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A place to learn, mingle, and share

This room is for those who have lost a spouse and need support or who can provide support to those who have.

Saint Paula is the patron saint of widows and Saint Stephen is the patron saint of deacons
Learn More: Saint Stephen and Saint Paula

Jan 19th 2013 new

(Quote) Tracy-929496 said: I wish I could express myself as well as you all have in the previous posts. I agree with almost ...
(Quote) Tracy-929496 said:

I wish I could express myself as well as you all have in the previous posts. I agree with almost everything said. I don't want one more person asking me, "How are you doing?", "You sure seem to be doing much better than I would be doing", "What are your plans for the Garden Center?" (the family business we've owned and ran for twenty years)...yet, if they DIDN'T ask, then I would feel slighted, as if they didn't care or were afraid my response would make them feel uncomfortable. I found a safe and honest answer is, "That's an easy question with a complicated answer."

The overwhelming grief at losing Paul physically hurts. He lost his battle with kidney cancer Nov. 3. We have three married daughters, an adult son, a 14 year old daughter home with me and seven grandchildren. Plus, countless extended family , friends, our church and the entire community of Loogootee who respected, admired and loved Paul. Our lives are all richer and blessed by knowing Paul. Our world is much lonelier and quieter now without him (he LOVED to talk - in person and on his ever-ringing cell phone, which he was buried with). I usually can express myself better when writing and I hope to find a safe, caring outlet here on this site with others who can identify with my painful loss.

Another reason I joined catholicmatch.com was because Paul insisted that I remain active, keep old and make new friends, and find a good Christian man to share my life with. He always looked out and cared for me in ways big and small. Simply taking the trash out the first time was a jarring wake-up call that the thousands of details he saw to each day, now, would not get done unless I did them myself.

In his typical, unselfish loving concern, he insisted that none of us 'get mad at God', if he was not healed here on earth, but only after death in heaven. He said we see our life's journey in a limited way, as if on a 8"TV screen. God is standing behind us viewing our lives on a huge, giant TV screen...He sees the BIG picture...we must trust Him that all is according to God's Divine Providence, for the good of our souls and that there is a reason why some are taken home to heaven and others are left to continue their mission on earth. OF COURSE we can be sad, cry, question 'why?', even beat the walls with our fists! Even Jesus cried when His friend Lazarus died.

My faith in God's promises and goodness has been bruised, but not destroyed. Prayers and grace sustain me. It's a miracle I have not gone insane with grief, but went right back to our store one week after Paul's funeral. Thank God I have this place to focus on and go to each day that we shared, worked together side-by-side with our kids for so many years and dearly loved. Paul did want me to be alone, so he has given me a beautiful gift and his blessing to accept the love of another man that God may send me one day. Thank you, dear.

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Tracy,

I think you wrote that beautifully. Biggest of hugs. To all of us here who have lost someone so dear. The physical pain you speak of was one of the most shocking aspects, and even worse I literally felt as if the left side of my body had been amputated and was merely like an empty gelatinous shell, its so hard to explain, but it was like being ripped asunder. It's just now starting to fill filled in and solid. but my heart still hurts everyday at some point.

I am so happy that you were able to talk to your husband and that he was able to share the things he did with you. Pete and I had talked a lot about everything and one day a few months before we had talked about what we would do if one or the other of us passed away. Pete said he would never marry again, he married once and that was me, but he might have a girlfriend lol. I told him that I knew as long as the kids were still at home I wouldn't remarry, but once they were grown I wasn't sure. I know he would want me to be happy and I don't think he would want me to sit at home and pine for him. But, because he didn't actually say to me, I think you should remarry or I think you still have a lot of love to share and should remarry, etc. . . I have felt a little uncertain about it. I finally joined the site because I came to the decision that I have always known I was called to married life. I had thought that would be Pete for a long time. And, I want to share my life with another person. I want to laugh. I want to touch. And, I think Pete would approve if I make a good choice :-). It's just so hard. And, I don't want to compare another person to Pete, I want to be able to meet them on their own terms and know them that way, not as an attempt to replace Pete. So I want to take it very slow and get to know the person as a friend and see what develops.

My mother told me the day or two after that I was young and I would remarry. I nearly fell over and said how can you say that. You never remarried, my grandmother's never remarried my aunt, so why would I be the one to remarry. She just patted my hand. And then a friend of mine said, you know there is a study that shows that people who were happy in marriage, who had a good view of marriage, were often the ones to remarry and to do so sometimes more swiftly than people expect.

I am sorry I didn't mean to hijack this lol. I just wanted you to know Tracy that I thought your post was beautiful and I am happy that you were given that gift of time with your husband to be able to talk about those things, as difficult and heartbreaking as it can be I firmly believe that being present with a person as they pass into the next life is one of the greatest gifts we can have, as great as being their at their birth. Big hugs and know I am thinking about you, I am thinking about all of you and your loss and wish peace and love and healing for each of you.

