Monday, June 11, 2012

What am I afraid of?


Every so often someone asks me "What are you so afraid of?"  Often times it is in reference to dating ("Why don't you try online dating? What are you so afraid of?") or how I should spend my time and money. ("Why don't you take a European cruise by yourself? What are you so afraid of?)      

Honestly, I know what I am afraid of and it's not dating or taking a solo vacation. 

·       -  I am afraid of getting sick and having to ask others for help.

·       -  I am afraid of retiring and having too much time on my hands.

·       -  I am afraid of losing my independence mentally or physically.

·      -      I am afraid that I will outlive the people I care about.

·       -  I am afraid of forgetting the sound of Lane's voice.

I guess I am afraid of being afraid. I don't want to be afraid to try new things.  I don't want to be afraid to travel my own road.  I don't want to be afraid of the future.

What are you afraid of?

Sue

33 comments:

  1. I, too, am afraid. What if I fall? I didn't even give such a thing a thought 4 years ago. I am on a farm, a few miles from any good friends, 20 miles from town. I am also afraid that I won't have anyone to take care of me as I looked after my husband. And I wonder, when do you stop thinking about him constantly? It seems I am now at about every 15 minutes, was every maybe every 5. I know you should look forward but it is hard to see any future there. Just want to live with my memories. I wish there were more magazines, etc.designed for mature people. I am past raising children, Little League, homework. I am just lonesome, it seems.

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  2. Afraid of just about EVERYTHING and despondent because the effort to overcome my fears is just plain wearisome. Likewise, I am tired of trying to be "normal" (because "they" expect/need/want that),when I know the fear is the constant in my life that apparently will not dissipate if I would "just try harder".

    Thank you, as usual, Sue for saying what so many of us are thinking and for providing us a safe haven for the opportunity to honestly express our feelings without fear (that word again) of censure.

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  3. I am afraid of growing old and needing help. My husband and I promised each other that no matter what, we would never be in a nursing home. What will I do now? What if I get cancer? Who will be there with me. My sons would do their best but they have families to support. I will never date. I am trying to make some single lady friends just to have someone to go out to eat, play cards etc.with. Life is lonely and the sadness floods my soul.

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  4. SUE,

    I CAN IDENTIFY WITH YOU ABOUT BEING AFRAID.

    I AM ALREADY RETIRED, SO NOT AFRAID OF THAT.

    MY HUSBANDS VOICE IS STILL ON MY ANSWERING MACHINE SO I STILL HEAR HIM FROM TIME TO TIME.

    I AM NOT AFRAID OF LIVING TOO SHORT A LIFE.

    I AM AFRAID OF LIVING TOO LONG A LIFE AND EVERYONE I KNOW BEING GONE.

    I AM NOT AFRAID TO DIE, IT WOULD BE THE END OF THE LONG, LONELY DAYS OF DOING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

    TODAY, I CHASED AFTER A LARGE UMBRELLA THAT CAREENED OUT OF SIGHT AND ACROSS THE STREET. NO, IT IS NOT VALUABLE, EXCEPT IT REPRESENTED THE COMPANY HUBBY WORKED FOR AND I TREASURE HIS UMBRELLA. IT WOULD BE LIKE LOSING A BIT OF HIM AGAIN. I WAS SO GLAD WHEN I GOT IT SECURED, I AM IN GOOD SHAPE FOR AN OLDER BROAD. THIS IS SILLY I KNOW.

    I AM AFRAID OF THE MIDDLE OF JULY AS THAT IS WHEN HE DIED 3 YRS. AGO. I AM NOT SURE WHAT I AM AFRAID OF, AS THE WORST HAS ALREADY HAPPENED. I JUST WANT TO GET PAST THE DATE.

    I AM AFRAID OF BEING AFRAID.

    I AM AFRAID OF ALL HOLIDAYS AND SIGNIFICANT DAYS IMPORTANT TO MY PAST LIFE.

    I AM NOT AFRAID WHEN I COME HERE, AS I FEEL THAT MANY HERE UNDERSTAND.

