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I am finding the second year is different yet in a sense harder. In the first year the tears, the turmoil, the struggle is so raw; yet in the second year this has lessen. However, the reality of everything hits you. This is your life and you struggle to keep up a smile for others, because now thye think you should be passed all the sorrow. How have you dealt with life in the second year? does it get better?

West

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West,

For me it is better, but I don't think, from reading posts by some others that is always the case. I do think the first year is so raw and filled with denial, that when you do finally accept that this is your life, it is so hard. I don't think we ever get past the sorrow, nor do I want to do so, however, I do want happiness in my life again. And I do have it in a limited way. I don't know how far into the second year you are at this point, I am half way through it, and mostly doing pretty well. Still have very dark days, but for me keeping busy is the part of the key.

I think it is different for everyone, and we are all at different stages, but for me I can honestly say that I am doing better this second year than I did the first. I think part of the reason is a very tight close trio of friends, of which I am a part. We three are 2 widows and a widower. We, and our spouses, were all friends before their deaths. They each died within 6 months of each other, Morris (my friend Dana's husband), died at age 48 in April 2009, Ann (my friend Tom's wife) at age 60 of cancer in Sept,2009, and my husband Michael at age 62 in January, 2010 (massive coronary). Tom was my brothers best friend in high school. We three meet once a month, and cook and talk. Dana has met someone, so we don't see her as often (always once a month, however), but Tom and I get together several times a week. He is a good friend, nothing romantic. We talk about Ann and Mike in a way that we cannot talk to someone who has not been on this journey. Talking has been the best thing for all of us. Don't know if you have a grief group that you are involved with, but it might help make this second year a little easier if you have one where you can just talk.

This is just what has worked for me, I hope you are able to find something that works for you to help you through this second year. I hope you can find a measure of peace.

Mary (Queeniemary) in Arkansas

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West, I am 16 months into this period of grief and so far it is harder in a different way. The reality of being alone is hitting hard. Therer is a lot of confusion about my life, who i am without Bill, how to spend my energy and time. It has been very difficult and I am returning to see the grief counselor I worked with last year hoping it helps some. I don't share my pain as much as I did last year partly because people don't ask and it gets old to always bring it up. Partly because it is confusing and the loneliness is more real. I keep on a day at a time and keeping busy helps me as I search for a passion to give my life to. You might consider a support group or a counselor to assist you.

I like this article on the 2nd year. http://psychcentral.com/lib/2006/grief-healing-and-the-one-to-two-year-myth/

We are all here for you....Mary

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it is harder in a different way. The reality of being alone is hitting hard. Therer is a lot of confusion about my life, who i am without Bill

I think this sums it up. There are some things harder about the first year, some harder about the second. For me, however, nothing compares to the initial shock of losing George, it totally blindsided me and was pain beyond belief.

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Hi Kay

That shock is so huge. I was prepared in a way but now know no one is prepared and to have the death be totally unexpected has to be incredibly difficult. No matter how you cut it....losing the most important and most loved person in our lives leaves up in shock, despair at times, and more. I wish you peace, mary

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It was such a shock and jolt to my system that I think it permanently altered my brain. My focus and memory and thinking is not as clear as it used to be beforehand. It's been over six years so I'd think whatever I was going to get back would be there by now. I've had to accept that this is just one more thing that's changed for me.

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Thanks for all your help. I can identify with a lot of what you were saying. I think the big thing with the second year is that the reality of life sets in and you need to deal with being alone and deciding what to do with the rest of your life. I believe it will happen; but it will not be easy and not soon.

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West, I agree that all of this takes time and patience. Right now I do not see when things will shift. I hope they do.

Kay, my mind has suffered the same assault. I thought my thinking would clear up and it has to some degree but the whole trauma took so much out of me that I think that my AWOL mind may not recover. Hopefully we are both wrong and even more time is needed since we are still grieving.

Mary

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Kay, totally understand about being blindsided. Mike was as healthy as a horse, as far as we knew, no symptoms or warnings about the massive coronary that was to take him away. I was in a hospital 1 1/2 hours from home, just having had total knee replacement. I had talked to him on the phone just a few hours before he died, and he gave no hint of anything bothering him. I think back to those first few hours after I learned of his death, and still feel the same shock and disbelief now that I felt then. They tell me it was over in an instant, and I hope that was true, that he did not have time to realize he was dying and was alone. I do think the shock and "jolt" does permanently alter us, certainly do not feel like the same person I was before his death. Miss him so very much.

Mary (Queeniemary) in Arkansas

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Hello Everyone,

I am at 18 months and I feel the progress is farther along than I anticipated but then again I am approaching this grief thing with

a mindset I am going to control it, it's not going to control me, 85-90% of the time I win but I have my moments for sure...it helps that I have developed a new relationship with a someone who has also lost a spouse because we have much in common and a great support system supporting each other, she is at her 2 year mark in August...we have chosen to continue living and doing everything we always wanted to do and have a bucket list, and both very aware one of us will go down this road again!...that's scary indeed but not worth giving up on life and all the good times and memories that are built in a relationship...so yes it is indeed different for all of us and we will know what's proper for us when the time is right...

NATS

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