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emotions mixed together


JoniRobertWilson

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I have found it barbaric that I have been able to get out of bed, shower and "take care of business". How awful am I? I had to go plan my husbands funeral, buy a burial plot, visit with friends/coworkers/family. I just keep going. How ridiculous - shouldn't I be in bed getting to cry, getting to mourn Robert. I'm being comforted by a lot of people and those I need comfort from aren't giving me comfort. That's sucha long story that I can't even post it. I feel like I have to walk on egg shells with some people to salvage their feelings, you know the ones, the ones who think they were so important to Robert now that he is gone? The ones I'd like to say "go away" you remind me of the hurt your caused him? But I can't because my husband held his tongue while he was alive, I'll learn to hold mine for him. That isn't easy.

I'm trying to plan the most beautiful funeral. The words won't be hard because he truly was wonderful. Why does cancer hit such good people? I don't understand, never will. My faith is still strong, I know Robert is with God but that doesn't mean I'm happy with God right now for taking him. I'm so afraid of what his death means. I keep wondering, did God take Robert first so he wouldn't have to bear the loss of Alex and he's getting ready to take my son too? That is haunting me. Is that normal? Most of you have been through this. Help. Is this right? Isn't it revolting that I sstill get to breathe and walk this earth and I wasn't 1/2 the person my husband was?

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Joni,

You are experiencing things the way I did, so I have to say it is all normal. I couldn't believe that I was able to sit around with the rest of the family and make final arrangements and visit with friends and family that just kept dropping in. I was even a little ashamed at myself. But now that I look back on it, I was only doing what was expected and I now know that I was in shock. Real shock. I think that is probably the body's way of dealing with such emotional distress. Because of the shock I was able to do the things that were expected. The tears came when all was quiet and usually when I was alone. Driving, alone in a car, is still an ordeal! But what you are feeling is normal. May you find some peace and comfort in these days ahead.

Kris

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Dear Joni,

It has to be normal because I know exactly how you feel..You know the saying 'We do what we have to do", I think that goes into play when it comes to arranging a funeral.. I was lucky I didnt do any of it I have 5 other siblings that did it, while I sat home with my mom..

I also know about the people who are not there for you emotionally, that you thought would be there..Its so hard Joni, I know..I am at a lost for words right now, cant seem to find them..I just wanted you to know I care..

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Joni

It really is shock that is keeping your legs moving even though they feel wooden. It really is shock that allows you to go about the things that need to be done because you are the person who needs to do it. I am so sorry for the pain you must feel and the abandonment, too. That happens. Just do what you think Robert would want you to do about the people.

As for the fear about Alex. That is so normal. After all, he was what you have left, of Robert and of your life. And you are so close to the loss and so devastated that the fear of it is so great. How could you feel any different now? It will lessen with time. I wish I could say it goes away totally, but I can't.

Joni, I hope you have the dearest of friends and family members to hold you up when you feel you can't stand.

I wish you peace, fortitude and comfort, wherever you can find it.

love

elaine

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It is normal.

I rememeber it felt like I was in a slow dream...I was SO aware of my movements and each and every thing I did....It's like you wake up and go wash your face and you are in slow motion and you can almost hear the na-na-na-na-naaaaaaaa (bionic man sounds) of every movement, whilst in the back of your mind your saying (me here)

"....dad's dead, he's gone, he died, yesterday he stopped breathing, he's gone, it's over, where is he, he's dead, dad's dead, oh god dad's dead...."

and your sick to your stomach that life is still moving all around you and that you have to do things that everyone else does, "don't they know, for crying out loud, that the greatest person in the world just died?"

Oh sweetie, I'm so sorry. to answer you, you're not losing it, it's all so normal and we have been there to some degree or another.

I don't know what it feels like to lose my love, my husband...but I understand grieving, and I am here if you need a friend. We all are.

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I remember after mom died the sky was so blue that day and the cars were going past the house. I kept thinking HOW can they just drive by acting like the world had not stopped!! I remember going thru the motions and at the funeral my STEP sister showed up crying! She had not called or seen my mom for 2 yrs. I held my tongue because that was what my mom would of wanted. I wanted to tell her she was not in moms will so she need not put on the show. Oh well, have not seen her since and that has been 10 yrs.

You will feel this way for awhile, I am sure it is normal, you lost your best friend, everything is different now. He would want you to breath and keep on going. Prayers are with you.

