Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Uh-oh - I wrote on the other posting! It was VERY difficult - everyone coming up to me and offering condolences - makes me feel sorry for myself! Also - my old job is gone - got to start again, and I am not used to having to wait for someone to train me - we got all new software while I was gone, all new phone system, all new alarm system, etc.! I just need to stick with it - too many changes in my life right now - it is very hard. This probably contributed to my depression yesteray - fears about learing and fitting in to the "new" responsibilites, etc. They have ASSURED me many times that we will all work together, but - I am scared, you know?

I am going to keep at it, and hope that in a couple of weeks I am reporting that it is going well. 

Love - Joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hey, hey, Joyce. You went through much worse than your job changing computer systems...you can do it!!! I am really NOT a computer person and yet my job is totally computer and during this awful summer we had, we also changed systems. I wanted to cry....but no pity parties are allowed. Now I feel almost like a pro with the new system. I hate it, but I learned it. I have faith in you and the worst part is over, that first day! And, besides, we are all sending hugs your way! smile

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi Joyce,

I think you did OK considering everything. Atleast with all of the new challenges it will help to keep your mind busy for a while.  Keep at it. I am sure you will do just fine!

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Thanks everyone - I am off to bed and tomorrow back to work - we shall see, but I am hoping you are right - it will get easier. Today was a better day - the kids raked my leaves, I enjoyed church (just can't bring myself to go out to breakfast afterwards - went grocery shopping instead!). It was a beautiful day - plenty of sunshine, and what a difference that makes. I remind myself of a yo-yo - up, down, up, down!

Love - Joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Don't worry Joyce. Take it one step at a time and if you find dealng with all those issues at work too much for you at the moment, go and get yourself signed off by the doctor for a bit longer. I think you have got through the worst day though - seeing everyone for the first time and finding out about all the changes - you did well.
        Take care
           Love
              Pauline

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Good Morning Joyce,

Glad to hear that your Sunday was a little better day. I don't go out for breakfast alone yet either & often do my grocery shopping on Sunday. I think we all know that yo-yo feeling well! So on to face another day.  Try to have a good one. I will be thinking of everyone & hoping for better days to come for all of us.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi Joyce,
Hope today goes well for you, the worst is over now, so just stick at it and it will all fall into place.
I had a bad day yesterday - sorry I didn't reply to you earlier - I felt very lonley so I think I will have to plan to keep my Sundays busy like you do!
Love Sue

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi All,

Sounds like we are all having issues with Sundays. Atleast we know what we need to do.  Make plans & keep ourselves busy on Sunday's.  Now all we have to do is go out & do it!!!! Here's hoping for a better week for all of us. Take care everyone.

Thinking Of All Of You,

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

I agree - Sunday is going to require some planning - I did go out to eat tonight with the people from work on the commitee I am on - it went pretty well, except that they were talking about the games tonight, and it made me think of Butch (he loved sports) - almost started crying - held it in until I got home, then cried all over my dog - I feel better now.

Love -joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Joyce,

I know what you mean. The strangest things will set you off. A few times when I have gone with friends to eat, I would see something on the menu that was a favorite of Jim's & I just feel so sad that I can no longer even share these little pleasures with him. I will sometimes get teary eyed in public, but like you do most of my crying at home alone. (Sometimes along with ranting, raving, hollering etc.) smile  It does seem to help to let it all out sometimes.  Good luck with work today. I am hoping that every day gets a little easier for you.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi Everybody,
   This week has been better at work - I am in the process of fitting back in - and learning new systems. I have had meetings all three days this week so far - working dinners, so didn't get home until 8:00! My poor dog does NOT like that, but - it has kept me busy. I miss Butch so much, but - I wouldn't have wanted him to suffer, and he did go so peacefully that I keep thinking that was such a blessing. Keeping busy is the best way for me right now, but - I can't get overtired - we have discussed this before, and know where that leads!

