This blog lives a vibrant life on Facebook and I copy to this space for those who are not Facebook clients. I don’t know if you’re out there, as you don’t reply, but just in case I keep on keeping on. Sadly I seem to have not posted the last few posts here, so I’m trying to catch up. I really would love to read any comments should you have them, so I can know whether people read this blog or if I am just wasting cyberspace.
Oh terrific! Just discovered my posts here are up-to-date. Following is the current one.
A week ago I received a very thought-provoking comment from Nancy; thought-provoking to me because our circumstances were so similar. I started to write a reply to her, but decided that posting my reply as a free-standing comment may better serve us all. Following is a copy of Nancy’s comment and my reply.
November 10 at 9:28am
I became a widow at age 45. (he was also 45) We were together 23 years and it was a week before our daughters high school prom and graduation. It’s been 8 years now and I still have day to day struggles. what people don’t understand is that I don’t get his pension or his SS checks until HE would have been at retirement age. (2022) People are used to widows being retired. My financial hardship makes it difficult for me to get the doctors care that I need for this healing process. I’ve come along way, but some mornings I feel like it was yesterday he was there. Don’t let people push you to do anything you are not ready for. Some like to give advice by looking from the outside in. Unless you’ve experienced it, no one understands. Allow yourself to do what is best for you. God Bless and I’m so sorry for your loss.
I have put off replying to your comment until I had time to write a reply worthy of what you have written here. Hopefully that time is now and I will have something cogent to say. Yes; it is cruel that we cannot have access to our spouse’s retirement until they would have had access to it. At the same time, I see that there is some wisdom in this, regardless of how much we could use those funds *now.* Although there is never a good time for such a passage, it being just before prom and graduation is particularly cruel. That’s how I felt about my husband dying just before my children’s 16th birthday. Honestly, there was nothing I could do to mitigate that. All the celebration that should be associated with that passage is condemned forever. There was nothing I could do to make it better. Nothing any of us could do, although dear friends bravely tried. My hope is that my kids were so immersed either in their own lives or mental fog that they cruised right through it without too much damage. My son wrote, this year, a beautiful essay about that time—stuff I never had heard from him. Lovely.
I also understand the difficulty of finding healers when your finances don’t allow. I found a very good resource in the bereavement center that was associated with our hospice. I have spent a *lot* of money on psychiatric care for all of us, and was fortunate to have the resources for this invaluable service. Currently I’m under the care of a psychologist who happens to accept my (very expensive) insurance, so that is a help. Mostly I am in debt in many ways to my courageous financial advisor who, with Adam, crafted an investment and life insurance plan that they thought would never be needed. I still cry to think of their work and care for us.
And speaking of crying, I did so just today, as I thought of Adam and all that is lost. We were fortunate to have children rather late in our marriage and thereby enjoy years of married life together before the responsibilities of parenthood intervened. I am deeply thankful for those years. Nevertheless I will always be nostalgic for the years we haven’t had, the years, the *now* years, when I had anticipated opening a hobby business for myself and spending time at the beach with my husband.
Instead, I commune with him as often as possible spiritually. I’ve found ways for this to be fulfilling.
You are so right about not letting people push you into things. I have spent two years focused on getting my children to the place they are now. I am now trying to rebound from that, and in the lucid moments discern what is right for me. I find that most people push you into things because it is uncomfortable for *them* to have you, their loved one, in an unstable place. This should be none of our concern. We love you, friends, but must find our own path in our own time. The asteroid has destroyed our environment and we cannot rise quickly from the ashes, despite how much we’d like to be a phoenix.
Thanks, Nancy, for your very thought-provoking comment.