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It's this calendar thing. It's now 2005 and I've left him behind even more. My husband died on May, 12, 2004. Every time I turn a calendar page, even every night when I go to bed, I feel the distance getting greater. Thanksgiving and Christmas were difficult, but I had family and friends who made sure I wasn't too alone. But here I am on New Year's Day grieving because I hung up a new calendar. Is nothing normal, will life ever be just day to day stuff again?

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Hello Karen. I know what u'r talking about; I was up last night bringing in the new year like we always did. I remembered last year and how much joy we had in each other's company...how was I to know that now I would be alone? Today I found pictures on my computer and I would blow them up just to look at his face again, see his hands, watch as he worked. That's the hard thing about pictures, u swear u could jump into them and everything would be alright again but it won't. At times like this, I just sit and cry and oh how I miss that man. He was my life; all my hopes and dreams were around him and they all died the night he did. How on earth can I ever be happy again...he was my happy. So it's day by day and go thru the motions and paint a smile on your face so the rest of the world doesn't know how much u hurt...I want to scream "Why!" but I know that won't change anything. I find myself watching people now and envying their ignorance; they do not know the pain nor the sorrow, they still have hope and love in their hearts...mine feels as heavy as a rock.

A part of me wonders if he feels the same sorrow as me. They say in Heaven our loved ones feel no more pain and are finally happy but do they miss us as much as we miss them? Do they cry also or are they lucky enough to just let go and finally have peace? If this is all true, why must I be the only one left behind lost in memories and crying?

I have no answers only questions and I pray that one day God will show me the way.

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That is how I am feeling, I do not want to start a new year without him. My Charlie left us in Oct, 2004 after 46 wonderful years of marriage. I feel guilty starting a new year that he will not be a part of. My 4 grown children have tried to keep me busy having me over to their homes for the holidays, but now every one is getting back to the normal routine of living and I am left with this new year alone. I want so much to handle this terrible grief and try to get on with my life, but life will never be the same without him. How is it possible for us left behind to go on? The pain sometimes is so unbearable I don't know how to go on.

I pray for all of us who are brothers and sisters in our grief for our loved ones.

Hugs to all.



7/1/38 - 10/2-/04

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My deepest sympathy goes out to you all. I lost my wife on 21 May 2004, after our more then five years of battling breast cancer. I would like to say that things get easier as time slips by but I have not found that to be true. Like you all, I was (and still am to some degree) very angry that my wife left me after 41 years of marriage. I blamed God for taking her and couldn’t understand why she had to leave. Additionally, what angered me is there is nothing I can do to bring her back. Like many of you, I am a person who feels he can get nearly anything done by just applying more time, effort, money, etc. With death, we all know that is not true – which makes it that much harder to accept. My wife knew she was dying and approximately 10 days before passing wrote our two children, six grandchildren, and me good-bye cards. On my card she apologized for leaving me and said God was calling her so she had to leave. When we lose our spouse and they can pass with that mind set, it is hard to remain angry. I control my anger and mitigate my loss by remaining busy – going back to work, taking grandchildren out to movies, dinner, trips to Disney Land, working around the house, helping neighbors, etc. Something we all need to remember is that we are only put on this earth for a short period of time, when we leave it is nice to leave a legacy of some sort – my wife’s was that she had no enemies and befriended all – her goodness and gratitude will be remembered by all. For you and I to be angry and complain about our spouse leaving us alone is SELFISH on our part. We were each blessed with that person for a specified time after which there services were required in a world beyond what we know her on earth. I will leave you all with a verse given to me by a local Hospice, the verse is called “Safely Home”.

“I am home in heaven dear ones; Oh, so happy and bright! There is perfect joy and beauty in this everlasting light.

All the pain and grief is over. Every restless tossing passed; I am now at peace forever, safely home in heaven at last.

Did you wonder I so calmly Trod the valley of the shade? Oh! But Jesus’ love illuminated every dark and fearful grade.

And He came himself to meet me in that way so hard to tread: And with Jesus’ arm to lean on, could I have one doubt or dread?

Then you must not grieve so sorely. For I love you dearly still: Try to look beyond earth’s shadows, Pray to trust our Father’s Will.

There is still work waiting for you’ so you must not idly stand; Do it now while life remaineth – you shall rest in Jesus’ land.

When the work is completed, He will gently call you Home: Oh, the rapture of that meeting, Oh the joy to see you come!”

To all of you, it is healthy to grieve, but don’t allow that grieving to be destructive – do you think that is what your loved one would have wanted? I know my wife wouldn’t.

