wings and things


on September 27, 2017

I have had to see our lawyer, social services, contact our accountant and financial advisor, reply to condolence messages, meet with friends and pull myself together.

During the week that Anthony died, we experienced heavy rain and storms, so much so that our power went out. Man-of-the-house, Ming said we should wait until the sun came back and the power might come back. In the meantime we lived with a lantern until I insisted on calling the electrician. They began work on the water-damaged electrics on Monday and Anthony died on Wednesday (it all seems like yesterday now, but this was nearly five weeks ago).

Due to having no power, I had arranged to stay at my mother’s place for the duration of electrical repairs. This never happened as Anthony went downhill so quickly I ended up sleeping at the nursing home for a couple of nights (this is where my confusion kicks in; was it one or two nights?)

I hate this confusion – my mind feels like mush and I keep forgetting conversations and arrangements and plans made, or else getting mixed up. And when, this afternoon, the insurance assessor came out to suss the claim, I completely forgot who she was and sobbed while I tried to explain the water damage etc. She was so kind.

So many people have been so kind – relatives and friends; blog friends; Facebook friends. All of those kind words have been matched with real and virtual hugs and I am so grateful for this throng of support. I am not the only person in the world to have lost someone they love this fiercely and I so ‘get it’ – the shock+grief.

Apart from the feeling that Anthony is in our hearts in an ongoing way, there is still, also, the fact that he is dead. This is made plain to me in my midnight sobs, my scrambled egg mornings, Ming’s presence, the black and white tiles on the kitchen floor and no Anthony sock-prints any more.

Perhaps my confusion is borne of a temporary inability to face the word/concept that Anthony is, indeed, dead.

Dead, death, dying – these are all words that don’t scare me any more but I am still so confused.


15 responses to “Confused

  1. Vicki says:

    Sorry to hear you are feeling overwhelmed and confused, Julie, but it is all very natural.

    Your poor brain has had to manage Mind, Body & Spirit all at once and it needs a bit more ‘down time’ to handle the shock. It has had to manage Family, Friends, Acquaintances, your virtual family as well as all the legal Stuff that happens when a family member passes away.

    So much Stuff.

    Probably sounds obvious, (or maybe ridiculous šŸ™‚ ), but get an A4 spiral writing pad and write it down. Move the overwhelming volume your mind finds confusing onto a piece of paper.

    I do it every day and have been for some years now. I get intermittent brain fog as one of my health symptoms. I have an A4 size writing pad in front of my computer screen and a second smaller one next to it with the ‘shopping’ list.

    I send myself emails with the reminder in the subject line.
    REMINDER: Pay Electr. bill $xyz by the 12th Oct 2017.
    REMINDER: Ring S. back by Friday 29th.
    REMINDER: Joe Bloggs to fix XYZ.
    REMINDER: Buy Birthday card for John D.

    The next morning, silly as it may sound, I turn the computer on first and double-check the email reminders as well as the hardcopy pad in front of my screen.

    (I can no longer multi-task and to save my high BP and Heart symptoms, I don’t try to remember anything…….seriously). It’s all on paper (with some reminders in my gmail inbox).

    Writing pad & Email inbox are wonderful companions. They never answer back or nag you. They often have little smiley emoticons to cheer you up or make you laugh. You can curse, swear and cry in front of them and they don’t criticise you. A piece of paper, or email inbox, doesn’t have to be answered immediately. You can answer them this evening, tomorrow (or press the DELETE button if they piss you off).

    I love my writing pad and my email inbox. They’re like my shadow. They follow me everywhere, but don’t weigh me down šŸ™‚

    Literally or Figuratively.

    (note: I will have forgotten I ever typed this comment tomorrow šŸ˜€ ).

  2. susanpoozan says:

    So hard for you, lots of sympathy.

  3. hi Julie
    I hope your faith will help you through.

  4. Sending you warm hugs and lots of love — and a loving reminder to be gentle with yourself. You deserve your tender loving care and self-compassion. ā¤

  5. As a health care provider here, I’ve worked with a lot of grieving patients and spouses of patients. Loss/grief and all that follows can cause sensory overload and confusion. My experience has shown me that it’s an inherent part of the grieving process. It just takes it’s own sweet time to sort out. It’s a sad state that so many logistical things have to be done upon the loss of a loved one and they don’t get done on their own. Losing your power on top of it is a lot of stress. I admire you, how you communicate with so much loving authenticity and human rawness. You’re a gift in my life and I hope my cyber hugs to you do help. And if you’re ever across the big pond, my home is always open to you. Love, Paulette ā¤

  6. It will all come together in time.

  7. Tracy Abell says:

    I’ve just now learned that Anthony died. Please accept my deepest sympathy. Please, also, be kind to yourself regarding memory lapses, etc. I know from experience that it’s all part of the grieving process. Sending you a hug…

  8. Judy says:

    Julie, everything you described is exactly how grief feels. It is blinding – it confronts our vision and completely distracts us from living. There is no way to truly describe it. I remember I couldn’t even watch TV or a movie. I didn’t comprehend anything I was listening to.
    This is temporary. There will be many stages of grief for you. I’m so thankful you have support and that you are able to write and share your feelings. I wish I had been able to write during my grief. But I made up for it many years later. Writing was very healing for me. Thinking of you and sending a big hug.

  9. It makes sense to me, that you have to remind yourself he is gone. It makes sense to me, that there is no easy way to accept that. I’m so sorry Julie.

    • jmgoyder says:

      You are a beautiful friend – thanks so much for your support.

      • I would also like to apologize to you for not reaching out personally to you. I searched and searched for your email….unfortunately….I could not find it. Though I “know” I have it. I wanted to send you a personal message but did not want to publicly ask you if I could when you had much more important things to deal with. So my apologies on that end Julie. ā¤

  10. I think its normal for your mind to be in a muddle for quite some time. Please don’t ever take yourself to task for it. It will take as long as it takes. My friend whose spouse died of ALS and a friend whose spouse died of heart failure are still grieving a year later but I see them grabbing enough glimpses joy in life to make it worthwhile. Thinking of you from afar and trying to find words that help.

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