Jump to content
Grief Healing Discussion Groups

Recommended Posts

I am 36 with a son that will turn 7 on June 6th, which will be the 2 month anversary of Karen's death. She had a heart attack as we were arriving at the hotel for vacation, there wasn't any warning signs and no previous history of heart problems. she was 45 and we were married for 11 years. So much has happened in the last 7 weeks sometimes I don't know which way is up. The last few days my mind has wandered to the future. Right now the only thing I see is getting my son through high school and college, but what is left afterwards? My hopes and dreams included both of us, but now there is one. It is like I have lost my identy, I don't know who I am anymore. I find it hard someetimes to look at her picture because she always had to most beaatiful smile. I am also one who usually shoves feeling deep inside so as to not have to feel. Right now I am so tired of feeling that knot in my stomach everyday, I love to eat, but I can't when that knot is there so I have lost 15 pounds that I don't need to lose in the last 7 weeks. Everyone that I have talked to so far has been older than me when they lost their spouse and their children much older. I am looking for some insight from someone my own age that has gone through this.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Derek

I am so very sorry to hear about your loss.... I do understand what it is like to have a part of who you are torn from your life....

I have lost a spouse many years ago in a logging accident...my son was only 4 at the time..recently I like you joined this forum for I lost my mom in dec/05...she was murdered by my dad....

So yes your grief will affect you in so many profound ways...there will be days where you are going to feel as if you are losing your mind....

Been there done that....

Just try to understand,it is all normal....part of grieving and it will be more difficult as you have your son who will remind you daily of your wife....

Cherish what you had with her...and be strong when you can but remember to bottle it up will serve no purpose to you.... Cry as you have never cried before and be thankful for what you had with her as it was a gift to be cherished....

I feel for you and hope that you will come to believe that as time passes it will get easier....take your time to heal...there is no timeclock measuring your pain.....

If you have difficulties, read the section on bereavement and behaviors it has helped me with my own healing....

My heart goes out to you and your son...take care hope to see more posting on here from you.....


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for your response, it is good to hear from someone that has gone through what I am going through right now. It gives me hope that there is an end to this tunnel that I am in, although I can't see the light at the end, it is there. Today is the 7th week since her death and that all to familiar knot is in my stomach again making it hard to concentrate at work and hard to eat. I sometimes wish I could hit the fast forward button to 1 year and still have to experiences in memory without have to go through each and every day. I am tired of hurting and felling this way. I go to bed earlier than I used to and it takes every ounce of me to get up in the morning. I used to be early to work everyday but now am barley making it on time. Thanks again for your reply and I look forward to hearing more from you all.


Link to comment
Share on other sites


I do not quite fit the loss scenario that you describe – because I am not your age. However I still felt it might be useful for me to write to you. I am older 55 and I lost my partner (Jack) 10 months ago when he was 56. We had been together 27 years. We always looked and acted much younger than our 55 years – so when I subtract the 15 years from my age – which so many say I look like - and what I personally feel I feel like – I may be closer to your age – mentally that you may think. And so I wanted to share with you some of my insights about grieving.

First of all take all the advantage you can from the fact that you have a son – I am sure in many ways he either is – or will become the mirror image of your dear wife. It is now your job to help foster the memory of his mother – he will in fact learn about her and who she was from you - what a wonderful mission that can eventually be for you to undertake – and for him to be the beneficiary of.

When Jack first died I felt as if my world had ended. I set out on a mission to make sure he will never be forgotten by his granddaughters – one who knew him when he died (age 5) and the other who was born after he died. I too have a mission to undertake with these young minds – somewhat similar to the one you have before you. You have the advantage of having this young mind in your very present – mine is complicated by distance recently created by my partner’s son moving his family away from me. I am still however determined to keep Jacks memory alive.

Let me describe to you some of the things I did and am still doing to help me heal and at the same time memorialize my lost love:

1. I have read over 40 books on grief – there is a wealth of information at your bookstore – use it is you like to read. And if you like I would be glad to send you a listing of the books I read. Reading has been a wonderful way to help deal with grief.

