Author Topic: Struggling  (Read 222 times)

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Offline AnneH

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Struggling
« on: November 03, 2020, 10:04:16 AM »
My husband died suddenly on 12th September after a heart attack.  He was very fit, the only medical problem he had was sleep apnoea for which he had a CPAP machine to use at night.  The afternoon before he was taken into hospital we were walking in a local park, he took no medication and he just had his yearly blood tests which were all within range.
It took paramedics 45 mins to get his heart started, in hospital they did various tests and found he had one completely blocked artery and 3 nearly blocked.  He was taken to ICU for 3 days, and every time they tried to take him off sedation he fitted, and an EEG showed no brain activity.  The following day they turned the machines off.  He did want to be an organ donor, and there are two people out there with a new kidney.
My counsellor suggested this forum, I have had two sessions so far, at the moment I canít see where it is going, but I will carry on.  The doctor put me on sleeping tablets (which I have now managed to wean myself off) tranquillisers and now anti-depressants.  I wasnít keen, but somewhat desperate, and I have been getting depressed enough over Covid, and now the lockdown has made things so much worse.  I was always out doing various classes and member of a number of groups such as WI, art and Historical Society, and there has been nothing on since April.  I need people to talk to but canít do that now, and get fed up being on the phone or zoom. 
The counsellor keeps telling me it is early days, and Iím being too hard on myself.  If I donít keep busy Iím thinking about my husband.  Iím constantly exhausted, shaking, my brain feels as though it's full of mush and can't concentrate, and panic coming back into the house now.
I haven't had a day in the last 8 weeks when I haven't cried, and i'm not normally a crying person.
The only good thing to come out of 2020, it was our 50th wedding anniversary in March, and we went to Costa Rica and a couple of Caribbean islands, arriving back in the UK 2 days before the lockdown, the last week being somewhat fraught as things were closing down behind us.  Holidays were our thing, and were planning more.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2020, 10:17:53 AM by AnneH »

Offline Emz2014

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2020, 10:00:17 PM »
Sending you a welcome hug. It is still early days, its a rollercoaster journey. There are many members who have lost partners here and will understand. Hope you find it supportive here
Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise. 
Hold on in there xx

Offline Sandra61

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2020, 12:05:20 AM »
So sorry to hear of what you are going through, Anne. What you describe matches up pretty much with my own experiences of loss. It does get better over time, but it's a long hard slog unfortunately and takes a long time. Do whatever you can that helps. It sounds as if you are already doing all you can to try to help yourself. Counsellors can be helpful and it does help to talk. I'm not so sure about the medication though, like you. I am glad your counselor recommended you try this website. it helped me after I lost my mum in 2017 just to know others understood what I was feeling and I hope it helps you to know that too. Nothing can make up for your loss and your grief journey will be your own that you find your way through in your own way and in your own time, but everyone here, whether they reply or not, will understand what you are going through and hopefully, some of them will respond and you may find some comfort in that.

My father died of a heart attack too. He had one and survived that, but a few months later had another that took him very suddenly. It is always a huge shock to lose someone no matter the way or whether it is expected or not, but you carry them with you in your heart and your mind for the rest of your days, so in a way they remain with you, even if you can't see them anymore. Take things one day at a time and just do whatever helps you get through each day. There is no time scale for grieving and in the end, I think, it's something you end up doing to some degree for the rest of your days because you can't stop missing of loving the person you have lost, but there will be better days and weeks as time goes on and you will come to find those good memories will give you strength and make you smile as you go forward.

Wishing you well and sending strength.   :hearts:

Offline Karena

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Re: Struggling
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2020, 04:33:41 PM »
 :hug: At the moment just getting from one to day to the next  - getting up getting dressed  washing your hair and eating - the very basics are an achievement i think all of us have been too hard on ourselves at some point of this journey  but think about it in physical terms if you had brocken your leg you would know you cant run a marathon without a lot of healing taking place first and healing takes time - you start with little steps, you lean on any crutches available sometimes you will fall over - some days will be more painful than others and you know that you may always have a limp or a weakness or an ache where that break is - the limp the scars the ache becomes part of you but you also know that eventually if you want too you can run that marathon.You cant see grief but the same applies you need rest to heal and to heal is a long journey be kind too yourself and be patient with yourself..

I found counseling helped and finding this place helped too not only for the support that was here but also having somewhere to write - writing poetry did too as having to think about the words to express the way i felt and put them in some kind of rhythmn/line order somehow also helped clear the mush a bit if only temporarily.

I am a lot further down this road - my husband died from a stroke in 2011 - -i will always love and miss him but life is much better now - i decided early on if i had nothing to carry on for - no point to my life than i wpuld live it for him and in tribute too him - so i started going back to the places we loved and planting native daffodils - went to places we said we would go or things we said we would do  but didnt get round too,  and did some things he would have loved to do and i would have sat and watched as they were not something i would have gone along with zip wiring over gorges definitely wasnt my thing and wont be repeated but  i know he would have loved it which is all ery well we didnt have coronavirus then,  but i didnt rush off and do it all at once i spent a lot of time planning  how to get over the physical and mental barriers involved and the planning filled some time i havnt done it all yet but what i have done has  meant that  he is still very much a part of who i am  - if that makes sense. but it is also the case that between those things i went through times of despair of questioning my sanity and also spent a lot of time in the fuzz brain world in which nothing but that loss gets through or matters.
last night i was watching the children in need revision thing and realized that  i had no memory of a lot of what the rest of the world was doing in 2011 I probably watched it i probably heard the song they brough out for it  but didnt take it in and music is something i can usually pinpoint.

Art is maybe something you can do at home if you have the stuff to do it or can buy it online - i work in computer graphics and art in the painting and drawing sense isnt my forte, but  i have suprised myself with learning to use charcoal so maybe you could take what you learned but try a different medium - also future learn.com  runs some very interesting free short courses - you can opt to pay for certified more in depth versions but initially i just randomly picked anything i thought might be interesting and didnt realise until i had done a few that there i was  creating a pathway to doing something very different - voluntary but being involved in something worth doing.

Your counsellor is right it is early days - and if you think about it - not thinking about your husband would be far more strange than thinking about him - i still talk to mine - sometimes when i do something foolish i imagine him laughing and tell him its not funny -  if my van breaks down i mentally ask him what to do and daft as it sounds sometimes the answers come - probably because i took on more of what he said about mechanics than i was aware of at the time but it is still another way in which the connection between us remains.Being outside being in the natural world i feel close too him and after staying away from our favourite holiday spot the place we had planned to retire too in the first year after he died, i wondered why, having lost so much i was punishing myself more by not doing the thing i loved  there  dolphin watching  i thought it would be too upsetting to go back but overcame that and now i realise i feel closer too him there than anywhere - the retirement plan cant happen now, but i still love that place and go whenever i can.

To some people they might say i am stuck, i havnt "moved on", "said goodbye", "gone back to being my old self" - and they would be right  - but my reply is  i have moved forward and he has moved with me in a different way - i dont have to say goodbye ever too the part of him that remains in my heart  and my old self was some-one in a different time and place - this is my new self and there were times as she evolved that  i really didnt like her at all  but we get on fine now.