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It's me, again. Today was a particularly tough day. Though there were some bright spots (dinner with friends), a great many tears were shed. And punching the bed. :angry: I feel like my heart is shattered. I am replaying in my mind how my husband must have felt in those last days, and feel that I didn't do enough. I wasn't with him because he was in treatment for addiction. Though I know intellectually that this was where he needed to be, I feel like I abandoned him (more like did he feel like I had abandoned him...?). He was an inseparable part of my life, and I can't believe he is gone. We never really got to talk, at the end (though when he was on life suppport, I did a lot of talking). I feel like I failed in the most important part of my life - I failed to save him. Alcoholism is a horrible, horrible disease, and I hate so much that it took him from us, the love of my life, just as he was beginning to combat it for real. It just isn't fair.

Today was Kailyn's 6 month doctor's appt - the first appt since Scott died. I told the doctor (actually told the doctor who was filling in for mine as she is on holidays). Very supportive. Of course, I cried a bit. And then, in the waiting room, an older lady was cooing over Kailyn, asked if she was Daddy's girl, and then asked if Daddy was waiting to see her. I told her the truth. She almost started crying right there. We talked for a bit, and I told her not to feel bad. I was okay until I left the office - then the tears came (thank God for sunglasses!). On the bright side, Kailyn was a rock star - she didn't cry when she got her vaccination....Scott, I am sure, is very proud.

Sigh....

Korina

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Korina,

guilt is such a big part of grieving ... at least it was for me, especially during the first six months. It then started to leave me thankfully. I was very good at beating myself up about lots of different things, and today I still slip into that behaviour, but not so often, and I am better now at telling myself off ... telling myself to analyze and look at things objectively.

What really helped me at the time was this. I would assign my guilt into justifiable and non-justifiable guilt piles in my own mind ... and I found that over the six months, I managed to eventually put everything in the non-justifiable pile :-)

Guilt was definitely my worst demon and if you are interested, please click here to read my blog entry about it:

http://boomayhew.blogspot.com/2009/04/worst-demon.html

I know that I too would have really beaten myself up over the fact that he might have felt abandoned by me, in your situation. As you say, on an intellectual level, you know you did the right thing, and that he was in the right place. That said, you will also know that even though you know this is the answer rationally, on an emotional level, you still need to accept it. For some reason, berating ourselves is something that we just have to do. It's all part of having the time stolen from us ... time that we could have had when times were better or whatever it may be ... regrets that we didn't have time to do something else or say to them.

Someone told me that hearing is the last sense to go when we die, and that is why we should always speak to people, even if they are unconscious or even in a coma.

I know beyond doubt that Cliff could hear me in his final hours, and I am sure that Scott could hear you too.

Alcoholism is dreadful and extremely hard to beat, which is testament to how very much Scott loved you, because to make the step that he did, to seek help and go into treatment, must have taken every ounce of his will power and his love for you enabled him to do that. Hold onto that. You must have been a wonderful wife to him if he made that step, because he did it for both of you and your little girl. Hold onto that too please.

Yes, Scott would be proud of your little girl, but please believe me when I say that he'd be proud of you too ... you are being a good Mom despite going through this enormous devastating loss ... you are ensuring that she attends her checkups and doing all the other chores too. I'm proud of you too.

xx

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Korina:

Definitely the guilt is part of the griefing. I still relive the last week of Alex's life and if he knew he was dying. I know that a few weeks before the last week he told a nurse that he was at peace with whatever god wanted and that he just did not want to know when it was coming. He always talked to me about how he would not live a long life. He felt that was his fate. I can take comfort in some of this. We did get to hold hands and look at each other the last day. He could not talk because he had a trak in his throat, but I am thankful that he was coherent and his mind was still with us.

When you start to replay and visualize the last days of your husband's life, you must just shake it off and start to think of better times. I have learned that when I start to think, I feel that my griefing is starting all over again. I have also learned in the past year that the greifing process has its lows and high. There are weeks that go by and I am absolutely fine and then like a ton of bricks, something triggers it and it starts all over again. But I know that it won't last that long.