2. I write a lot – so if you like to write – and even if you don’t it may be useful to put your emotions and feelings on paper. I have written over 14 letters to Jack since he died. There always seems to be unfinished business when someone you loved dies. Little things you just want to or need to communicate. I found this to be very helpful. I also write pomes and songs – this has been a very healing exercise for me. Some day I hope to write a book about not only the ordeal surrounding Jacks death - but also the grieving process that has followed. Perhaps I may write a book of pomes. But whether I write any of this or not – writing now – to heal – has been very beneficial during this grieving process.

3. I had bookmarks made in Jacks memory and included them in my Christmas newsletter last Christmas. So many people now use these bookmarks and every time they read they have a memory of him.

4. I am having two trees planed in a park in Fountain Hills Arizona in memory of our lives together.

5. I have created a scholarship in Jacks memory – which will be given away each year to some senior at his High School who wants to enter the same profession that was Jacks Passion – He was a Beautician. His memory will last forever, as I will fund this even after I am dead.

6. I am having a quilt made from some of Jacks Cloths – Pictures and some of my writing (poetry) will be incorporated into the quilt. Some day one of his granddaughters will receive this quilt after I am dead – and some of these same clothes that will make up this quilt will be the same cloths that Jack held her in when he was alive. I am slowly finding ways to bring his sprit to life in the minds of his granddaughters.

7. When I die I will fund a number of good causes in Jacks name – some feeding programs – and money to the dachshund rescue society – Jack just loved our Dachshund – Dusky – who died during the course of Jacks illness. Hospice may also be funded in some way after I am gone – all in the memory of my lost Love – Jack. I am determined to have his memory live on in “Tiny Deeds of Good Actions”.

Somehow what we can do – how we act – what we pass on to others – the gift of time – the memorials we establish – be they small of large – all have the benefit of helping us heal. It is all a very painful and painfully slow process. Use your son as your springboard to heal your self.

I hope some of these words help. I may not be your age – but some of what we are experiencing and are having to face - are indeed similar. I wish you well – and if you would like to obtain the listing of books I have read I would be happy to send it to you.

Please take care and know there are so many people on this site who truly care and understand your pain.

John – Dusky is my handle on here

Love you Jack

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for your reply Dusky, I do love to read and I have found some books listed by someone else on the forum. I would still like to see a list of books that you recommend. Right now I am going through a big amount of depression so I am looking for anything that will help me get through this, I am tired of feeling this way. I look forward to seeing the list.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dusky you are truly amazing.....

Jack would be proud of you....I am sure he is watching down upon you with love and gratitude for having you in his life.....

Derek, one of the most comforting things I did when I lost my mom was I found a special candle holder (one just like she had) and every night, I would find the time for just me to light her candle and take the time to talk to her. I bought a special picture frame... had one of her teddy bears (Mr.Bear) with me and sat in the dark gazing into the flame....Some people may have thought I had jumped over the edge of sanity but it truly became a very special time between her and I even though she wasn't here. She was in spirit.... During my mom time (as I called it) I remembered only the special times we had together...and it was a time to tell her all the things I never got to say..... It was very difficult at first but it became my comfort before I fell asleep to talk to her about my day.....

If you had a special place that you and your wife went to.....go there,talk to her, walk with her...for she is there you just can't see you but she can hear you.....

Books are great.... I have some and they do help you with coping strategies. All of your feelings that you have like finding it difficult to rise in the morning are normal.... It will get better,please trust me on that.... I know you feel as though your whole world is in turmoil....I know how you can get stuck in that mind haze and feel as though you will never see the light,but trust me, it will get better.... she truly was lucky for having someone like you for I can tell you loved her very deeply. You always will and she knows that.....

