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Everything posted by Julester3

  1. Everything is going well here with NG. It’s all a matter of making the time for one another since we have our own homes and our own kids to raise. I’m working on creating more instances for his kids to come over to my house with him and have fun and positive experiences. I know we’ve started to make loose plans where we’d like to travel and do things together but it’s matter of logistics, mostly related to his own logistics with his kids and his equal custody. The relationship is progressing at a comfortable rate.
  2. Julester3

    There are worse things than death

    This tragedy is terrible. My thoughts go to the family.
  3. Julester3

    First vacation without my husband

    We each did our own one on one with a counselor. I did just a grief counselor for a few sessions to help me understand things. My eldest did a teen counselor with specialty dealing with grief snd then switched to a general. My youngest did a general teen counselor. I chose according to our needs and by personality fit. We also do monthly group as a family. It’s a chance to share and possibly help others. Our family group is Willowhouse but it’s based here in Illinois. It’s format is similar to Gilda’s Club.
  4. Julester3

    First vacation without my husband

    It will get easier. That perspective is very helpful. I also think about what LH would want for us and I know we are now succeeding and doing well. I will tell you that our ability to cope without him was quite slow at coming at first but with therapy and counseling and talking and being open and honest to one another has been good for us.
  5. Julester3

    First vacation without my husband

    I remember our first trip without LH and it was fine at first. It was an adventure for me and the girls to travel together and we did well. The girls shared a room and my bed was so large and empty without LH to cuddle with me. That was hard. Also bring in place he would have enjoyed was hard as well. I took the trip one day at a time, hour by hour and did my best to relax and take it easy. No exact advice to give but just keep breathing and try to absorb the positive things you can get from the place where you are like sunshine, warm weather, or a beautiful view. Hugs!
  6. Julester3

    The "L" Word

    I said it first. It was about 8 months into the relationship. I know NG has issues because of his divorce. I don’t feel like I betrayed LH because my brain knows he can’t come back but I do know he’s always with me. Love for me is not a set amount. It grows so I know I am capable of giving love where I choose. NG earned my love his own way just as LH earned my love so many years ago in his. NG felt bad he couldn’t return the words instantly but I assured him it was okay. His own drama and hesitancy was from his failed marriage and from his own mother leaving his dad. His dad raised NG and his sister. I know NG needs consistency and stability and I can provide that infinitely. I’m patient and he was able to return the sentiments to me a few weeks after I did. All is well.
  7. Julester3

    Memory blanket

    I plan to make a quilt for each of my girls when they are ready. Right now they get some comfort wearing his shirts and hoodies and I’m fine with that. There are good services that do these custom works out there for quilts, pillows, or stuffed animals if you are a person who doesn’t sew or doesn’t have the time to.
  8. Julester3

    Went on first coffee date

    I’m happy for you! It’s hard to get out there. It took me a bit over a year to make any effort.
  9. Julester3

    Proud Mom

    Congrats to you and your son! This is a huge milestone. Definitely a sucky proposition for our kids to hit these achievements minus a parent to root them on but it is still a testament how strong and successful they are nevertheless.
  10. Julester3

    Hard day today

    I tried to keep my mind busy so it wouldn’t wander and make me cry mostly. I’d watch tv and crochet at the same time. Listen to music so the house wasn’t silent and then clean things. I’d sit in my hobby room and work in there because it didn’t remind me of my husband. It was my space. It was trial and error for me. The kids went back to school after a week so that kept them busy. They used music and tv as well to fill the silence while they did homework.
  11. Julester3

