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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

Jun 1st 2013 new
Hugs, Kerry,

It is very hard. I hate Saturdays, Sundays and evenings. I don't have kiddos at home now, so the silence at night can sometimes be almost suffocating. I keep the tv on all the time, not that I actually pay attention to it, but so I don't feel so alone in the house.

Marge is right about trying some counseling. I went right away, because I knew the emotions and the thoughts were way beyond my ability to manage or understand. I know some others found the grief counseling was not beneficial as there was nothing in common with some of the other members. I think perhaps mine helped because I did one on one counseling for four or five months and then the counselor asked me to join a group that met once a week. No one else in there was suffering the loss of a spouse, but we were all somehow linked in academia. I didn't feel therefore that my experiences didn't compare to someone else's grief, but found some beautiful support and objective opinions. Counseling is never the first thing on my mind, so I was a little stunned with myself when I went to my doctor the week after the funeral and stated right away.

I wish you didn't have to go through this. I wish none of us had to go through it. It is the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. I was sitting here this afternoon, trying to write my speech for my son's wedding, something Pete should be doing or we should be doing together and I was just overwhelmed with grief and sorrow and that soul deep ache, that nothing quite makes go away. I am so sorry you hurt like this and I do understand it believe me. I hope you feel the love we all have for you here and that offers some comfort and support. I wish I could give you some big, warm hugs in person.
Jun 1st 2013 new
Thank you Linda, yes, I will. I do go to a support group on monday nights and it is very helpful. But my household situation right now is horriffic, the kids are cruel to me, I have no one to speak up for me and no authority, in a house which isn't mine (we "rented" it from my ex, who wanted us to move in ten years ago so he could move out with his then girlfriend.)

That didn't work out in the end, but we stayed on as we did not have the money to move. Now, I still live here, and my ex comes every weekend to see our son Tanner who is 21 and he always manages to make things worse somehow.
Jun 1st 2013 new
I'm so sorry Lauren. That sounds like a very painful experience. I wish I could have been there to help you. My own oldest son got married a month ago and I was thinking the whole time how Robert would have been snapping pictures and having fun.
Jun 20th 2013 new
Kerry, it's tough, no question. It's like John from the Yukon (Alaska) puts it, "I'm never alone when I realize Who is with me". Develop a support network of friends and family to assist with things you need the most help with. Keep praying. It's tough when it seems like everything and everyone has things working perfectly for them. If you need spiritual direction, schedule a meeting with a priest, deacon, or nun. Remember that time heals all wounds. As tough as it is now, it will get better. Hang in there!

Blessings,
Jim
Jun 20th 2013 new
Oh, the sleepless nights! I think I woke up three times a night for the first four years. Miserable....
Jun 21st 2013 new
Dear Kerry,
A bit older than you but the pain feels the same. We were a late- in- life second marriage and I lost him after 5 years to cancer. At first I cried every night to sleep and several times during the day. There was so much to be done at first and even though I was mostly capable of handling the chores, I got so little done each day. The idea of a list w/7 things and do one a day is great. People would love to help you and really are grateful to be asked. Go to daily Mass if you can, give your kids hugs and compliments each day and say prayers together including your husband. You all have a saint in heaven and can talk to him any time.
Just a few ideas that came to me. It's almost a year and 4 months. I don't cry every day anymore but I miss him still so much.
Love and blessings,
Susan
Praying
Jun 23rd 2013 new
Dear Kerry,

Please accept my deepest sympathy on the loss of your husband. My heart and my prayers are with you. It is a great consolation to have so many of these CM ladies, who not only have had the sad experience of having lost their husbands, but who are compasionate, caring, and are there for you.
I lost my husband six years and seven months ago. We had a lovely marriage and I miss him every day. I thank the Lord for having given me a kind, loving, respectful, gentleman as my husband. It took me over six years to accept the fact the the Lord had a better world for him and that God gives us the graces we need in our present state to continue living.
Ask the Holy Spirit for the graces you need to get ahead with your life and that of the son he graced you with.
The Lord bless you and your son.
Jul 25th 2013 new
Before my wife passed, I had lite blessed candles in the bedroom and after she passed, I kept the candles lite for memory and to give me some support of life in our bedroom. My wife passed in our bed where she opted to do hospice. I still lite the candles when I really start to feel sad.
Jul 26th 2013 new
(quote) Jane-933948 said:

.... There are people just waiting and willing to help. 

....Night time is the worst, ....

It's really not my place to be posting here as bereavement is not in my experience, but two things seem to stand out in in a serious pastoral situation such as this.

In the times when people ought to be available to help, God is usually helpless because he has no hands. God cannot pay bills, cook meals, fix cars and otherwise alleviate the strains of daily life. He cannot because St Teresa of Avila said so. And she said so, in that much quoted prayer of hers easily read from the Web, because, in faith we believe, God told her to say so. She is, after all, a Saint. As is already being done, the community of the widowed members of CM, need to tell Kerry in posts and private messages, about how to find the people to fill the gaps that God can't fill.

And yet, in those times when people ought to have been available but were missing in action, and for those times such as night time when 'people' are helpless to help because the widow or widower just has to endure being on his or her own, God is still usually helpless unless the widow or widower finds the internal strength and know-how to make God helpful. And how is, in this case, Kerry, to do this? Over to you, community of the widowed members of CM.