Thank You

Joe --- Phoenix AZ

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Dear Joe,

I have that same poem from Hospice of the Valley and read it a lot. It reminds me that I will see him again. My Charlie died of prostate cancer this past Oct, 2004 after a 7 year battle. Hospice of the Valley were wonderful and made his last days as peacfull and comfortable as possible. Like you we were married a long time, 46 years, and I am having a hard time getting over the emptiness now in my life. I know my husband would not of wanted me to be in so much pain and would want me to move on with my life, but sometimes life holds no purpose without the one who shared it with you for all those years. My children are great, they do all they can to make things easier, safer, and better for me, but they will never take the place of their father in my daily journey.

Your wife sounds like a great, caring person who only wanted you to have peace with her passing, hold on to that thought and she will know you are honoring her memory. Don't be angry, God has called our loved ones home and I do feel they are in a much better place and are waiting for us, and like the poem says " the joy to see us come."



7/1/38 -10/20/04

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  • 2 weeks later...

Dear "Charlie": I feel your loss and pain. I too had a Charlie! He was my wonderful husband of over 20 yrs. He lost his battle with cancer and scleroderma on Nov. 16, 2004 at the age of 46. I miss him so much and cry every day, but I have to keep going. He would not want me sitting around sobbing all the time. I have to keep busy.

It's sad to read that time doesn't seem to make things any better. I was hoping that years from now I would feel better, but it doesn't sound like that happens in losing your spouse. I guess you cry less, but will never get over the pain.

I truly am sorry for your pain!! Not many people understand what it's like, so I'm glad I can write you all. Take care to all of you!!!


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Dear Patti,

Everytime I hear someone call the name "Charlie" I am reminded that he is gone. I am so sorry for your loss of your Charlie. He was so young. My grown children were very angry at God that he took their father at 66, they thought it wasn't fair, he didn't have more time on earth. Well your Charlie was only 46, that is really very very young. We all think this terrible thing is only happening to us until we read of others and their pain and then we can understand everyones loss is somehow different but the same.

I am trying to move slowly on with my life as I know that is what he would have wanted me to do. He would be telling me "move on, be happy, I will be waiting for you"

Everytime you think maybe you are getting better something triggers a memory and it is like the day you lost them all over again. I am hoping with time that my memories will bring on happy thoughts and not this feeling of despair.

I pray for all of us in our grief.

Hugs to you from cyberspace.

Love Grace


7/1/38 -10/20/04

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My dear Grace,

I am struck by your insightful comments and I thank you for sharing them.

Just this morning I came across a cardboard coaster that I had picked up in a restaurant several months ago and had stuck in a side pocket of my daytimer. I saved it because I was so taken with its message:

Always remember you're unique, just like everyone else.

As you so accurately observe, Everyone's loss is somehow different but the same.

As alike as we all are in our humanness, we each grieve differently, according to our age, gender, personality, culture, value system, past experience with loss, and available support. Grieving differs among members of the same family, as each person's relationship with and attachment to the deceased family member varies. How we react to any death depends on how we've responded to other crises in our lives; on what was lost when this death happened (not only the life of the person who died, but certain aspects of our own life as well: our way of life; who we were in our relationship with that person and who we planned to be; our hopes and dreams for the future); on who died (spouse, parent, child, sibling, grandparent, relative, friend or other; how we lived together and what that person meant to us); on the person's role in our family; on when the death occurred (at what point in the life cycle: ours as well as that of the person who died); and on how (the circumstances surrounding the death, and how the death occurred).

Everyone's loss is somehow different but the same.

Even though our losses are as different and as individual as we are, certain feelings and reactions are universal, normal and predictable, and it is helpful to know what they are so we can better understand them, know what to expect and be better prepared to manage them. By giving words to our grief and sharing our stories of loss in forums such as this one, we discover that we are not alone. We meet others here with feelings and reactions similar to our own, and realize that we are not crazy or abnormal or weak. We learn that others have walked this path before us, some are farther along than we are, some are coming up behind us and others are walking right along beside us. We find that we have much to learn from one another, and we give each other hope that together we will find our way.

Everyone's loss is somehow different but the same.

Wishing you peace and healing,

Marty T

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Hi there! I'm new to this, but I want to give it a try. I lost my love, Mark, on December 4, 2004 after a battle with melanoma. He was only 26, as am I. We were together for five years and were planning on getting married after I finished law school on December 18. He was the most beautiful person that I had ever met. I miss him so much that it takes my breath away sometimes. I never knew you could physically feel emptiness until he was gone. I was with him when he passed and that helpless feeling just doesn't seem to be going away. My father has been great about the middle of the night phone calls, but I feel like I'm just worrying him. I've read about other people putting on the smiling face and trying to face the day. I'm doing the same thing. I feel like I'm a robot most of the time. I lose track of time and I'll catch myself just staring into space. I try to tell myself that I saw how sick he had become and I watched him suffer, why would I be mad that all of that is over for him? I guess it's just because when I saw him let go, I watched all of our dreams of marriage and a family go with him. There are even times when I just don't accept that all of that isn't going to happen. Although I know that doesn't make any sense, it doesn't stop me from feeling that way.

