Were you fighting?

One of the top responses I got from people upon hearing the news was “were you fighting?” Automatically, I felt that they were trying to blame me. Well, yes, we were fighting that day. Actually, not as much fighting as I was angry and he was sorry. But for the sake of argument (pun intended) let’s go with fighting. Do you fight with your spouse? Of course you do! How many times had we fought in 6 years? Why was this time different? I maintain that I had every right to be angry that day, but that does not make this hurt any less or make me feel any less like crap for the way things turned out. Reading, starting therapy, and going to the support group has taught me that this is not my fault. I shouldn’t let anyone make me feel otherwise.

Living…

Sometimes I am amazed that I am actually out of bed, dressed and functioning. Ok, so I am wearing track pants and a tee shirt, and haven’t showered in 2 days, but still. I stand, I walk, eat and drink, go to work, take care of my daughter, and do the things I HAVE to do. I explain it by saying, I don’t have a choice. My husband chose death…I choose life. Although I may only be existing right now, I still chose life. I started this journey saying I don’t know how to live without him. The truth is, I don’t. I know that I physically can, but mentally? My husband, partner in life, love of my life, father of my child, is gone and hes not coming back no matter how much I want him to (and even if he wants to.) AND…he chose this! That’s a lot to swallow when you wake up every morning to the same nightmare that is your life. I always wonder how people go on after something like this. Here’s the answer…you just do. The baby needs a mother, the pets need to be cared for, the bills need to be paid etc., and I’m left to do it. So I do…

My first support group

I was referred by the state police victim services to a support group called Survivors of Suicide (SOS.) To start with, I sort of have an issue with the name of the group. I did not survive suicide. I am not the one “attempting suicide.” I am the survivor/family member of someone who actually did succeed at taking their own life. How do you properly put that into words neatly? I don’t really know. Nothing is neat about this. So I decided this group would help me. It was 1/31/13, exactly one month after his death. Apparently this was a new group because there were only 3 of us and the “moderator.” They all lost their sons to suicide. Not quite the same life as I was living. These women were much farther along in the grieving process than I was and told me all kinds of stories of what was in store for me. I felt horrible. I did not want to think about being miserable 5-10 years from now or how the first year you are in shock and the second is worse. I was looking for hope, not horror stories of first, second, and third holidays. I went “home” feeling lost and alone. This is not what I was looking for! What I can say is I was sent home with an SOS handbook (there’s that term again) and it made the night (and hour drive) worthwhile. It truly has helped. Has it erased any of my pain? No, I can’t say it has, but maybe explained a few things. Looking back, I did learn a lot that night about the history and stigma of suicide that may have opened my eyes a bit. I was told to try the group at least four times before deciding if it is right for me. I may try another meeting place that is busier, in hopes to find people that may understand my specific situation a little better. We’ll see…

Welcome

My name is Heather and this is my story. It follows me from marrying my best friend, succeeding through an infertility struggle, to becoming a widow and ultimately a single mother. This is a journal of my life after losing the love of my life to mental illness and suicide. My hope is to help others out there who may be travelling a similar path as I am, as well as have an avenue to express my thoughts and feelings.

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