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couple envy and thoughts on being alone


swilkinson

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Ray used to shout at me: "It is all very well for you." and he was right, and now I think that about other people as I look with my widow eyes enviously at their lives. I loved Ray with my whole heart and sometimes I really miss him. I miss him most when I see other couples in their senior years enjoying each other's company. I want to be like that. I want that special someone to be beside me, with me when I am enjoying myself, at home when I come home so I can tell them where I have been and what I have done. What fun is coming home to an empty house?

 

When Ray was here I had so much to do, it all seemed so over whelming, now with only me here it just seems over quiet. I would rush through the housework, list the shopping, bundle him in the car, rush to the shops, it was all go, go, go. I could have a little escape with a cup of tea on my sunny verandah and that helped a lot. I took minutes off when I needed hours but at least I had the shower nurses for the last three years, the three hours on a Friday and the "break" when he went into hospital or respite. In those days I longed for some time to myself, now I know that means you are both alone and lonely.

 

You just have to live the life you've got, sad as that is sometimes. You can only sacrifice your life up to a point, beyond that is madness.I know that was one of the reasons Ray spent his last year in a nursing home, once he could no longer stand, with all his other problems he became too high care to be at home. I didn't feel the loneliness in that year that I feel now. I knew I would see him "tomorrow" so although I was home alone it seemed as if it was only overnight, my days were still very busy with Ray and Mum to visit.

 

I have just had a very off week. I know some people say the second year out is the hardest as you suddenly look around and hey! you are alone, no friends, no family there to support you. Officially you are now "OVER IT!!!" and should just get on with life. When I find out how to do that I will let you know.

 

I have more funerals to go to. What is it with this year? So many of the dear old dears from our church are sick or in hospital or worse. It is like we are burying the congregation pew by pew. And I love them all and will miss them all and it is all so sad. We have had an odd Spring, really hot weather, which means all the alimentary diseases, and with cold changes which means there are still chest infections, colds and 'flu doing the rounds. And for our vulnerable aged population that is not good news.

 

I think I am feeling this more because Brett, my next door neighbour has his old Dad with him for a while and I see them struggling down to the car and it reminds me of the struggle I had looking after Ray. They even came over yesterday and used my handicapped friendly shower room as it is easier for Brett to give his father a good hot shower here than at home using a normal bathroom. I am so glad Brett decided to have his Dad for a while but it is a reminder of my former life. Maybe it is because of that reminder that I have started having nightmares again.

 

I have been plodding forward for the past week, looking for some good news but nothing much of that at the moment. I am about to start on getting quotes for various parts of the cabin roof restoration and the fence, the piece on the side of the house roof that has to be replaced etc. I am not sure how long all of that will take. I hate to do all of this knowing I am not good at working it all out. I am going to ring a couple of friends in the building trade and ask them to list out what needs to be done so I can check quotes and make sure it is all covered. It is hard for me to do the things that Ray was once so good at, it feels like I am trying to take his place.

 

I know - it is part of a widow's new life, being self-sufficient etc. Bah humbug!

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Oh Sue I wish I could give you a hug! You will be in my thoughts today, as I go about the daily grind, and I will try to be grateful for all the things I still have.

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Sue :

 

I am sending you lot of virtual hugs, just heard something very wise & going to implement in my life, when going through those blah feelings just say thank you for knowing every cloud has rainbow. isn't it great that you still got good friends you could ring to & get some comfort in knowing you are doing right things with your reconstruction projects. I am sure it will look better than before when it will be done

 

Asha

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I know exactly how you feel Sue. I learned to be self sufficient right after Dan's stroke so, on that part I'm doing ok. That's not to say that I'm not tired of doing it all, all of the time. I HATE it! But, it is what it is. The couples envy gets to me too. When I get envious I remind myself that I don't have a clue what their lives are like. They could be miserable and hate each other. At least you and Ray loved each other! That's the part that we need to remember. You know you can do it because you're such a strong woman, but that doesn't mean that you have to WANT to do it! Big (((HUGS))) to you Sue!

 

MJ

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It's not just you Sue who have "couple's envy". I have it too even tho Larry is here with me (or some of him is there anyway). Just like last night, I looked around and saw other couples who had the life Larry and I use to have. I asked Larry if it bothered him that I walked around and talked to each one. He said "no, I felt as if I should go with you to talk to them". I told him they needed to come over to you as they are more mobile than you are and they eventually did. I know it is different when you are alone, as I have been there too as a widow. The term "couples" are different entirely when you are a caretaker of your spouse. You learn to live with a spouse who is no longer the same.

 

Julie

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Sue, you will always miss him and you will never be a couple again. That said, remember he is always with you - in your heart and memories. It will get easier over time (took me a year and a half due to interruption for my stroke) and you will learn to form a new single life. Until you are happy with yourself, you cannot be happy with someone new. Best wishes.

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