Can I share my sadness?

phoggieJanuary 1, 2012

As some of you friends know, my DH had a heart attack and could not do open heart surgery because he also had pneumonia. Well last night at midnight I got that dreaded phone call from the hospital that he had passed away.

Now I have to make some real tough decisions...I can not live in this house without his SS check...I don't know where to I pick a place where my doctors are (and also one daughter) or go "back home" to family and friends?...which is 60 miles from the doctors, but they do have a hospital etc. "back home" also....just not very big.

This house felt HUGE this morning at 4 am when I got home from saying my "good-bye" to his has been picked up and will be cremated (his choice, not mine).

Thanks for letting me vent a bit this morning.

Mary (Phoggie)

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Oh Mary. I am so sorry. Please make sure you let your friends and family help you during this awful time. You will be in my thoughts and prayers today.


    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 9:59AM
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I am so very sorry to hear about the loss of your husband. It is tough to deal with this at any time, but being around the holidays, it is even worse. I am truly sorry this has happened. I wish things would have turned out differently. When you had said he also had pneumonia, I had a bad feeling about it, but was hoping he would overcome that.

Same thing happened to my grandfather - went into hospital for cancer treatment, came down with pneumonia while IN the hospital, and that is what actually took him, and it happened very fast. It is my understanding that this happens fairly often. By me telling you about my grandfather, I was not trying to grab attention for myself, I was just telling you I have been there, and I know what it's like.

I hate saying this, you are going to get sick of hearing it, it feels like such a cliche - but maybe it is actually a blessing that he is gone. He is no longer in any pain or discomfort, he is free of this world, and is now able to be with God, and his friends and family that passed on before him. He truly is in a better place, and I think you totally understand that. He will be there waiting for you, and one day you will be together again. I know it still doesn't help you a whole lot, I know you may still feel empty inside, and are uncertain of what to do with yourself now. In time, things will get better. I will be thinking of you a lot. I hope you have lots of friends and family that can be there with you to help you through this.

Selling your house should almost be the last thing on your mind. You have so many other things to deal with now. I also understand that this house is a big deal, and can be holding you back from going on with your life. This is a really tough situation to be in.

You have to decide which is more important to you - being closer to family & friends or being closer to your health providers. Maybe you could move in between them and be 30 miles from the doctors?

Again, I am truly sorry this has happened. I wish you well.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 10:23AM
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Even though I haven't been a member of GW very long, I hope I may offer my sincere condolences. Such sad news.

I have been an RN/RRT for 28 years. Not knowing you well enough to help you make your decision about where to live I would like to offer what input I do feel confident about giving:

For right now and the immediate future, just focus on those decisions that must be made immediately. You are going to be very overwhelmed with the details of your husband's services, receiving visitors and family and sorting through paperwork.

Be very kind to yourself. Make sure you eat and rest. Let people that offer to help with anything, do so. Just let the decision about where you are going to live percolate in the background of everything that is going on and simmer in your subconscious.

I am not sure what your health issues are but 60 miles is not so very far from your doctors. In an emergency, you can be transferred to there from the hospital "back home".

And because you referred to it as "back home" twice, maybe that is where your heart is? Or the place where you can find the peace to begin your healing?

I hope that by now you are surrounded by loved ones and are not still feeling the hugeness of your house. I am truly so sorry about your husband.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 10:32AM
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Mary, I am so sorry to read of the loss of your beloved husband. I've been reading your posts here, and saw that you also joined The Kitchen Table forum. Please know that everyone here that "knows" you will keep you and your husband in their thoughts and prayers.


    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 10:37AM
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I am so sorry to hear of your loss. We lost my FIL to pneumonia in 2010. He was only 77 and it came on very suddenly. Take your time in making any major decision. You need time to grieve.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 11:24AM
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OOOOOHHHHHHHHHH my. I am so sorry.

You are in my prayers.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 11:24AM
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I'm sorry for your loss.