   I haven't started that good book yet - would like to read when the snow starts to fly, though! Also haven't finished this Christmas table topper I have been embroidering for a LONG time - almost finished, just don't have the what-ever to go back to it. I worked on it while I was with Butch at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center for those 7 weeks - it brings back too many memories.

   Good night all - get a good night's sleep, and have a good day tomorow

Love - joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Joyce,

I hope things are still going along OK for you.  You are right, I also feel that as much as I love & miss Jim I am glad for him that it went quickly & he is no longer suffering. He would not have wanted to live like that.

I did file a claim for service related & will let you know when I hear anything. It will more than likely be denied the first time, but I will just keep trying.  I know that they really don't want to admit to any of this, just like Agent Orange, but  atleast I know now that there are some claims that have been approved. I think our husbands would want us to do this. Even if it is too late for them, hopefully we can do some good & help others.  It is all so unfair. 

I know what you mean about the memories. I think we just need to try to replace them with memories of all the good times we shared.

I'm going to try to relax and read or watch a movie. It is still hard to focus on anything for very long.  Take care & have a good day tomorrow.

Love & Hugs,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Dear all,
           I haven't been in touch for a few days because my friend was over here with me in Italy, which was really nice. She is very good with me and very kind. I made an effort to make it a pleasant stay for her and I hope it was. Unfortunately I got a bit ill over these last few days  - only a bad cold really - but it made me feel quite depressed without Anthony to tell me to go to bed and fuss over me a bit with cups of tea and honey and lemon drinks etc.
         I am thinking of you all as it is Sunday tomorrow and I know this is the difficult day. I find it easier if the weather is fine because at least a good walk is possible. Here there is a Sunday morning market in our local town which is another thing to do. I actually find Saturday nights very hard because Anthony and I would always have something nice to eat - maybe a take away curry from our favourite Indian restaurant - and I really miss him if I sit in alone.
        I too am still finding it very hard to concentrate to read books or even watch films and I am still making lists every day to keep mself busy. It's hard, just trying to keep going, isn't it? I do think, however, that we are all pretty strong and we don't seem to be the type of people to rely on others for too much, do we?
      Take care,
         Pauline

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hello everybody,
  I do find it difficult to accept help from people - I am so grateful to have it now that I am accepting it, andfind that my friends and family have been wonderful to me. My sister-in-law came over today and helped me go through some of Butch's things - it was very difficult, but easier because she was here. Tomorrow my Brother is coming down form his home - about an hour away - in the afternoon, so - with church in the morning and him in the afternoon, I hope it will be better than last week.

Work did get better as the week went on. My friend said I seemed a thousand percent better at the end of the week than the beginning, so - I guess I am doing allright.

I guess my theory is that keeping busy keeps me from thinking as much. I still get blue, but it comes and goes. I talk to Butch, as you all talk to your husbands, and I talk to God - sometimes I am mixed up about exactly who I am talking to up there ! Oh yes - I talk to my dog Flash all the time too - he is a great conversationalist!

Warm thoughts to all of you - may your day tomorrow be better this week also.

Joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Good Morning All,

I too feel like I have to do everything myself & find it hard to accept help from others, but do appreciate it when I get it.  I am trying to keep busy today also. I am going to breakfast with my Mom & Dad, my sister's & their husbands this morning. This afternoon my son & daughter-in-law are coming to spend some time with me, so I to hope that this week will be better for all of us than last week.

Pauline, I am glad you had a nice time with your friend. I hope your cold has gotten better by now. I know how you feel. I always thought Jim would be here to take care of me too & now I have to take care of myself.

I do think we are are a pretty strong group. We have to be to get through this and I think that knowing our husbands are watching over us helps, along with the support we get from each other.

Everyone have a good day & a better week. I will be thinking of all of you & hoping that things are going well.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Pauline - I think getting a cold right now would be terrible - even in the best of times, it is not good!. I so hope you are feeling better - it was wonderful that your friend was there duruing that time - what would we do w/o friends and family.

