Category Archives: Death of a Spouse

The Mary Mac Show | Death of a Spouse

The Mary Mac Show Podcast

In Episode 82, we discuss the challenges we face after the death of our husband or wife and how widows and widowers struggle to build a new life.

Widowhood is, by far, one of the most stressful and overwhelming losses we can experience.

Whether we have lost a husband or wife who was with us for a few years or decades, the relationship we shared with them was, more than likely, the most intimate one we had in our lifetime.

They spent more time with us than any other person.

While we feel a great bond to our children, our spouse is the one with whom we started our adult journey before our children were born.

And when they become adults and move onto their own lives, it is our spouse who is still next to us to live the remainder of our days.

Even if we divorce and remarry, that person is the one we share the majority of our waking hours with, apart from working.

We wake with them.

We go to sleep with them.

We enjoy all sorts of experiences with them.

They are our best friends who listen to us when we are sad, confused, angry, frustrated.

They hold us when we cry.

They console us when we are hurting.

They are our confidante, unlike any other.

So when they die, we are devastated.

And recovering from our grief is difficult and a long-term process.

Listen in to Episode 82 to learn what happens at the beginning of widowhood.

And remember, when it becomes overwhelming, do reach out to grief counselors at hotlines (see below) to listen and console you.

Sending you my love. xoxo

Additional Notes:

Visit Crisis Connections at my website to telephone a trained counselor to speak with whenever you are feeling overwhelmed, confused, frightened, fearful or any host of emotions. Even if it is a suicide hotline, do not think they cannot help you. You do not need to feel suicidal to speak with these wonderful counselors. They are there to listen to you.

I encourage you to find support groups for widows and widowers by searching online for “widowed groups” in your city/town. They usually meet a few times each month at the local church, senior center, hospital or hospice in your area.

Use the Emotional Freedom Technique for Healing.

You can watch Marissa Peer’s “I Am Enough” meditation.

Treat yourself to a lovely gift from our Heart of Gold “I Remember” Products from The Mary Mac Store.

Remember, a portion of all proceeds help fund The Foundation for Grieving Children, Inc., the first national non-profit public charity which benefits children, teens, young adults after a loved one’s death which I established many years ago.

And remember to sign up for my private email list so we can always stay in touch, since social media is no longer reliable. Receive my ebook 21 Things You Must Know About The Grieving Process for immediate download.

xoxo

The Mary Mac Show | Preparing for Valentine’s Day

The Mary Mac Show Podcast

In Episode 62, we look at our feelings as Valentine’s Day approaches and how to help ourselves through this special, yet melancholy, day.

Before we experienced our special loved one’s death, Valentine’s Day may have been quite joyous or not even on our radar.

If our spouse, fiance, boyfriend or girlfriend made it a special day for us, we will remember it with a longing for that again and are sad that we won’t be enjoying that again this year and, perhaps, in the future with them.

But there is no reason why we can’t not only remember the wonderful experiences we had with them, but plan something special for yourself with other friends so we aren’t so alone on this day.

Decide what would bring you happiness and call friends to meet for coffee, a drink or a meal. Toast to them, share memories and even through the tears, remember all the love they gave you.

You have a lot of love to give. Start to think about whom you’d like to share that with.

Perhaps you’ll rescue a beautiful cat or dog to be your forever fur baby.

Maybe you’ll spend time with a neighbor who is just as alone as you are.

Whatever possibilities come to you, giving love is the most precious gift you can give anyone.

Additional Notes:

Treat yourself to our beautiful Heart of Gold “I Remember” mug. Something so special for your collection.

Heart of Gold "I Remember" Mug for those grieving the death of a loved one.

Remember, a portion of all proceeds help fund The Foundation for Grieving Children, Inc., the first national non-profit public charity which benefits children, teens, young adults after a loved one’s death which I established many years ago.

Crisis Hotlines with outstanding counselors who are standing by to listen to your pain and help you. Excellent way to release your pain today.

Arianna Opper, D.O. offers tapping videos and soothing meditations to help you. If you’d like to explore them, please go here.