I was 22 when I lost my other and my son lost his father.... it does get better.... it has been awhile...I am now 40 so put some faith in us old people...we will help you get through this...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for the insight Penny, I guess I needed to be a little more clear, when I said someone my age, I meant someone who has gone through this at a young age like myself. You definately fall into this catogory at 22 when you lost your loved one. I cherrish any response I can get at his point, young or old. I don't have a lot of contact with people that have gone through this. My father-in-law, Karen's dad lost his wife Karen's mom 8 years ago to cancer. It was a quick illness in that once diagnosied she lived for about 1 year afterwards. We knew the time was coming which gave us time to prepare. There was a night about 4 days before Laverne died that she had some clarity of mind and wanted to talk to all of us and say her goodby's, that was the last night that she was able to speak. Karen's dad is the type that is very talkative, but is not the type to share his feelings. Even with the loss of Karen, he hasn't shared a lot about how he feels. I am thankful in one way that Karen didn't have drawn out illness, but I also feel robbed, I didn't have the oppurtunity to say my goodby to Karen in person. We were hurried that day due to we were going to Disney World so we didn't have the time to really have a good hug or kiss that morning it was just a peck on the check. I miss her so much, I wish I could just hold her tight one more time and tell her how much I loved her. I know she knows, because I did make it a point to tell her every day how much I loved her, but that doesn't make it any easier. It still doesn't seam real sometimes. I look forward to continued conversation from you and others.


Link to comment
Share on other sites


It is so awesome that you and Karen shared what sounds to be like a wonderful relationship....

I know what you mean when you say " it doesn't seem real" you will walk around in a daze, feeling as though you can't go forward... no one is expecting you to... as I said, take all the time you need to grieve... you will come across some people that cannot understand what you are going through.... just promise to do what is good for you....

I went back to work right after my mom passed away... figured that work was the only normal thing in my life so I thought it was good for me to jump back into it and take my mind off of the pain I was experiencing.....didn't work for me.... just about lost my sanity and the counsellor I was seeing told me that it was essential that I take a leave..... my circumstance is quite different in my life with mom's death but it has torn a piece from my heart that I am not so sure I can replace.... anyways I was told to go walk on a mountain top, a stroll on the beach, just anything that involved nothing before I did end up having a breakdown....

It worked.... I feel much better...still have my moments... you will too....

You will know.... for what ever reasons beyond our control... our lives have taken the path we are now living... can't change what is happening no matter how difficult and hopeless it seems life will go on.... embrace your son and the future you have with him for he will help you through this....

Keep you head held high, have faith that your path along this horrific rollercoaster ride will subside and normalicy will return....

We are all here for you....


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Grief Bibliography


Here is the list of books I promised you. I put an asterix (*) near the ones I found the best. I have mentioned one book on this site before that is outstanding - and it is listed below. it is called Grieving Mindfully. It is really a very powerful book - and I would highly recommend it.

Hang in there my freind - there are people on here who really do care and understand. The list follows.

1. Surviving the Death of Your Spouse: A Step-by-Step Workbook, by Deborah S. Levinson

2. *Care giving , by Beth Witrogen McLeod

3. Grief’s Courageous Journey: A Workbook, by Sandi Caplan and Gordon Lang

4. Life after Loss: A Practical Guide, by Bob Deits

5. Chicken Soup for the Grieving Soul, by Jack Canfield and Mark Hanson

6. * Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life, by Jon Kabat-Zinn

7. * Unattended Sorrow: Recovering from Loss and Reviving the Heart, by Stephen Levine

8. * Surviving Grief and Learning to Live Again, by Catherine M. Saunders

9. The Mourning Handbook, by Helen Fitzgerald

10. Healing Your Grieving Heart: 100 Practical Ideas, by Alan D. Wolfelt

11. * Life Lessons, by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and David Kessler

12. * How to Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies, by Therese A. Rando

13. * A Year to Live: How to Live This Year As If It Were Your Last, by Stephen Levine

14. * Letting Go With Love: The Grieving Process, by Nancy O’Connor

15.* The Dying Time: Practical Wisdom for the Dying and Their Caregivers, by Joan Furman and David McNabb

16. * Companion Through the Darkness: Inner Dialogues on Grief, by Stephanie Ericsson

