Jump to content
Grief Healing Discussion Groups

Feeling Empty And Lost..

Recommended Posts

Its me again, I don't even feel like doing THIS. I guess I will try anything to feel a little normal. Whatever that is anymore. I hate having good days and then from nowhere you feel like absolute crap. I woke up at 4 am. I don't even know why. I hate feeling sorry for myself, but I can't stop feeling this pain and emptyness. I made myself shower and get ready for church, but I couldn't make myself walk out the door. So, here I sit in my dress with freshly applied makeup running down my face. I so badly want to do what is right. To keep moving. To not just lay down and let this bone crushing dispair beat me. It makes me so angry and tired. Why can't I just do what needs to be done? Make all of those stupid phone calls that I keep putting off, go to the mail box and face more bad news, face that sea of happy faces with their intact lives. I feel like such a failure. I lost my unborn child. I couldn't help my husband. I lost his son. I lost his buisness. I may lose this house. All of my life I have been told what a strong person I was. I have NEVER quite anything in my life. I am always happy. Why can't I do this better? I don't even feel like I have been able to truely morn for my husband. I have been too busy trying to cope with all of the aftermath.

I've always taken care of other people. When my husband got diagnosed with cancer, the nurses told me that I needed to let someone else take on some of his care or I would burn out. I couldn't stop. For two years, I never left his side. I slept in chairs by his bed at hospitals for weeks on end. I changed IVs of chemo. I cleaned up blood, urin, feces, vomit, puss, and sweat. No one else really knows all that he went thru. He didn't like others knowing how sick he was. When he died, I was holding his hand. I was there and helped them put his body in a bag as he left our home. I helped dress his body for burial. I wrote and gave his eulogy at his funeral. I made all the funeral arrangements. When his family bickered over the funeral plans I calmed them down. I never thought twice about any of it, nor do I regret a moment of our time together. I loved my husband more than anything. I promised him that I was with him no matter what, and I was. Now here I am. nothing left to fight for or hold together. I know logically that that isn't true. But everyone is gone and it is just me. I am all that is left. I gave all that I had to give, physically, emotionally and financially. I am waiting for my stuborn streak to surface. To tell me, "Screw it! You can do this." I hate to complain. I am just worn out.

I told a friend that I would go to a "fitness Boot Camp" with her. It starts tomorrow at 5:30 am. I will see if I can do it for a month. Maybe it will get some endorphins coursing thru this worn out body. That or kill me...either way its something :). Its that or prozac. Not that I am knocking drugs, just thought that I would try physical torture first. Hopefully I will get myself together and do it.

Sorry for being such a downer. I know that my situation is no worse than anyone else's here. Just in a mood I guess.

Thanks again, for all of your feedback and advice. It does help.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi LostLuv,

Your posting really moved me. You did so much for you husband. I don't think you could have done any more. It's ok if you get all dressed up and can't go out the door. It has happened to me more then once. Things will get better, but it takes time so please don't be to hard on yourself.

Take care.

Mary Lou

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You totally cared for your husband every minute of the day and then he was gone. Wow, what and adjustment! No wonder you are finding yourself paralyzed at times. But this idea of fitness bootcamp sounds good. I wish I could join in. I think it would be so useful to focus on exercise to the point of shutting out everything else for an hour or two. But, if you change your mind, I get that too. I used to dance every Thursday night. Now, on Wednesdays I start thinking about going and I look forward to it. By Thursday afternoon, I have come up with at least one good reason why I'm not going. I figure I'll get back into when I'm ready.

I've been thinking about medication too. I think that if I go an entire week without one good day ... a day of accomplishment and without tears ... then I'll make an appointment. Sundays are difficult days for me. Today I was thinking that I wished I was dead too, that I had nothing to look forward to and that no one needed me or cared. But, it's Sunday and I'm not going to hold myself to any of those feelings.

Let us know if that fitness bootcamp works out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I am new here. My husband, age 60, died on Saturday morning. I was reading here for about three days before he passed. I cared for him here at home, had Hospice for one week prior to his death. I am a retired nurse, so I could handle the nursing care. The emotional aspect of it was very tough.

