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Old 10-26-2012, 09:15 AM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 15,923,921 times
Reputation: 7531

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Keeper and I (your Grief Moderators) would like to try something new and see how it goes.

We'd like to have this thread as a sticky for new posters to come to - to tell their story and why they are here, and as a general chat thread. Sometimes we tend to drift off topic badly in our regular threads (has anyone else noticed, LOL?). Actual "topics" will continue to be posted in the forum, but it would be good to have intros in one place and kind of get to know one another by chatting a bit.

Whoever wants to lead off, that's fine - we will make this a sticky for now, meaning it will stay at the top of the forum but it is an open thread that can be posted to by anyone. I can't promise it will stay that way because sometimes forum rules change, but let's try it for now.

Thanks for your participation, all the words of encouragement you offer one another, and the ability to reach out to virtual strangers. It is much appreciated.

Keeper and Sam I Am
Moderators, Grief and Mourning
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Old 10-26-2012, 10:41 AM
 
Location: SWFL
21,531 posts, read 18,200,837 times
Reputation: 18896
Good idea, mods! I've noticed you afford us lots of leeway about going OT in this particular forum and it has been well appreciated. With this thread now we can come and just blab if we feel like it. Sometimes I don't have much to say about a particular thread because I've already said what I wanted and just want to say "hi, how's your day going?" Like the room I have, my members just pop in to say hi even if they don't have much to talk about........

Hi, I'm tamiznluv and my hubby died a little over 10 months ago from esophageal cancer. I was having a very bad time trying to cope with his death and then I found this "grief and mourning" forum. I've been a member since '07 and had never seen it. Why? Because it didn't exist! TPTB musta been psychic because they created this forum just in time to save my life! I truly mean that too. Not only was I hurting from Earl's death, I was dying inside with not having anyone to talk to that really understood my feelings. God answered my prayers and eased the pain in my heart and gave me peeps to talk with!

The people here are just fantastic. I feel that all of us really "know" one another and consider each other friends. I know that I'd rather be sitting here talking than be out IRL talking with others who are not in my position and do not really understand what widows/widowers go through.

I'm having a good day. My CO-Q10 is working great, I am sleeping, hurricane Sandy seems to have made a turn that will not give us a direct hit, so life is good!!!
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Old 10-26-2012, 10:46 AM
 
Location: New York State, USA
142 posts, read 203,338 times
Reputation: 173
I don't really know what to say, but I'll start.

Have had much death in my life. Too many funerals all of my life. I just kept going.

Now, as I get older and face illnesses, and my friends dying, this is getting harder to cope with.

People who I once saw as old, no longer seem old to me.

And to experience death and dying of very young children and very old people, I suppose now, I should be well-seasoned, yet I still look up to older people as I don't consider myself to be very old.

I'm still grieving the death of my parents. So that transition is the, perhaps, the biggest one goes through.

Although, freinds of mine lost their 24 year old daughter two years ago, and another friend's grandson is dying from cancer. And just this week, my cousin's son died suddenly at the age of 32.

I guess I am finding it hard to be happy in the moment.
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Old 10-26-2012, 10:58 AM
 
Location: SWFL
21,531 posts, read 18,200,837 times
Reputation: 18896
I don't blame you one little bit, dear. My parents' deaths were tough. Mom was the toughest because she was the 1st to go. Daddy was a tad easier because I knew what needed to be done arrangement wise. I have accepted that this is the circle of life but I still miss them so much.

Gotta scoot. Need to go get extra dog food just in case hurricane Sandy changes course again.

Waving to all. BBL.
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Old 10-26-2012, 05:24 PM
 
Location: SWFL
21,531 posts, read 18,200,837 times
Reputation: 18896
Ah, now I feel better. My baby has plenty of food even if I don't go out for days, which, I might not. It's supposed to rain Sunday-Wednesday whether we get a direct hit from Sandy or not. The birds hav e plenty of food, the dog does now and I have plenty of smokes and a gallon of milk. I am all set to wait this out.

I went leaf peeping Monday and we have had so little rain most all summer and fall that the leaves are dull, dull, dull. NOW we may get plenty of rain but too late. Here is a pic I took of the backyard at our "old" house that I am going to eventually be moving back to.....Now that was a pretty Fall....

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Old 10-26-2012, 06:40 PM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 65,367,998 times
Reputation: 22274
I am not a widow. My husband has several diagnoses and was told in March 2009 that he could expect a lifespan of about five years. With good healthcare and pharma, we hope he has extended his years, but b/c part of his problem is sudden heart failure, we live with the knowledge that his heart could simply stop at any time and that's that.

I have come to a better place with all the emotions I have dealt with - from anger at having our future ripped out from under us - to shame at feeling angry - and every possible emotion in between.

I would say that until the last 6-9 months, I felt nearly overwhelmed with grief for all the changes and decline in hubby's health. I was impacted with "everyone" giving me unsolicited advice about all the things we "should do" to prepare for my being alone at some not so distant point in the future. At the same time, both hubby and I were consumed with sadness and anger and disappointment . . .while still trying to decide how to proceed with our lives. Of course, amidst all that, we have had more health scares and "near misses."

I won't go on and on but I am sure that at least some of you have dealt with terminal illness and so you can identify with the hundreds of things you think about in regard to planning for a future that you can't really foresee.

I feel in some ways, I have already lost my husband, due to so many personality changes that have occurred (meds, his own attitude, depression, etc). And we no longer can do so many of the things we enjoyed sharing - even something as simple as take a walk together. He just doesn't have the stamina.