17. * Don’t Let Death Ruin Your Life: A Practical Guide, by Jill Brooke

18. * A Time to Grieve: Meditations for Healing, by Carol Staudacher

19. * Too Soon Old Too Late Smart: Thirty True Things You Need to Know Now, by Gordon Livingston

20. * The Art of Forgiveness, Loving Kindness, and Peace, by Jack Kornfield

21. * Grieving Mindfully: A Compassionate and Spiritual Guide to Coping with Loss, by Sameet M. Kumar

22. When your Spouse Dies, by Cathleen L. Curry

23. Five Good Minutes: 100 Morning Practices to Help You Stay Calm and Focused All Day Long, by Jeffrey Brantley and Wendy Millstine

24. * Healing After Loss: Daily Meditations for Working through Grief, by Martha W. Hickman

25. * The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment, by Eckhart Tolle

26. * Gay Widowers: Life After the Death of a Partner, by Michael Shernoff (Editor)

27. A Journey Through Grief: Gentle, Specific Help, by Alla Renee Bozarth

28. * When Bad Things Happen to Good People, by Harold S. Kushner

29. * The Grief Recovery Handbook, by John W. James and Russell Friedman

30. * Ambiguous Loss: Learning to Live with Unresolved Grief, by Pauline Boss

31. * The Precious Present, by Spencer Johnson

32. * Life After Loss: Conquering Grief and Finding Hope, by Raymond A. Moody, Jr. & Dianne Arcangel

33. * Writing to Heal the Soul: Transforming Grief and Loss Through Writing , by Susan Zimmerman

34. Stillness Speaks, by Eckhart Tolle

35. * In Lieu of Flowers: A Conversation for the Living, by Nancy Cobb

36. * The Other Side and Back: A Psychic’s Guide to the Ouer World and Beyond, by Sylvia Browne

37. * Blessings from the Other Side: Wisdom and Comfort from the Afterlife for This Life, by Sylvia Browne

38. * Change Your Mind and Your Life Will Follow, by Karen Casey

39. * The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, by Sogyal Rinpoche

40. Seven Choices: Finding Hope after Loss Shatters Your World, by Elizabeth Harper Neeld (recommended by Paul S)

41. Grieving the Death of a Mother, by Harold Ivan Smith (recommended by Paul S)

42. I'm Grieving As Fast As I Can, by Linda Sones Feinberg (recommended by dpodesta)

43. Sibling Grief: Healing after the Death of a Sister or Brother, by P. Gill White (recommended by Kerry)

44. Hello from Heaven, by Bill & Judy Guggenheim (recommended by LoriKelly)

45. Good Grief: Healing Through the Shadow of Loss, by Deborah Morris Coryell (recommended by Chai)

46. Grace for Grief: Daily Comfort for Those Who Mourn, by Michael and Brenda Pink (recommended by Kath)

47. Angel Catcher,by Kathy Eldon and Amy Eldon Turteltaub (recommended by Carole)

48. The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion (recommended by NotCoping)

49. When Parents Die by Rebecca Abrams (recommended by Rachael)

50. The Healing Power of Love: Transcending the Loss of a Spouse to a New Love, by Gloria Lintermans and Marilyn Stoltzman (recommended by Marty Tousley)

51. Loss and Found: How We Survived the Loss of a Young Spouse, by Gary and Kathy Young (recommended by Marty Tousley)

John - Dusky is my handle on here

Love you Jack

[Note to John, Derek and others: For your convenience, I've taken the liberty of editing John's post, so that by clicking on any of the book titles, you'll be taken directly to Amazon's description and reviews of each book listed. You are under no obligation to purchase any of these books; this simply gives you a way to read a little more about each one. To see my own list of books I've read and personally recommend (some of which are the same as John's :wub: ), go to the Articles and Books page of my Grief Healing Web site, then scroll down until you come to the section entitled Suggestions for Further Reading.]

