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  1. Jess

    Phoenix Area

    Road trip? 😁
  2. Jess

    Phoenix Area

    East Valley for me. But happy to go anywhere in the valley.
  3. Jess

    Phoenix Area

    I am always down.
  4. Jess

    Curious as to why this board is so quiet

    I am locking this per the OP's request.
  5. Jess

    Curious as to why this board is so quiet

    As a reminder, any time someone is bothered by a post they can report it to us. Each report is discussed by the moderator team and acted on accordingly, whether it is privately speaking to someone about their post, issuing a warning, or letting the reporter know that we do not feel moderator action is warranted with an explanation of why we came to that conclusion. We love this community and volunteer our time to support it the best we can. While at least one moderator is online every single day, this doesn't mean that we will always catch every time someone says something that could be out of line nor are we interested in being heavy handed and stopping disagreements that the community can resolve organically. That said, a disagreement and trolling behavior are two separate things, and the latter is what should be reported to us if you see it so we can determine how we think it should be handled.
  6. Jess

    Passed three years

    You absolutely, positively do not have to rush it. Waiting until it feels right is really important, and I think that timeframe can vary greatly from person to person. Even though all of us are here because we lost our partners, we are grieving our individual relationships so it does truly mean huge things like that will be at your own pace. For me, the tipping point was realizing I didn't have enough space for a combined household of stuff and that in reality, my LH had his own bedroom and we needed that space. I was so used to just not going into that room it almost became not real to me... something I could ignore to deal with another day. Then, suddenly one day it just felt like TIME. I have made decisions on a lot, but still struggle with some things, but sometimes I find what I cannot face a decision on one day is something I am ready to decide about a few days or weeks later. Something I have also done that has made it easier it set aside a specific amount of room for the really cherished items. I keep them in a cabinet and also plan to have a plastic bin of things I want to keep but don't want in the cabinet.
  7. Jess

    Passed three years

    I haven't totally figured out the third person for myself either! Always a work in progress, and it is scary pretty much every day. Yet every day I survive it and learn a little bit more about who she is and who I want her to be.
  8. Jess

    Wedding Dress

    So I have been working on getting up the nerve to do something with my dress. Based on a suggestion from someone here a while back, I had decided to donate it for use as an angel dress, which is a funeral dress for infants. Unfortunately, my recent searches now that I am feeling more ready have shown that a lot of the local places that do this are backfilled with dresses and they aren't currently accepting donations. It is a wonderful problem for them to have, but it means I have to rethink what I want to do with it. I have considered donation for someone that can't afford a dress, but part of me has this little superstitious feeling that maybe the thing is cursed. I know it is silly, but still.
  9. I just passed three years last week. I have been thinking a lot about me before being widowed, me just after being widowed, and me now. It is like three different people cut from a similar cloth but so very different. Before being widowed, I was very naive and had no idea. I believed in sure things. I was a planner. I got upset over meaningless nothings and although I would try not to hold grudges, I still would. I didn't have a lot of focus on my career because I felt my main purpose was supporting my husband and his important work. I felt loved, secure, and happy in our marriage... and then he was gone. Just after being widowed, I thankfully am very fuzzy on the details, but I do remember some things. I wished for death to come find me the way it found Joe. I'd fantasize about jets crashing into my house, a rogue meteor deciding my living room was a proper landing area. I didn't eat and lived on protein shakes. It took me about four months to stop sleeping on the couch and start sleeping in my bed. I made a return to work after three weeks, but I couldn't really do my job in any capacity for a few more months. I would try to watch a 30 minute tv show and it would take me three tries to do it. Time stretched on so long and far it felt like it took a week to live a single day. The idea of continuing to excruciatingly tick off time just waiting for the world to be done with me felt far worse than death. Through the support of friends, including many here, eventually time returned to its normal pace. I decided that this new life I never wanted had to mean something, and I kept coming back to something Joe would say when posed with a choice: "I just want you to be happy". So, as impossible as it was, that is what I set out to do. Simply find some way to be happy. I began to think about my career in a way I hadn't before and have gotten promoted. By all accounts, I'm doing really great at my new role, which I have now been in for a year. There's some exciting possibilities on the horizon on that front and I am scared as hell, but also feeling ready. I had to move households because I couldn't afford the home we had together. The new place is smaller, but chopped about 30 minutes off of my commute so it is a good thing. I am slowly making my way through Joe's stuff and selling or donating it as I decide is fitting. I am getting close to having a third bedroom in my home instead of boxes stacked floor to ceiling. Although that work is hard, it makes me feel lighter each time I make an actual decision. A few days after being widowed, I told people I would never look for anyone to be in my life again. The pain was just too much. Turns out, despite me not looking, I did find someone, and we have a wonderful life together where we do our best to remember that every moment is important. Joe and I never were successful having kids, but I now am bonus mom to a wonderful 19 year old that I love as much as if I raised her. So, when I think about whether or not I have been successful in being happy, I have to say yes. The sad days don't go away altogether. A few times a week when I drive to work I let my mind drift and usually emit a single sob before pulling it together and walking into the office to throw myself into continuing to build my career. Other days I give it permission to wash over me more and live in the hazy sadness of just missing a wonderful guy, but those days are getting fewer and farther in between. I remember being so terrified of forgetting him, especially since shock did a number on me in the beginning and I had trouble conjuring up simple details about him. Things started coming back and sometimes still will come back, more often than not making me smile. If you made it this far in my ramblings, thank you for taking the time and humoring me as I type out a lot of the things that have been on my mind.
  10. Jess

    Do you go to church?

    I am an agnostic so I pretty much know I do not know. I wish sometimes I could be sure there is God and heaven as it would bring me great comfort to know LH is happy instead of simply gone, but I have never been able to give myself over to faith. There are too many questions I have that no one can answer to my satisfaction, but I also cannot take the leap in the other direction to say billions of people that believe in God in whatever form are just plain wrong. Lacking faith has had its upsides and downsides for me. For the upsides, I didn't have a struggle with faith to accompany my grief. I didn't have to ask myself why God would take such a good man nor did I have to try to understand his plan. For downsides, I didn't have community to help me and support me. I do not have the comfort of being sure there is an afterlife. I lacked the cornerstone of faith many have said grounded them. Many tried to comfort me with saying he is in a better place or other sorts of religious statements that brought me no comfort at all.
  11. Jess

    Radio Hell - Ninth Level

    Glad you left my old picture up! Also listening.
  12. Jess

    Facing another loss

    So heartbroken for you.
  13. Jess

    My niece that had the double lung transpant

    Love this! Thank you for the update! Blessings to your family.
  14. Jess

    Phoenix Area

    Sounds great, let me know when and where... or if you need help picking a place.
  15. My husband died suddenly as well so we'd never talked about it. There was no point as we were happy together and we're going to grow old together. I kept coming back to something he would say all the time: "I just want you to be happy." I decided I didn't think death would change one of his fundamental desires for me. Being happy wouldn't necessarily mean he wanted me to find someone, but it meant I need to make decisions and choices that were towards the goal of being happy. I do my best to do that.

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