my loved one entered hospice and it's so nice, so helpful, blah blah blah" and all I can do is smile and nod and wonder why in the bloody hell we never got that option.  Was it because we were 2 men?  Had I been his wife would my concerns been taken seriously?  Did they assume we had it all under control because we didn't really make a fuss?

Well, let me tell you all,  I made a fuss, afterward.  i got that rehab facility nurse's license very nearly revoked or suspended.  At the very least he's on such thin ice with the State Board of Nursing that any additional missteps or complaints filed against him, the board will take that new complaint AND mine, and put them together and he will then be in very hot water.  The rehab facility was scared I'd sue them into the ground,  but by the time it was all over, I was too exhausted, and I knew it would never bring him back.  And I couldn't prove any malfeasance or malpractice.  Even the notes that I got from the rehab facility , which I had to pay for, show he just declined their interventions.  He was just over it all, just ready to check out, but couldn't seem to articulate this-- not even to me.  It makes me sick to think of it, now.

So yes, resentment, anger, jealousy are all frequent companions.  Oh I get it.  Every time I think I have reached a bit of peace of mind, it all goes out the window eventually.  I replay the interaction with the charge nurse and wish I had called 911 myself.  Stuff like that.  I know it does no good, does me no good, but it's hard to move beyond it.  And I don't like the resentment I carry toward those unprofessional providers because that will end up hurting me more than it will them, but gosh it's hard to let go of.

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I am so sorry you went thru that, Kieron.  It’s appalling.  Steve had hospice care for months and itbmade all the difference.  I think our GP suggested it.  I would be as angry as you are/were after the fact.  They didn’t give Steve false hope, but they helped him live at home as long as possible and enjoy his interests.  They took him in when that was done so he was comfortable.  What I am most sorry about is you now have that memory forever.  I wish I could erase it for you like so many others have and a few of my own.  I don’t know if it was because you were both men.  If you weren’t married there could be legal problems, but at least suggesting it is not forbidden.  I hope you have someone to vent this to.  My counselors got earfulls of my anger about other issues.  It’s all we can do now.  I’ve managed to let most of mine go and now live in the sadness of years we missed since he was 62 and so full of beautiful energy to share.

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Kieron,

I am so sorry the two of you were dealt with in that way.  Yes it IS appalling!  I hope to God it wasn't discrimination, but be it discrimination or just inept workers (I hate to use the term professionals here), it is the same result and abhorrent.   You are already aware that resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die...yes, you're right, it hurts you not them.  BUT knowing that does little to change how you FEEL.  I get that!  I've had to work through my feelings and let go of what was done in George's case...I probably had grounds for a malpractice case with his practitioner for not sending him to a Cardiologist, not listening to his complaints which any doctor should have recognized as heart symptoms.  I also have my own feelings to deal with in regards to "the ice queen" (as I've so dubbed the nurse that threw me off the ward and locked the door behind me when he was having his last heart attack).  Because of her, I was deprived of my right to be there for him as he made his transition to what's next.  Did he think I abandoned him?  Did he realize I was thrown out, not willingly left?  He was in crisis, extreme pain, I don't know how much cognizance he had at that time.  I've had to trust that he attributed nothing but the best to my love and motives, as we always had complete and utter faith in each other.  I don't know about nurse's protocol in such situations, I only know that I am the only one I know of that got thrown out when their husband was dying.  I wasn't in their way, I was across the room...in fact, they wouldn't have even been aware of his situation had I not ran and got them!  I've thought, if I hadn't ran and got them I could have been present while he was dying, but then I'd have always wondered if they could have saved him and would have beat myself up for life.  Sometimes you can't win.  I guess we have to realize some things are beyond our control, it's hard to realize that, it takes much much time to get there, we fight like crazy because we did not want this to be! 