Edited by MartyT
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you both for your replies, Dusky, thank you for that list, 2 of the books I ordered Wednesday came in today, Chicken Soup for the Grieving Soul and I wasn't ready to say goodbye. I saw these somewhere else on this web site. I have always loved the Chicken Soup series so when I found out that this book existed, I jumped on it. I will continues to look back on this list and use it. Thanks again.

Penny, I to went back to work the begining of the week following Karen's funeral, by Thursday I was going nuts and asked for Friday and Monday off which my work agreed to they have been real willing to help me in any way. I really couldn't take a bunch more time off though because I needed to save some time in case my son gets sick and I have a couple of vacations planned that I am keeping for my sanity. Since that time work has gotten easier as long as I am busy (except Thursdays)no matter what is going on I go nuts on that day. At home is when I have the problems, so I have been doing a lot of repairs lately to keep me busy. I fell the same way you do there is a part of me that is buried with Karen that will never be replaced. Some people keep saying you are young, you will find someone again. Right now, I just can't see that and it is too soon to even be thinking about that, I haven't even taken my wedding ring off yet and don't know when I will be ready to even go that far. My plot is the same as Karen's and one day someone asked me what happends if you get remarried what about the plot I told them that IF that happened that there are certain things that she would have to accept 1. is I can't give my full heart to someone again, partt of it will always be with Karen. 2. is that no matter what I will be burried with Karen no if's, and's or but's if they can't understand that then she isn't the person for me. I can't believe that some people want to bring that up when it is so soon.

Well, now that I am off of that soap box, I was on-line when both of you posted last night, but the system didn't e-mail me that there was a response to this post like it usually does, or I would have responded last night. I was up until 1:00 on-line because I wasn't sleepy. Needless to say if it weren't for my Golden Retriever who sleeps with me waking me up this morning I would have been late for work. Anyway, good to hear from you and keep it up.


Link to comment
Share on other sites


I am not sure if this site will email you... I can't seem to set that up on my pc.... I tried but I keep getting an error message saying page cannot be found....

Figures... just my luck....

I just wanted to share with you... that you are right... not sure why anyone would question you about your plot... Don't really understand some of the human race... but just try to remember that only you can make a decision about whether or not you remarry and what to do about your burial preferences... you will know when the time comes...

Trust me on one thing as I speak from experience.... you will find love again... just do it on your time..... it may not be for years, it may be just around the corner.... that is the thing about love is that is just broadsides you and no one has the choice to decide....

I was fortunate to take some time with pay... I had requested a leave of absence without pay but the company I work for told me after the fact that they would still pay my wage.... chalk one point up for the human race... there are some caring souls....

Anyways it was nice to hear from you.... glad we can help.... let us know what your sons name is and maybe you can share a little of him with us next time you post.....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Penny, I just realized today that you can set up a box to where you can be e-mailed. I just got the one you sent earlier. Let me know if the reply doesn't go through. This is the first time I have seen your picture associated with your messages, did you add that today? Is is a good picture, is that your husband?

Thanks for your insights on love, right now I just can't imagine it. I know in time things can change.

My son's name is Carson he will be 7 on June 6th. He never meets a stranger and will talk your head off, which he gets from me. He just finished 1st grade yesterday. I can't believe that this school year is over already. Right now he is stronger than I am, when we were on the plane to come back home and as we were pulling away from the gate, I started to cry because when you go somewhere with 3 you should come home with 3 and I was leaving the love of my life behind. Carson just as calmly as ever said "Just take deep breaths daddy and it will help calm you down" I was floored! He has helped me in so many ways and may never know how much that having him here in my life is keeping me alive. If this had happened and he wasn't here, I don't think I would be able to go on. The day all this happend Disney World said they could get me on an evening flight home that night, I decided to stay and leave in the morning so I could give him a little something of Disney to remember instaed of this is the place where Mommy died and then we left. Parental instinct and God took over and we kept our dinner reservations at a charcter meal and he was able to get an autograph book signed. We also got to ride in the drivers car of the monorail. To top it off Magic Kingdom let all 5 of us (We went with another couple and their 6 year old Daughter) into the park for free to see the fireworks. So he had a great time and Disney helped turn a bad situation into a positive experience. He knows I have a hard time with Thursdays and will sometimes will say things to comfort me 1 or 2 days before. He is a gift from God.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Yes your message came through.... and yes today I just added the picture...

