The Fatigue Begins to Catch Up

June 18, 2009 at 7:09 am 3 comments

Today, it was a struggle to get out of bed.  I am really exhausted – rather “burned out” inside.  But I knew I needed to eat something to keep my stomach calm.  I’m thankful that made me get up.  But the day was very challenging. I discovered over 50  e-mails that came in soon after I sent out the announcement that Dan had passed.  I had not looked at them.  After I sent out the announcement, I closed my computer and went to bed. Having been up more than 24 hours without sleep, I had to rest before I could face letting the mortuary take Dan’s body away.

When I started looking at the e-mails from last week, sadness enveloped me.  So I stopped.  I’ll read them when I have more energy.  But later, I went to the P.O., and there were a bunch of statements from Medicare and several statements from the hospital, Emergency Room, doctors. I started having flashbacks, remembering all those times rushing to Emergency, sitting in the many doctors’ offices, the days and days that Dan was in the hospital, and that while it helped us have him several months longer…he is now gone from us.  I came close to crashing.  Even though I know that’s simply part of the grief process, it does not make it any easier.  Being a therapist who helps others with grief recovery doesn’t help me get over my own grief any easier either.  

Our son said to give him all the papers about Medicare and bills that come in.  He will look at everything and figure it out. I hope that these are the last of the bills relating to Dan’s sarcoma.  They took care of over $350,000 of Dan’s bills.  Even though we still have some to pay, we don’t have any huge bills.  Because of Medicare, we’re going to be fine.

Another example of how God continues to help us – Nancy,  my new friend, the daughter in law of our beloved Sue Lawrence from Edgefield days,  and a member at RHCC made a Facebook page announcing the container for Romania with a link to the web page. We already have two online donations!  Helping others is good medicine for sadness.  “God will always give what is right to His people who cry to Him night and day, and He will not be slow to answer them.”  Luke 18:7 — Anne


Dan in Vienna with Lynn & Barbara Camp of Eastern European Missions who gave us the Hungarian Children's Bibles!

Dan in Vienna with Lynn & Barbara Camp of Eastern European Missions who gave us the Hungarian Children's Bibles!


Romanian Children are beautiful!

Romanian Children are beautiful!


Entry filed under: 1.

One Step at a Time Seven Days Ago

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Sherrie Hammond  |  June 18, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    Dearest Anne,
    Yes, indeed helping others helps us heal from our grief and loss. It is indeed therapeutic to help someone else who needs an uplift. I am happy the Romanian container is progressing forward with the mission God has called you to do for Him. This is thrilling good news! Soak-in this good news about your God-given mission … soak-in the good news down deep into your soul so that this good news can plant, root, grow, flourish, bathe, refresh, and revitalize your spirit. Good news is a gift from God. Praise God, He sends you good news!

    I can relate to the medical bills, etc, coming in, all the business wrap-up of earthly things, and all the reminders about what happened. I went through this experience after dad died last year, after my brother died, and after my mother died. Plus, I can relate to the flashbacks of events, past words, thoughts, feelings happening all at the very same time. Grief is interesting how it “floods” our souls with a mixture of uplifting things and hurtful things all at once. At times, it seems like everything “floods” our minds and emotions all at once and there are too many images, thoughts, and feelings to process. (You will process each one, but it takes time.) And then, all those things are gone … processed out of our system … a welcome relief. This is normal for grief feelings. This too shall pass … in time.

    I am thankful for your wonderful son who supports you, encourages you, and relieves some of your burden! Your son is a gift from God and a great blessing to you right now. I am very grateful to God that He gave you this special son who loves you, cherishes you, and cares for you now in your time of need. I am glad you are getting some very much needed rest and good nutrition. These are all very healthy ways to purge our grief. Sometimes, during the death & dying event process, we do not recognize and realize how exhausted we really are. I am grateful you have loving family to help you. And, I’m grateful you are getting some rest.

    I thought of some other helpful grief recovery tips that work well. I thought I’d share a few with you:

    RE-VISIT HAPPY PLACES. When the sadness starts to overwhelm us, re-visit happy places where we shared joy. Re-visit happy places where you and Dan went and where you (personally) have pleasant, happy memories that still bring a smile to your face when you go there. For example: Go to a favorite restaurant with family or friends and talk only about happy, funny memories of Dan that you had in those places. Our family did this recently after Steve’s mother’s funeral. We all went to eat at El Fenix together as a family directly after the funeral, and we talked about our own personal fun, happy, or funny experiences eating and visiting with Bobbie at El Fenix. That was one of her favorite restaurants, so we all went and shared our El Fenix Mexican food luncheon stories with each other. It gave us a happy relief feeling with smiles on our faces after the tears flowed down our faces.

    BURN OFF GRIEF ENERGY. When we can not ‘let go’ of the agitation or anxious feelings from our grief, get busy and burn off the grief energy. Do normal routine tasks like the laundry, wash the dishes, vacuum, mop the floors, dust the furniture, cook a meal, clean out the closet, or wash the car (this one really uses a lot of energy, because I’ve done it, haha). Normal daily work activities use up physical energy that is produced by overactive emotions. Then, after we burn off that grief energy, we relax and rest better when sleep is needed. Also, by cleaning up our normal daily environment, we gain double blessings … a clean, nurturing residence and restfulness after our work. It helps us stay balanced.

    MAKE A HAPPY BOOK. Make a happy scrapbook of good memories you had with Dan … sort of like you are doing on the blogsite, except in a scrapbook. Remember the joy in photos with written captions and memories written out to remind us of the joyful times we were blessed to share together. I did this right after dad died last year. He had “millions” of photos … and funny looking ones of him in his high school football uniform … you know, back in the “Dark Ages”, haha. You know, my dad was the field goal and extra point kicker for his high school team! He was so handsome and popular at his school. I felt happy putting all those photos in a scrapbook … AND I also cried my tears while compiling Dad’s Happy scrapbook of his life’s story. It helped me heal by crying and smiling at the same time.

    Love you,
    Sherrie H.

  • 2. Jeanie Mercer  |  June 18, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    Flowing midnight tears
    Have been saved in God’s bottle
    To water the rose.

    (by Jeanie Mercer, cf. Ps. 56:8)

  • 3. godschildrenorg  |  June 20, 2009 at 4:02 am

    Thank you, ladies, your messages are so helpful. Jeanie, I didn’t know you wrote poetry. This is beautiful.


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