I've only just returned from the weekend away and this is the first thread I have read up to now. I really liked reading your post in which you share with us your experiences of the weekend. I thought it was wonderful that you decided to do something other than dwell on the care home and pop into a garden centre instead.
I could relate to you missing the David that you fell in love with. You are probably missing him more now because you have the space to miss him. Whilst David was so severely ill and the roller coaster was forever either in crisis mode or a calm mode in which you got used to the downturn in David's condition, you didn't have a moment of peace to feel these feelings as you do now. I believe that love never dies and can only wish for you that the love which you are rediscovering within you for David is a love which you can share with the world around you (which you do anyway).
I love that saying of Bronwen's. I am glad though that I have just a few friends with which I can do nothing with - you included
I feel a bit of an interloper posting on this thread, my wife died two years ago , and most of the posts are from members whose loss is still recent and raw.
But the title of this thread is “My way - Dealing with Loss” and I have naturally had to deal with the hurt that all must feel.
Much against the advice of many friends I decided early on not to dispose of my wife’s clothes and other possessions,
A decision I shall never regret. We have a large’ walk in wardrobe , more than half of it still occupied with my wife’s clothes
If I were to dispose of her clothes I would be left with a half empty wardrobe , every time I open the wardrobe door and see a half empty space I would be immediately be reminded of the emptiness of my life .
Now I use the wardrobe daily but ,often or not, I don’t even think about it , I know if I ever move I will then have to reconsider , but in the meantime I am happy as it is
Naturally I have several pictures of my wife scattered about the house , but two of them, one when she was a young girl of 17 when we were courting , and one taken only a few weeks before she died
are my favourites and I made a bookmark with her picture on either side and the two verses we chose for the crematorium book of remembrance ,
I always read for half hour or so before I go to sleep at night, and
the bookmark is the last thing I see as I close my book , a natural reminder without any soul searching.
Some members will already know , there is a beautiful pink rose called ‘Lovely Lady’ So many people described my wife when she died as a lovely lady I decided to ‘adopt’ the rose in her memory
I bought several plants and gave them to my sons, and the carers who were so good to her . I planted two for myself in my front garden ,they have produce gorgeous blooms each year
Every day as I walk past them on my way to get my paper I am
instantly reminded of ‘My Lovely Lady’ and I have the added pleasure of knowing that scattered in different parts of the country
several others will be enjoying the lovely blooms on their own plants and occasionally will be reminded of my ‘Lovely Lady’
I still grieve for the loss of the lovely lady that was my wife and sweetheart for over 60years ,but the pain is not so deep with the reminders I have
That so far is “ My way - Dealing with Loss”
Thank you so much for sharing your memories and thoughts with us, it has helped me to know it is still all right to grieve..it is six months since Trevor died and I know I will feel the same as you are feeling for a long long time yet.
I too have a picture of Trevor as a bookmark, so I can say goodnight to him before I go to sleep.
My thoughts are with all of us who are missing our loved ones.
Thank you so much, Bronwen and Jimbo for sharing this Thread with me. I believe it is so important to keep the positive side of grieving. Yes it is awful but for our loved one's sake we need to live on the bright side of life.
I have very black moments but I know my dear David is egging me on and willing me to enjoy what I can. He is still with me, I am sure of that.
I haven't been on TP for a week or two, maybe three, because I was suddenly overtaken with another wave of loss. (Brian died 1st July last year.) I decided to come to this section (Dealing with loss) to see what I could pick up from it. It was lovely to see so many replies to you from people I feel I already know.
I am sorry I have nothing of much help to say myself, but I do send you love, and to all the others here who are also dealing with the loss of their loved ones.
Hello Nan - glad you could post.
I understand about the 'waves of emotion' and I have been worse of late than at the actual time of his dying and through the first few weeks.
I was advised to never say 'no' when someone offered an outing or something, but I found doing so much has overwhelmed me. Eventually I guess everything will settle and I am thankful that folk care enough.
