you did help me a lot to understand thank you
Add to that the fact that he was only 40 and had young kids, and it's like one of the ladies said -- you feel out of place.
I was widowed at 42, with five kids under age 14 (two in diapers). I didn't have time for counseling, even if I had had any notion of where to find it. And if I had known, I would have been most interested in counseling for the older children.
I never really have talked to a "professional"...and sometimes I wonder if it delayed the mourning process. I found year 4 much tougher than year 2...and year 10 was pretty bad, too.
How are your kids now? I wanted counseling, too, when mine were younger and maybe it would have made the process easier because at times it was just so very tough. After six years, It seems both my children found their own ways to deal with the hurt and loss. My daughter as been actively involved in her youth group and helping others that she sees as far worse off than her own situation. My son has poured his heart and soul into playing sports. I find both of these areas to be a positive place for them to grow and/let off steam. (Though they would have liked having their dad at home as much as I last night to help with my computer issues.)
For any widowed moms with younger children, I found the Moms in Touch prayer group to be an incredible place. To have other moms listen and pray out loud for your child's struggles is a true blessing. I spent many times sitting in a puddle because of it, but I have no doubt that wrapped so much protection around my kids and I at a very critical time. It also allowed me to praise God in a way I had never done before.
I think that having to care for the little ones prevented me from mourning except for a few minutes here and there over the years. ("Okay, you can cry just a little bit, but only for 15 minutes and then you have to make dinner.") I think it wasn't until the youngest entered high school and I no longer had to drive, or to supervise Scouts, etc., that I had the "leisure" to address it. And with so much time having past, sometimes it seems like I have to try to remember what it is that I am mourning!
As for the older ones...my son was hit hardest by his dad's death, I think, and flailed around aimless and unhappy for a long time. But he met and married a nice girl who seems to be able to help him through anything. His sister (in the military, like yours) was tense and unhappy for years, but has met a man whose father committed suicide when the boy was 17, so they both understand grief.