Cookie and Gin, 

It took me years to build a life I could live.  YEARS!! It took tremendous work and effort.  It is nothing like my life with George, which was utter happiness.  But it's a life I can do.  I have a lot of interaction with others because I have several groups I'm a part of...church, a group of ladies that go out of town for a luncheon once a month, the grief support group, a group of ladies that meets for lunch once a week, the senior site I volunteer at twice a week, I'm active in my church both on the Praise Team (leads worship) and as Treasurer.  I've been involved with Bible Study Groups, and Growth Groups.  I had another monthly group I enjoyed but it's on hold due to the host's work schedule changes.  This past month has been really hard for me because I was sick for two weeks and then snowed in, shoveling snow until my back ached and my hands (arthritis and carpal tunnel).  It's been hard being isolated this last month and seeing nothing but snow in the forecasts.  I can't wait for winter to be over!  My heart goes out to you, I know the feeling all too well.  I hope some of your small groups help you feel not so isolated, I know sometimes it takes time to forge those relationships.  It's a horrid feeling when you feel no one cares...been there!  This week I had a day that I called my "encouragement day".  From Marty's message, to several phone calls I received from people, it was neat to have people that checked up with me.  I hope you get a day like that, it's restorative!

I hope you are in grief counseling, esp. you, Kieron, I think a professional counselor would be able to help you realize your goal of moving past some of these feelings, Lord knows it's hard for us to figure this stuff out on our own!

 

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15 hours ago, Kieron said:

I am tired of him being gone. 

OMG that`s sooooo true!!!!! 

-------------------

Dear Cookie:

You`re not alone in feeling this way.  

I have always wondered what would imply: healing, improvement, getting better, being a better person. Somehow these imply going from dark to light. Perhaps we´ll always be in a "grey" "contradictory" zone?

I have no answers. I`m still struggling with that and other notions.

 

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It seems that many of our spouses experienced less than stellar medical care. In Ron's case, a catherization(which he told the nurse NOT to attempt due to scar tissue) led to a bladder blockage which then required surgery, a chemo port and feeding tube implanted incorrectly...........Those are just the beginning of a long list of errors that finally delayed his chemo treatments for 6 months. His poor body just could not withstand any more. Would he have survived if all had gone smoothly? I don't know, but at least he would have had a fighting chance. That was where all my anger and resentment was directed. At the inept medical profession. In my daughter's case, it was the Hospice she was involved with and the God she loved who left her to die screaming and in convulsions.

It took me many years to let go of all that anger. Holding onto it was not going to bring them back or change the unknown future. So, it just kind of dwindled away to be replaced with nothingness. As far as feeling anger, resentment, and jealousy just in general, I don't really feel any of that for anyone, which is what I think you are referring to, Cookie.  I don't seem to feel much of anything anymore.

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18 hours ago, KarenK said:

As far as feeling anger, resentment, and jealousy just in general, I don't really feel any of that for anyone, which is what I think you are referring to, Cookie.  I don't seem to feel much of anything anymore.

Our grief feelings were so intense, so raw, some of them traumatic, some experienced for the first time, and they lasted for a long time. 

They had a powerful and long lasting impact in our own core and our own selves, altering our lives and the way we experienced the world. They came in a combo, with a pain we could barely handle.

I think that for these reasons, for that kind of exposure, we were left feeling numb to almost anything. Like a burn-out type.

Of course none likes living like this, I don`t but I accept it is what it is today, and I give myself permission to wonder if it`s going to be like this for ever. I cannot say (yet) I "hope" it won`t be, since Hope dissappeared from my vocabulary almost 5 years ago, when my and our biggest hope crashed against death. 

I then think of what Kay says, that it takes years to rebuild a life in which we choose to be. 

Peace.

