How do I carry on?

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I recently lost my husband due to advanced cancer. It was abit unexpected as he went into hospital with side effects of a medication and never came out. I looked after him with cancer, COPD and a heart attack for the last year, and would do so all over again if I could. It was hard to see his health getting worse but I tried to keep him positive. I blame myself for not picking up on the signs of pneumonia and sepsis that killed him.
Now he's gone I feel so lost and lonely. I have family around me but it does not always feel like they understand. An I being ungrateful pushing them away, not on purpose but I don't know how to carry on.

Hi Yemmy,
I too recently lost the love of my life to lung cancer and COPD. He was diagnosed 12 months ago but the end came so suddenly a few weeks ago when he was admitted to hospital with what was thought to be an infection but he never came home..I am devastated especially as like you we were so positive! Please don’t blame yourself for anything,I did that, and even went back to the hospital to speak to the Consultant and Macmillan Nurse to reassure myself that I could not have saved him no matter what, which doesn’t help as it doesn’t bring him back but all we can do is our best! I push people away but I tell them to please try to understand that it isn’t them it’s me and I have to get through sometimes with them, sometimes without them. I have recently started counselling which is helping, maybe you could consider this too?
Take care,
Lynn x

Thank you for replying. I'm sorry to hear of your loss which is so similar to mine
My family have now come to the conclusion that I will contact them if I want anything. It's been about three and a half weeks since losing my husband and I still can't see any way forward. I was told to have bereavement counselling but am abit shy and feel like I would be wasting their time.
I'm also afraid that I can't control my emotions at the moment and people don't always understand it. My mum particularly does not understand that it's me who can't handle things, I appreciate their help but she seems to think I will be fine in a week or so. She keeps asking me to go home ( her house) no longer my home, so I can get through it. I explain to her I am in our home ( mine and Alan's) where I need to be. It's lonely and quiet but I have to get used to it.
Everything around me seems harder to deal with and I don't always feel up to it. I am currently looking for work but don't know how I will cope. I gave up work to care for my husband. The only work I know is care which I've done for many years. Not sure I can go back to that again.
I have never had alot of friends so that made it worse as I have a very small social network and feel like I am not good company. I will consider giving counselling ago, on antidepressants off the doctor at the moment. But not forever hopefully.
Take care
Xxx

In reply to Yemmy

Hi. Yemmy. Three and a half weeks!! My goodness, give yourself time . It's nearly ten months in and I still find it difficult There's no time limit on grief, but try and be kind you yourself and not force anything.
Your mum thinks you will be fine in a week or so! Sorry, that leaves me speechless, it really does. Has she suffered in this way? Does she understand the extreme pain of grief? She may be trying to be helpful, but false hopes are not what you want at this time.
Counselling can be very helpful and I suggest you try. A counsellor will always try and put you at ease with no judgement or criticism. You should never feel shame or self criticism. None of us asked to be here and your reactions are very normal in the circumstances.
But I have to say again, three weeks is far too soon to even begin to talk about relief. Just go with it, a day at a time. No matter what others say, it's you that needs looking after so be kind to yourself.
Days and weeks will pass but there is no time limit to grief. We all have to do it in our own way. Please keep posting. You will find so much help here as I have. Blessings.

Thank you for replying. In answer to your question no my mum has never really dealt with death. When my grandad died she had kids to focus on, I have no children
She does not seem to understand that I am lonely even in a room full of people and keeps telling me I'm pushing people away.
I try and be sociable and stronger on the outside but everyday I wake up in tears. She seems to think I should be round people all the time but I am still too emotional. I was with my husband for only 5 years but we went through so much in that time. We only kept a small group of friends due to immunity after chemo and he was with me 24/7. Where I went my husband went. Because of the short time together she thinks it will be easier to get over but she just doesn't understand how much he meant to me .
If I cry she says be brave, I don't feel brave and tend to feel more depressed when she's gone. I think this is because I can't explain how I feel when she's here.
I am trying to carry on but really only want to be with Alan at the moment. I don't make friends easily as I'm too shy and worried about going back to work. If I mention any of this to family I'm told you will be fine when you get back to work. I'm working age and happy to work but it just seems so scary starting from scratch again.
I've got a really good friend who I can talk to but I don't want to put too much on her. I will try bereavement counselling once I get the courage to ring up about it.
I am trying to be kind to myself and take things steady . The reason I joined this site was because I knew people would understand and not judge me.
Take care

In reply to Yemmy

Hi,
Please be kind to yourself! I am 3 months in and still wake up in tears every morning and cry myself to sleep every night. It doesn’t matter how long you are with someone, it’s the depth of the love that matters. I was with Daz for 16 years but I felt the same about him as I did when I lost him just a few months into our relationship!
I have both my parents but to be honest they both lost patience with me after the funeral. It pains me to say it as I love them dearly but they have no understanding of what I am going through! They celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary next year so they have thankfully never experienced the loss I am feeling. My mum wanted me to “come home” after Daz passed away but like you I have a home, our home! She got frustrated with me when I declined invitations for coffee with friends etc (which I have now started to accept but only recently) as she said it would help me to get out! Going back to work is something else “that would help.” No it wouldn’t so I haven’t yet. The only thing that would help is for Daz to walk through the door which is all we want isn’t it, our loved ones back! Yes please try bereavement counselling, I do think it will help but only when you are ready, nobody else, you!
This is your grief, my grief is my grief and all we can do is get through it as best we can, minute be minute, hour by hour, day by day...
Take care,
Lynn x

