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    • CommentAuthorAdmin
    • CommentTimeAug 20th 2016
    I absolutely promise that this site will NOT be focusing only on widows and widowers. The main blog of the week will be a weekly theme directly relevant to caregiving Alzheimer Spouses. The first weekly theme that is up on the home page now is an explanation of all of the changes. Once I learn to navigate the new software with ease, I will post the next "theme", which will be exclusively for spousal caregivers, as will all of the ones to follow. The "Widow's Journey" will be a separate blog under a separate box for those who are interested in reading it.

    But for now, I would like comments and reactions to the Widow's Blog that I wrote. Please, as always, be honest with your comments. Thank you.

    Joan I am sincerely sorry you had to go through what you have. At the same time, I have been really looking forward to your widow's blog. My husband died in March so I too am trying to navigate this new way of being. It is very difficult. You write very well and I can always identify so clearly with your experiences, vulnerability, and honesty. You help me immensely.

    I know I would not have survived the dementia journey without this site, thus you and the amazing group of men and women here. You were all my only hope to be able to continue in the terror and horror of Alzheimer/dementia.

    Now I crave that same level of communication and support as I learn navigating life as a widow.

    Thank you Joan for all you do for all of us. I hope it is ok to say I love you.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeAug 21st 2016
    Hi Joan, I think the first installment of the "Widow's Journey" is a beautiful introduction to the subject. The details about Sid's last breath, your calling the nurse, and your friends driving your car home all give the reader a sense of the calmness you felt after Sid's death. Your reference to the Rabbi's words, however, give us a hint that this apparent peacefulness was not real and that something now hidden would later be revealed. Even if I did not know that you have suffered so much, I think I would still see it as a gripping beginning to what is to come. I look forward to reading the story of your journey, as painful as it has been.

    P.S. I am not one who resents posts by people who are at a different stage than my husband and I are in right now. Like you, I crave communication, especially with people who understand what spouses of Alzheimer's patients experience.
    • CommentAuthorbhv*
    • CommentTimeAug 21st 2016
    WOW. I just read your widows blog. It is very well written. Powerful. I am still early in the caregiving process. (Only about 7 years in. Looking like it could be 10 or more years more. Hard to imagine that). Definitely need the caregiving side. I have a hard time believing I will feel anything but RELIEF when this is over. But so did you. Through your courage in writing this journey I will be more prepared when I get there.

    I went to a support group. I have read lots of stuff online. But THIS website, THIS safe place to ask the real questions. This safe place where you don't have to pretend to be the saintly caregiver happily scraping poop off the floors and walls singing about how he took care of you all those years so now it is your turn. (Those commercials make me want to puke.) But I got myself off topic. Joan, I am so grateful for your courageous efforts starting and maintaining this website for all of us through the complete journey.
    Joan, big thanks to you and your tech team for the roll-out of the new website. It looks beautiful and I can't even imagine the hard work that went into its creation.
    I appreciate the new widow's blog - your first post was so poignantly written. I know not everyone wants to read/hear about the grief journey that many of us are on,
    so it is great to have that special section. Like so many others, I have leaned heavily on the wisdom here. Thanks again for all you do.
    Joan, thank you for all the work, by both you and the technical staff, to produce the "New" Alzheimer Spouse. I understand that it is more than a new look, and is new technology which I wouldn't begin to understand.

    I think the Widow's Blog will be of great value to those of us whose spouses have passed. As we have been saying, "if you've met one Alzheimers patient, you've met one Alzheimers patient". I suspect that the same can be said for widows and widowers. Since Ron passed I haven't wanted to stay home at all. It was 2 years last July 24th and in that time I have been of 4 cruises totaling 84 days. I have 2 more cruises booked in the next 6 months.

    I used to love working in our yard, planting (and weeding) the flower beds, trimming shrubs and even mowing the 1 1/2 acre lawn. Now it is a big chore. It's not that I am sad all the time, I'm not, but I just can't seem to get myself motivated to do much of anything at all. I feel well, OK I'm 79 and slowing down, but my Dr is pleased I lost 25 lbs and have kept it off. I bought a Fit-Bit and try to walk 10,000 steps a day. I don't get that much every day but usually make it up other days so I have over 70,000 steps in a week.

