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Old 12-05-2017, 05:14 PM
 
Location: Ohio
7 posts, read 3,571 times
Reputation: 13

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My friend from Germany who I met on a forum 10 years ago passed away from cancer in August. (I'm from Ohio.)

Since she died, I closed my small forum down for posting, leaving it in maintenance mode. I cannot imagine it without her, she was a constant in my life, her posts always there and messages always regularly coming through.

She was there for me, as a pen pal, a message board friend, we talked by phone. She was there for me more than my local friends and my own family and knew more about me than all of them.

She was on hospice all summer after a brief battle with cancer, and I was with her all the way through her final days and weeks. We messaged on the forum and talked on what's app until 4 days before she died. She posted on my forum up until 4 days before she died, didn't stop posting until she began to physically die.

I created a memory box this week with several printed up messages of ours through the years and decorated it with her favorite prayers, quotes and colors.

I used to take walks or drives when things were bothering me and my friend from Germany was always a phone call away. She never neglected to pick up her phone or answer a message and, through the years I knew her, made a point to check on me and to stay in touch for our friendship, even when I didn't.

Since she died I dropped my message board and the people there were initially very sad about her death, but nobody felt it like I did.

No other posters heard her laugh and talked with her for hours offline like I did.

Basically, i haven't had contact with my former small community of posters since it happened because I lost my best friend, the one that mattered and now my forum doesn't matter. I have no interest in it.

I was and am hoping the memory box I created would bring me some peace. But since I made it, I have seemingly freshly reopened the wound, and although sad, it's becoming peaceful. Maybe its what I needed to do.

Grief is a strange thing.

I just wanted to share my story about how I met my best friend in the world, who was there for me more than any other soul, on the VERY first forum I ever joined in 2006. She lived as far away from me as anyone possibly could. She was unique, quirky and thoughtful beyond belief. We had great times and stayed friends for the rest of her life. And for the rest of mine I will miss my friend.

Last edited by weepingwillowtree; 12-05-2017 at 05:30 PM..
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Old 12-06-2017, 02:32 PM
 
3,985 posts, read 5,272,792 times
Reputation: 4582
I'm very sorry about the loss of your distant friend. It sounds like you were very close and that both of you relied on your relationship for daily, mutual support. It is especially difficult to lose loved ones who are a part of our daily lives because we are constantly aware of the huge change this has made in our existence. Our daily lives are suddenly disrupted by the loss of this contact as well as the grief that is carried with the death.

I know it was painful to look at your memory book, but I think this was actually a good idea. We need to acknowledge how important people are to us and how their lives were important and meaningful. I made a slide show (actually power point) of my husband's life, not only to show at his funeral, but also for me, so that I could look back and remember all the wonderful events of our lives together. I looked at it a lot early on. Yes, it made me cry, but I needed to feel close to him and see again how much joy we brought to each others' lives. Now I look at it less often. But it is still a comfort for me. I think these kinds of things are important because they help us to remember that those years were a vital part of our lives, making us what we are today, feeding us with the power and will to go forward. It's like the person's spirit lives on in those remembrances, cheering us on, supporting us still, expressing their essence even after they are gone from us. So even though it is painful, I think such a review of the person that is lost is a part of healing.

What a blessing to have such a close friend! How difficult it is to lose that. Peace and hope to you as you grieve.
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Old 12-06-2017, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Ohio
7 posts, read 3,571 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by G Grasshopper View Post
I'm very sorry about the loss of your distant friend. It sounds like you were very close and that both of you relied on your relationship for daily, mutual support. It is especially difficult to lose loved ones who are a part of our daily lives because we are constantly aware of the huge change this has made in our existence. Our daily lives are suddenly disrupted by the loss of this contact as well as the grief that is carried with the death.

I know it was painful to look at your memory book, but I think this was actually a good idea. We need to acknowledge how important people are to us and how their lives were important and meaningful. I made a slide show (actually power point) of my husband's life, not only to show at his funeral, but also for me, so that I could look back and remember all the wonderful events of our lives together. I looked at it a lot early on. Yes, it made me cry, but I needed to feel close to him and see again how much joy we brought to each others' lives. Now I look at it less often. But it is still a comfort for me. I think these kinds of things are important because they help us to remember that those years were a vital part of our lives, making us what we are today, feeding us with the power and will to go forward. It's like the person's spirit lives on in those remembrances, cheering us on, supporting us still, expressing their essence even after they are gone from us. So even though it is painful, I think such a review of the person that is lost is a part of healing.

What a blessing to have such a close friend! How difficult it is to lose that. Peace and hope to you as you grieve.
Thank you for your very kind reply. I appreciate the encouraging words!

I found this forum in a Google search while looking for a grief support forum yesterday to post my thoughts. Was in the mood to post somewhere since I have been away from the forums I usually post on since a couple weeks after my friend's passing. Continuing being on them would just never be the same & would be strangely painful for me without the presence of my friend. I have not been able to go back to those sites I spent years posting on regularly nor do I have the desire to.

So, I came here, someplace new.

Then I noticed this forum has a lot of sections I like. I never even knew about these city forums!

I'm really sorry you lost your husband. I'm glad you found spiritual peace in the memories you keep of your precious time together on this earth.

Last edited by weepingwillowtree; 12-06-2017 at 04:40 PM..
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Old 12-06-2017, 07:53 PM
 
3,985 posts, read 5,272,792 times
Reputation: 4582
Thank you, Willow. I am 3 years out today. Yes, today is the anniversary of my husband's death. I am doing OK. I am slowly finding the way I want to live on my own, the things I want to do. That is the way of grief. We never forget, and we never truly heal because we will always miss that person. But we learn a new way of living. The memories become sweeter. Now I usually think of him more wistfully than sadly. I wish he could be with me, but considering that he can't, I'm doing the best I can, and I think he would be proud of how I have rebuilt my life. That kind of healing will happen to you, too.

The advice I always give to people newly grieving is to take care of themselves. So I will give it to you, too. Get enough sleep, get some exercise every day, eat well, and if you are having trouble with any of these, see your doctor. If you have trouble sleeping, the first thing to try seems to be getting exercise during the day. One more thing - seek solace in nature. Whatever your setting, nature is healing. Grieving is hard work, and it only gets harder if we don't take care of ourselves.

Blessings
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Old 12-12-2017, 10:16 PM
 
Location: Ohio
7 posts, read 3,571 times
Reputation: 13
I realize most come here to talk about families and that my story was a bit different, in that I chose to discuss a loss of a close friend I met through the internet, but had become a regular & very good friend for years despite the miles between.

The memory box I made in honor of my friend did bring me a sense of peace I hadn't had since its completion and I sent a picture of it to her son who really appreciated it as well.

Last edited by weepingwillowtree; 12-12-2017 at 10:24 PM..
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