Love Cindy

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Joni, I'm so sorry you have to go through this. I'll give you my perspective, for what it's worth. I think you go through the expected motions because your loss is so incredibly deep and profound that it would feel like an invasion of privacy to show it in front of others. There is a private world between a husband and wife in love that no one -- not even their children -- can really be a part of. You guard that world and the aching loss of your soulmate because it is too precious to let anyone else share it. They do not understand. They were not part of it. It was a place only you and Robert shared.

You will grieve with your son for the loss of the father and leader of the family, and together you will grieve the wound to your family. You will grieve with friends for the loss of a friend. You will grieve with his parents for the loss of a son, and with siblings for the loss of a brother. But no one can grieve with you for the loss of your soulmate, best friend, lover. The only person who could share that loss with you is Robert, and he's not there.

When everything settles, you will grieve privately. And I believe with all my heart you will feel Robert comforting you.

My heart aches for you. Be good to yourself.

Pam

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(((Joni))) When Dad died, I saved a poem in my electronic journal that reminds me of what you all are saying. I kept repeating it over and over in my head. I felt just like you did Cindy. How can everyone just keep on going...why hasn't the whole world stopped????

I apologize for its darkness. Here's the W.H. Auden poem:

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,

Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,

Silence the pianos and with muffled drum

Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead

Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead.

Put crepe bows round the white necks of public doves,

Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West.

My working week and my Sunday rest,

My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;

I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;

Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;

Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;

For nothing now can ever come to any good.

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Joni....I understand how you feel and what you are experiencing right now. I was also amazed at how efficiently I was able to make arrangements and plans when Dennis died. This is only my opinion, but, I believe I had been making those plans in my mind and preparing myself for Dennis' death since the day of his diagnosis. For nine months, I lived with the words.....inoperable.....uncureable.....treatable to buy some time. I also remember the answer to "How Much Time"? Maybe 1 year if we are lucky!!! So, from that day on I began preparing myself for the worst. Of course, I hoped and prayed for the best...a miracle at minimum. But, in my heart I knew I had to be ready to say goodbye and I knew I had to be stronger than I had ever been before. I don't think I could have handled all the formalities as well as I did if the news of Dennis' death had come by surprise. I could never have dealt with things as car accidents or sudden heart attacks. Dealing with a "death sentence" for nine months was a terrible thing, but it gave me time to prepare myself for the things to come. Dennis had always fixed everything around the house and with the cars. During the end of his illness, Dennis was so sick and in such pain that all this responsibility fell on my shoulders. I began making decisions and taking care of matters I had never dealt with before. God also gives us a built in mechanism commonly referred to as "shock." This lasts longer with some people than others. It is this state that helps you deal with much that is going on in your life right now. When this is gone, the emotions that you are expecting will surface. And YES.....it is completely normal to have these thoughts and worries regarding your son. I pray that you will continue to be strong...for both you and your son!!!

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Oh Joni, my heart breaks for you. I think you are behaving perfectly n ormal. You know what has to be done, and you are doing it. You know you have to make the arrangements asnd take care of business for your son. You are one strong lady !! I don;t know what else to say. I just am heart broken for you

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Joni -

They're all right. It is shock. You may not really believe that now. I didn't recognize that I was in shock until it started wearing off. And a big part of my reactions was also how can the world be going on? Don't they know the universe has stopped?

I'm sure you will be experiencing many emotions and all of them are normal. Grief is different for each person, but as you can read, we all seem to have a lot of feelings and reactions that are similar.

Wishing you more peace each day.

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I understand more than I want to how you are feeling. I think the first concern these next few days is to honor Robert. I had my WWBD bracelet made during the few days between Becky's death and the funeral. And believe me, soon enough you will alone. I would not hold anyone's inabilty to comfort you against them. After all, the fact that Robert is gone isn't going to change, and it will be a while before you allow yourself any kind of comfort. I know in the immediate few days, I thought, how can I be moping about when there are plans to make to honor Becky.

The one time I got really angry was not when noone else seemed to be mourning, but the whole air of tragedy around Ronald Reagan passing. All of the breast pounding and wailing seemed a little out of place for a man who passed peacefully into death after a long illness with nothing left to give. You want tragedy? My exhibit is a 31 year old math professor, two years into a promising career, with a four year old girl and thousands of future students to take care of. Who should we be lowering the flags for? I know Becky never did anything as big as what Reagan did, but I also know Reagan could never have done what Becky could have with a reprieve.

I also know the nervousness about Alex. I found a great house here in San Antonio when we were moving, but I finally couldn't get it because a smoker lived there before. And so even if the doctors told me it was safe after repainting and recarpeting, yada yada, I just didn't think I could ever feel safe having Katie there.