Ana

 

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Perfectly said, Ana.  I didn’t know such inner pain could exist.  How impossible it is to tell anyone.  How my whole identity could be altered and not know if it will ever come back.  Hope, happiness, joy.....all mere words now.  I see others that have found some purpose in life and wonder if something is wrong with me.  Steve is the foundation, but it keeps piling up.  Nothing is flowing back in.  Not a trickle.  My body is failing so many things I do are getting limited and new things are hard to fathom because of hardly being able to walk.  Being more sedentary makes things worse.  The possible fix for the pain would be major and leave me still alone and empty.  I ask myself will I survive this and why?

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Thanks for the kind responses.

On 2/13/2019 at 12:27 PM, kayc said:

Because of her, I was deprived of my right to be there for him as he made his transition to what's next. 

Wow, kay, that's horrifying.  How is it these people think they know better, in cases like yours, mine, and others?  It was like the rehab center nurse who barely knew Mark telling me to 'calm down" when I pointed out that his slow responses indicated hypoxia or low oxygen levels.   I saw it happen in his first ICU experience so I recognized it.  Who knew him better, someone who was with him for 18 years, or a nurse who knew him for half an hour?  My view didn't count.

To answer yours and Gwen's questions, yes I did find a support group that is much more to my liking than the first one I found last summer.  That first one was often 15+ people and I got "lost" in it, not to mention being a little different from the others. 😏  In the new one, it's 5 or 6 people and everyone has a great deal in common, so that helps a lot.  Ironically this is what made me realize how cheated we were with hospice.

Gosh, the things I didn't know that I didn't know!  😒

 

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On 2/12/2019 at 10:18 PM, Kieron said:

...So yes, resentment, anger, jealousy are all frequent companions.  Oh I get it.  Every time I think I have reached a bit of peace of mind, it all goes out the window eventually.  I replay the interaction with the charge nurse and wish I had called 911 myself.  Stuff like that.  I know it does no good, does me no good, but it's hard to move beyond it.  And I don't like the resentment I carry toward those unprofessional providers because that will end up hurting me more than it will them, but gosh it's hard to let go of.

I can so relate.  I have seen several hospice cases in my life and I do not have a good opinion about the program at all.😨

My continual burn is the fact of how doctors treat Type 2 Diabetes patients.  I asked plenty of questions and never did get sound answers as to why the doctors treat the SYMPTOM of Diabetes( Blood sugars) and not determine the ROOT CAUSE to stop and prevent the disease.  It NEVER made sense to me WHY the doctor would treat INSULIN RESISTANCE(Diabetes) with more INSULIN.  I asked the doctors and all they would tell me is "this is how we MANAGE the disease."  In their Rx world that is their only treatment.  But we trusted the doctors because they are TRAINED and KNOWLEDGEABLE about disease.  WRONG!

Doctors are GREAT for ACUTE TRAUMA but for chronic diseases there are usually better more natural alternatives.  So my MISSION is to share with "everyone who will hear" that there is a healthier way to heal and recover.  Many people are INSULIN RESISTANT and are never tested or even aware of it. I wasn't!  It is the early stage of type 2 Diabetes. A simple FASTING blood INSULIN TEST and you can discover where you are.  The doctors used to believe that OBESITY leads to Diabetes when in fact it is INSULIN RESISTANCE which causes inflammation and can lead to Obesity. 

Shalom

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17 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

How my whole identity could be altered and not know if it will ever come back.

My identity as George's wife, as part of a couple in a seemingly couples world, all that died when George did.  I've had to built a new identity, one that always existed (as me) but sometimes I didn't always realize it in being someone's wife, someone's mother...and now that I'm older, I'm not the same person I was when I was young, so I've really had to reinvent my identity to align with who I am now, which is always changing.

14 hours ago, Kieron said:

To answer yours and Gwen's questions, yes I did find a support group that is much more to my liking than the first one I found last summer.  That first one was often 15+ people and I got "lost" in it, not to mention being a little different from the others. 😏  In the new one, it's 5 or 6 people and everyone has a great deal in common, so that helps a lot.  Ironically this is what made me realize how cheated we were with hospice.