It is an older pic of me and my other half taken last year... I have short hair now and drastic change I did just a couple of weeks after my mom died...

Carson sounds absolutely wonderful.. I am so glad that you were able to find some enjoyment in Disney World... I have been there it is a wonderful place to visit... Hopefully maybe one day you and Carson can return there to experience all the wonders it holds....

It was good to hear from you....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, I told him that one day we will return, I didn't know when but we would. My sister said her and her husband would come with us. In fact they had a trip planned for about 3 weeks after we had gone but instaed of going to Disney like they planned they went to see other areas instead.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Wow that was a fast reply.... how are doing tonight? I was glad to hear that you do find some comfort in work...at least it is a distraction...

I know how it is... I had such a difficult time when I went back to work as everyone was told that my mom passed away but no one was told that she had been murdered.... it took awhile but finally became brave enough to tell my co-workers... of course they were shocked (who isn't) but they have become a great support network.....

Anyways read lots.... it gives comfort when you do realize that all the craziness and anxiety you have are just normal....

Give Carson lots of hugs.... he is your gift from god.... but I guess you already knew that.......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I am sitting on-line tonight playing some poker. I was up untill 1:00 in the morning this morning almost didn't make it to work on time.

I recieved 2 of my books today, was very surprised as the web site said it would be Tuesday. I started reading them a little at work today because it was slow, I had them shipped to my work address.

My work does keep me busy at times, but also there is a lot of room for distraction where i can pause and that will sometimes throw me for a loop because I start to think.

How soon after your 1st husbands death did you meet your current husband and how did you know he was the right one?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Derek

Ya I know what you mean about getting thrown for a loop.... I have found that the moments come fewer and farther apart as time goes by...

Since Mom died, there are days when I look at her Mr. Bear and just lose it...

I only have a few things of moms (one being the bear), I have her travel case that she had with her in the hospital that contained her belongings....

I put her glasses on and imagine what it was like for her to look at the world through them.... that one always hits me with a huge wave of tears but it gets easier each time I do it...

I know you must have lots of reminders and you will have times that are so much worse than others but trust in the fact that it will become easier....

The grief counsellor that I have been seeing gave me the advice to not get caught in the drama... easier said than done in my case...but I am trying...

Today I am going to contact the RCMP I have so many questions I need answered... today will definitely be a loop day for me....

Take care, hope you day is not too rough on you....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Penny,

This weekend was a good weekend, I had 2 high school graduations to attend and my family came over on Monday for the holiday. We swam all afternoon and grilled hamburgers. It was a lot of fun even though I got sunburnt. In-betwwen all that I started painting the outside of my house. How did your meeting at RCMP go?

Hope al is well


Link to comment
Share on other sites


I am glad to hear you had a good weekend....

It ended up that I didn't get to see the rcmp but was promised that the lead investigator will meet with my on next Monday...

Last week, they told me they didn't have anything to tell me other than they we actively persuing the case.... not really sure what that means other than that I should have faith that they aren't willing to let it go...

It is such a huge fear of mine that it will end up being a cold case file....

Anyways I left a message with one of the investigators and pleaded with him that I really needed to have some questioned answered.... there are so many...

I received a message that yes they would meet with me on Monday for sure...

There is hope... I think :unsure:

I spent my day yesterday selling popcorn to raise money for the BC Children's hospital... we do a huge fundraising campaign for them every year... it was a great distraction for me....

Well hope all is well with you and Carson....

Take care

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Everything is going good, yesterday was the first Thursday I have had wwithout severe depression. I don't know if it is because I had a short week or what, but I am not knocking it. We are celebrating Carson'r birthday this Sunday, which will be 2 days early. He can't wait. Boss is away today so it will be an easy day, I am ready for the weekend. Hope everything goes good for you and keep up with the invesgator. You will be in my prayers.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...