    THANKS FOR STARTING THIS SUE!

    YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

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  5. I'm a new widow and I find I'm most afraid of not getting past the pain of him not physically being here with me. I used to get so agitated at things he did and now they seem like nothing. I feel pain everyday and I wonder if it'll soften with time and what is ahead? It's been two weeks and I've been working hard to cope, will I be able to continue working to get there or is something else going to knock the wind out of me?

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  6. It's unreal how you know what is on everyone's thinking - we are afraid. well I am afraid.
    Afraid to forget
    Afraid to remember
    Afraid to move forward
    Afraid to stay stuck
    Afraid to share
    Afraid to keep running
    Afraid to stop
    Afraid to grow old when we were suppose to grow old together
    Afraid to die alone
    Afraid to live alone
    Afraid I will never see your smiling eyes again
    Afraid I will forget you
    2 and a half years
    Afraid you have forgotten me

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  7. Fear is one of my biggest challenges.

    It seems that when I'm on a project, busy or engaged in someone else's problems, I do better. It is when I spend too much time alone or when I awake in the middle of the night and wonder how I'll pay my dental bill, or where I'll live after I sell my property that I start to freak out.

    Sometimes when I get into the fear mode I say to myself "Not now" and it helps to soothe me. Another thing that has helped is trying to live in the moment, not dwell on worst case scenario that may or may not happen. After all, I had no inkling that my husband would become terminally ill and die. It came out of the blue.

    I have had a lot of saddness and loss in my life and have found that unexpected support has come my way. I'm hoping that this will continue as I face life alone.

    I'll add this: I never dreamed that life without my husband would be so difficult. We were dependent on each other, thought we'd be together always. No matter how much I try to put a positive spin on coping with aloneness and the accompanying fear, it sucks.

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  8. Afraid that I will forget memories, dates or events we shared.
    Afraid to be alone
    Afraid that to complete things we were suppose to do together
    Afraid to love anyone else
    Just Afraid

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  9. One of the hardest things about dealing with fear, is trying to pretend I'm not, and keep putting up a good front. People want to help, and are willing to give a hand when needed, but not for long extended periods of time; except in rare cases such as husband's or wive's who may have longterm serious illnesses. Those situations also become tremendously difficult for all involved.

    I've always been a strong person, able to make decisions, get things going, keep up with the fast pace of life, always very responsible. Now, I feel myself slipping, my spirit is weary, as well as my body. I keep going, but I'd really like to just sit down and give up.

    Family members seem oblivious....but after all, they have their own lives to tend to.

    The greatest fears for me are getting to place of having to ask for someone's help, or not being able to take care of myself anymore. After thinking it thru, I know I'd put myself in a nursing home before I'd go to family to live; it would be for the best for everyone. I don't want anyone to feel burdened with caring for me, especially if I become invalid.

    I've resolved this in my heart, I just hope I keep strong enough to make these last decisions myself, if it ever comes to this point before I die. I don't fear death....it's the process that brings feelings of dread.

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  10. I'm afraid of actually listing all of my fears because the list would be endless. But if I had to list just one, it would be that I am afraid of growing old without someone who shares my dreams.
    BM

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  11. I am afraid of all of the things that I have to handle and do not understand because he handled them. I am afraid that I am not an adequate enough parent for my two teenage sons. I am afraid for my sons as they no longer have any male influences(family is not close by and/or doesn't care). I am afraid that something will happen to me and leave my sons without a living parent. I am afraid of all the big decisions with the house that lie ahead of me with no one to talk them through with. I am afraid that I will not be able to provide my sons and me with things that we may need. I fear not being able to find help when I need it.I am afraid of being alone the rest of my life with no one to share life's ups and downs with.

    These are just a few. I'm sure there are more. But these are the ones that rattle around in my head on a pretty regular basis. What gets me through is the Lord does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power. I know not everyone on this board shares the same belief system, I am just stating what gets me through each day.