Curtis

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Joni,

I know I sent you a PM but I keep coming back to your post. I feel your pain. As others have said, what you are thinking/feeling is very normal. Most of us who have gone through this understand only too well what you are having to deal with. The people you would rather not see, those you thought would be your rocks are no where to be found. I have to agree with what Ann wrote, you start planning in the back of your mind that this is something you are going to have to do. I know when we found out about Randy, I did certain things hoping they would not be needed but I felt I needed to take care of business while I could with a clear head. Then the suddenness of his death left me reeling. All the things you have to do to plan a funeral/celebration are sometimes overwhelming. You ask yourself are you doing what he would have wanted me to do. There are no answers to that. I know I have never had to plan a funeral and all the details were almost unreal. But I think that doing this keeps us moving because it is something that we have to do for our loved ones. It is one thing we have control of at the moment. When the funeral is over, you will have the time to grieve. You will pull yourself together because of Alex. Even so, when the lights are out and Alex is sleeping, you will grieve. Your loss is profound. You will survive this, and in time, the pain eases. It never goes away, but it eases and there will be a new norm. Be kind to yourself. It is okay to feel the way you do now and probably will in the coming weeks and months. Come back when you feel the need to vent, to share special things that others would not understand, to get the support, love, and acceptance that we all have for you here.

Alex and you are so in my thoughts and prayers. I pray God gives you comfort at this very sad time in your life.

Shirleyb

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I am so sorry for your loss. I really am. I hate this disease and what it brings. I hate that it robs people of the love they so desperately need. My husband died just 4 months ago. He fought as hard as he could but lost the battle after 22 months. I know exactly what you are saying about preparing things and managing things. It seems ridiculous to be efficient at a time like this but something inside you wants to make sure the funeral is as perfect as they were. Grace is what keeps us going and shock is the human side of your energy right now. Please take care of your self and Alex and know that I am here. We are all here for you if you need us. Just ask.

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Joni,

I understand what you are feeling exactly. My 1st husband and I were married a few months short of ten years when at age 29 he was killed in a car accident. I remember the police coming to my house to tell me. I found myself in the bath tub the next morning knowing people would be coming and I needed to look good and be clean. As I was in the bath, I questioned myself "What are you doing taking a bath when your husband just died?" I couldnt imagine doing anything but laying in our bed and just wailing crying but I didnt. We had a son who was 6 yrs old and another son who was just 8 months old. I knew that no matter what I wanted or felt I needed to do, what I had to do was to go on for our sons. My 8 month old still needed his diaper changed, he still needed to be fed etc and it was I that needed to do it. My older son needed things also but was more self sufficent. I spent that whold day taking care of my children, talking with people on the phone , visiting with people that came to the house and not once did I cry.

My Mother was living in Florida at the time and I was in Massachusetts. She had arranged for a flight that day and it wasent until I opened the door to her that I fell apart. It was all real then. We went through the motions of planning his funeral, talking to clergy, ordering flowers etc and I was mostly okay. At his funeral there were just tons of people that came and I dont remember crying then either. I thought to myself what are they thinking? She isent even crying.

It was shock, It all took its course and when the tears came they came in a storm. My Mother stayed for 2 weeks and I flew back with her as my Brother was giving up his job to move to Massachusetts to live with me and help me. My youngest was sick while I was there and I had him in the ER 3 times. I kept thinking "Dont you dare take my son too!!" Yes, I was mad at God and could not understand why he would take a man of 29 yrs old and leave a 28 yr old widow with 2 young children. I talked to the clergy about this. I am sure this is the one and only time I questioned God. I was told that God does not take anyone. What happens on this Earth happens and God is there to take us to Heaven. I believe that wholeheartidly (sp) God is Good. He does not take innocent children or good men and woman. People follow the normal course of life and things happen. God is there to lift them to Heaven.

I know this post is long but I knew it would be when I started it. It just hits to close to home. David ( my 1st husband) died in 1982. 22 years ago and I still miss him. My sons still miss him and wish they had had him throughout their years. BTW my youngest son did get better on the drive home to Massachusetts. I was so relieved. I have 2 wonderful sons and a husband now that I love with all my heart. He is my soul mate. It does not mean I dont still love David or that I dont still miss him. I do and always will. Time heals all wounds. We go on because we must. I am sorry you are where you are right now because I know how painful that is. My prayers are with you and your son Alex.