Darla - my Mom and Dad are both alive also, and what a comfort they are to me. We are so fortunate to have them, aren't we? My Dad had his knee operated on the day after Butch's funeral, but he is doing fine.

Sue - we haven't heard from you in a few days. Is everything all right? Or - as right as it can be now? I am thinking of you and sending good thoughts your way.

Hugs your way,

Joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hello there,
                I am glad that you both kept busy with family this Sunday and I also hope you are ok Sue. My cold has gone now and the weather has improved again and so I have been out walking a lot over the weekend. I still find the evenings the worst, especially now it gets dark so early. I find myself feeling more depressed when the sun goes down.
               I am coming back to the UK tomorrow and will start my counselling on Wednesday so I will let you know how it goes.
               Take care all of you. Keep the lists going!
                       Love
                         Pauline

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi All,

I'm glad you are feeling better, Pauline. My Sunday went rather well. Keeping busy does seem to be the key. As you said tho' the nights are so long & depressing.  It is supposed to be unseasonable warm here the next few days, so I will have to get some walking in too.  Good luck with your counselling on Wednesday. I will be thinking of you.

Sue, I too am hoping that you are OK & that we will be hearing from you soon.

Joyce,  My parents are 82 & in relatively good health. For that I am greatful. Isn't it interesting how life works. They even wonder why they are here & doing well & Jim passed on at the "young" age of 62. I guess there is a reason for everything in life. I just wish we knew what it was!

Everyone take care & have a good day.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Dear Pauline, Darla and Joyce,
Sorry I havent written for a while, I had the Memorial service for Ray to get over last Sunday, and it made me feel pretty low, but I have picked up now.
I am not really a very sociable person, I left all the talking to Ray usually and just sat back and enjoyed the conversation - I am an only child and am fairly comfortable in my own company, but I have made a rule never to refuse an invitation to anything now - people will only ask you once - and it is kind of them to consider you - even if I dont feel like going out wherever I usually enjoy it - but I have also made it a rule to make them an invitation back, if it is a couple I try to arrange for someone else to be their either mutual friends or my daughter etc. So I have been quite busy lately.
I lost my dad three years ago but my mum is 85 and still going strong, she has been a great comfort and spends weekends her sometime if I need company. I have booked a flight to Malaga, Spain for a week for the 6th Dec for us both, I think  that will give me something to look forward to, and when I get back it will be close enough to Christmas for it to keep me busy without thinking too much.
I hope you are feeling better, Pauline, I am glad you had a good time with your friend, I thought you must be busy when you didnt post for a few days.
Let me know how your counselling went - I think they would be hard pressed to do better than we all do here! I think we are a strong group, too, Darla. We should be proud of ourselves!
I posted a picture a while ago, I havent checked if it is up yet, it was taken last year at Rays daughters wedding.
Thought you might like to see who I was!
Lots of love. Keep strong.
Sue

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Our picture is up now, under Plummer.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Dear Sue, Darla and Joyce,
                                        I'm back from Italy and have had my counselling session, which I didn't find very useful. Maybe counselling isn't for me but I am going to give it another session in case it improves after the initial chat. I found, like last time I tried it, that I talk, she listens but I get nothing back. The worst thing was that it took place at the hospice and going there brought back all the awful memories of Anthony's last few weeks. I knew this would be a problem but they didn't really take it on board. I could even look up and see the balcony and the window of the room where he died.
            I think you're right Sue, we do much better ourselves in the support and understanding we offer each other and I know I find it much more useful. I think you're doing very well in keeping the contact with people going. I accept all offers of meals etc and do find it helps as well, although sometimes I get upset if they don't talk about Anthony, because it makes me feel as though he has gone and they have forgotten about him. I like people to talk about him because it makes me feel they cared about him and miss him too. The trip to Spain sounds good - will you be going alone?
         Yes, Darla it is very hard to accept that life is so tragic and that some  people die so young. I look around and everywhere I seem to see couples much older than us looking so comfortable in their lives. I always think how lucky they are and it all just seems so unfair. I can't imagine ever getting used to this lonliness.
        I'm glad you're finding work a bit better Joyce and I hope this continues. I would like to see your picture, Sue so I'm going to try to find it on here. I'm off to school tomorrow and so will have an early night now - any excuse!
      Take care all!
                Love
                   Pauline

