Heart Broken, Lost, Sad, Confused, ANGRY

Discussion in 'Loss to COVID-19' started by MemaB, Aug 31, 2020.

  1. MemaB

    MemaB New Member

    Hi my name is Brenda
    I joined this site because I needed to talk to somebody who was going through what I was going through, I started by reading, and I was right, I'm not alone, in some ways this is a comfort to me and in many ways it is not, I feel so SORRY that people are feeling the way I do, its sad, we have to feel this bad every day, its sad that family and friends try to help by saying they understand, when they don't, its sad when people I think should be by your side, don't know what to do, so it is easier for them to stay away... its just SAD so many people have to feel this way...

    I lost my husband Rick to Covid-19 on July 22, 2020, @ 2:30 PM, that was 40 days ago.
    We where together 25 years, we worked and lived together, Rick, was not only my Sole Mate, my Best Friend, and Husband, he was my Everything, and I truly mean my Everything, we did 98% of everything together, he retired at 64 just over a year ago, I retired this past November, I was spoiled, I got to retire at 57 so I could spend everyday and night with my best friend.

    We started our retirement with everything new, we moved last January 650 miles away from where we both grew up, away from family and friends, why, because (again I'm spoiled) I no longer wanted to deal with Minnesota snow.
    Let me start by saying, Rick and I took Covid very seriously, we both had underlining health issues, Me asthma, Rick high blood presser and type 2 diabetes , so we stayed close to home and only went out to get supplies, and even then we wore mask, and tons of sanitizer, before and after entering a store, or our car.

    On June 22, we reluctantly drove to MN to see the new granddaughter, after the 13 hour drive, Rick was tired, so he headed off to bed, this was at 8:30 PM, which was odd, but it was a long drive so I didn't think much of it, about an hour later he texted me to come and see him, he said he felt odd, I felt his forehead and I could tell he had a fever, and with the new "Covid World" this scared the crap out of both of us so we rushed back home the next morning. because we choose to drive home the very next day the trip was exhaustion, so we slept most of the following day. the only symptom Rick had the 1st few days was a fever, in hindsight he had fatigue as well, by day 5 he had slight chills that came and went, he could still smell but he said his taste was off.
    On the morning of July 2nd I got out of bed, by this time we decided it was best for him to be sleeping in the guestroom, praying it was just the flu, but knowing we both cant risk being sick if it wasn't, Rick said he was really feeling off, couldn't explain what it was, but it was something very wrong so I took him to the ER, they admitted him after 4 hours, he had pneumonia and Covid-19.

    This is where I keep trying to explain to people, who yes they have lost a love one, but if it was not a death by Covid, they could not possible understand how truly alone your are, this is a horrible horrible Covid world, you drop off you love one off at the door, if your lucky you get to see them again when they recover... if your not lucky the next time is at the funeral home.

    I was luckily enough to be able to talk to him on the phone, then we got to FaceTime, he would keep me on the phone for hours, not always talking, just knowing I was there by his side, he would be playing one of his games, and I would see him sneak a peek to make sure I was still there... I was there to watch his vitals, and remind him to take deep breaths, I was there when they had to put on the c-pap mask on at night so when he slept he would be getting the oxygen even if he breathed through his mouth instead of his nose... By the way I forgot to mention is was EXTREMELY claustrophobic and fought the c-pap each and every time they put it on.... I was there to calm him down... this was my job, and I did it well...

    The Doctors decided it was not helpful for him to be on the phone, he needed his rest, and I did what they ask, I told the LOVE of my life, he needed to rest, and I needed to rest, so the phone would have to stop...
    Rick went down hill from there, to the point we needed to have a Priest perform Last Rights, THANK GOD for my daughter, she was able to convince the hospital staff and a Priest to go into his room and preform the rights correctly, in person, and not from behind a glass window, as they now do in the 'Covid World", the staff also gave me permission to be on the phone with him... GOD forgive me but I blocked out the entire call... I know I was there but I cant remember any of it... it was like I was drugged...