 Gosh, the things I didn't know that I didn't know!  😒

I'm glad your new one suits you better, it sounds more like the one I have, which usually has 6-7 people.  We've become very close, very supportive.  

12 hours ago, iPraiseHim said:

I have seen several hospice cases in my life and I do not have a good opinion about the program at all.😨

I've heard testimonies both positive and negative from others about hospice.  For the most part I think they're good.  We dealt with them for three years when I was taking care of my MIL who was bedridden with cancer.  They were wonderful, all except for one who carried on an affair with my FIL while my MIL was dying!  We were pretty angry with him at the time, but I also realize, SHE was the professional that took advantage of someone very vulnerable, someone who had been through hell, and we did report her and it's hard to believe she didn't lose her job over it! My poor MIL, she wasn't blind or stupid, just because her body was ravaged with the insidious cancer and pain, I watched her tears slip down her face, that was so hard.  One of her dying wishes was we would forgive Papa and continue to love him...which we did.  It was not only her dying request, but beyond that, our own values and beliefs that dictated forgiveness and understanding, even though we didn't agree with his choices.  I loved that man until the day he died and even after his son's and my divorce, I visited him weekly in his assisted living, having dinner with him and playing Cribbage with him, which he always beat me at!

I had interaction with hospice with my mom but she was in a dementia care facility so not as much need for the hospice.  They appeared too late with regards to my sister, Donna.
 

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It saddens me to read stories like these. In the early years, hospices were small, intimate, local and not-for-profit. The hospice I was with for 17 years (Hospice of the Valley in Phoenix, AZ) is still non-profit and is still considered to be one of the finest in the country, even though it has grown to be one of the largest. So much has changed in recent years. Nowadays the old adage, "Let the buyer beware" applies. As consumers we must do our due diligence to make sure the hospice we select adheres to the highest standards of care. At the same time, I recognize that those who live in rural areas and smaller towns may not have many options from which to choose. See When Hospice Care Fails A Family ❤️

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Marty,

Hospice Of The Valley treated Ron with love and dignity and were responsible for transporting him home to breathe his last breath. Nurses stayed here with him round the clock through the end. I have only kind words for them.

My daughter lived in a rural area. The Hospice in her area was probably understaffed for the large area they covered and definitely poorly trained. The nurse who visited most often did not even have a license, I found out later. It took them hours to arrive when called.  I was appalled to learn no one would be there to provide medical assistance during her final hours. Just "give us a call after she's gone and we'll call the funeral home for you."  I watched her die screaming and in convulsions,  an unimaginable horror and I was helpless to stop her torment. Therein lies my anger.

Such different treatment from two organizations who should operate on the same principle.

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No human being should have to die that way, dear Karen ~ and no mother should have to experience such a horrible, traumatic death. I am so, so sorry that this happened to you and your daughter. You have every right to be angry about it, and I'm sure you're still haunted by the memories of it. I can only hope and pray that this cannot and will not happen to anyone else ~ but I know that not all hospices are the same. Truly, Hospice of the Valley is a very special one, and I am grateful for you that your beloved Ron was treated with all the love and dignity he deserved.  ❤️

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Karen, what an awful menory to be left with, like Kay being pulled away from George.  I was not there when Steve passed overnight but declined coming to see him.  He was gone and the body was of a man ravaged by cancer, I did not need to see it again.  He was in dementia so the times I saw him were heartbreaking.  He woke out of that so briefly and said I love you and then back to that world in his brain.  A memory that was not uncommon but it tears you up.  

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Marty,

By and large my experience with hospice over the three years of care they helped when my MIL was bedridden was amazing.  There always seems to be a bad seed here and there and the one woman was an example of that, but in the three years most of those who helped us were godsends.  My sister Donna was in an amazing foster family and they did more for her than anyone, and I still feel blessed we got to know this family.  My mom had less interaction with hospice beyond a fitting for wheelchair, etc. but they were professional, her needs weren't as great for them because she was already in a facility taking care of her.