Most widows qualify for SS payments based on their husband's contributions over the years, so don't think that just because he has passed that the check will stop. It may take a bit of paperwork and time, but at least it can help to ease the financial burden.

Fire sale that big house at rock bottom "give away" pricing and move halfway between your doctors and family. Just rent for now and don't worry about anything further for at least a year.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 1:10PM
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I am sorry for your loss. Take some time for yourself and rely on friends and loved ones. When they say, "what can I do to help?", know that they really do want to help you through this, so take them up on it.

And, know that we're here for you too. We can be a great sounding board, especially when you need objective advice, or just, as you said, want to vent.

I do hope the new year brings you some peace.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 1:27PM
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Dear Mary - Please accept my condolences on the loss of your husband.

I lost my dear wife five years ago after a lengthy illness and, as such, I have a some small idea of what you are facing.

Please feel free to PM me at any time if you wish - I'd be glad to listen to anything you offer as one whom has been there.

One observation gently offered - there rarely is any true hurry to make important and lasting decisions regarding finances or location. Take your time and wait for your feelings of shock and numbness to dissipate.

Best wishes.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 3:54PM
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I am so sorry for your loss. ((((hugs))))

No advice to give on where you should live, although it sounds like family is where your heart is. (Personally, I would choose family over accessibility to my doctor)

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 4:22PM
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Doc gives good advice. Take it slowly. I think eventually you will know what to do, but being close to family and friends sounds good to me.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 6:11PM
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the advice is always to not make any major/life changing decisions for a year - however, your house situation might mean that you will need to make a decision before a year is up (I have been a widow for almost 3 years - I will be 73 in June); I was almost 70 when my husband died - it was not totally unexpected - he had a very deadly cancer. I, too, had to 'say goodbye' to his dead body. He died in surgery.

We had already purchased a second home (for retirement) and I did sell our original home and move to the second home. You can expect to be 'numb', in a 'fog' for at least the first 90 days, dealing with many, many things.

Hoping you can find peace in your life soon. Carolyn

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 6:43PM
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So very very sorry, Mary. Now is not the time to make big decisions like you're talking about. Take some time to deal with the things you have to right now (arrangements for your husband) and let everything else be. It will take some time to adjust to things the way they are now & you will need to make a concentrated effort to take care of yourself--make sure you eat, sleep, & stay physically active. All these things help fight depression which is a very real possibility considering the unexpectedness of your husband's passing. Once you have a firm handle on things as they are now, you will be in a much better position & frame of mind to take on the decisions on what to do with the house, where to live, etc. I will definitely keep you in my prayers. (((Hugs))).

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 8:44PM
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(((( Hugs ))))

I'm so sorry to hear this. I can only hope you can figure out what makes the most sense for you and that you can find what feels like home to you.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 9:35PM
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I'm so very sorry, Mary. You need to mourn awhile before you make plans, but I've always been impressed with your positive attitude and I know you will make the right decision for your future when the time comes. You are in my prayers.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2012 at 10:17PM
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So sorry to read of your loss and house issues on top of everything else.
Please take care of yourself first. You will need strength and a clear mind to make the right decisions when the time comes.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 10:03AM
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I'm so sorry to read this news. What a sad and difficult way to begin the new year.

I would agree with all the other posters that right now you need to spend your time dealing with matters immediately related to your husband's death. Don't hurry through this time--it's very precious even though it's painful and exhausting.

My mother, who lives an hour from me, died before Christmas, and during the holidays it seemed to make perfect sense to sell our house and move to her city, to be closer to my family. That feeling was very intense. I haven't yet acted on it--perhaps I will or perhaps I'll stay right here--time will tell. It's just interesting that both you and I experienced a significant death and immediately had thoughts of changing locales.

Give yourself lots of time and space to grieve and wait to do anything about selling your house until you are sure that is the path for you to take.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 11:39AM
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I'm so sorry.