    No will

    I cried when I got the death certificate. It just reminds you that it really truly happened. Since I was waiting on a full autopsy by the county, I had to wait 90 days to get it so I had to wait 90 days to do any business at all. That sucked. You need to assess exactly what was in his name and find out what the laws are in your state. My husband had no will either however the house and cars were in his name. The cars were easy if you have the title or liens for the titles. I did a small estate affidavit and had to go to the DMV and pay for the transfers. The house however had to go through probate court and where I live you have to wait like 18 months after presenting at court to be sure there is no other possible person to stake a claim but yourself. Our accounts that had his name on it, I was able to change over by going to an office or bank. Just make a list and go through it. Then it will seem less overwhelming. Wait on the bank account last in case any check comes in his name so you can deposit it. I closed all his credit cards and I sent a death certificate to the credit bureaus so no one can use his SS or credit to purchase or open any accounts. Also don’t forget to go to social security for SSI benefits for your kids. They are eligible until they graduate high school. If they turn 18 before they graduate, they just need to turn in a form from the high school their intent to graduate so you can keep receiving SSI until they graduate. You can do this. It’s hard but just take it one task at a time.
  12. Julester3

    When to go back to work

    I waited 3 weeks. I used a week giving the girls time and support before having them go back to school so they could finish their school year. I liked being home for them in those early days since LH worked from home often and would be home already when they got home from school. I also needed the time to process and come to terms initially as I was in shock still. I eventually needed the distraction work could provide on a daily basis and honestly we needed the health insurance I could provide if I worked full time. When I was in a poor triggered state at work, I simply shut my door and waited until I could collect myself. Thank goodness I have an office with a door! I cried plenty the year of firsts while I was at work but I bounced back better being in an environment with people around than I would have sitting in an empty house by myself.
  13. Julester3

    It's been 10 days

    I am sorry for your loss. You need time to process as it is still so early and fresh for you. Many of us know how you feel. My own husband died of a heart attack nearly 3 years ago and he was only 40 years old, 5 weeks short of his 41st birthday. My girls were 12 and 16 when he passed. I used my energy on them the most and then worked on myself. We are now a stronger family unit with redefined rules and boundaries. Read through the site and process. I found that so helpful. Vent whenever you need to. We are good listeners. Hugs to you today!
  14. Julester3

    Sexy Widowed Saturday Night!

    Just returned from spring break trip with the kids. I'm recovering in bed!
  15. Julester3

    Widow for 3 years

    Hugs to you. I’m sorry you are joining us here. It’s hard to keep it all together and moreso with your anxiety and depression to compound things and make life more challenging for you. I hope you have support around you or people to lean on. If you haven’t tried yet, have you considered family grief counseling? It could you help you as a family unit. Please read through and vent as you need. Sometimes it’s hard to talk to people but it’s easy to read our stories and feel a sense of kinship and understanding.
  16. Julester3

    Not sure where to start

    Strength and hugs for you today! It will be hard.
  17. Julester3

    Teen daughter struggling

    It sounds like you have had your hands full. Have you done a full neuropsych evaluation? My eldest had a huge episode of PTSD about a year after her dad died. She was 17. It put her high school years in jeopardy and she went through so much trying to “handle” it herself. She skipped classes, her grades dropped, she wasn’t sleeping well, she was drastically moody. This eval takes all day and it a battery of several tests. It would help you figure out areas to focus. It’s best done with a team your child hasn’t seen so it’s non-biased. We went to a different group than my daughter usually sees. Her issues went beyond grief and when it was addressed and we started medication, she slowly got better. It’s exhausting. The driving, the appointments, the discussions, the emotions, the tears. I maintained my position to be consistent. I told her I can’t fix you. You need to fix yourself. I can only give you the tools and help you need. I can be your rock but you have to do the work and decide to get better. It’s heart breaking and hard but I think for us, it worked. Good luck to you! Hugs!
  18. Julester3