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On ‎02‎/‎12‎/‎2019 at 4:10 PM, Gin said:

Hi Cookie,

It has been about the same time for me, also.  I have not found peace with this, either.  I keep trying things that do not work.  I joined a book club, knitting club, grief group, etc.  My biggest problem is the extreme loneliness.  I go to the health club 3-4 times a week.  Nothing.  Most of the time I am alone.  I do not see any good coming from this.  I feel useless and wish I could find something to give my life meaning.  I recently joined a Bible study group and that has been good.   Days go by when  I do not see any people.  I wish you well, Cookie and hope things start looking up.   Gin

Same to you, Gin.  Yes, I feel invisible a lot.  I have also done all the clubs.  Seems like everyone is connected and I'm on the outside looking in.  It's my fault.  I was not in any of these groups before John died.  Just wanted to spend my time with him.  These other people have formed long-time connections and it's hard to break into that.  Hope things go well for you too.  Cookie

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On ‎02‎/‎15‎/‎2019 at 2:32 PM, KarenK said:

Marty,

Hospice Of The Valley treated Ron with love and dignity and were responsible for transporting him home to breathe his last breath. Nurses stayed here with him round the clock through the end. I have only kind words for them.

My daughter lived in a rural area. The Hospice in her area was probably understaffed for the large area they covered and definitely poorly trained. The nurse who visited most often did not even have a license, I found out later. It took them hours to arrive when called.  I was appalled to learn no one would be there to provide medical assistance during her final hours. Just "give us a call after she's gone and we'll call the funeral home for you."  I watched her die screaming and in convulsions,  an unimaginable horror and I was helpless to stop her torment. Therein lies my anger.

Such different treatment from two organizations who should operate on the same principle.

You know, Karen, we had a similar experience with Hospice when John died.  They were never available and it could take them all day to get here if I called.  I was so angry at the end.  They didn't even provide bereavement care after he died.  I ended up calling another Hospice in a neighboring town, who were very responsive and came right away.  I live in a very small community in the mountains, but still.....I understand your anger.  You want your loved one to get the best of care when they are suffering....hugs to you, Cookie

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On ‎02‎/‎12‎/‎2019 at 10:18 PM, Kieron said:

For me, it will be 2 years on March 22.  My emotional states are at often at war with one another.  In the middle of all this heavy snow and extreme cold weather, I'm very glad that Mark no longer has to go out in it, and doesn't have to get up at 4:30 AM 3x per week for kidney dialysis and be driven many miles to his unit for treatment and back home later in the day, that I don't have to worry about him being stranded somewhere or in an accident on the highway, or slipping and falling on all this stupid ice, nor do I need worry about getting a call that he's been hospitalized, etc.  It's such a relief, but at the same time I am tired of this.  I am tired of him being gone.  What a strange sensation.  It even sounds ridiculous when I say it out loud.  But it's true.

And like you, Cookie, i have the same emotions you described, as I hear from others how their loved one was placed into hospice prior to death.  We were never given that option.  Not one time did anyone propose that he enter hospice, not until the ICU doctor declared his quality of life to be zero.  THEN, hospice began.  I didn't even get to bring him home to die.  He would never have survived the trip.  Looking back, I can see the trend of his decline, and the social worker at that 'rehab' center (what a joke) utterly failed to recommend hospice.  He ended up deteriorating in early March and all she  really had to say was "Well,. he's not doing his rehab exercises in the physical therapy center of the residence, but we can't make him do it.  Blah blah blah."  And because I didn't know better, I didn't know what to do.  I remember him looking miserable when I sat in on one of his sessions in physical therapy.  He was just so over it, didn't care anymore, and I didn't know what to do.  When he ended up in ICU again after being basically allowed to deteriorate, and my requests for more intensive attention that last day before he was sent to ICU were met with responses like "I think you should just calm down" from the charge nurse... well, that's a whole other story that maybe I will tell some other time.  Essentially, he didn't enter hospice until 2 hours before we took him off life support.  It was a catastrophic FAILURE of the system across the board.  And now I'm running into people who say "Oh, my loved one entered hospice and it's so nice, so helpful, blah blah blah" and all I can do is smile and nod and wonder why in the bloody hell we never got that option.  Was it because we were 2 men?  Had I been his wife would my concerns been taken seriously?  Did they assume we had it all under control because we didn't really make a fuss?

