• All threads and posts regarding Coronavirus COVID-19 can now be found in our new area specifically for Coronavirus COVID-19 discussion.

    You can directly access this area >here<.

Grief in a time of lockdown

CWR

Registered User
Mar 17, 2019
171
I thought I was doing fine. I knew that if mum had survived, it would have been horrendous, either looking after her at home, and worrying more than ever about her, or else not able to visit her in a nursing home, worrying myself sick. I managed to go out once a day, get in food, I was worried more about the virus than anything. Till today,maybe its because of having more time to brood, but I suddenly felt mum's loss more than ever. It's 4 month since she passed away, and I thought I was coping well. What triggered today's meltdown was thinking that I kept putting off tidying the house, getting rid of things I no longer need because mum is no longer here. Then the tears started. Somehow thinking of that only underlines the fact that she is gone, and I think I am still at a deep level denying that. I had intended to see about counselling but then the virus came along and I was concerned about that. Now I feel back at square one, even worse because of not being able to go out.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,315
Kent
I had this period of verging on depression when the isolation began @CWR although it wasn`t about grieving after loss. For me, it was the realisation I was one of those considered vulnerable and it was a big culture shock.

We all plod along trying to adapt to changes in our lives but our emotions come to the surface when we find ourselves even more stressed than we thought.

All the rationalisation about those we have lost being saved from the stresses of this pandemic, don`t always work and isolation is not what society is about.

However self contained and independent we are and so many of us have shown by our devotion to caring just how strong we are, we need choice. Choice is denied to us now and this is where it hit me.

You are still in the midst of grief CWR and so have a double challenge to face.

Stay well.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,562
South coast
The greif monster will jump out and give you a slap when you least expect it @CWR . Even now, three years on, I get the occasional slap. It is still early days for you. It takes time to work through it all. You may feel as though you are back to square one, but you are not.

Be gentle with yourself
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,562
South coast
@Grannie G
Sylvia, the closing in of our lives during this pandemic is hard, but I was taught a long time ago, by a very good doctor, that we always have choices - they may not be the ones we had before, we may not like any of the choices, and it may be reduced down to "which socks shall I wear?", but the choices are still there. Try choosing something different, like eating dinner on a tray in your bedroom instead of in the kitchen, for example. They may be only small things, but we still have some control.
 

Izzy

Volunteer Moderator
Aug 31, 2003
62,046
69
Dundee
Thinking of you @CWR. Grief really is like a roller coaster and it is very early days for you.

I find that sometimes I just have to cry - and I think that’s ok.

Keep posting here - I hope connecting on the forum will make this even the slightest bit easier.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
1,878
I thought I was doing fine. I knew that if mum had survived, it would have been horrendous, either looking after her at home, and worrying more than ever about her, or else not able to visit her in a nursing home, worrying myself sick. I managed to go out once a day, get in food, I was worried more about the virus than anything. Till today,maybe its because of having more time to brood, but I suddenly felt mum's loss more than ever. It's 4 month since she passed away, and I thought I was coping well. What triggered today's meltdown was thinking that I kept putting off tidying the house, getting rid of things I no longer need because mum is no longer here. Then the tears started. Somehow thinking of that only underlines the fact that she is gone, and I think I am still at a deep level denying that. I had intended to see about counselling but then the virus came along and I was concerned about that. Now I feel back at square one, even worse because of not being able to go out.
I am much the same @CWR Dad has been gone for almost 2 months now and it is as if nothing is real. I have dads house to clear but because I left it until after the funeral I can't get rid of anything. I started by boxing up dads good things for the charity shop and they immediately closed so the boxes are in his garage now. I can't even clear the garden rubbish because the tip is closed.

It would have been awful for dad if he was still here, he was ill and needed more care than I was capable of giving but we muddled through somehow. I really miss his wit, he was so funny at times and always made us laugh. He has left a huge gap in my life.

@CWR It is a very strange world at the moment and it is not the life I expected after dad. I had plans but everything is cancelled. I looked after dad 24/7 and longed for freedom but here I am locked in again but with no dad to look after which is actually worse because I don't have any real sense of purpose now. I suppose things will go back to normal, whatever normal is, I lost normal a long time ago. I really want to get out and go somewhere and just sit and look at a nice view, the seaside would be nice but perhaps later in the year. Stay safe.
 

