Packing up his clothes. When is the time right??

Kim - posted on 01/14/2009 ( 32 moms have responded )

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My husband Dan passed away Dec. 31,2006 from Pancreatic Cancer. I have four children. Three girls, 13, 11, and 8 and a 3 year old son. My son was 21 months old when his daddy died. It has been 2 years now and I still haven't removed his clothes from the closet. His Christmas presents from 2006 are still on the floor in my room. I'm asking anyone for help. I am thinking about it more these days so I know I am ready... I am just scared. Most days, seeing his clothes, brings me comfort however there are days seeing them there gathering dust that it is painful. I guess I am afraid that taking the clothes out will feel like losing him all over again. I know it has been 2 years, but it still feels like yesterday. I'm fearful that leaving the clothes there is confusing to my son. He asked me the other day why daddy's clothes were there. Does anyone have advice for me. I really am so scared to take that step forward. I feel like it is like saying I'm ok and ready to move on. I just never want to forget him. He was the love of my life and most amazing person. He was only 37 when he passed and I was 34. We were just too young to go through this. I want him back. I want him to help me raise our children.
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Laurette - posted on 09/29/2009

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Hi Kim, I can totally understand that his clothes are still around as my husbands' clothes still hang in his closet and often I peek into it as if to find him in there or something. My husband was only 47 and way too young so I can relate to you on many levels. Have you ever thought about doing something with some of his clothes so you can still keep them in some form? I was thinking of taking the ones that I associate most with him and having someone make it into a quilt so I can wrap that around me and still feel his presence in some way. Maybe if you can think of some creative to do with some of them, it may not feel like such a huge mountain and some will still be around, so to speak. Just an idea. I too, want my husband back to bounce off ideas about child raising and to help! It is all still so very sad and overwhelming at times. Sending thoughts your way....

Dianna - posted on 09/22/2009

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My husband passed away last March from Bladder Cancer. I've managed to go through most of his things and sort out what I want to keep for my kids (10 yr old girl, 7 yr old boy). Seeing my husband's clothes hanging in the closet was very painful for me. At the same time, I absolutely hated the thought of giving them away. What I ended up doing was contacting a quilt shop here and having most of his shirts, pj bottoms, etc... made into memorial quilts for my kids. The quilts are twin size and consist of patches made from his clothing. They were even able to sash it with fabric from his clothes. On the back is a label with Dan's full name, date of birth and date of death. There is another label on the back that is a favorite picture each child picked out. The quilter scanned and print them on fabric. I am also having a lap quilt made for myself from his ties. They are even going to incorporate the tags into it. This has been a great source of comfort for my kids. They can curl up and snuggle into them and have the comfort of something that was their dad's close by. I've told them that this is a way to get a "special" hug from dad. The kids' quilts also have patches that include the pockets from some of his shirts. They're able to put little special things in them, if they chose. This was of great comfort to me over having to pack it all up and give it to thrift. II felt like this was the best thing I could do with his clothes. It made packing p his clothing so much easier.

Launie - posted on 08/04/2009

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I lost my husband after long term illness. We'd been together for twelve years, married for eight...he'd been sick for seven. He was 43 years old when he passed, I was 41. He died suddenly two days before thanksgiving 2008. We had five children altogether, our son being the youngest at nine yrs old. Our other children are young adults. Three out of the four oldest took it quite hard. My youngest is very practical about his dad's death. He is the only child living at home with me. I gave away most of my husbands clothes in steps...first the underwear went (I kept his socks), then I gave his sweatpants to my daughters boyfriend, gave my dad his hat and favorite pair of sunglasses (he hadn't worn them in years because he had prescription sun glasses), gave away most of his shirts that he hadn't worn in awhile. I kept his t-shirts and his ball caps and will eventually give them to the boys. I gave his wedding ring and his beloved leather jacket to his two older boys.

On valentines day two of our kids were with me and I went to the jewelry store to retrieve some jewelry I had repaired to give to my daughter. My son spotted a ring and it was beautiful. I tried it on and my son's response was,"to new beginnings, Mom." So I bought it. I took off my wedding set that had been passed down from my mom and told my daughter when she was ready to get married the set will be waiting for her. It wasn't a big deal to me to remove the rings because I hadn't been married with them and my husband and I believed that it wasn't what was on your finger that told the story, it was your heart!