    Widowed on Dec 29, 2018

    I’m 3 years out and my outlook is totally much better now. I try to maintain a more optimistic approach to everything, be positive, and look for the silver linings. Yes my kids are thriving. I can watch a movie and laugh. I can listen to music and sing along rather than cry. I can look at his picture and my heart isn’t throbbing in pain. Can I plan my future? Not so much yet. I need to work on that and I get that and I don’t punish myself for not knowing. Just be there for your kids and be honest with them. You can find your happiness with any combo of hobbies, friends, volunteering, personal projects, your kids, extended family, etc. You can date when you are ready. Just be mindful of your timetable and work in your own pace and what works for you. One thing at a time and don’t let these things make you feel too overwhelmed.
  19. You definitely won’t like Chicago right now. Polar vortex levels of cold with negative degree wind chill. It’s unpleasantly cold. Come on spring! Hurry! Seriously, we all can only take so much garbage before snapping! Hugs nevertheless.
  20. You have really been dealt a poor hand so to say and that sucks and it’s totally not fair. Is there anything we can do? I’m near Chicago.
  21. Julester3

    Frozen in Time

    I’m so sorry Christina. It sounds like you have a coping skill that helps you get through the day but I agree I think you need to just get it out and have that good cry. It hurts like hell but the pressure and relief is so much better than bottling it in. Therapy for an outlet would be a good idea. Also don’t try to rush it. You are aware of what you feel needs to be done but actual processing in your head and heart of the grief and loss takes time that varies for everyone. Hang in there! Hugs today.
  22. Julester3

    Further frustrations

    Just when you think you have a handle on things, things get frustrating again. I finished my probate period on the house. Hello 20 months of BS! I get half of the house and each kid gets 25%. I have to pay out to them if I refinance or sell the house. The lawyer didn’t do the work on the cars so now I have to fill out more paperwork ie small day state affidavit and then the notary I went to said he couldn’t sign it? Never mind no instructions how to fill out that stupid form? Then I got my furnace serviced this morning and it’s declining? The repair is already 1/3 the cost of replacing the whole damn thing but I’m not in the mood to shell out $9k for a new furnace. I know it’s old and it’s only going to get older and less efficient. I hate having to sit here and make these giant decisions by myself! So frustrated! With LH, I know we’d sit and play pros and cons but with the smaller salary that I make and the careful budgeting that I do, this totally sucks. I have to be more careful with how much and what we spend. I’m not sure we will keep the house past my second daughter graduating high school. I will have to downsize but I know I need certain things done to the house to sell it in the future. Le sigh! Thanks for letting me vent.
  23. Julester3

    I'm an orphan

    I’ve already lost both my parents. My older sister took care of the estate when our mom died and we let her take charge. We helped where we could and where she asked us to. It helps if your dad left his important papers together so you can methodically go through accounts and such. For the house, If there is more than you can take on, consider an estate sale company to help you to sell the items within the house. Donate the rest afterwards. It’s a different sadness for sure when it’s your own parents. I hated seeing my own mom deteriorate. Sorry for your loss!
  24. Julester3

    Widowed on Dec 29, 2018

    It’s good to have a support system. But I do agree that everyone’s time tables and journey is different. My girls were older than yours when my LH died of a sudden heart attack. We were both 40 years old. My girls were older 12 and 16. I went back to work 3 weeks later after the funeral. The first few months was just survival mode and trying to motivate myself to do normal things. I was lucky to have a wonderful community who dropped us dinners every weekday from April to June. That helped me as I was numb and I wasn’t ever really hungry so it helped that the meal was right there. I would say the heaviest for me was 6 months-1 year. It just hit me so hard. I had to mourn our dreams and goals and mourn all the things he’d miss with the girls. I journaled to him and it made a huge difference helping me simply accept it. As I often tell my kids, we don’t have to get over it but we need to accept it so we can move forward. Little by little, things do get better. You find little joys life and that is huge. The first time I could watch a movie and laugh? It’s progress. You learn to live again and you need to find things that help fill your time so you can keep busy. It’s a powerful tool against idle time and hijacking sadness. Be gentle to yourself, cut yourself some slack, try group grief therapy as it’s good to help teach the younger kids how to cope and incorporate little strategies so they can keep a piece of their mom with them. Talk and vent as you need to. Read older posts as they can be super helpful. We’re all here to listen though it’s quiet. Hugs and sorry for your loss. We know how it feels.
  25. Julester3

    On line dating vents and laughs......

    Wow, that's a small world there Paul! What are the chances of that?

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