I totally agree that the only thing that would help is, in my case for Alan to walk through the door and give me a cuddle. Just to hear his voice again. I was very lucky his last words to me was how much he loved me and me to him, even though we did not know he was dying.
I'm having a bad day today feeling very tearful. I went to the shop earlier and walking home when an ambulance passed. I just stood there and started crying. I got a few odd looks but just got home as soon as possible. It was a Saturday Alan was taken into hospital in an ambulance and all the memories came flooding back. I could not really explain that to the people around me though.
My family backed off after the funeral. They said let them know if I need anything but they can't give me back what I want, no one can.
I will definitely try counselling as I can't talk to my family so much and it might be easier to explain how I feel to a stranger. They won't tell me to be brave either like my mother does. Macmillan and the doctor suggested it also, it's got to be worth a try.
I am trying to take it day by day and usually end up in tears starting and ending the day. I do talk to him even though he's not here but I have to talk my day through with somebody!.
I hope you are ok.
Take care
Emma x

To hell with being brave! Now what does that mean? It just seems as if family are just 'jollying you along'. It's always with good intentions, but can often hurt rather than help.
I am not anti social, but more than a couple of friends I just can't cope with. After a while I want them to go, but I can't be ungrateful or rude. The danger is that if we become too introspective it can become a habit, and not wanting people can make us like a hermit.
Five years, five days, fifty years makes little difference to grief. It's the depth of love that's important. That never dies on either side.
Why would we judge you? What is there to be judged about? Never feel any shame or have bad feelings about yourself None of us want to be here, but we are and we need to accept that. You and I have done nothing wrong. We have, for the moment, fallen victims to life.
Take care now.

In reply to Yemmy

So sorry for your loss. Your life seems to echo mine. My partner of 38 years died in May and every day is so hard to get through. I like you was with Alan 24/7 4 days a week. I worked the other 3 to allow us to do the things in life we loved to do together. He was 72 when he retired and 77 when he passed away. I am 67 but do still work, but not gone back yet. We didn't have friends because we were happy with one another. I too am quite shy and never mixed very well. I have a couple of friends but they don't live very near. One is an old school friend and the other one I worked with until she retired, but none of us drive. Like you say people don't seem to understand how really upsetting grief is and won't clear up overnight. From some of the posts on here that you read it can take years. Unfortunately we never know what is going to set off our emotions, or even when and where. That makes you more reluctant to go out. My son has said to me that I've pushed everyone away, including him. He doesn't like the way I've been saying things to him about family. He says all I do is slag them off. Whatever I have said is true and said it because they don't seem to care. They never ring, text, or call to see if you're alright or if you need anything. The day after Alans funeral I was left alone all day while 2 of my sons and 3 of Alans grandchildren were at the pub from morning 'til well after midnight, then he's got the cheek to say I slag them off. Why can't they see that a kind word or a nice gesture would leave you in a much better place. Alan cared for me so much as I him, so it would be nice if they could just make an effort occasionally. Its very true that when you're out you want to be in and you long for company and then want to be left alone. Our world is just turned upside down and round and about. Not knowing what to do for the best. All the time you sit and think of you're wonderful life you had together, and will never be the same again. It is so hard to bear. Even when you try and explain how you feel to family, that all you need is a bit of help and understanding whilst your grieving, it still appears to make no difference. Our lives are lonely and quiet now and as you say everything seems so much harder to deal with. I think may be looking for a job may help you but I would certainly give it more time as it seems early days yet. I start counselling on Wednesday and am a bit apprehensive about it, but I will try it. The way I would sum up my life at the minute is to say I feel as though i'm only half a person looking to try and regain my other half at some point in my life. Before Alan died I would think how lucky I was to be living this wonderful life of travelling all over the country doing the things we liked to do and how it was so nice to be alive. But that has now all changed and my life is not wonderful at all. Take care and hope all goes well whatever you decide to do workwise and if you decide on counselling. xx

In reply to Yemmy

Hi Yemmy
Good to hear your story and very sad to hear the sad news about your husband. Sounds like you cared so much
for your husband during his illness and I am sure he appreciated every minute.
I know just how it feels to feel so lonely as I have no family at all and am all alone. You are lucky to have family around you for comfort.
All of us who have lost our love ones are finding it so difficult to carry on as it is such a different life. I live in a small flat but it seems so empty as I have no one to bounce off. Weekends are especially hard as friends have their own lives to lead with their family. My husband died in January and today is the first day when I have made myself sort out a cupboard. I am doing it half-heartedly but at least I am doing something. I hate this lonely life and wish I had family around me, just to talk to someone is nice.
Try and be strong. I find this web site so lovely as feel there are such lovely people out there feeling just like us .Take good care and keep messaging love Suex

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