Pete1

Registered User
Jul 16, 2019
762
Hi @CWR, the situation of isolation is a stressful time for many, and if you are already grieving it can certainly exacerbate those feelings. Acceptance is part of that process, and probably one of the most difficult things to come to terms with. You shouldn't worry if you have tears, let them flow. Four months isn't long - take your time to do things, there really is no hurry, no deadlines.

Are they offering any other support such as Skype sessions or even phone sessions - I think they may still help. I wish you all the best. Stay strong and look after yourself.
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
16,490
66
Toronto, Canada
It is still very early days yet for you. The forced isolation brings everything into sharper focus. In normal times, routine helps get us through.

My mother died on a Sunday. My boss is the best and most understanding of bosses. I could have taken as much time off as I wanted. But I decided to return to work on the Wednesday, simply because my sister and I had sorted everything out Monday and Tuesday. Had I stayed off work any longer, I would simply be staring at my four walls.

I'm so sorry, I hope you find something that will help you get through. Cry as much as you need to.
 

Philbo

Registered User
Feb 28, 2017
817
Kent
Hi @CWR

This current crisis is certainly changing our physical and emotional lives?

My wife passed away in January after 6 years of caring for her and after the obvious grief, I felt I was mentally able to start sorting everything out and commencing the next chapter of my life.

To be fair, I thought I was doing okay, helped by friends and family who have been amazingly supportive throughout our "journey". Then along came COVID-19.:eek:

Firstly, my strategy for coping, first implemented at the beginning, involved adopting a local pub to get us both out socialising more and proved to be a life saviour - except of course, it's now closed, Now I've only got phone/video calls, messenger, Facebook etc to try and stay "connected". So only me and these 4 walls, plus a friendly nod to passing strangers whenever I walk out for exercise - 2 meters and face masks/scarves permitting.:)

Secondly, I had made some progress slowly getting rid of my wife's clothes, mainly to local charity shops or recycling centres, but I had put off doing her 2.5 wardrobes, as I found the whole process very upsetting. Well, the charity shops all closed, as did the recycling centres, so I decided to pack all that's left into 2 old Samsonite suitcases in the loft (plus a big cardboard box). On the one hand, it was nice to have more space to spread my clothes out but I sobbed my heart out for a while, as it felt like I was packing her away in a case in the loft!😢 . Silly I know, but it hurt.

At the very time we need physical companionship and hugs, we are now denied them.

I am trying hard to remain positive and look forward to whenever we can start mixing again, so I do hope that you can do the same. This forum has been a great source of support for us all so I hope you find comfort from all the responses the lovely folk on here are giving.

Best wishes
Phil
 

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
16,490
66
Toronto, Canada
lOn the one hand, it was nice to have more space to spread my clothes out but I sobbed my heart out for a while, as it felt like I was packing her away in a case in the loft!😢 . Silly I know, but it hurt.
I don't think that's silly at all. I completely understand. I still have a lot of my mother's identity cards - library card, credit card, social insurance, various retail reward cards etc. They are useless but when I am ready, I will dispose of them. But that's not yet and my mother died in 2016.
 

PJD

Registered User
Apr 4, 2019
14
I don't think that's silly at all. I completely understand. I still have a lot of my mother's identity cards - library card, credit card, social insurance, various retail reward cards etc. They are useless but when I am ready, I will dispose of them. But that's not yet and my mother died in 2016.
My wife died 2March buried 26 after a closed church mass and a graveside service for family only. We talked a while afterwards at social distancing and I went home to an empty house. No comforting hugs. Makes it so much harder. The family keep in touch but it is the emptiness of the house that makes it hard. I walk and have set out a rota of room cleaning to get me through the week. Neighbours shop for me but the house is a lonely place now. The current crisis adds to it. We can all agree it is a hard time. They time heals or eases the pain. Let's hope so.
Peter
 

CWR

Registered User
Mar 17, 2019
171
I thought I was ok, the occasional moment. I keep myself busy during lockdown by doing jigsaws. And then, out of the blue, I just felt it, the enormity of my loss. I don't know what triggered it, it just came. I had been thinking about counselling, but the virus put paid to that. It's the complete and total absence that kills me. I came across letters she had written to me inthe 80s when she and dad were in Ireland, where she said I was worth a thousand of my cousin, who never gave her mother anything, even on Mother's Day. At least mum knew I loved her, but even tho I wouldn;t have wanted her to go through this ( the nursing home where she would have gone has had 8 deaths and a local carehome worker has died), still it hurts.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,562
South coast
The grief monster will jump out of the blue and slap you in the face when you are least expecting it. The smallest thing can trigger it off - it is quite normal. Everyone around you will going on their normal lives and give you the impression that your aught to be too, but grief is not over in a few days or weeks. It is three years since my mum died, but just recently I heard a piece of music which triggered a memory and reduced me to tears. You cant stop grief, you have to go through it.
Be gentle with yourself
 