The advice to sit still for a while is excellent;
I've sold real estate for many years, & people sometimes do make unwise, even rash, decisions when they try to move too fast.

Take your time, & the one-year-before-you-sign-anything policy, if you can manage it, is a good one.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 1:06PM
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Mary, I am so sorry.

If there are decisions that need to be made, can you ask the hospital if they have a social worker on staff? A human services professional may be able to help you navigate the SS stuff and clarify the decision making process.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 3:21PM
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Oh, Mary. I am so sorry to read this. I have no words of advice or comfort, just profound sadness for your loss.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 4:22PM
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I, too, am sad and very sorry to read this news.


    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 8:15PM
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    Bookmark   January 2, 2012 at 10:44PM
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Phoggie, I offer you my sincere condolences. I can't imagine how you are feeling right now. My heart goes out to you.

Hope you are spending time with supportive friends & family around you. Don't isolate yourself; reach out, and know that people want to help you in a number of ways.

If you ever find yourself alone & need to just talk or get feedback, please post here!

Sending you my hugs too & keeping you in my prayers.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 10:16AM
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Mary, I also offer my condolences at this time. Very sorry to read of your husbands' passing. As others have said do not make any decisions at the present. Let what happen sink in a bit and be with friends and family. The house can wait right now. Take care of yourself. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 2:46PM
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I am so sorry to hear of your sad news. I have said a prayer for you. I hope it makes its way to your heart.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 7:17PM
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I pray for comfort and strength for you when you need it.

Make no lasting decisions now.

My deepest condolences,

    Bookmark   January 4, 2012 at 5:40PM
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Phoggie - I am so sorry....... Please go directly to the source and make an appointment with your local Social Security Office to see what you may be eligible for - the sooner the better, as it takes awhile to put changes in motion. Don't agonize over the unknown.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2012 at 6:26PM
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My sympathies on the loss of your husband. May his memory be for a blessing.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2012 at 8:19AM
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I am so very sorry.

Take a few months at least, if you can, to recover from the first shock, before you make your decision.

Thoughts and prayers for you.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2012 at 1:33PM
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Oh my...your thoughts are SO much appreciated...and prayers are even more so. Today is a lonely day....cloudy and one has come, called, the aloneness is setting in big time!

This is not the first time I have had a husband pass first husband was killed in a highway accident when I was only 33 years old and had children 13, 10, and 7 to raise by my self. I am so proud of them...they are now all educated, married and have been there for me anytime I need them. They have given me 5 beautiful grandchildren and I am truly blessed.

I was only married to my last husband 11 with his children has been strained (to say the least)! So selling this house and moving "back home" where I have family and friends is where I need to be so I can heal and put this embezzling family member as far away from me as I can. He completely took everything from DH and I am left with $1500 a month to live on...and although this house is paid for, that is not enough to maintain a 4,090 SF home, taxes, insurance, and live. DH never did up-date his will since he had been married to his first wife before she died about 18 years I am not named in it...and he never got around to buying any life insurance :My blessings are many...DH didn't have to go to a nursing home or suffer...he was sharp to the end. He sent me home to rest...and I wonder if he had any idea that he was losing ground and didn't want me to see him pass away....but I hate it that he was alone when he did.

As far as SS goes....lesson learned....I had to pay back the entire SS check because he died one SECOND before midnight in 2011...that was a kicker that I had not planned on...but God is good and he will provide for me some how.

It might be crazy, but I just can not get a thought out of my mind..... Recently we went to that lot we have and when we watched the sun set over the lake he said, "This is home, this is where we need to be." I know I can not afford by myself to build the house that he drew for that lot, but I called the Amish builder who would have done the work and asked him if he had any very modest house plans that would sit on that lot and I would have to really watch my money in a build and he said that he would look and see...and he thought he had one that would be good. Foolish?....probably, but that is where DH wanted to be and I just can not get that thought out of my mind.