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi Everyone,

I think you are right. The support that we give each other helps more than anything else. We have all been through the same thing & really understand each others pain & all of the other feelings we are dealing with. I don't think any counseling or group therapy could compare. 

Pauline, I know how you feel about going back to where Anthony passed away. I don't every want to go back to the hospital in Milwaukee if I can help it. I don't even want to drive any where near there! It would just bring it all back.

I too try to accept all offers if it is possible, even if I really don't feel like going any where.

I think a lot of people just don't realize that we do want to talk about our loved ones. They don't want to bring back the memories or upset us. What they don't realize is that we need to talk about them to keep them from being forgotten.  It almost seems like most people just figure that they are gone & we must learn to deal with it and go on. That just is not possible. They may be gone, but we will never forget them & don't want others to either. I too see so many happy older couples & wonder why we couldn't have had that too. I wonder if they know how lucky they are. You want to tell them to appreciate what they have & to make the most of every moment.  It truly is unfair & so very lonely. I don't think you ever really get used to it.

Sue, Spain & Malaga with your Mom sounds like a good idea. It should be enjoyable for both of you.

Joyce, I hope you are still keeping busy and that work is still going OK for you. Pauline, have a good day at school tomorrow. I also am going to make it an early evening, as usual!!!!

Everyone take care & I hope you all have a good day tomorrow.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hello Everybody,
   I have been very busy this week, which is the best thing for me, as we discussed. I still have a lot of "sad spots" as I call them. but in between I am functioning quite well. I know what you mean about people not mentioning Butch - they actually look uncomfortable when I mention him - and I do - frequently. It helps a lot to talk about him, I think.

  Work is coming along - I am fitting back in and finding my new place. Everyone has been wonderful - just good friends.

  This week I bought a couple of new outfits - I used to LOVE to shop - now it is a chore, but - I really need some new clothes.

   My list is growing longer - thre are so many things to attend to, and Butch used to run the errands for us. He was retired and I am not, so he picked up a lot of the chores, running around, etc. for meNow I have to do myown laundry!

   I am thinking about signing up for a widow/widowers support gruop - they meet once a week for breakfast at Denny's - not sure though.


   Sue - I am going to go look at that picture - I haven't posted an entry yet - trying to gather strength. I haven't blogged since I wrote the final entry on the blog I kept for Butch's journey. I do miss it - it was GREAT therapy. I blogged all the way thru 3 weeks at Mayo, and 6 weeks at Pittsburgh Medical!. I think I will start a new blog for me.

   Take care everyone - I am thinking of you all.

