I’ve Stopped Counting Mondays

I’ve stopped counting Mondays. I am usually vaguely aware that another Monday is going by, but I don’t watch the clock like I used to thinking about where I was at that time. At some point in the last month or so, I’ve stopped tracking time by weeks gone by. Now I refer to months and their fractional parts. It will be 7 months on Friday. I don’t think this is a sign of healing more that my brain can’t regularly keep track of numbers as big as 30 weeks.

Silence is the enemy these days. Memories are a blessing and a curse. It used to be that everything would hit me hardest in the car but now I find that any quiet time takes me to a place of loneliness and melancholy. I’ve been reading to fill the void – 6 books in 3 weeks if that tells you anything.

A friend shared an article she read about grieving. In it the author talks about how exhausting it is to put your “I’m doing fine face” forward to the world. I understand this. People want to know that you are doing okay. I find myself doing it all the time. A question as simple as “How are you?” usually gets a standard “fine” response. I mean who really wants to hear that it’s tough? Most days.

I know that this was exhausting for Dave. He always put his enthusiastic, positive face forward for others. He would only really show his true emotions to me and even those were guarded at times. I guess it is human nature to not want to be a burden on others. Even when sharing bad news with family and friends he would temper it by being upbeat and positive when inside he was feeling frustrated and knocked down.

I guess that I am finally at that point where outside help is an option. I have avoided counseling and support groups (shudder) at all costs. The idea of sharing my experience and having to talk about everything makes me feel queasy. I talk about Dave all the time – what he would say or think, what he did say or do. But I am loathe to really revisit those last days/months/years or my feelings about them. I have shared in this space more than anywhere else and that has been helpful, I think. But it is probably time to call in the professionals – for their expertise and maybe for their prescription pad.

It is not that I am not functioning. My to do list is getting done, bills are being paid, I am showing up at work and doing a decent job, I think. But I just don’t know how to make my heart stop hurting or how to quiet the sad thoughts in my head. Those just make me want to go back to bed and pull the covers up. I guess it is a victory that I don’t.

I know that counseling is beneficial. I know that many of you will encourage me to seek it out. Please don’t. It takes courage to make that step, and I am building up to it. One step and day at a time.

xoxo,

Robyn

18 thoughts on “I’ve Stopped Counting Mondays

  1. Robyn — professional help is definitely a personal matter and only do it if YOU feel it is necessary. I was pushed into it and it was awful for me. I had the best counselor in the world and I liked her and it was easy to talk to her. BUT going in and talking about Melissa’s death for a hour was a tremendous burden on me. I liked talking about Melissa on my terms and in short periods of time — not an entire hour dedicated to it. For some people it is what they need, but it was not what I needed. I am glad I went because it let me make the decision that this was not the route to take in my grief — I didn’t think it was, but I wasn’t sure. Don’t let anyone talk you into going — go only if you feel it is right for you. Professional help isn’t for everyone. For me it is easier to talk to my family and friends and not have everything I said analyzed. You will know. Take care my new friend.

  2. I don’t know if the heart ever stops hurting…medicine may help quiet the sad thoughts…just take your time, you will know if and when you’re ready. I think people see through the “fine” face and I think you might be surprised about people wanting to listen how tough it really is…..please keep posting…we may not always respond but we still care and we are atill praying…Lisa

  3. Robyn,
    Some well meaning friends once got me set up with a counselor to deal with an issue they felt I wasn’t dealing with, and I was FURIOUS. I had decided to seek counseling on my own, and their actions took away my feeling that I had come up with a good solution on my own, which of course took away any chance the counseling had of being effective. I think you’ve done a great job, based on what I read in the blog, of doing what you need to do to deal with
    the challenges you have. I have great faith in you, your decision making, and your ability to ask for and access help when you need it. I am sure I join the rest of your support system in reminding you that we continue to send our love and positive vibes to help as you heal.

    XOXOXO

    • Dear Nanabelle,

      Thank you for sharing that story. I can completely understand and would have been so angry too! (I think that counseling can be an amazing tool IF/WHEN you are ready for it.) I appreciate your faith in me. High praise indeed considering the source. And I, of course, appreciate your continued love and support.

  4. I was reluctant too… Writing has been the best source of counseling for me, being an open book. But honestly, it’s because I felt that even though the support groups for people who lost spouses, that were supposed to make you feel like you weren’t alone? Did just that. Yes, she lost her husband, but I could not, in any way, relate to her. I feel like it’s not my place to compare my loss to hers, or yours. It’s your love. How could I?
    I feel like it was helpful to get the kids into a group/therapist, because I couldn’t say the right thing without crying through it. But I feel like you’ll find the right path when youre ready, and not a minute before. There is no rule book for this….
    Good luck, and I’m always here to talk if you need a friendly ear to scream at. 😊
    Shannon DiBacco

    • Shannon,

      FIrst and foremost I am so grateful for you and your sweet daughter. I hate that we have this in common but I am thankful that you both were there for Parker when she needed someone who really understood. There are no words to express how grateful I am.

      I made the kids go to counseling and Parker actually enjoyed the group. I didn’t so much enjoy talking to the other adults though. Because it just made me dread what was to come. They were all a year or more ahead of me in their losses. That and the whole “when did he die, of what” conversations.

      And that friendly ear offer goes both ways.

      Robyn

  5. I have been following your blog for many months & never posted. Partly because I do not know you personally,but something is leading me to comment tonight. You do what you need to do when YOU need to do it! Everyone’s grieving timeframe & situation is different. It takes time, so do not get frustrated. I have been praying for you and your family. Christine Page, former Hayfield parent & PTA member.

  6. After Zachary died, so many people encouraged us to go to support groups and counseling. I couldn’t bring myself to go to the support groups because I was overflowing with sadness and I didn’t have one more ounce left in me to be understanding, helpful and lacked ability to take on the burden of those other mother’s sad stories. I know they help many, but as others have said, both groups and counseling are very personal and you will know when and if you are ready.

    • Oh my dearest friend. I hope that I was there for you in even a fraction of the amount you have supported us during this time. I will never forget that incredibly devastating time and now look back and wonder if we checked in on you guys enough or did all that we could. Love you all.

  7. I wish I could say it is getting easier for us but is isn’t. We are not seeking professional help and it is a very personal decision. You go when and if you want to. Love, Ann

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