Young Widow Forum

Time Frame => Beyond Active Grieving => Topic started by: rifatheroffour on November 12, 2017, 07:59:44 PM

Title: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: rifatheroffour on November 12, 2017, 07:59:44 PM
It will be five years in two short months.  I have to say that my day to day existence while far from happy and joyful is also just as far from woe and dread. There are many happy moments with my kids, being proud of their accomplishments and even some glimmers of hope for a future personal life.

That said there are triggers that come when you least expect them and I feel like sharing in hopes that the more I embrace them the less awful they become. There are two things in particular that get me more than anything else, kids accomplishments that DW will never see and old couples that I will miss out on.

The latest of the former happened a couple weeks ago during my kids last band competition of the season.  My second son now does tech/coaching for the HS band that my youngest two still march in.  He spent the last two summers marching in a DCI Marching band and has learned a lot. I remember watching one of their warm ups last summer.  As I now watched #2 warming up the HS band in the same manner that he learned it struck me how much he has grown and developed a passion for band and I was so proud to watch him in action...of course with that comes the realization that his mother never got the chance to see any of this progression from a quiet, reserved and often challenged young boy to a passionate and confident young man. Even as I write about this my eyes are moist.

The other major trigger, older couples, hit me this morning.  Our scout troop was attending mass as part of a new flag dedication at our sponsor church.  I have not been very good about getting to church, a completely different rant for another time.  During communion I noticed a much older couple making their way up the aisle.  He was pushing her in her wheel chair.  I immediately flashed back to wheeling my wife around the hospital to get to appointments etc. I just had to put my head down for a bit to compose myself.  I would have given anything to keep taking care of her into those much later years. I wonder if the older gentleman realized how lucky he actually was to be able to care for her into their later years together.
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: Wheelerswife on November 12, 2017, 09:30:33 PM
Hugs to you, riff, and thank you for sharing your thoughts. I don’t have children, but I try to imagine how it might feel for someone who laments the loss of the experience that a late spouse might have had with his or her children, and also for widowed parents themselves for the loss of the joint experience of parenting.

I wish Fal could see your kids’ growth, accomplishments, and the young people they have grown to be. Hats off to son #2 and his leadership that has developed through his hard work with the drum corps!


Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: sojourner on November 17, 2017, 09:02:17 AM
I have a lot of those same thoughts and reactions regarding kids' milestones and elderly couples. (When there're anouncements for 50th wedding anniversaries- which there's now no chance I'll ever have- seems the good-natured question always asked is what their secret is... I wistfully think, well, first off, neither one died....)

Last evening I got the word that I have a good offer on my dream house with LH, where we were going to live the rest of our lives- which, I guess, he did... just not as planned  :-\ . I moved over a year ago after it was supposed to be sold, just waiting for the closing, but the deal fell through at the last minute.

It's as if a dam burst open all last night, with an endless stream of memories pouring out in a flood, as if I were reliving our lives together in a big jumbled rush. Today I feel exhausted, but I need to go through the neccesary business of processing the paperwork to accept the offer. It's a good thing, as it was no longer the right place for me and the kids to be, and frankly an overdue economic neccesity. But it's sure bringing the memory of all our crushed plans and dreams back up to the surface, at 3 and a half years out as of today.

(Edited to correct a typo- been making lots of those lately! Right hand is in a brace as it recovers from carpel tunnel surgery!)
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: Abitlost on November 17, 2017, 10:09:12 AM
Those are my two biggest triggers as well. Every one of my kids' accomplishments is twinged with a bit of sadness that their dad missed so very much. This will never change. In fact, as the years go by and so much more is missed, I'd say the feeling intensifies for me.

Even though I am in a solid relationship now, elderly couples get me every time. DH never got to be elderly, which was all he wanted. We already had plans for our 50th wedding anniversary. We only got 11 :(

Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: rifatheroffour on November 17, 2017, 02:42:21 PM
Yes, the 50th anniversary, I had both my parents and ILS celebrate theirs last year...I was there I was pleasant but damned if I was going to be celebratory...jealous is the feeling I had to contain.
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: JeanGenie on November 18, 2017, 07:20:40 AM
I know I am lucky that DH survived to see my son's graduation from college and see him get his first "real" job and first apartment. Yes, there are still future moments in his life he will miss, but he saw most of the major ones and, again, I know I'm "lucky" in that way.

The old couples, on the other triggers the same emotions the rest of you are experiencing. I resent their happiness and many years together. At church, on occasion, they recognize significant anniversaries...I find it difficult to clap and instead find myself questioning "why are they so lucky and not me?" and I get angry and jealous. I am envious that they have each other to care for as they grow old. Thankfully my DH had me to care for him and he never had to worry about who was going to care for him in his old age since that never came.  This is one of my greatest fears, though, that I'll be alone and have no one who loves me to care for me as I grow old. So either I can hope to die before my health begins to fail or I guess that's sadly why you can hire PCAs...
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: Captains wife on November 22, 2017, 06:48:37 AM
Sorry RIFF - you were married a long time with 4 gorgeous kids so there must be so many triggers. I agree that although I have some small triggers that set me off, the worst are where I really feel my LH is missing all my son's milestones - even odd ones like I started crying in a school meeting last year. I wasn't married very long before he died (less than 3 years and my son was 9mths old) and I'm finding this hard enough so I can't even imagine the loss felt for longer marriages and older kids.
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: Toosoon2.0 on November 22, 2017, 07:43:11 AM
Captain's wife - I so get this; I wasn't married very long either.  Yesterday, we had a meeting to renew my daughter's special ed plan.  She's doing so well ever since I got these accommodations in place for her.  She's happy and doing so much better in school.  The principal and her teachers were effusive about what a polite, thoughtful, empathetic child she is, and I felt the tears coming on.  Scott should have been there, too.  He would have been embarrassingly, ostentatiously proud!  I managed not to cry but I definitely had the lump in my throat; I felt the weight of everything that's happened and everything that no longer is.  That doesn't happen very often anymore but it is still very much there.  Lots of love to you all.  I get it. 
Title: Re: ...does not mean triggers don't rear their ugly heads
Post by: Lmsmdm on December 13, 2017, 05:03:30 PM
Big or small, those triggers are still out there.