And remember to sign up for my private list below, so we can always stay in touch. Since social media is no longer reliable, please complete the form below so I can connect with you via email.

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Much Love,

Mary Mac xoxo

The Mary Mac Show | Difficult Discussions

The Mary Mac Show Podcast

In this week’s episode, we speak about the Difficult Discussions that families need to have, but fail to have, surrounding end-of-life care, death and burial.

I realize this is not something that many families consciously do long before it is needed, but it is a topic that we are all more aware of this year, with the pandemic, than ever before.

Since there is a good chance that this is the first time since spring that you will be with your family to celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas and other year-end holidays this year, I am encouraging you to please use that time specifically as an opportunity to discuss these topics and start to think about what your older relatives may want for themselves when they die or become ill.

It might be your grandparents, parents, even you and your spouse.

Listen in to Episode 52 as we discuss how important it is to gather as a family this season to talk about end-of-life preferences and the best ways to carry them out.

Bless you.

xoxo

An Uncommon Valentine’s Day

avatar-heartEveryday life after losing your spouse or sweetheart can be quite difficult. But handling holidays such as Valentine’s Day can be unnerving.

We start to see the advertisements on television for roses, jewelry and heart-shaped boxes of chocolate weeks before this day. Restaurants feature special dinners for two on that evening. And when you were paired with someone you love, chances are good these ads didn’t affect you.

But they do now.

The anticipation of a significant holiday or date such as the anniversary of your loved one’s death or their birthday can bring many emotions that we might not have expected. But please know that they are natural and normal.

Most of us feel such intensity around holidays because we are sad that we can no longer enjoy the closeness, experiences and love we once shared with our honey.

Some of us also are angry that they died before us. Others of us struggle with the unfairness to the point of cloistering ourselves in an effort to never be hurt again.

But there comes a time when we consciously accept that we are still alive and if we were supposed to go first, then we would have. And since this is the way things have turned out, why not live life to the fullest.

When that turn in thinking eventually arrives, it can gloriously begin a guilt-free new life whereby you take a long deep breath and with a loving kiss planted on their picture, you decide to consider new adventures.

It doesn’t mean you don’t miss them. It doesn’t mean you will not honor their memory for your children’s sake. It only means that you are now beginning a new and perhaps a somewhat scary life where the unknown awaits.

And that is a good thing.

So on Valentine’s Day, find the right thing that will make you happy. Is it the chocolate-covered pretzels, cherries or strawberries? Shall you get that massage you have been promising yourself because you miss your husband’s touch?

Will you finally accept your buddies’ invitation for a round of golf and lunch instead of sitting in front of the television alone?

Will you decide to give a little time to someone who is hurting like you and share a candlelit dinner together with a funny movie?

Or is it, perhaps, time to give that little soul at the animal rescue shelter a new life with you?

Even if you find yourself melancholy at times, no need to be embarrassed. Those who love you know this transition has not been easy for you.

So accept that kind pat on the back or hug, accept all the well wishes of those who love and care for you and remember that your sweetheart would want you to enjoy your life. Their love for you will never die.

Holiday Grief: My Story by Michelle Enis Vasquez, San Antonio, TX

Brian and MichelleI have been widowed twice.

I put up my Christmas tree two weeks ago. On Thanksgiving, my beloved Brian will have been gone eight weeks. He died October 3, 2013.

I decided that the Christmas tree would be a memorial to him, and I got a whole bunch of purple ornaments (our favorite color) and some British ornaments, and other ornaments that reminded me of our time together.

My beloved husband, Al, died in 2007. I have ornaments from years past to honor his memory, and I added a few more this year. I also found two angels that did not look like women (hard to find) and put them close together, symbolizing my two guardian angels, Al and Brian, who are looking after me.

I turn on those lights when I wake up and keep them on until I go to bed. I need a bit of cheer at this very difficult time.

Michelle Enis Vasquez lives in San Antonio, Texas. This picture was taken on a cruise to Alaska they enjoyed just a month before his death in October, 2013. Michelle also recently baked a cake to honor her two angels.