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Grief Journey, Losing a Spouse or Partner

Words That Trouble Me Now

Since my husband passed away, certain words are like ticking time bombs to me. There are many words that set me off.

For starters, now I hate the word “expired.” I work in a nursing home and they use it there. Expired is what eggs or milk do when they spoil and go bad. My husband was far from spoiling or going bad. 29-year old’s are not rotten food.

And the word “late.” I got a call last week regarding my late husband. What the heck was so late about him? He died way too early. There wasn’t a late thing about it. That was the 1st and so far, the only time, I’ve heard him referred to that way, but it struck me hard.

I also now hate the word “beloved.” Why is someone who has passed beloved? Like it’s past tense. Like they aren’t loved anymore. I still love my husband more than anything. I will never say that I loved him as if I no longer do. He’s still with me in some way, shape, or form. His physical body may not be here, but he will always be alive to me.

I have problems with the word “deserve.” I’m trying to move on with my young boys as best I can. When we have plans or go somewhere, we are told that we deserve it. And that I deserve to be happy. To me, you deserve credit when you work hard on a school paper or work assignment. This is not something I wanted to work on. This is not something I’m doing because I want recognition. I’m not moving on because I deserve to. I’m moving on because I have my little boys and I must.

The last word I will mention is “surprise.” The word used to have good connotations for me. Surprise parties. Surprises for my children. A happy unexpected event. But now, the word is tainted. After my husband passed, I got surprises that made me cry. Mail in his name. Mail addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Cards or gifts from people out of the blue. Songs on the radio that set me off. It seemed I was always getting a surprise that ruined an otherwise good day. Surprises sent me right back down to the bottom. Never thought of surprises as a bad thing. Now they are.

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Wisdom From Our Community

"Wisdom From Our Community" posts originally appeared on the Alliance of Hope Forum for Suicide Loss Survivors and are reprinted with the permission of the authors. Our online forum transcends time and distance, offering a culture of kindness, hope, and understanding to people who have lost loved ones to suicide. Operating like a 24/7 support group, our forum is supervised by a mental health professional and moderated by a trained team of loss survivors. Members can read and comment, share their stories, and connect with other suicide loss survivors.Read More »