Well, let me tell you all,  I made a fuss, afterward.  i got that rehab facility nurse's license very nearly revoked or suspended.  At the very least he's on such thin ice with the State Board of Nursing that any additional missteps or complaints filed against him, the board will take that new complaint AND mine, and put them together and he will then be in very hot water.  The rehab facility was scared I'd sue them into the ground,  but by the time it was all over, I was too exhausted, and I knew it would never bring him back.  And I couldn't prove any malfeasance or malpractice.  Even the notes that I got from the rehab facility , which I had to pay for, show he just declined their interventions.  He was just over it all, just ready to check out, but couldn't seem to articulate this-- not even to me.  It makes me sick to think of it, now.

So yes, resentment, anger, jealousy are all frequent companions.  Oh I get it.  Every time I think I have reached a bit of peace of mind, it all goes out the window eventually.  I replay the interaction with the charge nurse and wish I had called 911 myself.  Stuff like that.  I know it does no good, does me no good, but it's hard to move beyond it.  And I don't like the resentment I carry toward those unprofessional providers because that will end up hurting me more than it will them, but gosh it's hard to let go of.

Oh, my heart goes out to you, Kieron.  I certainly hope that your partner being a man was not the reason, but I also had a horrible Hospice experience with my husband, John.  They were very nonresponsive and he suffered a lot.  I wish I had raised a ruckus after he died, but I was so angry and hurt and didn't have the energy.  I feel so bad that you all had to go through that.  What is wrong with people (I wonder sometimes).  I can't wrap my head around it.  But, those experiences, I think, make it harder to get peace and comfort because they leave a horrible taste in your mouth and heart.  Hugs to you, Cookie

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On ‎02‎/‎13‎/‎2019 at 2:02 PM, scba said:

OMG that`s sooooo true!!!!! 

-------------------

Dear Cookie:

You`re not alone in feeling this way.  

I have always wondered what would imply: healing, improvement, getting better, being a better person. Somehow these imply going from dark to light. Perhaps we´ll always be in a "grey" "contradictory" zone?

I have no answers. I`m still struggling with that and other notions.

 

Yes, you put that very well...the grey zone.  People really think I should be doing better after 3 and 1/2 years.  I got a puppy and that is also supposed to have cured me.  It's almost like they are saying, you got a puppy, you should be happy.  I love him but am still struggling over losing John and truthfully getting the puppy triggered a lot of grief I wasn't expecting.  Don't understand it either, and it leaves me depressed because I wish I could make some sense of this or just know what was wrong with me and fix it.....Cookie

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I got another dog too, Cookie, after losing Steve and our golden.  Still ad our lab mix.  It was the work of dealing with a puppy at first, but the same thing happened.  It triggered th grief bigtime.  He wasn’t here for anyything from choosing her, watching her grow up and influencing her socially.  I also made a rush decision filling that void.  Now I see how I was never alone with our dogs.  It tears me up at times because I get scared with no back up for emergencies and just plain feeling a full family as that is what I’ve known for 30 years.  I almost hate to say it but I love her, but it isn’t the same and I feel bad about it.  Like I am cheating her in ways.  She’s also way too bonded to me an I am not used to that.  What your feeling makes perfect sense to me.

As usual, just because we look normal does not mean we are.  I’ve never felt this bad and it’s 4 years.  Hugs to you.