I am having a house showing in the is not listed on MLS, but I will give a one-day listing to anyone who will bring me a qualified don't expect anything to come of it, but I never turn down a showing.

I am terribly sorry this got so long.....but I am lonely today and I am so appreciative of all of the thoughts of my new found friends far away from Kansas.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2012 at 3:37PM
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Thanks for checking in, Mary. I've been thinking of you and I'm sure others have as well. It is wonderful that you have such close and supportive children. Let them be a comfort to you now. Forward thinking is good and your dream isn't crazy, but still please give yourself some time before you act on it. When you sell your house (as you were already planning), why don't you think about renting near to where you want to be for a while while you consider your options? Take care, take your time, and know that you've got a lot of prayers coming your way.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2012 at 7:24PM
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I'm very sorry for your loss. It's such a terrible time to have to deal with financial matters but you have no choice.

I just wanted to chime in to tell you about my Mom's experience. Her DH owned land in Texas before they were married. After they married, they built a house together - by themselves. It took eight years but they built the house of their dreams. Mom worked as a waitress and her DH was a truck driver and she paid all of the household bills while all of his money went to building the house. In the end they never took out a loan and the house was totally paid for.

Not even a year after the house was finished Mom's DH had a heart attack and died right on the spot while Mom was administering CPR. That evening, I had to rush her to the hospital because she had a heart attack. It was an awful time, she was in the hospital and couldn't attend the funeral.

Mom's DH has three horrible sons. Never helped with the house unless he paid them, they withheld their children from him as punishment whenever he didn't come through with money every time they asked and never respected my Mom. I had to pay for the funeral and his burial plot in Mom's stead while they insisted on making all the choices for the funeral.

The thing is, Mom's DH never had a will either. Because of that, the judge split my Mom's house four ways, a quarter going to her and a quarter going to each of the boys. She lived in the house as long as she could but she had to get a job 60 miles away and the gas was just too much. She sold the house and only received a quarter of it's worth.

PLEASE seek legal advice and protect yourself before your DH's kids descend like vultures.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2012 at 11:04AM
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Oh kellyeng~~ I am sorry for all the heartache your family had to go through.

"Mom's DH has three horrible sons. Never helped with the house unless he paid them, they withheld their children from him as punishment whenever he didn't come through with money every time they asked and never respected my Mom. I had to pay for the funeral and his burial plot in Mom's stead while they insisted on making all the choices for the funeral."

OMG, is this the same family I am dealing with? certainly sounds like it. I will look into getting an attorney's advice ASAP.

I hope your mom is doing okay now and God bless~~

    Bookmark   January 8, 2012 at 5:18PM
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About SS benefits - If your husband's SS benefits were greater than those that you draw on your own record you may be eligible to receive his higher benefits instead. You should contact Social Security Administration to find out.

As far as the will and estate - Please, please contact an attorney who specializes in that type of law. Each state has different laws as to how assets pass on death and how it might treat a spouse not named in the will.

Also certain types of assets often pass outside the will. It is common, for example, that retirement accounts may be paid according to the beneficiary designation and not according to the will. That also is often the case with regard to money on deposit in banks as well.

No one here can advise you as to how this all affects you as we don't have enough information and each state's laws are different. Again, consult with an attorney in your area.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2012 at 10:18PM
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Oh Mary, I'm so sorry to hear this! This is the first time I've had a chance to come on here since I moved, and this happened to one of my most favorite people on here! You poor thing. I wish I was there in Kansas to give you a hug.

I relate to what Gardeningmusician said. I'm sorry that you lost your mom Gardeningmusician. I lost my mom about a year-and-a-half ago and the pain is unbearable. It's the main reason I left Virginia and moved back to New Jersey. After eight years, I suddenly needed to be by my family. I feel safer here. People are shocked when they hear that--"You feel safer in JERSEY?!" It's the familiar. The familiar is comforting. And not just the family. The type of music that's on the radio here, the food, the way people talk and how we "get" each other. I guess it's the culture. Even in the same country, it's very different from state to state.