Joyce

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Dear Joyce,Darla and Sue,
                                       Well, it's been another difficult weekend for me and I'm planning an early night to get it over with! I thought the photo was lovely Sue. You both looked so happy and fine. It's so hard to believe what lay ahead of you, isn't it? Did you know at that point that Ray had cc? I find photos so poignant. I may post one soon. I think it would be nice for us all to see each other and our loved ones.
                                       I'm glad you are all keeping busy. I know it is close to the one month anniversaries for you both, Joyce and Sue and two months for you Darla. I am thinking of you all because I know these dates mean a lot to us all. I remember the first month seemed endless and I must admit that it feels as though the 4 of us have been in contact with each other for much longer than this. I had family over for dinner on the first month's anniversary of Anthony's death and I think it helped but looking back I realise I was still really in a very dazed state of shock. I feel that you may still be in this sort of state, Sue and Joyce. We have to cope with such devastation and yet still have to get on with doing things in the "real world" that I think it's only in retrospect that you realise how you were. I think you have got through this month really well but go easy on yourselves - it really still is very early days. What do you think Darla? I still feel after 3 months that it is still very early but I have noticed a difference recently. I think the shock is wearing off, not completely, but a bit and I find I am beginning to face the huge issue of the permanency of my loss, which on several occasions recently has seemed too much to bear. I feel as though I can go on keeping myself busy with lists for a while but not for ever and I don't know where any of this is going. I still just miss Anthony absolutely unbearably. He is on my mind at every moment, no matter what I am doing and I don't want this to change. The thing I really want to do is to dream of him but this rarely happens. On Thursday it was my birthday - not a day I wanted to think about at all. My stepdaughter, Justine, who is so amazing to me and really keeps me going, invited me round for a meal. When I blew out the candle on the birthday cake, she said to make a wish. I wished that I could dream of Anthony and that night I did - probably because we had been talking about him a lot - and it was lovely - even though he had grown a moustache and was a bit grumpy with me! I gave him a big hug and it was so realistic. How is it that in dreams people are so real? I can never see him so clearly when I try to picture him when I'm awake.
                 Anyway, I have already done my list for tomorrow so I will try to face the world again. Today I just stayed at home. It was one of those miserable British grey, windy, rainy days and the walk I had hoped for was just out of the question. Joyce, you must let us know if you go to the widows group. I suppose it all depends on who you get in the group. I imagine it could be a good way of meeting some new friends who understand how you feel.
                 Well, take care all of you and know that I am thinking of you.
                         With love,
                                Pauline

Re: Anthony died on 30th July in a London Hospice

Hi All,

I just got back from my folk's house. I went for dinner & spent the day. Watched a football game & tried to help my Mom with a computer issue. I couldn't solve it so she will have to call her service provider. I don't think it is anything too serious though. So now I am back home & alone once more.

Joyce, I hope you had a good day.  It seems that you are doing OK under the circumstances. Let us know how it goes if you go to the support group. I did check out your blog. Enjoyed the pictures. I am writing in a journal, but never did a blog. I know how you feel. Everything just seems like more of a chore now when your alone.

Sue, Hope things are going OK for you. I don't know if I already mentioned that I too liked the picture you posted. We all look so happy & healthy, it is hard to believe that all of this has happened to all of us!

Pauline, Not sure if it is appropriate, but Happy Birthday. It sounds like you & I are kind of at the same point even though you are a little further along.  Odd how we are all generally a month apart, You at over 3 me at over 2 & Joyce & Sue have gotten to 1.  It still all seems so unreal. I think you are right Pauline, the first month or so I don't really think you know what you are doing or saying. It is all so surreal & you are definately in shock. I think you then graduate to disbelief, & finally it starts to sink in that it is real & is not going to change. Everything that you said is exactly what I am feeling too. Jim is still constantly on my mind & sometimes the pain is still too much to bear. I am having a problem with not being able to dream of Jim either & when I do I can't really remember much the next day.  I am glad that your wish cane true. It sounds like it was a onderful dream. I keep all sorts of pictures around & look at them often so I can keep him in my mind. My birthday was 2 days after Jim passed away, so I have that first over with, but I think I was real deeply in shock then, so I wasn't really even dealing with it & everyone else was afraid to bring it up as it was so soon after he died. I still have people coming in & asking for him that don't know he is gone & I have to explain. That is still hard to do, but I am sure it will happen time & again for a long time. Some days I truly just want to stay home & be alone, but then I get so depressed & lonely & think that I do need to keep busy. Every now & then I will clean out a cupboard or drawer or go through pictures. I sometimes get obssessed with doing something & getting it done.  Other times I just sit around staring into space & doing absolutely nothing.  It is just so hard. I am so glad that we all have each other to talk with & hopefully together we can help each other work through all of this. All of our situations are so similar in many different ways.

Everyone have a good week. Take care & know that I will be thinking of all of you.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.