CWR

Registered User
Mar 17, 2019
171
The problem is, during this virus situation, reading some of the horrendous things that are happening can just trigger emotional moments. The stories everywhere are truly heart-breaking.
I just went for a walk to a local beauty spot; I just had to get away. Take care, everyone.
 

Scouts girl

Registered User
Jan 18, 2017
309
I haven’t posted on here for a while as I felt after 2 years 4months since losing my dear mum I was slowly coming to terms with the loss. However, since this awful virus has changed our lives I am feeling the guilt and loss all over again. The guilt, that I am relieved mum is not living in her care home, which she never forgave me for moving her there, wondering why I cannot visit her everyday, like I used to and me having to endure not seeing her and worrying that she might contact this awful disease and I was not able to be with her. I would give anything to have her back but my thoughts go out to you all at this time, especially to those of you who cannot be with your loved ones at this time. The guilt monster will pop up when you least expect it and I think because I am now too in that vulnerable age bracket and in self isolation have more time to think of the ‘what ifs’. I am trying to remember the happier times when dementia was just a word to me and not ever thinking that my mum would succumb to it. Take care all of you, keep safe.
 

CWR

Registered User
Mar 17, 2019
171
I sometimes feel there are so many minefields. Today I got an email from a US-based company -its Mother's Day there, plus , by a roundabout way, I was reminded of my mum's birthday. I miss her so much. Even with the dementia, she knew me and loved me. I could doubt all sorts of things, but never her love. She was always so affectionate, and thats what I miss. I dont have any contact with the rest of my " family", so I cant miss what I never had with them, but I do miss hugs from mum. When people ask me how I'm coping with the lockdown, I tell them I'm ok. I am most of the time, apart from when I suddenly become aware of my loss all over again, or when my " neighbour" starts blasting out VERY LOUD "music" because he is fed up and wants everyone to know it. Thinking how I am glad that mum didnt have to go through this sometimes helps, but some times it doesnt. Grief and logic are not related in any way. Sorry, I just had to get this off my chest
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,562
South coast
Im sorry you got another slap (or two) from the grief monster. It can often seem to come out of nowhere.

(((((((((((((((((((((((hugs))))))))))))))))))))
 

AliceA

Registered User
May 27, 2016
2,825
@Grannie G
Sylvia, the closing in of our lives during this pandemic is hard, but I was taught a long time ago, by a very good doctor, that we always have choices - they may not be the ones we had before, we may not like any of the choices, and it may be reduced down to "which socks shall I wear?", but the choices are still there. Try choosing something different, like eating dinner on a tray in your bedroom instead of in the kitchen, for example. They may be only small things, but we still have some control.
Good advice. X
 

CWR

Registered User
Mar 17, 2019
171
Today I got a phone call from the Health Partnership, asking for mum. I thought they would have known, but it was like a hammer blow, reminding me of what I have lost. I am going to see about phone counselling but I keep putting it off because I know it's going to be painful, re-opening the wound. I get by by not thinking about it till something reminds me. I lived with her for 61 years, and when I try to imagine what my life without her will/could be I cant think.. I do have a partner but he doesnt live nearby, and I have no family , so no children such as some people have, so they can think about the next generation. There was just me and her. I was never a great socialiser- I do have some friends I ( used to, before this...) meet for meals, but no-one nearby and besides, they have their own families and friends. I just feel so alone, I have been sobbing my heart out, and of course this bloody virus doesnt help. In some ways it would be better if it was overcast rather than bright and sunny. I might be able to settle down to some reading. I know nothing will make this go away. I just have to get through it, but it's no fun. At least I can type this, knowing that it does help a bit. I dont want to let off to friends,-it's hard for them if I am blubbing away. I know this was something mum worried about, she said once, a few months before she died It's sad that love has to be destroyed. Someone here said it isnt destroyed, but at times it feels like that.