    Fear is a very big obstacle on this healing journey. I am sorry we all have so many fears, but I am glad to know I am not alone.

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  12. I am recently a widow and I am afraid the pain will never go away and I will never enjoy laughter again. I am afaid of being alone as I approach old age and not having my best friend by my side in times of trouble. I afraid I will make the wrong decisions now that I have to make them on my own. I am afraid of never feeling happiness and a zest for life again.

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  13. I have the same fears listed above with the biggest fear of getting seriously ill and being a burden on my children. Therefore, I take extra precautions with the health related issues I already have and do the necessary regimen to maintain a healthier lifestyle. However, the anxiety of everyday living without my husband is always with me. It gets better when I step outside myself and get involved being of service to others. I have plenty of time now that I am retired.

    I will keep my fears at bay with prayer and focus on what is still good in my life.

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  14. Wow! This is great! What a blog to set up for us widows. I was just futzing around in gmail and did a search on 'books for widows' and saw this blog site.
    I've been a widow for almost 59 months and it does get easier and then harder and then easier...Talk about a nasty roller coaster ride, and I hate roller coasters anyway. And this is one ride we cannot get off of!!

    I have all the fears the rest of you ladies have, too, to one degree or another. And my biggest fear, bar none, is that I'll forget to remember my husband. We didn't have any children and were married for seven years. I have lots of good memories. And I am happy to say that our last words to each other were "I love you..."

    Oh, I have lots more to say later. Right now I have to get ready for a set of meetings with my major client.

    Sue, I echo what others have said: thank you so much for starting this blog!
    We do all need each other.
    Everyone have a great day!

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  15. I am afraid of calling a friend or relative again only to hear they are too busy...with their husband etc.

    Afraid of not being able to meet another...

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    Replies
    1. I am afraid of all the same things the rest of the widows are afraid of, and than i'm sick and tired of being afraid. Why is it we are examined so much closer than our say divorce female friends. we seem to draw attention if we're doing good or especially if we're not doing good. Maybe that's another of my biggest fears. Holding in grief to long, smiling to soon, it's a tight rope walk that we can't seem to win, wihtout a safety net. take care ladies,

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  16. Mostly I think I fear 2 things. One is the future and all the what ifs my mind can think of. The same as everyone else here, growing old, getting sick, being all alone, bills, and then lately my mind has become a runaway train and I worry about odd things like what if the USA goes bankrupt or there is no food for people, and tons of odd things like that. The second thing I worry about is what is inside myself. It terrifies me. I do not want to know myself anymore. I used to be loved and happy and secure. I don't want to be the terrified and traumatized woman that is inside me now. I hate her. She wants her husband back. Still almost a year and I want my husband back? I feel I should be farther along by now. Obviously its impossible but part of me wants to hope or find some great place in denial land and I think I have emotionally shut down yet it still hurts like nothing I have ever experienced before. And maybe I am even a little mad too. No-one understands my life. I wish I could just sit down and pour out my heart about the ache that is there inside me where my husband used to be. Thank you everyone for letting me rant. I am just so heartbroken. I am trying to move ahead but it is so hard. Tomorrow the kids and I start therapy. Today I found some pictures of my husband I had forgot we had. How I long to kiss his smiling face again.

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    1. Reading all of comments about our fears, I found yours to be so close to mine. I too Want My Husband Back!. I'm afraid someone will find out how much I live in fear. The alone time is too much, the decisions , the home and car maintenance, the sitting alp e at church, the noise in the middle if the night. I never expected the FEAR would be so overwhelming. Peace....

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  17. Afraid is my middle name. It has been just over two years and I am afraid that I am doing everything right. I'm afraid to make decisions with out him. I'm afraid I will always miss him as much as I miss him now. I am afraid he doesn't think of me anymore and whereever the other end is they don't remember. I worry about the house, I worry about the money, I worry about daughters, I worry about his mother and my mother. I am consumed by worry. I guess we loved so deeply that I am afraid just as deeply.