He was conscious and able to get up to use the bathroom until 5 days prior to his death, so I guess it could have been a lot worse. John was diagnosed with Stage IV kidney cancer in June 2008. Had the kidney and ureter removed and when the doctor came out after the surgery he was honest and told me that it was bad, the cancer was outside of the kidney capsule and into the muscles of his back, that he got as much as he could out but that John would need to begin chemo as soon as he healed from the surgery.

I continued to work, scheduling almost all of his doctor's appointments, chemo and radiation around my working hours, which are 8-1:30 so that worked pretty good. I work part time - 5 hours per day, Mon-Thurs. - as a clinical instructor at a local post-secondary "career training" type school. I made the decision to keep my job and continue to work, feeling it would be best for both of us and also we needed the money with him on disability income. It is a year-round school but I took a month off for his surgery and immediate post surgical recovery at home, then returned to work. His brother who no longer works due to disability then would come over on days I worked - mainly to fetch things for him because by then he didn't really need nursing care.

The reason I am responding on this thread is that when I am reading that some of you are going through this without medication, that just astounds me! As a nurse, I would not have even tried to get through this without an antidepressent.

I have taken Zoloft, at my doctor's recommendation, since right after he was diagnosed. I have not had any problems with it and no side effects that I have noticed. (Well, I shouldn't say that. It makes me sweat some times. But it is not awful or anything. Kind of like a baby hot flash.)

I also have taken a very occaisional 0.5 mg Xanax (an antianxiety medication) usually at night when I had trouble sleeping and knew I had to go to work the next day. Plus, maybe 3-4 times over the past 14 months I would take a half pill when I was really "losing it" - crying uncontrollably over some latest bad news usually. It makes me sleepy so I don't like to take it when I have things to do or must drive.

Please, please, I urge those of you who are suffering to see either your family doctor or ask for a referral to a psychiatrist (I like a psychiatrist because they are a Medical Doctor first, then go on to specialize in disorders and diseases of the mind. They really, really know their medications and how they work in the body.) I have not had any outside counseling throughout this but I do have a lot of support from my daughter and several other friends.

But today I did meet with the grief counselor from the Hospice Team. Three meetings with her are part of the Hospice program and I plan to take advantage of them.

The funeral will be Tuesday and Wednesday. My only sister who lives on the West Coast (I am in the East) will be in for a week beginning tomorrow, so I look forward to seeing her, despite the circumstances.

I am hurting badly but feel that I am going to survive this. Maybe I am just still in shock. It is so soon that I haven't gotten to the lonliness yet, but I know it will come. I think I survived the past year by being busy, busy all the time.

I also wanted to share that if anyone is looking for some volunteer work to do that will get them out there and is very rewarding - look for a charity in your area that services young, single mothers. Which a lot of my students happen to be, because the school has a relationship with government services that offer single welfare mothers the opportunity to get training in order to be able to support themselves and their children. These gals are able to get baby clothes and equipment, diapers, and formula by going and watching films on parenting skills, first aid for children, etc.. They get "credit" for the learning experience, which they then can "spend" on goods. I just thought this was such a good thing all the way around that I have urged both of my children to donate all of the grandkid's outgrown clothing, toys and equipment to this charity.

So when you volunteer you sort baby clothing, which is kind of fun, and work with the moms who usually have their kids with them. And these girls need nurturing role models so badly that you get to give your knowledge and experience with raising kids to them, plus learn all the "latest" chilld rearing techniques and reccommendations.

Well, it is 3:00 am so I am going to try to sleep. (Fell asleep exhausted on sofa at around 7:00 pm after shopping for a black dress and a black pantsuit today). Woke up at 1:00 am. I do notice that I get tired out very easily and that my ability to stay focused on tasks - just things like I need to do laundry and I forget that I need to go down and change loads, I was upstairs and started to clean up the bathroom, got distracted, and forgot all about it until I went back upstairs much later on in the day.

I cry on and off throughout the day, could take medication but I don't because I know this needs to come out.

Thank you for listening to me. I offer my deep sympathy to each and every one of you who reads this. It's a heartbreaking experience, that's for sure. I supported my Mom through my Dad's sudden death 7 years ago and they were both in their 80's and it was still hard. Plus it has different ramifications at that age.