    After that the next morning Rick improved, the Doctor said they thought he now had a 50/50 chance of survival, and where amazed by that and couldn't figure out why... I TOLD THEM WHY... It was because I was back on the phone with him, and he knew I was there, I was his Rock, as he is mine, that I had NOT abandoned him!!! so they let me be on the phone again...
    A Day later, his lungs where still not taking the oxygen, so they decided he needed to be put on a
    ventilator, so they let me talk to him before they put him on the ventilator, when they walked in he thought he was going to get in trouble for talking to me, so he hid the phone under the covers when they came in, I told him he was not in trouble, and it was OK, I would talk to him later, so the last time I talked to my love, I got to see this scared and confused face as he hung up... as I rethink that call, I didn't prepare him for what was coming next, I took the cowards way out and said nothing, and justified it to myself, I didn't want him to have a panic attack before they even got to tell him what was going to happen next... I figured when he was better he would understand... now I have to live with that guilt...
    After Rick was put on the ventilator, the nurses would let me talk to him via FaceTime, I got to talk to him and pray he heard me tell him how he was fighting a great battle, that hes got this...

    Early morning on July 22, 2020 Ricks organs started to fail, first his kidneys, then his liver, and the only thing keeping his heart beating was his blood presser medicine...
    Doctors informed me they could put him on dialysis, but that would require surgery, and if he survived the trip to surgery, dialysis would be was extremely painful, and it would maybe work for a few days, and only prolong his suffering, so I had to make the toughest decision of my life... be selfish and keep him with me at a distance... or let his pain be over with...

    I got to be on the phone with him for two hours, telling him again how he fought the best battle ever, but the war was to big to win... I got to tell him how much his family loved him, and we would all see him again, I lied to him and said I would be OK... then I spent the next half hour watching my handsome husband with no tubes, no mask covering his beautiful face, while I lied to him some more, the nurse was kind enough to hold his hand, and rub his shoulder the entire 1/2 hour, and I got to tell him I was with him, holding his hand...
    at 2:00 it started to rain, we loved the rain, most people would go in the house, we always ran out to the porch and watched it storm, I told him his Mom was sending happy tears, she would see him soon, at 2:30 when he took his last breath, the rain stopped, it wasn't his mom it was him being close to me, if i had only known I would have been in the rain with him....

    Later that night I was outside looking at the sky, and there he was... a face in the clouds, his face, my best friend, love of my life staring down at me... at 8:22 PM, I saw his face...

    I'm sorry for dragging out this so long, but typing what you feel, they say is good for the soul, so I guess this has been helpful...

    I want to say at the beginning, friends and family cant understand a Covid death... yes they lost a loved one, a friend and that in it self is a terrible terrible thing, what make it so much worst is the person is alone, totally totally alone, nurses/Doctors only come into the room when they are administering medications or doing some other medical function, or if the patience pushes the call button, then in his case they asked what he wanted from across the room, there is NO HUMAN CONTACT, don't get me wrong I get it, they need to stay safe and healthy... but it is really inhumane to expect someone to survive with no personal interaction or even a simple touch of a hand in kindness....

    And then there is the spouse/partner, who in the "normal world" can sit in the room and be present, when Doctors do there rounds, we are there to ask questions, hold hands, hugs, give kisses... JUST BEING THERE.. my last kiss was at the mortuary, through plastic wrap, sounds gross, but I do it again if he was still here...

    One last thing, I also tested positive for Covid, I had no symptoms, except maybe fatigue that first day back from the long drive home, but it went away after day one, its been extremely tough for me, I was in quarantine when Rick passed, there was no picking up his stuff from the hospital, dropping off his favorite PJ's to be cremated in, my doctor and Covid social worker had to make special arrangement with the state health department for me to even be at the viewing before cremation.

    I still have the fear of passing it on to someone else, though it has been 76 days since I was tested Positive, so I'm long past contagious, the fear someone else I know would die like that is traumatizing... so I keep my distance... which is not that hard, it hurts to know that even thou it has been such a long time, my neighbors, who are sadden by my loss, stay away, the few friends I have will drop stuff off but panic if I get within 10 feet.

