When our loved one passes away, life changes.  We ask ourselves . . . Who am I now?  Our self esteem may take a hit.  We may have to take on new roles or tasks that were handled by our loved ones, such as cooking or child care.  Our beliefs may change.  We now see the world as unfair and we ask why did this happen?

Have you taken on the tasks or roles of your loved ones?  Do you wonder who you are now?  How do you see the world now?

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Those are some interesting questions.  The simple answer for me is that I feel like a boat without a sail or rudder with a life preserver labeled titanic. Please forgive me if I offend anyone or trigger some dark feelings ... however, I know that I have seen my world turned upside-down and so many changes that I wasn’t really ready for, but had to take on.  Melanie [my wife] was into a lot of things – and she loved to have several big projects going at one time – and I was her worker bee.  She would tell me what needed to be done and together we would do it.  That applied to things like building a carport, installing a pool, to drawing patterns for her stain-glass pieces [she was quite the artisan].  She would get so completely immersed in her project that I would see to the daily running of the house and yard [fixing meals, feeding the dogs, cutting the grass, etc.] so she could focus her energies and talents without being interrupted.  Before she passed away – she had multiple big projects going on, and she would start another before finishing any of them [in hindsight, I see that was a red flag to the heart attack that took her that I should have notice, but didn’t].  I was left devastated by losing her and many of those projects are left unfinished – and I know that I am going to have to address them as best I can.  She was the confident one – the one so sure of herself and her decisions, yet I was the one that had to decide on doing what I knew she wanted in her condition at the hospital and what I and probably her family wanted.  I had to make that decision – and I did honour what I knew she wanted as hard as that was – and then I was alone.  I had to make the same sort-of decision with my mother only a year before on the very same date – that estranged me from my family [more or less] and I believe when Melanie passed that her family blamed me and I feel that I am estranged from them as well now.  I did what I knew my Melanie wanted – her wishes, and feel guilty and punished by silence from her family now.  I am still “lost” in trying to figure out “who I am” without her, because we had made many plans together after we retired – she retired and only had a year and two months before she passed away on the 30th of October.  I was scheduled to retirement November 1, but I didn’t – no point to it, you know.  Those that loved her, worked with her so many years, and the world has seemly forgotten her for the most part – but my world stopped and I have to deal with everything by myself that she and I did together as a team.  I have no clue about who I am anymore – just some over-the-hill, worn-out vet trying to figure out what to do with the rest of my life.  Like I said [wrote]- I am angry at the world for just moving on – and leaving me behind, but it is what it is I guess.  Her son has even taken down a video we put on facebook that was a tribute to Melanie and her life - it seems that even he is moving on with his life and forgotten his mother.  I realize that sounds pessimistic and I am sorry it does, but it is how I feel about things.              

My response is similar to the other comments. Diffult times

Hi, I am in such a great place of loss and feeling lost; I feel like an orphan and the child in me is more pronounced then ever. I told my partner today that I wouldn't know what it would be like to lose her. I know the "focus on today, in the moment" affirmation and I remind myself of this. However, those dark places creep up like an MF@#! (sorry needed to say it like it feels) and it takes so much effort to remember this. I have taken on the role of mediator and caretaker because my brother can't or won't. I see the world right now as an enormous test. I pray for longer moments of peace in my torn soul. Yet, I am glad that I have this place to say this and be with all of you and feel hopeful if I keep talking to all of you. I wish the same for all in our grief. With warmth, Jen

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