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Pssst.....wanna know a secret?


Pam

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If you tell people you are "ok", they will leave you alone.

I've learned this in the last two months.....

After my dad passed away on Oct 27 and I returned to work, I noticed how people either looked away or wouldn't bring it up, maybe they were uncomfortable and didn't know what to say...whatever. But then when they got the courage to say "How are you doing?" - if I answered honestly by saying "terrible - I hurt - I feel like my insides are bleeding - I miss him so much I don't want to face life without him - it's so unfair" they got uncomfortable and blurted out something stupid....(Ok so maybe I'm being too hard on them, but some things they said bothered me - the worst thing of all was "Get over it - be glad it wasn't one of your kids."')

Most people expected you to be fine and carry on and be the same person you were before.

But I will never be the same person I was before. I will always be in pain, I feel like I will always be angry, I feel cheated out of life with him, he was cheated out of so many things, why didn't treatment work, why didn't we catch it sooner, wasn't there something else we could have done, did we do something wrong, it was so awful to see him in so much pain and not be able to help him....

People ask how was my christmas. I want to say - it was awful. I cried, my mom cried, we went to the cemetery and cried, there was a huge vacant spot in our lives and we couldn't swallow a bite to eat because of the lump in our throats....my 3 year old son went up to Grampa's picture and said "Come back Grampa - you are gone so long - come back Grampa - is he done with the angels yet Mama? can we go see him in heaven now Mama?" ....and we cried some more.

But people out there don't want to hear this.

So it's just easier to say I'm ok and keep walking.

Sorry I'm so down and out tonight. It's been an awful year.

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Pam,

I'm fairly new to this site but I just read your post and had to reply. The comment about your son just broke my heart. It's probably what everybody is thinking inside. I'm sure this must be a tough,tough time of year. Lean on the people here for support. They are wonderful as you know. Prayers for you and your family .....

Jess

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Pam,

I may say I do know how you feel, I lost all my family some

years ago, all to different sickness and now I lost my husband

to LC, 2 1/2 months ago, and the If..If..If.. are there all the time,

can't chase them away, they stick around.

I am alone, no family, no friend near, not even a job I could

put my mind to and try to forget.

The only people I see in a day are clerks in stores or waitresses

in restaurant, I am days without speaking to a single person,

it is more than lonely.

My solution is to talk to myself and to Mike as he would be still here

and make him still a part of my life, CRAZY, sure and proud of it,

it is my pain, my life and I will do it my way.

And I also have cancer so, I may not have to worry too much

about the future, my past was with Mike.

When people ask me ''How are you doing ?''

I always answer ''Marvelous and you ?''

So end of the conversation, they do not know how I feel and could

not understand so better cut it short.

I have a silver wee urn on a chain, with some ashes from Mike

around my neck and the big urn on a table, so in my crazy way

he is still here with me, to stay.

We each have our way to deal with the loss of a love one, we

have to find a level of pain we can live with.

Even if that pain will never go away, we have to go on and

cherish all the memories we have.

I only have myself to answer to, you have your son, that is very

hard but I am sure you will find words to soothe his pain and keep

the memories of your father alive for him.

Love to you and your son.

J.C.

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Pam,

I know what you are saying. I do agree. Most don't want to know how you are "really" doing. They just want to make it seems like life is totally wonderful and you need to get back on the band wagon.

I too don't always tell people how I am feeling. I have found this to be the safest place to let my true feelings out. There are so many here who have gone through what you are going through right now.

I just tell people the truth and that I would rather not discuss it with them if I don't feel they understand. Especially those that tell me it is time to "get on" with life. I am "getting on" with life in my terms. So to those that don't understand or have the idea they "know" what you are going through, even though we both know they don't. I just don't discuss it with them.

But you are right, the easiest way is to just tell them, I am fine. My close friends know what "fine" means. They smile, give me a hug, and let it go at that.

Thank you for joining us on the board.

Much love and hugs to you.

Shirley

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Oh Pam,

Your post just brings tears to my eyes. I am so sorry, for you, for me and for everyone who had to face this Christmas without a special loved one with them. I also get stressed dealing people in general. I was annoyed at my siblings over the holidays who seemed to be full of their talk about an upcoming cruise, whether or not they spent too much time with their spouses (while I was wishing I could spent even one more second with mine), how it was so nice that my sister's husband was retired and available to brush snow off of her car and drive her to work so she never had to get in a cold car anymore..... I found myself getting quieter and quieter with nothing to add to the conversation and wishing I could escape. Later at home I was telling my son about the whole thing and told him I wasn't sure exactly what I expected of people around me. What ARE they supposed to say or not say? I mean, can I honestly expect people to stop talking about being married or their lives because I don't have a husband or much of a life anymore? I'm just not sure what I really do expect. Of course that doesn't excuse the absolutely insensitive remarks that it seems we all get. I can't tell you how many people have reminded me that I am still young and can have another relationship - that just really makes me angry and the fact that they say it so soon after he died makes me consider it an insult to Hugh and I and what we had. It seems someone says "get over it" or something similar at least 3 times each week. I realized a while ago if I said I was okay and kept walking that people left me alone and it at least meant I didn't have to listen to insensitive advice. I also find that when I say okay and they say "good" as they fly by that I am annoyed because I am not okay or fine and somewhere inside me I just think they should know this.

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It has been an awful year and I know exactly what you are talking about! My co-workers don't even ask me how I am anymore, they just ignore the worst thing that ever happened to me in my life.

It's tough, and it bites, and I don't have a single bit of information to help you other than to let you know I understand, you are not alone, and next year can only be better- even if only a bit.

HUGS-

Love,

Katie

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Pam, we understand!

After my husband's death, people would ask me "So, how are you?"

What I wanted to answer is "I am heartbroken, devastated and in the worst pain I've even known because I have lost my partner, friend, family, lover and my future. How do you think I feel?"

Instead I would say "Oh fine" and I could hear the relief in their voices at hearing this. They didn't want to hear my pain.

The worst comments I got were from people I thought were friends. One said "Well, everyone has to die sometime." And "Now you can come and live downtown - after all, you're free now." (Free????)

Another friend asked why I was not looking foreward to Christmas. I was stupified at first, but mentioned that maybe the fact that I was alone in the world had some bearing on that feeling.

She said "Oh, I know what you mean. Sometimes Peter (her husband) has to work on Christmas and I am alone." What do you say to this??

I cut these people out of my life without hesitation. I no longer tolerate anyone who brings me down, or is totally negative or dismissive.

Friends are people who are on your side. And we should not have to apologize for being down, or for crying. Sometimes just a little sympathy can do wonders.

But no one who has not been where we are can understand. It's not their faults, so a board like this where we ARE understood is such a relief to come to.

I wish you all peace for the New Year.

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