Take care of yourself,


P.S. John and I had known each other for 30+ years, had a 19 year relationship as a couple and legally married for the last two of them. (Married 6 months prior to his diagnosis, planning a nice, long retirement together. Both married prior - I have two adult children and three grandchildren, all of whom live closeby. He has one child who lives out-of-town, was due in this evening and will stay with the mom (husband's ex-wife who called and wanted to come visit him last week, which was fine with me. We hugged and both of us cried).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey Everyone,

I survived my first day of "boot camp". Heck walking out the door at 5:30 into a unknown situation was an accomplishment. I'm not going to lie...The work out was torture! Not once did I think about how badly I missed Chris.( I've thought about it plenty since then.) Now if I can do it every day for a month.....? Time will tell.

Fredzgirl, dancing would probably be a lot more fun and relaxing. :) Hopefully you will be able to do that when you are ready. My friend across the street came and picked me up or I may not have done it by myself.

DeeGee, So sorry to hear about your husband. When my husbsnd passed away I don't even remember if I cried. I went into auto pilot and just kept taking care of everything that had to be done. It took a long time for it to even sink into my numbness. I don't know if it has really sunk in now. I stopped working to stay home and take care of him. Maybe for you, working will keep you busy. Part of me wishes that I had. I guess that we all do what we feel is best at the time. Probably it is and was for the best. Thank you for your feed back about medication. I have been curious about how many who are going thru this use it and some feed back on it. Part of my hang up is that I also lost our insurance during all of this. I'm not "against" it by any means. The work out is free :). Both exercise and medication would probably be ideal. Our prayers and thought will be with you this week.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I hope you have a computer at your fitness camp, and I hope it does rejuvenate you physically. You've taken care of other people all your life, it sounds like now you could use some of that nurturing yourself. You're exhausted! You've given so much to everyone else. I wish I was there to feed you some chicken soup, give you a massage, stroke your hair and just tell you it's going to be okay...I know the "okay" will never be like it once was, but we do eventually adjust and cope and some of us even learn to smile again...someday. It takes time, oh so much time...I know, you don't want to hear that, neither did any of the rest of us, and it really isn't of much use now, but it's true, time helps somewhat. I'm glad you have a friend and I pray they are able to say and do just what you have need of!

And all of the "stuff"...it will eventually get done...just do a little at a time as you feel up to it, don't try to kill snakes doing it! Remember that housework always has to get redone anyway, and put off what you can if you don't feel like doing it. Type a form note that states you lost your spouse and you're sorry you're late, you haven't been able to focus since then...enclose one with the bills you pay or everything you do that's late that affects anyone else. They'll understand.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I am exhausted just reading what you have been through! I am so glad Boot Camp worked for you. For many years, I have been an avid exerciser, and I had just been getting back into exercising (other than walking) when my husband went into ICU. I didn't push myself getting back into it after he passed, but have been back at it now for a few weeks (though admittedly the time can be limited, as I usually take our little girl, now almost 7 months, down the the gym in our building, as she doesn't always occupy herself for as long as I would like...!). Before getting back into exercising, I did let myself wallow on the couch (am not back to work, yet, due to maternity leave), always aiming to get out an take a walk with Kailyn every day. Both those walks and exercising are (usually) very positive experiences (though I am often hit in the guts whenever I see a father and daughter on our walks or in the playground).

I totally relate to your statement of "face that sea of happy faces with their intact lives." For me, the intensity of that feeling varies from moment to moment.

Please don't push yourself all the time, just to be busy, or to face those happy faces. Sometimes, I believe you will find you need to be alone and to cry or scream, or lie on the couch. I have found that I kind of know when would be a good time to go to a social event, to exercise, to call a friend or family member for support, get online here, or to stay home. I am saying this just 2 months into the process; knowing this is such a rollercoaster, this may change. But for now, that is how things have worked for me.


Link to comment
Share on other sites


you asked for feedback on medication. I saw a psychiatrist and he diagnosed me as clinically depressed after asking me several questions and scoring me on the answers. So, he prescribed me anti-depressants.