I am here to listen and learn and try to help myself keep perspective and balance. It helps so much to hear what others are dealing with as well as what they have dealt with in the past.
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Old 10-26-2012, 07:09 PM
 
Location: SWFL
21,531 posts, read 18,200,837 times
Reputation: 18896
Hi, anifani. Welcome to our "home". I'm glad you are not a widow yet. I'm also glad you like reading our posts and can "know" what is to come. I'm so sorry you and hubby have had your futures ripped out from underneath you. Some of us here know exactly what that is like. It sucks. It is so depressing/maddening not to be able to make any plans for anything! Is he on a list for a heart transplant?

(((HUGS))) to you and hubby. We are here even if you just need to vent.

HAGN, everyone. TTYAL.
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Old 10-26-2012, 07:22 PM
 
Location: Olympia, WA
363 posts, read 406,339 times
Reputation: 704
Default Introduction

I am a recent widow of just 6 months. My husband died at home in his sleep, which was such a blessing, what he would have wanted. He was a truck driver for 30 or so years, smoked over 3 packs of cigarettes per day. He suffered from severe emphysema and COPD. He also developed diabetes about 15 years ago.

We moved to middle TN 6 years ago to get to a lower elevation (from mile high Prescott, AZ), hoping it would improve his condition. It did not. What we/I learned that once the lungs are damaged, that's it, the lungs do not repair themselves.

He did pretty good for the first year we were here, our plans were to be retired and go camping, fishing, and see Tennessee. Then he went on oxygen full-time and I went back to work (no health insurance for me, he was covered through the VA).

The last 5 years have been a steady decline in his health. The occasional trip to Walmart, get a haircut, drive himself somewhere new.....all went by the wayside and he was just too weak to go. His breathing progressively got worse until he didn't even want to go anywhere with me. The only time he got out was to go get a haircut or a doctor's appointment. He gave up driving. No more Sunday rides, go get a hamburger or ice cream.....just stay home where he didn't have to exert too much. Walking from the bedroom into the living room was a MAJOR ordeal. It totally wiped him out.

I went back to work but was his caregiver until the end. He had a home health nurse that came once a week, but I was the main caregiver for him. In the last 3 years, he was hospitalized 6 times with pneumonia. The first time the doctor told him that if he ever got pneumonia, it would kill him. He survived six bouts with it. But we learned that each time you have pneumonia, it kills a few more lung cells. In the last 3 years, he only had 10% lung function. 10%!! I can't even imagine. He said it always felt like someone was sitting on his chest. We were told that those lung conditions, almost always fatal, are the longest, slowest, most painful deaths anyone can experience. And Jim was 6'6", 250 pounds, this big, strapping man's man....just fading away.

Watching him suffer was one of the most painful things I have ever had to deal with in my life. I prayed every night that God would not let him suffer. Every time he went into the hospital, I thought....this is it. And he always made it through. We often talked about his life and quality of life. He told me that I was the best thing that happened in his life, he had lived a good life, and he was ready to die. We talked about his/our desire to be cremated, no funeral service, what would I do if he died before me....just life-in-general things.....or perhaps death-in-general things.

I think being a caregiver is sometimes as hard on the caregiver than the person they are taking care of. Anifani, I can so relate to what you are going through. It is so stressful. I spent many an hour on this computer reading CD forums, thinking about where I would want to live if he died before me. I usually hung out on the retirement forum, since I am 63 and hoping to retire some day. In the back of my head, I thought about how his end would be. I prepared myself....or THOUGHT I prepared myself for all the feelings I thought I would have. I was ready....just please God, please don't let him suffer.

When the end finally came, no words can describe what I felt. The loss was unbelieveable, the emotions uncontrollable and unexpected, and I was a total wreck. On top of that, 3 days before he died I came down with a case of shingles (started in my head and settled in my left eye). Besides the pain, I looked like I had been hit with a baseball bat.

To make a long story short, my friends rallied around me and invited me to their church, and it has just been amazing what God has done in my life since his death. One of the most amazing things that has happened has been the creation of this forum. It has truly been a godsend. I have been comforted by others who are going through the exact same thing as me, feeling many of the same feelings, and giving me their support. I don't have that extent of support anywhere else.

I am taking one day at a time and trying not to put too much pressure on myself. I gain strength from all of you. I have comfort and faith that God is right where He wants me to be and loves me and will give me all I need to get through this time. I have no idea what the future holds for me. Most days I try to put on a happy face and go to work, but when I get home and settle into the safety of just me and my dogs and cats, the loneliness creeps in and my mind wanders. Yesterday I went to the grocery store; what a painful thing to do. I see all his favorite foods I fixed for him. I see couples together everywhere I go.

Thanks everyone for listening to me ramble. Hope it made some sense.
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Old 10-26-2012, 07:51 PM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 15,923,921 times
Reputation: 7531
Thank you all for joining in - what totally heartfelt posts we see here in this forum. Mourning and grief can take so many forms, and this is such a wonderfully supportive forum to come to. Peace to you all.
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Old 10-27-2012, 12:10 AM
 
1,627 posts, read 2,642,383 times
Reputation: 2047
Hi everyone, my name is Smilin and I live near Prescott, AZ. Dear Husband and I were together for 38 years. Seven years ago he came down with Alzheimer's and was diagnosed in 2007. He fought the good fight. The last three years were the worse years of my lfie. I watched him deterioate and go downhill. He passed away June 27th, 2012. I am still in the grieving process.

I miss him so so much.

No family, no neary friends, just me trying to make it this world.

Glad to be here. Thank you all for being here for me.
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