I'm posting this because in another post, to do with widows, widowers and their lost spouses who may be in Heaven, I said that in a sainted deceased spouse interceding, as saints do, with God for the welfare of the spouse left behind, the widow or widower left behind is on their own but not alone. Like oft-quoted exhortations to 'let go and let God', 'trust in God and don't worry' and statements of a similar ilk, my statement is simultaneously true and glib. It's like the Scriptures asking what is the point of saying to someone, "I wish you well. Stay warm and fed" without doing anything to help that person achieve those things. It's a paradox that the short, pithy statement of piety and faith designed, by its shortness and pithiness, to be uttered as an easily-remembered mantra by people to give solace to each other, can be both true and glib.

So, Kerry is not alone --- but only if there are people to help her. And when she is alone in those circumstances when people cannot (or do not make themselves available to) help her, she is not alone ---- but only if there are people to show her how to manage being alone. Otherwise, she really is alone.


Oh, but we say, God is usually helpless but when push comes to shove, he will help. Somewhere in the depths of the bereaved person's being, will come the assistance that is required. Really? God will definitely heal when it is both just and merciful to do so --- in the next life. Healing is always available when it is just and merciful to be so -- across the gulf. But if we presume that healing will always be available from God in this life, even when nobody helps, isn't this on a par with presuming the mercy of God in the next life? Something that ought not to be done? Aren't we presuming that, at the end of the day, there's always a safety net in this life? There's no need for a safety net in this life when there will, if justice and mercy allow, be one in the next, but charity is not making the widow or widower wait until the next life to find out --- or, in vulnerable cases, leaving them with no felt option but to make the journey to find out.


At the end of the day, God expects people to provide the practical and spiritual help. Over to you, community of the widows and widowers of CM, and thank you for your service.

Jul 30th 2013 new
(quote) Roystan-340472 said: It's really not my place to be posting here as bereavement is not in my experience, but two things seem to stand out in in a serious pastoral situation such as this.

In the times when people ought to be available to help, God is usually helpless because he has no hands. God cannot pay bills, cook meals, fix cars and otherwise alleviate the strains of daily life. He cannot because St Teresa of Avila said so. And she said so, in that much quoted prayer of hers easily read from the Web, because, in faith we believe, God told her to say so. She is, after all, a Saint. As is already being done, the community of the widowed members of CM, need to tell Kerry in posts and private messages, about how to find the people to fill the gaps that God can't fill.

And yet, in those times when people ought to have been available but were missing in action, and for those times such as night time when 'people' are helpless to help because the widow or widower just has to endure being on his or her own, God is still usually helpless unless the widow or widower finds the internal strength and know-how to make God helpful. And how is, in this case, Kerry, to do this? Over to you, community of the widowed members of CM.

I'm posting this because in another post, to do with widows, widowers and their lost spouses who may be in Heaven, I said that in a sainted deceased spouse interceding, as saints do, with God for the welfare of the spouse left behind, the widow or widower left behind is on their own but not alone. Like oft-quoted exhortations to 'let go and let God', 'trust in God and don't worry' and statements of a similar ilk, my statement is simultaneously true and glib. It's like the Scriptures asking what is the point of saying to someone, "I wish you well. Stay warm and fed" without doing anything to help that person achieve those things. It's a paradox that the short, pithy statement of piety and faith designed, by its shortness and pithiness, to be uttered as an easily-remembered mantra by people to give solace to each other, can be both true and glib.

So, Kerry is not alone --- but only if there are people to help her. And when she is alone in those circumstances when people cannot (or do not make themselves available to) help her, she is not alone ---- but only if there are people to show her how to manage being alone. Otherwise, she really is alone.


Oh, but we say, God is usually helpless but when push comes to shove, he will help. Somewhere in the depths of the bereaved person's being, will come the assistance that is required. Really? God will definitely heal when it is both just and merciful to do so --- in the next life. Healing is always available when it is just and merciful to be so -- across the gulf. But if we presume that healing will always be available from God in this life, even when nobody helps, isn't this on a par with presuming the mercy of God in the next life? Something that ought not to be done? Aren't we presuming that, at the end of the day, there's always a safety net in this life? There's no need for a safety net in this life when there will, if justice and mercy allow, be one in the next, but charity is not making the widow or widower wait until the next life to find out --- or, in vulnerable cases, leaving them with no felt option but to make the journey to find out.


At the end of the day, God expects people to provide the practical and spiritual help. Over to you, community of the widows and widowers of CM, and thank you for your service.

Wow, that was extremely profound and one of the best things I've ever read on here, hands down. Thank you for posting it.

I read something on a catholic blog site from a widow that was talking about what she had needed and wanted in those first days, weeks and months after the death, and one thing really stood out to me. She said her friends had not only cooked meals and done those types of things, but they came and STAYED with her, sometimes for days, and some even slept in the suddenly way too big and scary bed with her the first couple of weeks. I would have died of gratitude had someone done that for me. But no one even offered to stay.

And after a couple weeks, people no longer wanted to hear about it,

This line from your post stood out greatly to me:

"charity is not making the widow or widower wait until the next life to find out --- or, in vulnerable cases, leaving them with no felt option but to make the journey to find out."

That's so true. So true. Often it's only something like the fear of being doomed to Hell if one were to take that step, or leaving underage kids behind, that keep us from doing this. But the pain is palpable.
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