I was scared the whole time, that whole year my house was on the market that I was making a mistake, that I was doing this because of my grief and like the song goes, "you can't go home." Two months after my mother died, we put the house on the market. We've only been here a month now, but I love it. My mother's not here but everything and everyone else is. It's a cliche' about how important family is but it's true. We have to restart our business here and so we're actually unemployed and though that's very scary because we're already out of money, I still feel at peace. I'm happy. And I know my mother would want this for me.

You wanted to move before you lost your husband so I would say stay on track. You're not making a decision because you lost him. If the question is "Where?" I would say go to your family and not your doctors. What does your family think?

    Bookmark   January 9, 2012 at 11:23PM
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I haven't visited this forum for awhile, but when I saw the title of your thread, my heart broke for you.

I am so, so, sorry to learn the news of your husband's death. Please accept my deep condolences.
I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.


    Bookmark   January 10, 2012 at 7:11AM
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Thanks again to all who have posted and especially your prayers in my behalf.

Sunday (15th) we will bury his ashes. Since I have absolutely no cooperation or visits from his family, I have
contacted a retired minister and I have written a very small "service". They can like it or lump this point I don't care! I will just be glad when it is over and I personally don't care if I see them again.....and they are only 2 blocks away. I had hoped at least they would have come and see if I was okay or needed anything....but not a sign of them. I don't even know where DH's ashes are or the death certificates, etc. "The Thief Son" said he would "take care of it"...for whatever that means!

I am still going to follow our original plans and move near my family and friends...that is where my heart is at.
As "Love" said, go back "home" where things are much more friendly, safer, and people who care.

I am very thanks for all of your support....and hope and pray that this house sells soon so I can get on with me life.

DH had no insurance, just enough to pay for his cremation...had not up-dated his will since his last wife died 18 years ago...everything is in his family trust, but thanks to "that son", there is nothing there anyway. Life
will be tough living on only SS and my very small retirement....but life goes on. MY children/grandchildren
and family are very supportive with their time, calls, visits, etc....thank God for them!

Again, you are all appreciated so much.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2012 at 12:38PM
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Oh, I just typed a big long thing and my new Internet is terrible.

I just wanted to say that when I was selling my house, it was endless and I thought it was never going to happen and what helped me was visualizing being in the new place and I'd look back on this someday and it would all be a memory. Before you know it, you'll be with your other loved ones and you will feel better. I hate that you are lonely. You're such a sweet, positive person. Hang in there Mary. You may feel lonely, but you're not alone.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2012 at 11:31PM
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I lurk obsessively, seldom post. But I have been following your story. Sooo sorry about your husband. Just wanted to let you know that someone else is thinking and praying for you. Especially on the 15th.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2012 at 1:56PM
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Oh LITH and lokipup~~ thank you so much for your kind words. It is good to remember that I do have friends on here who care about me. Just pray that a good qualified buyer comes along and falls in love with this house, so I can get "back home".

    Bookmark   January 13, 2012 at 2:20PM
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What's happening Mary? Any luck on the house selling? I've been thinking about you.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2012 at 12:17AM
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LITH and all others too~~
Thanks for thinking of seems like an eternity since my beloved was taken home, but I am doing as well as can be expected, I guess~~ There is always something I want to tell him, and look at his empty chairs and wish I could talk to him one more time...but then there would never be enough time~~

As for the house....I was told yesterday that I have a "low ball" offer coming in.....$255,000 on it listed at an already lowered $299,900...I am hoping they will counter, but the realtor thought they were pretty set in their price.

