What is normal?
It is normal to have your grief affect all aspects of your life.
Physically - you may still feel tired, changes in diet and/or sleep.
Thought processes- still feeling like you are in a fog, difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness. You may have challenges with making decisions, making to-do lists and or reading.
Emotionally - your emotions are likely to be all over the place still. See Jeni & Teresa’s stories below for two widow experiences at three months. See the bottom for things that might be helpful at this time.
The 3 month mark found me back at the same funeral home where we had Bob’s funeral. My Grandmother (on my mom's side) had passed on the 25th and here I was attending her wake and funeral on the 3 month anniversary of Bob's death.
I wasn't done ...truly I hadn't even begun the grief process with my husband and I was burying my grandmother. I had walked zombie like through Christmas, New Year's Eve and Valentine's Day. My facebook statuses included the following:
Wants his dash back! http://thedashmovie.com
Just figured it out...we were married 4,967 Days which is 13 Years, 7 Months, and 5 Days....Not long enough!
I was struggling with the brief amount of time our lifetime together had brought us. I was also struggling with the fact that our children, whom we had just adopted prior to his death, only had a little over a year with their father.
I was longing for the way things were and trying to find a way to move forward. Unfortunately, I was also becoming very well acquainted with the staff at the funeral home.
I remember just kinda getting through the wake and funeral… thinking both about my husband and my grandmother.
I just had to keep my head up and my feet moving forward. ..one step at a time….one minute at a time.
The three month anniversary was tough. I powered through it the best way I knew how. By doing and keeping busy. I had to work so that was actually a good thing. Working as a science teacher and being around the kids are like free therapy. It keeps me busy and we have fun in class. My sister called and we talked for a long time and that was nice. Over the winter break I got us a doberman puppy as a future protector and something to care for and love. He is growing huge and provides us entertainment.
I am still going to our Sunday’s couple’s dinner club from church. They are really great people but after this month where we, Kris and I, were signed up for hosting, I’m done. I don’t know why I felt like I needed to do this. I wish I hadn’t but I will host this dinner. I used to love entertaining, now I’d rather just be alone in my grief and misery. I’m not a couple, I don’t have a husband, I can’t stand being around those that do right now. I especially can’t stand to hear them complain about their spouses. I wish I had one to complain about. I am a widow. I hate that fact but that’s the reality. I accept that begrudgingly. Who ever thought at 43 I’d be a widow? It’s a crappy club no one wants to be a part of.
I am desperately trying hard to get our lives back. I started counseling to start dealing with my grief. Apparently everything we are going through is normal. This normal sucks but it’s part of the “grief process” so I’ve been told. The boys are doing counseling through school. I feel like I’m going crazy sometimes and life will fall apart at any moment. I hope counseling continues to help. I wonder if I’ll ever feel normal or happy again?
The good news is I am happy and feel “normal” as I’ll ever feel. Therapy and group work is a great way to get through those tough moments. Surround yourself with positive helpful family and friends. Do what makes sense. If it makes you miserable, don’t do it. Try to be healthy as you can. Find the joy in what you can each day. Be thankful for the little things - sunshine, a blooming plant, smiles from others. Little by little the new normal will settle in, there will be happy moments and eventually a happy life.
Things that might be helpful at this time:
Take care of yourself the best you can:
- Eat healthy
- Schedule a routine Dr. appointment - checkup
Emotionally Taking Care of Yourself:
- Take deep slow breaths
- Have a quiet reflection time booked into your schedule
- Talk to a friend, spiritual advisor, coach - someone who is a good listener and positive influence
- Write in a journal
- Walk in nature
- Paint/dance/listen to music
Take Care of Everyday Tasks
- Take notes or a notebook - especially as you deal with the estate
Jeni and I would love for you to share your wedding ring story. We would love to learn from you. SHARE YOUR STORY