God Bless You Both,

Jane

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Joni,

I must confess that I saw your first post about Robert shortly after you put it up, but I just stared at it and shook my head, with yet again more tears. I just shut off my computer and didn't come back to post until tonight. Joni, there are no words that are adequate. When someone on this board loses a spouse or has a spouse that is not doing well, I just kind of freeze and find myself speechless. It's something that my brain says to not listen to, but my heart says to respond. I don't know if that makes sense, but it's the only way I can think of to say that I know what you are feeling, yet, how can I? I haven't felt it myself, so how can I possibly know what you are going through? I guess it's because even though I haven't "been there" physically, I've "been there" mentally.

You're right about having to do all the planning for the funeral. It seems like you should just be able to curl up in your bed and cry for three days before you even have to think about getting up and talking to ANYBODY. Unfortunately, that isn't the way it works. I often think those first few days after a death that we are kind of numb. If we weren't "numb", I just don't think we would be able to get through the planning, socializing, talking and playing the "word games" with all the visitors.

Joni, I'm rambling. I just want you to know that you have been on my mind all week, as well as all the others that are hurting this week: TBone, Ginny, Earl, Cheryl, Jerrye's Mom, Dave, etc., etc., etc. I'm so overwhelmed with compassion and caring, but so helpless to ease your or their pain.

Again, I am so sorry for your loss.

Much Love,

Peggy

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Joni.

Here is a poem by Emily Dickenson that talks about what your are experiencing. After my Dad died, I really understood this poem in a much deeper way. Hope it helps.

love

elaine

After Great Pain

After great pain, a formal feeling comes--

The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs--

The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore,

And Yesterday, or Centuries before?

The Feet, mechanical, go round--

Of Ground, or Air, or Ought--

A Wooden way

Regardless grown,

A Quartz contentment, like a stone--

This is the Hour of Lead--

Remembered, if outlived,

As Freezing persons recollect the Snow--

First - Chill - then Stupor - then the letting go

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Joni,

My heart goes out to you. I have watched my mother-in-law go through losing the love of her life this last year and she still voices questions like yours now and then aloud and most likely more often in her own heart and mind. It is a year from the day we learned of his mets to the brain and she said that from that day and even up to the day he passed away she still couldn't comprehend her world without him. She didn't think he'd really leave. Joni, as everyone else mentioned you are in that shock phase right now. Please just remember that there is no "right way" to do anything except for what feels right to you. Finding the support you need after some time may come best from a "grieving" group. A friend of mine who lost her husband at the age of 22 said that helped her a ton and my mother-in-law will be starting to go to one next month. My prayers are with you and your family.

Karen M.

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Joni,

Its normal... I am so sorry that your going through all of this,,, not to mention all the drama from other people you mentioned. Yes, keep your mouth shut to them if thats what Robert would have done. I hope your feeling better soon, were here for you if you need us...

Jamie

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When Johnny died I had no real part in the arrangements. His sons took care of all of that because we were not married. I did however speak at his memorial service. It was the hardest thing I had ever done but I did it. I felt like I was in a long tunnel and no one could see me. My whole world ended but everyone else went on with their lives and it seemed so unfair, so unreal. I know that I was in shock. Sometimes I think that I am still in shock.

As for those that you wish would just go away I know only too well how you feel. In my case it was Johnny's kids. The whole time that I was caring for him alone and the times that he was in the hospital they had no time for either of us. They showed no concern but on the day he died that all changed. They took over everything and mine and Johnny's wishes were ignored. I was very angry at them for a while and even now I have days when I want to lash out at them. That does no one any good however. I just think that they had to lose him before they reallized what a treasure they had had in him.

I too was angry at God for taking him. I was so sure that my prayers were being answered and when he died I felt betrayed by my faith. It has taken me a very long time to get past so many things and some things I still struggle with every day. I have regained my faith and it is stronger than ever. I have just come to believe that God does answer prayers and gives us the tools to do our part but not everyone does and our prayers turn out to have a different ending. In my case there are spacifics that I missed and things that others failed. There were also things done that should never have been done. In General mankind has failed to use the tools that God has given us. Maybe someday everyone will see the pain and devistation this monster causes and then an all out effort will be started to find a cure. Until then we just have to do the best we can with what God gives us and hope that it is enough too see His miracle come to pass for the ones we love who fight this beast.

You are so new to this and it breaks my heart for you. It has been over a year and a half but I can still see and feel the torment of those first few days and weeks. May God hold you in his hands and give you some measure of comfort. Lillian

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