A new perspective
Hi everyone it's Judy in Florida
Let me begin by saying that most of the healing I have done has been because of this site and the total acceptance and complete understanding you get here from others who are on this same rocky path of grieving.
I had a very bad holiday season, but believe as I always do that everything happens for a reason. Things seemed to start around the first of November when I fell into a really deep depression. I'm sure this was around the upcoming first anniversary of Barry's death on 11/27/10. I didn't go anywhere or ask to have my depression medication adjusted, I just kept on taking no positive steps to address these feelings. Then I caught bronchitis. Then I caught the stomach virus which was going around.
Long story short I ended up in the ER and then in the hospital for 12 days where they diagnosed me with an irregular heart beat and tried all sorts of things to get it back in rhythm, without success. While there I had exactly two visitors, one of whom was bringing me pajama bottoms. My friend from work resentfully took care of the dog for eight days before telling me I needed to put him in a kennel, which I arranged from the hospital bed. After seven days I finally had this same person call my daughter in LA who was now frantic because I didn't call her back. I was released 12/23 and she had to fly from CA to FL on Christmas Eve, completely ruining her holiday plans for the second year in a row.
I had plenty of time to think while I was hospitalized. It gave me a new perspective. I was so sick and depressed that I reached a point where it didn't matter to me if I was home or there-I didn't care. I now understood how Barry was so ill that he had the fight go out of him and how even in that state he thought of me first and tried to shield me from the reality.
I understood that I had to put myself first if I am to survive and go on in this "new life", and also that there was no other choice but to go on, that depression by itself is an illness not to be ignored and soldiered through. It gave me a new appreciation for family and true friends. All the support I got through those long days came from CA, and children and my best friend who called daily to encourage me. I need to be back there and somehow in 2011 I will achieve that.
To all my fellow travelers on this road, put yourself first. We are still living and our lost loved ones want us to be OK. Take depression seriously as an illness and get help. Begin to make decisions based on what you need, not what necessarily is the most practical, logical path. Be kind to yourself, for we are all still wounded and healing.
Thank you all for being here.