This afternoon, I am showing it to a husband and wife doctor team who are coming here....and I live only 1 1/2 blocks from their offices/ I am anxious to see if anything becomes of that. They wanted out by the big lake, but they have to live so they can be at the hospital in 20 minutes and I don't think they can get here that fast from the lake......oh who knows, but on the brighter side~~~~~ I was talking to one of the guys who live in a 4 plex, just south of my lot on the lake, and he said that he didn't know when it would happen, but the south unit of the 4 plex was coming up for sale. It is not as large as the middle units, but still a 2/2 and looks out on "my" lake~~~~ I called about it and she was driving, so I need to call her again this afternoon. The HOA fees there are $224.00 a mo., but they include the taxes, insurance, lawn care, snow removal and the dues.

I could probably build a duplex for not too much more than that unit would cost, but heck, it is already built and I would not have the hassle of moving twice and the headaches of building by myself~~ I have not seen the inside yet, and if he was a smoker, it is out...I have a terrible allergy to smoke.

Thanks again for your good thoughts....keep them coming...I read these posts regularly to keep up with you fine people who post on this forum.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2012 at 1:11PM
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It's going to take a long time for you to "get used to" your husband being gone. I fell into a deep depression and became a totally different person when my beloved dog died a few years back - and I know that doesn't even compare to what you are dealing with. I can't begin to imagine what it is like to lose your beloved spouse. It's just going to take a lot of time. At least you do seem to be thinking about it the right way. You say things like "he was taken home", and that tells me you KNOW he is with God, everything is ok and you will see him again someday.

I hope your house sale goes well. I really hate to hear about the low-baller. Unfortunately, that's the way it is anymore. People want bargains. Hopefully he will either come up to a more satisfactory price, or the doctor will make a better offer. Either way, it seems like this house is now holding you back. You need to decide what is more important - holding out for a better price, or accepting a lower price than you wanted just so you can finally be set free.

You are now thinking of buying a condo? I can see the attraction of living in a place where you don't have any maintenance worries, but at $2688 per year? Wow, that seems very expensive. You'd pay a whole lot less if you bought a smaller house or a townhouse in excellent condition and paid a neighborhood kid to take care of your lawn and snow removal. I'm not trying to talk you out of it, though. Do what you think works best for you. The older I get the more I realize living in a condo may be in my future - but I still think most condo fees are just ridiculous for what you actually get in return. Well again, not meaning to sound negative.

I wish you the best. I hope something good happens really soon.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2012 at 2:54PM
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cas66-- I know the HOA fees may seem steep, but those are the ONLY units in the entire town and they are right on the lake where we wanted to live. That HOA fee does include TAXES and INSURANCE also. After paying $4500 taxes, $2000 insurance, $240 HOA Fees, $30 a week for lawn moving, $250 a year for weed control, etc, and $50 each time it snows, a year on this place (although it is a lot larger), they don't seem quite as bad. I know I am paying for LOCATION, but it is just across the street from my son and daughter-in-law, so it makes it more attractive to me than many others. There are numerous "lookers" at it already, so don't know if this house will sell in time to actually be able to purchase it or not....nothing firm in an offer yet....although the realtor says there is one coming...but I am trying not to get too excited (but can't sleep for hoping).

    Bookmark   February 6, 2012 at 3:13PM
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I have been away from these forums for several months but recognize "phoggies" poster name. So I am truly sorry to hear about your husbands passing. When you mentioned that he sent you home to rest I had no doubt that he really needed to be alone in his passing. I hear that quite often, so don't be upset that you weren't there. You were there for the living and I'm sure that you and he have many memories to treasure of happier times. Keep the faith, things will get better. (((hugs)))

And I do want to share one more thing...I may not have remembered this exactly but here old saying... a joy shared is twice a joy, a sorrow shared is half a sorrow. Seems like a simple saying but I believe there is truth to it.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2012 at 3:12PM
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I just want to ad that $240.00 a month would be considered a low HOA fee here. We own a 1000 sq ft condo and the HOA is 365.00. Florida, so snow removal isn't an issue.


    Bookmark   February 7, 2012 at 6:58PM
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i hope you're not too sad anymore.
hope you feel better after all this time.

take care!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 8:47PM
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