    Again I'm so sorry this was so long... but if you read all the way through I thank you for you time...
    Calamityjean, Lyn77 and Time heals like this.
  2. SallyD

    SallyD Well-Known Member

    Hi, Brenda--I'm so sorry for what you've been through.

    My brother passed away on March 31, 2020. It was Covid related, as he was waiting for a liver transplant (and he didn't even drink to have a bad liver).
    It was a struggle to get him on the transplant list, because we are low-income, and they held it against us. Had to rush to get some SSI Social Security
    benefits in place for him so they could see we'd have enough income to sustain us, as he'd recover. Although I'm not well myself with thyroid trouble,
    I did manage to get help with doing this. Jordan got on the transplant list. They planned to give him a new liver on March 12 or 13.

    I signed all the papers and talked to the surgeon, etc. At the last minute, they cancelled the operation. Said, "This liver isn't a good fit for him.
    But don't worry, another will come along, soon." But it didn't. They stopped getting donor organs because of Covid--the supply just kind of
    dried up (maybe less people were out having accidents, and I think there were just less medical people to work on this.) Jordan was only strong enough
    to be on the transplant list for another week or so. Then they pulled him off the list, and he kept getting sicker....he was gone at the end of March.
    We couldn't visit him past March 17th...and I feel like me and his girlfriend not being their to encourage him made it worse.

    We talked to Jordan on the phone and speaker phone, but it's not the same. I just feel awful about everything that happened, and I blame
    myself for not doing things for him better....I know I did some things right with him, but I wish I could've done better with others. Jordan was
    my last close family and he helped look after me, because of my ongoing health problems for many years.

    Like you, they needed me to make the decision to stop things on him.....it was awful. I talked to his girlfriend and our friend Jeff about it,
    because I couldn't handle all this by myself. Things were shutting down on him, like you said. This was all done by phone calls--it was
    horrible, and I'm so sorry that you had to go through something similar, too. Getting those phone calls in the last few days about how
    Jordan kept going downhill was so painful, and it still hurts me. Because just a few days before that, it looked like things were stable and
    he's still have a shot at getting a new life with a new liver. I can't believe all this has happened, and I know you can't believe what happened
    to you, either. I read everything you wrote and I think you did a really good job of describing what this is like. I can't write anymore, right now,
    but I wanted you to know that I'm so sorry for everything that's happened to you and your family, and that people on here like me do actually care.
  3. MemaB

    MemaB New Member

    Thank You for the responce, and Thank You for the kind words, it does help to know I'm not alone, and your NOT alone, if you need to chat I'm here for you, just reach out, even if its just to say HI.
    Sally, PLEASE don't beat yourself up on the decisions you made, you did right by your brother, you did the best you could do under the circumstances you where given, and I know as I say that, you will still think you didn't do enough, but you did, you will still hurt, you will still miss him, but hold in your heart that you did talk to him, even if it was only on the phone, remember... YOU DID THE BEST YOU COULD DO UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES YOU WHERE GIVEN...

    Thanks again for responding, it means the world to me that durning your grieff, you reach out to heal my grief...
    Many Hugs... Brenda
  4. SallyD

    SallyD Well-Known Member

    Hi, Brenda.

    And thanks for writing back. And for being kind. I am having such a bad morning, missing my brother. I honestly don't know if I can keep going
    without him, as I don't feel like I have enough support from his girlfriend, Rose, who lives in the house (but she doesn't talk to me that much), and
    our friend Jeff can only do so much, although he does call to check up on me. I just miss my brother so much--his encouragement and kindness,
    and just that he was the last of my close relatives, and he knew me.....and he cared. It's just so hard. I don't know why I'm still here, without him.
    He was the one who could do a lot more, over the years. I just feel like this is too much for me to handle.