And dear Jan - thank you for yours, too. I know just what you mean about dealing with the first few weeks better than say the third or fourth month. I felt as though I were in a little bubble and looking back I did cope wonderfully well. And then got low. And have coped very well again since. And got low again. It really does come in waves.
I know that some members of TP are already members of the University of the Third Age and I am just this week sending off my application to join. Our local branch is apparently one of the largest in the country and I am going to start attending at least one class, possibly two. My "social life" dwindled down to almost zero following Brian's stroke in December '07 and I feel I need to meet a few people on a regular basis. My biggest fear, though, is that everyone will "go with someone else" and I will still find myself a bit on my own. But until I try it, I won't know, will I.
Yes, at first most people will know each other and you will feel the odd one out, but they will all be welcoming and slowly you will get to know who you relate to and who you don`t, what courses are for you and what are not.
It takes courage to walk into a room full of strangers but never forget they have all had to do the same.
Like you, I had years of being more or less house bound or unable to make commitments . In addition, I was in a new area. Now I meet people on the bus, at the seaside, wherever i go, not all best friends but just to say `Hello` to.
I think U3A is a great idea. I must update on what our local groups are doing as I believe there is a massive range of subjects. I am sure most groups will be welcoming as it caters for our age group and most have experienced some difficult patches and a degree of loneliness.
Let us know how you get on Nan as it may encourage others 'dealing with loss' to find other interests and hopefully find new friends.
Dear Jan and Nan - I do think that you have to do things at your own pace and though others mean it kindly, if you aren't ready to re-join the busy world after having to put it aside for whatever reason, it isn't always as easy to do as it might sound. Just do things as and when you feel ready to. That way you will find it a pleasure rather than having to force yourself to go.
I think too, that a bereavement after Alzheimer's or any dementia has to be a bit different from other bereavements in that there has been a gradual loss over a number of years. So that when the final loss happens, emotions are very complicated and it is perhaps harder for our hearts to comprehend that this is indeed final bereavement. The years of caring, whether directly at home or indirectly, in a nursing home, also came to an end and that means a huge change to your lives. The focus for so long has been your husband and now this focus is no longer there.
I'm sorry, I am probably putting this badly and am making myself upset as I am writing but what I think I am trying to say is that you have to do what you you need for yourself. Others can't understand what you have gone though nor what you are going through now. I am full of admiration for the way you both have coped and are coping. Love and best wishes for whatever you do. XXX
After David died a friend sent me a 'Name a Rose' gift. This was a small kit of rose seeds with 'the opportunity to name the unique rose for eternity'.
I planted ten seeds and I have a registered 'certificate of naming'. Two of the ten seeds have been successful. This is a picture of the two plants and the rosebud is actually on the right hand side one.
I am thrilled with the success so far and just hope I can keep them growing .
Thank you Butter. I have put the two roses in the front porch which is colder hoping they will adjust to our seasons (not that we can so why should they ).
I have serious doubts about one of them as the flower hardly resembled a rose but the leaves did. The other one has 3 buds which I doubt they will flower now - wondering whether to prune them as I do the outside roses.
Yes I registered the name when I set the seeds. I always left David a note which ended with a series of letters (all my love sort of thing). So it is that series of letters followed by David. I get quite upset even thinking about it as he remembered what those letters meant even at fairly late stage when he remembered little else.
Today I am going to a memorial/remembrance service being held at our church for those who have lost a loved one this year. I think it will be upsetting but I will face it and the emotion it may bring. To help afterwards I am going to hear Michael Morpurgo the author of Warhouse - he will be reading and it says some 'heart rendering music from two Folk Award winners' - so we will see.
This is the first time I have seen the posts about the roses. How lovely that you have two growing.
I can imagine how emotional the memorial/remembrance service will be. I am always offered a place at one of the Derbyshire Hospice's memorial service but I have never been able to face it up to now even though quite a large portion of my family go because we lost a grandson a few years ago who was only in his early 20's.
I hope the talk is enjoyable and thought provoking. Downton is bound to be excellent but I will be grief stricken when it ends tonight.