This is a long process for all of us. And as I always said on this site, that things will never be the same again. But there is nothing you can do about that. You just have to move forward in your life. I definitely do not want to forget Alex, but also, I trully feel that I do not want to go on griefing forever. That is what your husband would have wanted. At least that is what my husband wanted for me.

Love and God Bless,

Jeanne

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Korina - I can't say it better than Jeanne and Boo. I had so much guilt - I could have been a better caregiver, I should have seen early warning signs, and on and on. But when I think back to those 4 months of Joe's cancer, I don't know what else I could have done. Been superwoman? Apparently I felt so. But we're human, and only in hindsight, when we actually have time to think, that's when we replay and try to rework what already has happened. I couldn't save Joe, and you couldn't save Scott, and nothing we could have done will change that. I'm glad you had the chance to talk to Scott and say what was in your heart - I have no doubt he heard you. Please try to be gentle and patient with yourself - this is a journey of such highs and lows, but we're here for you. Hugs, Marsha

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Korina, I know what you mean about guilt. I use to think that if i had been home and not visiting my daughter and her new son that maybe i could have called the ambulance for my spouse. I do alot of the what ifs. But I know that It will not change the fact that Rick is not here and he chose not to call the doctor when he knew he was not well. And that is the way he was. Did not like doctors or the goverment. I feel guilty because he was always here for me.When i broke my shattered my ankle and was off it for months. He would take me around in the wheel chair and when i had the angio in Jan, he was there and was worried about me.

Your baby is 6 months old. While I was just at my daughters again my grandson max had his 6 month shot. He made me so happy . He smiled a cooed and i dont think I could have had any better medicine to make me feel good. Your daughter must do the same for you.The feeling he gave me when I hugged him and when he smiled at me. I will not see him now till Christmas. I also get that feeling when I hug my stepdaughter who i raised since she was 31/2. Now 18., I think it is becasue she is part of her dad and is the connection for me to him. She has guilt so bad that she mad herself sick. She left us when she was 16 on bad terms and didnt really reconnect with her dad like she may have wanted to. She feels sad for not calling her dad and being here to but again hindsight. Everyone says it will get easier. It dosent feel like it is. I think of him the first thing in the morning when i get up and the last thing before i go to sleep. Its like im waiting for a sign from him or something. I know it sounds silly but we had talked about things like this just the first of the year . About if something had happen to one of us what would we do and he said hed come and see me. Im keeping him to his word . Maybe i should let go of the sillines talking but we didnt get tosay any goodbyes. My chest still hurts . I love him and miss him. I know so well how you feel. Goodnight and I hope tomorrow brings brighter times for you. Ps. I feel like smashing dishes sometimes and my daughter told me to go get some from the sally anne and do just that. LOL

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Thank you so much, everyone. I have really been feeling down. But yesterday, I had a lovely dinner with a cousin I just met a couple of weeks ago (she married into the family, and is visiting BC on an course for work).

Boo, so many things in you blog sound familiar....and Scott also seemed to feel he was going to have a shortened life (though I know he didn't want to die...). He had lots of bad dreams - I wish I had paid more attention to those. Etc. Etc. Etc. But woulda shoulda coulda. As you all had pointed out, guilt just seems to go with the territory. But that doesn't make it any easier. And I really do know that Scott loved us intensely, but that seems to make it all the more unfair that he was taken from us. But while he was on life support, I promised him I would take care of our Baby Girl as well as I could, and would be asking for his guidance on some of the bigger decisions I will be facing.

Jeanne, you are so right - when I start thinking about his last days, was he afraid....I feel horrible. And right now, I am in the process of organizing a memorial service here in British Columbia, as we have lived here for the past 16 years (his funeral was back where he grew up in Montreal). This is something I very much want to do, but it very difficult (ie. writing an obituary for my husband who was only 41 IS JUST NOT RIGHT!!!!).

Thank you for your comforting words, Marsha. I guess I still do feel I should have done more, been stronger, smarter, asked more questions. I will try to be more forgiving.