    I'm having a phone meeting with a social worker later, but the last time I talked to her, it didn't seem like there was that much they could help
    me with that'd help me feel better. I'll see what she says, today. I'm not very hopeful, but I guess I'll try. Thanks for listening--I hate that we
    both have had to deal with such hard situations. I hope things get easier for you, as time goes on. I wish I had more caring people like you
    around in my real life....it would make this easier, I think. Best to you, and write anytime. Sally
  5. MemaB

    MemaB New Member

    Hi Sally,
    I'm glad you are talking to someone, if your social worker isn't working out for you you need to find someone who does... maybe a grief counselor would be a better fit.
    I know by reading your responces you are so terribly sad and need someone, and I wish you had more family to lean on, maybe check to see if there a support group in your area that you can visit, a comunity center, or a church, or maybe some type of virtual group you can join... I haven't checked it out but this site does have Grief Coaching... I bet they will be able to guide you... :) I know you say your frien Jeff is helping, and he sounds like an awesome friend.

    I'm finding this hard to say out loud, but I like the fact my family is so far away, I would rather be alone, I spent 4 weeks back in Minneasota, it was so tough, I couldn't grieve, the stress was overwhelming, I had to smile all day, eat a food I have no desire to eat, and I had to hide when I cryied... it was extreamly exhusting.
    I'm so glad to be home... and alone... I no longer have to pertend I'm doing ok, but the best part is, I no longer have to hide when I cry...
    Could Rose be like me, she needs to be alone to grieve?

    I Hope all went well with your social worker today, and if you chose to I hope you find a support group in your area...
    In the mean time... Take slow deep breaths... Take each moment one moment at a time... Try to smile, even if only once a day...
    And most importantly, take care of you...
    Many Hugs Brenda
  6. SallyD

    SallyD Well-Known Member

    Hi Brenda,

    Thanks so much for writing. The social worker said she will see if she can find a counselor to help me. I was extra upset yesterday because the
    hospital where my brother passed away had asked me if I could take part in a research study they are doing. They wanted me to talk about
    what happened to my brother Jordan, and if I thought they did a good job with his end-of-life care (like nurses spending extra time with
    him because we couldn't be there, if they turned on the TV for him to favorite programs, etc.) I did talk with them, but it really hit me badly
    later on. They actually were willing to listen to more about Jordan's case, so I told them bad things that were done, too.

    Like, they delayed him getting on the transplant list for about six weeks, because our income wasn't high enough for them to feel he'd have
    enough money coming in while he'd recover from the surgery. So I begged for workers from Soc. Sec. to help get his SSI benefits pushed through
    a lot faster, and we did it....(I get SSI, too, because I'm not well enough to work.) Everyone at the hospital thought I did a great job in getting the
    benefits pushed through so fast. Jordan got on the transplant list. But we'd lost too much time. It was a mess, and I talked to the lady about
    all this. And it really, really hurt. But I wanted her to know what happened. They should've just put Jordan on the list and finish the paperwork,
    later on. He only made seven hundred dollars in the year before--he would've qualified for benefits. They said, "Medically, he's a very good
    candidate for a transplant." But the money part held things up. It was just painful to have to go through all that again--maybe it'll help someone else, though.

    I am in an online support group from Grief Share. It's pretty good and has helped some, but it's not the same as having Jordan or more people around
    who actually care, which is what I need. I'm glad you're finding comfort in being away from your family. Maybe if I was healthier, I might feel the
    same way. Rose actually did talk to me a bit because she saw I was a mess, yesterday. So, she tried. Jordan was so chatty, though, so I'm used to
    a lot of talking. My mom used to talk a lot, as well. In good ways. She passed away in 2005. And I've been ill for longer than that. So, it's hard.

    The lady who did the research with me from Jordan's hospital was nice, and I did tell her how hard all this was on me. She said she would look,
    too, if there is some counseling or groups or something to help me. She might get back to me, today. So, maybe something will work out to help.
    I guess you're right, too, if I need more help, I could check into the grief coaching on this site. We'll see. Tomorrow, Rose said she will take me
    for lab tests because I take thyroid medicine (my big health problem--it doesn't work right on me), and maybe the doctor can find out something
    useful that he can adjust, so I can feel better. Thyroid can make you even more depressed and upset when it doesn't work right, so we'll see on that, too.
    I have an appointment with the thyroid doctor on Oct. 5.

    Thank you so much, Brenda, for taking the time to care, and for writing back. I wish all the best for you, as well. I will try to remember your advice,
    because it sounds really good. Thank you.