I didn't question this, because I wasn't strong enough to do anything other than follow his instructions at the time, however, within two weeks of taking them I started having suicidal thoughts. I can remember lying in the bath and thinking how nice and relaxing it would be if I just let all my blood out with the bathwater and felt happy about it!

Then my deaf dog trotted into the bathroom and started licking my face and crying and it snapped me out of it, just for a second ... but long enough. God only knows how long I had been lying there.

And so I jumped out the bath, put a dressing gown on and hammered on my neighbour's door and said, "I can't be alone right now".

Obviously I stopped taking the meds straightaway, and was fine after around 5 days.

Mine is one example of how one can react to these meds ... but for others they have been a godsend and a great help.

What I have thought retrospectively though is this. To me, the definition of depression is being sad without a reason. I am sad for a very good reason. So I don't think I am clinically depressed. I think I am simply grieving and missing my husband - he was and still somehow is the world to me. The pain is sometimes unbearable, but I must bear it and I am stronger than I thought I was.

Sometimes I take a 2mg diazepam to settle me so I can sleep, or sometimes I take an anti-histamine because it seems to work just as well, because sleeping tablets didn't suit me either (I was so dizzy in the mornings I couldn't walk).

My cousin is a homeopath in Australia - so have asked her for a prescription for "grief" and at least I'll know that is harmless.

That's my med story ... and can I just add a caveat ... I will be in the minority when it comes to bad side effects, so don't want to scaremonger. If they work for you, then great.

Let us know how you get on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


You sound like a very pro-active person, taking care of those around you. And now you have suffered this great loss. When you say, "I am just worn out"....who wouldn't be. That is your mind and body speaking to you. It is great that your friend is urging you to get out and move your body, but if you don't feel like doing that, that's fine too.

Each day seems to be different, some deep and dark, some with a tiny bit of light, some so full of responsibilities that you have no time to feel. I go up and down and next week it will be one year since my husband died. I still find it impossible to believe and cannot imagine my future without him. And now I am almost one year into that future.

Take care,


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...


How are you doing? How is boot camp going for you at this stage?

It will be two weeks tomorrow since John died. And I am feeling empty and lost also. Now I am really starting to miss him. Two weeks is the longest amount of time we were ever apart during our 19 years together. I would go out to the West Coast to visit my sister for two weeks at a time about once per year. But we would talk on the phone every day during the entire time I was gone.

I am missing the little things. Him telling me what the weather is going to be for the next day or two. John could watch the weather channel for 1/2 hour at a time sometimes. (I know, weird!) But he knew what the weather was in the city where his son lives, in the city where my sister lives, up and down the Eastern coast of the US, plus usually what the temperature was in Baghdad yesterday. (Because his son lives in Phoenix, and Phoenix is often as hot as or hotter than Baghdad!) I miss that.

John saying to me "Hey, sweetie, tomorrow is garbage day" to remind me to empty all the upstairs trash cans and empty anything out of the refrigerator that needed to go. And he would always take it out. I miss that!

Coming home from the grocery store and searching for my house key, then realizing there is no longer a John to call upon when I can't find my key! And how about if I absent-mindedly lock me keys into the car? So easy to do with these push button locks! And what about getting the car inspected? He always did that for me.

Oh, I'm there, lost luv. I miss that man!


Link to comment
Share on other sites


I don't know how I missed your post before, but I want to welcome you to this site and express my profound sorrow at your loss. It is all so fresh you are probably in a whirl, but you have found a very caring group of people that you can spill your guts to and get help in return. You're 60, I'm 56, it all seems way too young to go through this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I saw my doctor a couple of weeks ago. He agrees with you, Boo ... I'm depressed but I have reason. He said there is no pill to make it better. He did give me a prescription for Xanax .25mg. It doesn't seem to have much of an effect and so I haven't taken it more that a few times. Once I took two which put me to sleep quicker. I meant to call him to get his ok on increasing the dose. I did Google it and .5 appears to be a moderate dose.

Dee, Fred died two months ago. I felt strong at first and then it was harder. Now, I'm fine most of the time but have a short cry about once a day. I try to smile at my memories instead of cry. It doesn't always work. Hang in there.

I think staying incredibly busy helps in the short run. In the long run, you still have to spend the time working out the grief and learning to accept the loss. That's my take on it anyway.

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...