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  18. I am afraid of getting involved with anyone again because it would mean having to go through all of this all over again. And yet, I am afraid of going through the rest of my life alone. Last night I was watching "My Big Fat Greek Wedding". I love that movie and watch it whenever it's on. Last night, though, in the scene where Ian kisses her on the bridge after their 1st date, I started to cry. I miss having someone to love me, to kiss me, to hold me. I kissed my husband goodbye that morning. He said "drive carefully, I love you". I said "I love you too. Have a great day." Two hours later I got the phone call that he was gone. Sorry - getting off topic of fear a little bit. I am just feeling really down today I guess and am missing him so much. I need a hug.

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    Replies
    1. I appreciate your post as I have the exact same fear. I am a new widow, just shy of 1 month.

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  19. I read all the comments on here and I feel for all of them. I hope they all find the peace and confort they are looking for.
    I have to say that I feel a little jelous, be cause my husband and I did not have a good marriage. I know!! everyone ask why I stayed. It is simple I believe in the wedding vowes and stayed until the end, he was sick for 8yrs. before he passed away. At the same time I ended up with 2 nephews to raise, it was tough but they keep me sane. The last one finished high school in June of 2011.
    It seems like that I have always taken care of someone and now that I am alone the lonleness is a killer. I live in the counry by a lake and have been trying to sell out and move to town but no luck yet. I do pretty good during the day, but the nights are depressing, that is when everyone I know are at home with their loved ones and I sit here alone. It is hard to not have a pitty party going on. There is no activitys where I live and cost to much to do a lot of driving to find some one to enter act with.
    There are only 2 singles at my church and one is to young and the other to old. I have tried pen pals and that didn't work out. Tried enternet dating sites but I seem to draw all the scammers, or someone that thinks all I want is to go to bed with them, so thats out.
    Thanks for letting me talk, I needed that.

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  20. I recently lost husband of 12 years he was a wonderful man and my best friend. He passed away 6 weeks ago and I have to stay no one really understands the fear and pain and loneliness I go through.
    Alot of fears I have is will I ever be happy...I am tired of being alone. Do I move where my family is? Friends don't come by as much or call. The pain is so bad. I live with guilt for allowing him to go with his friends. Is this normal how do you find a new normal? Will I ever be happy again? Will the loneliness get easier? Any advise will be great. I also and struggling with fear of my home is this normal

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  21. I can't find my new normal either. It has been 8 months. How do you find new routine after you did the other one for 30 years.

    I have nearly all of the same fears that every single person above has. It is comforting to know that I am not alone. I am so jealous when I see an older couple together - we were supposed to grow old togehter. It just sucks.

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  22. Today is my birthday. I have been widowed for almost 5 yrs now and each birthday I tell myself ..by next year it will be better. But it isnt and time is slipping away. I hate being alone all of the time with no one to turn to when the lonliness gets so deep and strong. I fear the thought of growing old alone with no one to love or be loved by. Im afraid that this is as good as it will ever get. I miss the joy and happiness and wonder if I will ever be happy again.

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  23. Fear is a great topic for us widows for sure. I have had every fear you all listed and then 100 more. I think in the beginning and for the first few years they are pretty prevalent. At time goes on ( I am on year 10--but widowed at 36)my fears have diminished to a top 3 or 4. So that is improvement and something to look forward to. Of course any fear is tough--one way that I have coped is to control the things that I can control--it gives me some peace. The other thing that helps is sharing your fears with other widows. I remember when I was first widowed I had all of these emotions and thoughts but I had no one to talk to who could relate so I wasn't sure which thoughts were rational and which were crazy. If you are on this blog then you already have a place to fit in and get some feedback or advice.

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  24. I so feel for all of you who have posted. My husband has been gone almost 3 months. It seems I have fears I never dreamed I might have. I do fear always being alone, never having anyone to share thoughts & dreams with again. I am 70 so not young but still feel I may have a few years left and would like them to be as reasonably happy as possible. I fear things going out around the house, repairs that I never even thought about before. The car maintenance is something that intimidates me and I know many women do it without thinking. We shall see. Good luck to us all.