    I'll be interested to see what others say.
    • CommentAuthorCO2*
    • CommentTimeAug 21st 2016
    Thank,you Joan for all,the hard work and for,your continued willingness to share your new life as a widow with us. I can only speak for myself but on some level,it does help to,know that I am not alone is walking this new journey.
    I love the "Till death do you part" reference. I know that when we marry, one of us will outlive the other. We don't have a clue as to how or when it will happen. We even talked about which of us would handle the death of the other better. Still, that was all talk. For me, when I realized there was not another breath, the nurse in me immediately put my fingers to his carotid artery on his neck. I knew that his heart would beat just a little longer and I needed to feel each pulsation until that too, stopped. It beat slower and slower until that last beat. Only then did I realize that he was REALLY gone. Thanks for all your hard work!
    • CommentAuthorSherizeee
    • CommentTimeAug 23rd 2016
    Absolutely beautiful, both the website and your post. You are such a blessing to me.
    • CommentTimeAug 24th 2016 edited
    I feel like I have come home..... Just as I did when I found this site back in 2008.

    Joan, your blog was beautiful and powerful! It resonated deeply with me. We have all been through so much together,
    yet when I lost Lynn, I just could not come here anymore.

    It's not that I didn't care about the others, it's never that.... I am living, or trying to, in profound grief.
    It took me 6 months to be able to drive again!! And I still do not get dressed daily. Eh, I have nothing left to give at that moment.

    I don't expect people to understand. So I stay silent because I know, that only those who have lived it, can possibly understand.
    Just as nobody who hasn't lost their spouse inch by inch to dementia can't understand the hell we all live/lived in.

    I have felt very much alone in my suffering. Oh I have family and friends who care, but they do not understand!!
    I missed the comfort of being able to express myself with people who understand!!

    I did join a bereavement group, it has helped. But I miss the connections I had here...
    And I can not begin to express how grateful I am that you are now doing a blog for those of us who have lost our beloved spouse.
    It IS part of the journey too.... and it needs to be included.

    Personally I feel what has always made your site so wonderful is the way you shared with us (and us with you)
    what you were experiencing in brutal honestly and sincerity. I for one look forward to following you new Widow Blogs!
    It is what I relate to now....

    Thank you Joan, for making my internet home, feel like home again ♥
    Ohhh...Nikki I can so relate to what you wrote!! Thank you for sharing where you are.
    My husband died in March and I am barely functioning. To read you don't get dressed every day makes me feel less alone and judgemental of myself.
    I am bone weary and also "have nothing left to give at the moment."

    I too deeply need to be able to tag along with you Joan as you again lead the way for me to navigate where I am now.
    • CommentAuthorBev*
    • CommentTimeAug 27th 2016
    I will be going through this one day soon. I will need this to help me get through those long, lonely days to come. Thank you, Joan. You helped me through the beginning, the long, long middl, and, now, the end.
    I love the new site. Thank you for all of your hard work. Your blog was so beautifully written. You are brave to share your journey with us. I am still an Alzheimers widow Since death is yet to part my husband and I but I don't see how the pain of seperation can get any greater. I may be wrong here so looking forward to your continuing Widow Blogs.
    Thank you for all you do for all of us here. Your site has been such a blessing to so many suffering from this disease.
    • CommentTimeAug 29th 2016
    Marilynn, it's good to see your name again.It's been a very long time for you. My Irish mother used to say, "It's a long road without a turning."
    Hi Mary75. I'm always here reading. I've been around here since 2007. Thanks for remembering me . My dh was just taken off of hospice after eighteen months. No decline in last month so they took him off. Without a decline he doesnt qualify. I go twice a day to the memory facility to feed him.
    We have been together 61 years. I'm a retired nurse like you and its in our blood to give care. I married him at 17 and he is the love of my life for sure. So many love stories here.
    • CommentTimeAug 29th 2016 edited
    Yes, I remember that you were a nurse. Sometimes I wonder if that makes it harder for us. It was so ingrained in me to "care for the patient" that when the role stopped, I was quite lost. Still am, I think, to an extent. God bless, Marilynn.
    • CommentTimeSep 2nd 2016 edited
    katherinecs*, you are most welcome, it helps doesn't it, knowing we are not alone. Are you by chance on facebook? If you want to chat you can either contact me through there or I believe my email is still in my personal information. (I will go look and add it if it's not.) I am going to try to check in here more often. Support is just as important in the afterloss, maybe even more so. We can travel this road together ((hugs))

    edit to add, if you send me an email, please let me know. My spam filters are high and I am just horrible at checking my email. That's not new though, I have always been that way lol