Mrs. B, you are so right. Our daughter is my best pick me up. Not only is she a wonderful little girl, she is a part of Scott, and she looks like Scott. And I don't think it is silly to look for a sign from Rick. I keep asking Scott for a sign, and feel he did give me a sign a while ago when the clock on the computer seemed to be stuck on June 17 (until it eventually rebooted) - this was the last day I spoke to Scott while he was conscious. I need to feel he is watching over Kailyn and myself.

Thanks, again.

Korina

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Korina,

I'm sure Scott was very proud of her for not crying! Please don't think yourself as anything other than what you were...loving and supportive. Addictions are very difficult to go through and NEED dealt with. We can't possibly know when our loved one is going to die. I went through something similar...three weeks before my George died, he told me he'd been using Meth...I had to utilize some tough love on him, I didn't want to sit around and watch him kill himself, you know? He was getting treatment when he had his heart attacks and died. Yes we can ask why they had to go when they were just getting treatment, but I've learned not to ask why I won't like get an answer to, and even if I did, maybe I wouldn't understand the "why". I don't think it matters so much whether we agree with God's choices or understand them, only that we learn to go on from here...and that is hard and takes time. I know God was with me even when I didn't feel Him and even when I was mad at Him, and He allowed me that privilege of feeling mad...He understood.

I have no words of wisdom, only (((hugs))).

Love,

Kay

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Thanks, Kay. I know he needed to deal with his addiction. I guess I also feel guilty because I never forced the issue until recently. That if I had understood the disease earlier, I could have "done the right thing" or encouraged him more productively, or admitted to myself that he needed treatment earlier. I kept telling myself for such a long time that he should be able to combat it somehow with just the 2 of us. I didn't understand how powerful the disease is (Scott was an extremely strong-willed/stubborn and intelligent person). Sigh.... I find myself apologizing to him for not saving him, as I am certain he would have been able to save me if our roles had been reversed. He would have fought for me, been smarter about it. I know that guilt is part of the process, but I feel like such a failure.

These last couple of days have been really tough. I wrote his obituary for the paper here, with an announcement for the upcoming memorial service (the original obituary was back east for the funeral, another wrote it, and all that is just a blur). Looking at photos puts me over the edge. It seems so unbelievable. And though I have Kailyn and the 2 cats, I don't have my guy to talk to about the day, to laugh with, to hug, to play with the cats, to smile with our daughter, or even to fight with. I am now feeling terribly lonely. Scott is no longer away at treatment or on a trip. He isn't coming back and the finality really, really sucks. You are right, I don't undertand the why, and I am periodically very angry at God. Why did He take my husband when there are so many bad people still around? And did Kailyn and I deserve this? I sound so judgemental, but I cannot help it. :(

Anyhow, thanks for listening to me vent.

Korina

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Korina,

It is okay to vent and feel angry...God's got big shoulders, He can take it. :closedeyes:

It is so understandable, what you are going through is so much, it's a huge effort to process all of this. Try to be understanding and kind to yourself, you didn't know, how could you? Be as kind to yourself and you would want him to be to himself if roles were reversed...and remember, none of this was of your making, you were just left to deal with it all. You will undoubtedly go through a phase of feeling angry at him too, and that's also okay...I went through that too about George's addiction. I finally was able to accept the whole of the man and realize that all in all, he was a wonderful man who just happened to have an addiction...he was working on it, getting help, and likely would have licked it if he'd have lived, but he didn't...and I was left holding the bag so to speak. I don't (any longer) blame myself or him or God, I have come to terms with it, it just is what it is, and I have to accept what is...that is my new "normal", my new life, such as it is. It takes time, there's no way to speed it up, you have to experience all of the emotions that come with it, you have to walk through the pain, no way to circumvent it, but eventually, given enough time, you come out somewhat on the other side in your new altered state.

I wish you all the best, and if you ever want someone to talk to who understands, you're free to send me a personal message...

Love,

Kay

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Thank you so much, Kay. Your words are much appreciated, as are everyone's here. As I am sure it is with everyone, in the early months, the emotions seem to change quickly and violently, sometimes, while remaining sort of the status quo, other times. I guess I will just have to ride the waves, like everyone else....

Korina

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