Lauren

Jan 26th 2013 new

I'd like to thank everyone who posted their thoughts and experiences here. My daughter was widowed just two weeks ago and I've been struggling with ways to help her. She has two young children and although she has always been very much in control and an organizer, she now seems lost and frail. Thank you for your prayers. I know it'll help her on her new journey.
Sue

Jan 26th 2013 new
(Quote) Sue-370457 said: I'd like to thank everyone who posted their thoughts and experiences here. My daughter was widowed just two ...
(Quote) Sue-370457 said:

I'd like to thank everyone who posted their thoughts and experiences here. My daughter was widowed just two weeks ago and I've been struggling with ways to help her. She has two young children and although she has always been very much in control and an organizer, she now seems lost and frail. Thank you for your prayers. I know it'll help her on her new journey.
Sue

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Prayers for you and your daughter and her children
Jan 26th 2013 new
A similar situation I know one person got control of the food/meal donations and a plan was made that an ice chest was left on the front porch where each person contributed a meal for ? (ever how many in the family), if no one was home the meal could be put into the ice chest. What the meal was and any instructions with the name of the donator was on the meal. This worked great. Going out and joining the world again was the most difficult. Even something simple as an invite to pick the person or family up for Mass, stop for coffee afterwards maybe.
Jan 26th 2013 new

I should have added... one meal a day.

Jan 26th 2013 new

(Quote) Sue-370457 said: I'd like to thank everyone who posted their thoughts and experiences here. My daughter was wido...
(Quote) Sue-370457 said:

I'd like to thank everyone who posted their thoughts and experiences here. My daughter was widowed just two weeks ago and I've been struggling with ways to help her. She has two young children and although she has always been very much in control and an organizer, she now seems lost and frail. Thank you for your prayers. I know it'll help her on her new journey.
Sue

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Big hugs for you and your daughter. It is heartbreaking and devastating. Just be there, tell her you love her, hug her. If she can't make a decision right now, take care of it for her. She will get a little stronger every day. Most of all tell her, the grief has a mind and power of its own. and, it demands that it be experienced, none of our control is equal to it. I will keep all of you in prayer and know I am thinking of you. Lauren

Jan 26th 2013 new
So sorry to hear you lost your son-in-law. I'll keep you in my prayers.
Feb 3rd 2013 new

Ask them to make a commitment to ask her to a social event 3-4 months from now, with someone else providing free babysitting.

Feb 8th 2013 new

Hi there - okay, I am trying to decide if this is a good idea. My gut tells me to do it but I don't want to hurt her.

These are very, very good friends; we've "adopted" them here to the point where they were calling my whole family "our American family," their son calls my mom Granny too, etcetera.

His saint was St. Valentine. He was also the kind of guy who did send flowers and that kind of thing. This is so soon after her loss is the only thing making me pause. I think though I want to send her flowers, I know it will probably make her cry but that's not necessarily a bad thing. I know it's going to be a rough day, she will be thinking of him anyway.

Feb 23rd 2013 new

(Quote) Katherine-868943 said: I hope this does not dredge up too many painful memories, but if those of you who were widowe...
(Quote) Katherine-868943 said:

I hope this does not dredge up too many painful memories, but if those of you who were widowed suddenly could please share the most helpful things to you in that first few days, we are trying to give large numbers of people ideas about what they can do to assist my friend who has been unexpectedly widowed. There have already been so many visitors to her home bringing food that we suggested donations to a fund or grocery gift cards instead, because the other lady & I who were helping were starting to get concerned that things couldn't be stored and would just end up being thrown out. Everyone wants to help but nobody knows how. Is there anything in particular someone did or said that helped you? Were there any issues that came up a few weeks out that you wish someone could have been able to help with?

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The best thing is talk to the person and find out what THEY want, I'm sure you'll find most widows / widowers are happy to answer that question. In my case I was very fearful I would be forgotten, and in many cases that is exactly what happened. Knowing that this was a very real possibility I remember calling some of my friends and saying "In case you don't remember ... and I know I will need help on Friday. So if you really are my friends you'll take me out to a movie". There will be times when the person grieving will want to be able to talk, and there will likely be times when they want to lock themselves in the bedroom and sob uncontrollably. Just understand that when they say "Go away" that it's nothing personal, they need time to grieve. Likewise allow them to talk about their loved one!

I personally find comfort in talking about my beloved wife, and I never tire of hearing people talk about her silliness, her gentle spirit, her love. I sometimes laugh to myself, because I think about her cold sholder, and her "gaze" that said "you screwed up mister ... and you owe me"!


With all of the widows / widowers I've ever spoken to they don't want to feel invisable, and fear the day when all the attention stops and they're left all alone with out a phone call for days!

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