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  25. I hate being a widow. I hate being without my compadre in life, my kindred spirit, my husband, my friend, my lover. HATE it.
    But FEAR was the feeling I knew best when he was here - he made me feel secure and would coach me along into trying new things - made me feel with him I could do anything, but I was so tentative all the time.

    But maybe I'm weird, but now, in widowhood, I am so not afraid. I am doing things I never thought I could - NOT that I want to at all - but I must. I am asking for help from people I never thought I would - I am having conversations with contractors, asking intelligent questions, buying a car, and starting a new job; HOW? I guess in many ways, if I am afraid, I am "doing it afraid."

    In my heart of hearts, the worst thing that could happen to me has, with losing my Marty to heaven; any woman who has picked out her husbands funeral clothes can do most anything!

    I have lost my coach, biggest fan and loudest cheerleader. So sad.

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  26. I fear the nights the most. No matter what it just feels more secure with someone next to you. I am sometimes literally terrified and frozen in my bed when I hear a noise outside.

    Then like many of you have said I fear things like house repairs, car repairs, financial decisions, dealing with repair men ---really do not like that at all--always feel taken advantage of or uncomfortable with them in my house.

    To cope I just do the best that I can and I am always looking for solutions: asking a trusted person to be with me during a repair or getting their advice one time I even had my brother in law in the house ( I never said he was my husband -but if the repair guy assumed that I was fine with that)during a major and expensive repair---it was very reassuring!

    I feel great compassion for all who post here. Don't give up. I know it's hard.

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  27. mjay- you said it all-"I have lost my coach, biggest fan and loudest cheerleader. So sad."
    I am afraid of making the wrong decisions financially. My husband was all excited that once the kids were grown and we had double incomes we bought our "dream home", then the market fell, then he died. Now here I sit in my upside down mortgage "dream home" that is no longer any fun to live in without my sweetie. Well, that's it. I find a young family or widow, widower much older than me to sit with in church so I don't have to sit "in the back row" and that helps a bit. Having people over for dinner now and then helps, but it is so much more work without my biggest fan to help with the prep and clean up. I miss him all the time. All the time.It's been 4 months and it doesn't seem to be getting any easier. I never thought this would happen, I always thought I would go first- he was so full of life.

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  28. I've been a widow for 4 years now. Sadly this is the secound husband I have lost in death. My first on I was married for 10 years. I promised myself I would not get married again. Then my 2nd husband came along and I feel madly in love with him we were married 12 years and he died 1month latter. One of my biggest fears is losing anyone else. I can't trust or seem to want to love. Love hurts to bad. After losing two husbands you lose all confidence in yourself. And know one seems to understand how much that takes out of a person. It take away my will to go on. How could I trust or love another. I gave my second husmbad who was the love ofmy life all I had. I loved him so much and when he died he took away everything from me. I use to be a strong willed person now I am just a empty shell indise trying to make it through ach day

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  29. This is horrible. New Years Day of 2014. I miss my best friend. Its been 5 years and I still cannot go forward. My first husband died and then the next man in my life had a massive stroke. His family put him in a nursing home. Then the love of my life for 10 years retires and 6 weeks later dies. We had so many plans and now I sit here in a different state then all my friends. I have my Mom left and that is it. I couldn't have children. I have lost all my friends because of despair and depression. I fell at work, lost my job and became disabled. I am in chronic debilitating pain physically and emotionally Ended up having three heart surgeries last fall. . I cannot function anymore and I wonder what the hell happened? I sit here in shock 90% of the time.
    I finally signed up for counseling and my first session is next week. Hugs to all. Hopefully 2014 will be better for all of us.

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  30. Not everyone is a widow or ever will be. But there are plenty of souls out there that are still alone, with no family. The people who have family do not even see us or think of us. It is very hard. My prayers go out to all that have lost friends, parents, significant others, through no one' fault or through someone's fault. It is a daily battle.

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