I had the pastor tell me that the grief would come in waves and to just go with it when it does. I'm so afraid to do that. I just want to be able to be really busy and concentrate to pass the time, but I can't seem to accomplish the latter. I'm so sorry that I had to meet all of you this way and I wish all of you the best of luck getting through your difficult times. And, I apologize if I rambled on.



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My dear Nicole,

I’m so very sorry that it is the death of your beloved that has brought you here to us, but I know you will find that this is a compassionate place, and you are most welcome here.

You say that while you’re afraid to ride the waves of grief and “just go with it,” at the same time you feel unable to ignore it enough to keep “really busy and concentrate to pass the time.” I want to suggest to you that the harder you work to ignore or to stuff your reactions, the harder it will be to function. Read this piece, taken from the Comfort for Grieving Hearts page of my Grief Healing Web site:

How Well Are You Doing with Your Grief?

If I were doing well with my grief, I would be over in the corner curled up in a fetal position crying, not standing here acting like no one has died." -- Doug Manning, in The Gift of Significance: Walking People through a Significant Loss.

We are doing well with our grief when we are grieving.

Somehow we have it backwards.

We think people are doing well when they aren't crying.

Grief is a process of walking through some painful periods

toward learning to cope again.

We do not walk this path without pain and tears.

When we are in the most pain,

we are making the most progress.

When the pain is less,

we are coasting and resting up for the next steps.

People need to grieve.

Grief is not an enemy to be avoided;

it is a healing path to be walked.

-- from HOPE Line Newsletter, August 2002, hope@dreamscape.com, HOPE for Bereaved

And read what Stephanie Erickson has to say about The Agony of Grief:

Grief is a tidal wave that overtakes you,

smashes down upon you with unimaginable force,

sweeps you up into its darkness,

where you tumble and crash against unidentifiable surfaces,

only to be thrown out on an unknown beach, bruised, reshaped.

Grief means not being able to read more than two sentences at a time.

It is walking into rooms with intention that suddenly vanishes.

Grief is three o'clock in the morning sweats that won't stop.

It is dreadful Sundays, Mondays that are no better.

It makes you look for a face in the crowd,

knowing full well the face we want cannot be found in that crowd.

Grief is utter aloneness that razes the rational mind

and makes room for the phantasmagoric.

It makes you suddenly get up and leave in the middle of a meeting,

without saying a word.

Grief makes what others think of you moot.

It shears away the masks of normal life

and forces brutal honesty out of your mouth

before propriety can stop you.It shoves away friends,

scares away so-called friends,

and rewrites address books for you.

Grief makes you laugh at people who cry over spilled milk,

right to their faces.

It tells the world that you are untouchable

at the very moment when touch

is the only contact that might reach you.

It makes lepers out of upstanding citizens.

Grief discriminates against no one.

It kills. Maims. And cripples.

It is the ashes from which the phoenix rises,

and the mettle of rebirth.

It returns life to the living dead.

It teaches that there is nothing absolutely true or untrue.

It assures the living that we know nothing for certain.

It humbles. It shrouds. It blackens. It enlightens.

Grief will make a new person out of you,

if it doesn't kill you in the making.

— Stephanie Ericsson, in Companion through the Darkness: Inner Dialogues on Grief

To make the process of grief a healing one, you must go through it actively, which means moving through it thoughtfully and working with it deliberately. Expressed grief can be worked with and released, but suppressed grief will torment you in ways you cannot control. Healthy, normal grieving is a process of honestly facing the reality of your loss, coming to terms with its impact on your life, learning to access all available resources for recovery, finding meaning in your loss, and continuing to live productively in the years that follow.

That is a very tall order, and that is why it is so important that you find an understanding, nonjudgmental listener with whom you can openly acknowledge your feelings and experiences, express and work through your pain, and come to terms with your loss. If friends and family aren’t as available as you need them to be, or if your need exceeds their capacity to help, I hope you will consider contacting your local hospice organization to see what bereavement services they offer. (The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization maintains a database of hospices for each state in the United States. To search for a hospice in your own community, click on Find a Hospice Program.)

Wishing you peace and healing,

Marty T

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