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I'm not quite sure how to express this but I'll try.  To read that some of you lovely folks, who have been dealing with your loss for longer than I have, are still struggling after so much time, well, in a weird way, it's both discouraging and encouraging at the same time.  Discouraging in that everyone around me expects/wants me to be "all better" by now, and discouraging to realize from your stories and comments that it really IS going to be a long-term slog through this grief process, no getting around that.  At the same time, though, it's weirdly (very weirdly!)  encouraging in that this group has shown me it is OK to still be struggling, have bad days, momentary meltdowns, etc. because all around me in my daily life, I'm being given a subtle message that those things really are "not OK."  It's really hard work balancing these two extremes.  No wonder I'm so damn tired.

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3 hours ago, Kieron said:

I'm not quite sure how to express this but I'll try.  To read that some of you lovely folks, who have been dealing with your loss for longer than I have, are still struggling after so much time, well, in a weird way, it's both discouraging and encouraging at the same time.  Discouraging in that everyone around me expects/wants me to be "all better" by now, and discouraging to realize from your stories and comments that it really IS going to be a long-term slog through this grief process, no getting around that.  At the same time, though, it's weirdly (very weirdly!)  encouraging in that this group has shown me it OK to still be struggling, have bad days, momentary meltdowns, etc. because all around me in my daily life, I'm being given a subtle message that those things really are "not OK."  It's really hard work balancing these two extremes.  No wonder I'm so damn tired.

Yes. This is the group that no one wants to join because it means deep and profound loss and grief.  Other people judge us based on their perceptions and understanding in their world view.  Feelings are neither right or wrong.  They are just that feelings.  However, I have come to learn that they are not always FACTS but when closely examined they will let me to my TRUTH.  It is very individual yet comforting to know that there are other people (here) who know and understand our journey.  We are all learning how to survive and live with this grief and healing.  I am learning to let go of others expectations of me and even of myself and just deal with each day as it comes.  One day at a time.  Good sleep hygiene, healthier eating, and movement(exercise) all help.  Most of all this sanctuary here where we can listen, share, and care for each other.   {{{ HUGS }}}  - Shalom

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30 minutes ago, Kieron said:

I'm not quite sure how to express this but I'll try.  To read that some of you lovely folks, who have been dealing with your loss for longer than I have, are still struggling after so much time, well, in a weird way, it's both discouraging and encouraging at the same time.  Discouraging in that everyone around me expects/wants me to be "all better" by now, and discouraging to realize from your stories and comments that it really IS going to be a long-term slog through this grief process, no getting around that.  At the same time, though, it's weirdly (very weirdly!)  encouraging in that this group has shown me it is OK to still be struggling, have bad days, momentary meltdowns, etc. because all around me in my daily life, I'm being given a subtle message that those things really are "not OK."  It's really hard work balancing these two extremes.  No wonder I'm so damn tired.

I get your feelings...it's validating to our own grief feelings to know there are others experiencing it.  It can be discouraging to know that it's NOT over in a certain period of time, but by the same token to know that it is okay that we are still missing and grieving them ten years later, well it's good to know our feelings are normal.  Anyone who thinks this is so cut and dried that we're over it in a year or some other period of time, well that's just crazy and totally unrealistic.

 

17 hours ago, Cookie said:

I got a puppy and that is also supposed to have cured me.

No, nothing "cures" us of our grief, not even an adorable puppy.  Our dog Lucky died three years after George did and a few months later I adopted Arlie.  At first they are a lot of work, no way around it, but when the bond develops, well, it's the smartest move I ever made!  Yes it's hard to see "our" animals die and to realize that the ones I have now, he never met...it does feel like I'm getting farther away from "our" life, but it doesn't change the love we have for each other or what we shared.  The fact is, I'm just trying to make the best of the life I have right now, I need to.

And besides, maybe, just maybe, he can see my Arlie and is smiling at our experiences.

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