Last fall I took my husband out into the yard (he was paralyzed from the armpits down) and we went through everything in his shop. What he wanted to sell and what he wanted to keep. This year I held the sale and got rid of what he'd chosen. I kept the rest and will keep it until his son is old enough to use dad's tools. Sometimes I go in there to get something I need and just stand in there and cry. There is not a day that goes by that I don't miss him, but my mind is not consumed with thoughts of him at every minute like it used to be.

The timeline goes according to you...when you feel up to or ready is the perfect time, not on someone elses.

I learned a long time ago to live for today, look ahead for tomorrow and don't look back. I carry my husband with me in my heart and I know he would want me to be healthy and happy and in doing so honors him the best way I can. Focusing on today and your future doesn't mean not remembering him, it just means to not dwell on what used to be.



I just watched the movies P.S. I Love You. I would highly recommend it, but warn you ahead of time...it'll make you cry!

Sharon - posted on 07/08/2009

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I had the misfortune of having to move before 6 months were past after my husband's death. I had to give most of his clothes away pronto, simply because there was no room to put them where we were moving. I found several special people to whom I gave his shirts and then his suits. I couldn't touch his shirts. A lady at church had offered to help me any way that she could, and being elderly, there wasn't a lot of things I could ask her to do. But she came over and folded all my husband's shirts for me...for which I'll always be grateful. I was then able to take them where they needed to go and gave them away. After I gave his suits away I really broke down and cried but I have a few things of his. I kept his ties, because I saw several patterns for quilts on the internet using ties.

It's nearly 2-1/2 years and I'm still wearing my wedding rings. I started asking the questions about "when should I...." way back when, and I decided that it was MY DECISION when to (whatever - fill in the blank here) and I have let things come as they do. Our rings were made special for us, and I have made his into a bracelet which I wear. But until I know I'm ready to take them off, on my finger they'll stay.

Lori - posted on 06/28/2009

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They say timing is everything and I completely agree. My husband passed away June 25, 2008 after 5 months in the hospital preceeded by 9 months at home on oxygen needing a double lung transplant, the second one in 10 yrs. I gave away most of his clothes the day of his memorial service (4 days after his death), I gave a few things to his Dad ( they wore the same size shirts and ties on Sundays to church) kept a few ties for my oldest son (I have 3) I gave the rest to a local homeless shelter. My sons were 7, 3 and 20 months when he passed, I hade been somewhat prepared in the thinking of him going after so long a time being ill, but there is no way you can truly account for how you will feel when it occurs as you all know. I thought of the quilt idea and have some of his things for that and I used to sew quite a bit for him and the boys so I have kept material scraps from different projects and even from our wedding (all my dresses were homemade) to add to the quilt including various bibs and baby outfits that all my boys shared. I kept everything of his including his favorite recliner. I have several pics and different momentos of his around the house too. We moved right after he passed, so I have been able to get over some of the hurt just by not being in the house where he last lived. Since the year anniversary has now come and gone this past week, I am very glad I already dealt with the "get rid of his clothes" ordeal. I realized within just a few weeks that I would not have been emotionally able to do the job later. In honor of his memory this last week, I emailed all our friends and family a pic of him and the boys and a small note and the words to one of his favorite songs that I felt summed him up if that is possible. I also made one of his favorite meals for the boys and I and we went through the boxes of his things that we have (he collected ball cards, coins and stamps) and found a scrapbook that he had begun of his life from birth to college (he was 43 when he passed). We are going to finish it for him adding us to it and this helped alot because in looking for momentos and pics to put in we were reminded of who he was to us and learned a few things we had not known about his life. It has been very rewarding and helpful. My oldest son wants to keep all of his dad's things which is understandable to me and I am not really ready to see all his things go yet either, but I too have come to the place that "life must go on" and we will do this with God's help and with all the memories and love we have for my husband too. Blessings to all you wonderful ladies and your families as we live through "the valley of the shadow of death" as Psalm 23 says--through meaning we will see the other side of it someday, we will always remember and love the ones we've lost but hopefully be able to face life and raise our children to find hope in the future and remember that love will stay the same no matter what.

Sharon - posted on 06/03/2009

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I believe you will know when the right time comes, everyone is different. My husband died in April 2000 in a mining accident and I still have some of his clothes hanging in my closet. I did manage to get rid of some of the things about 2 years ago but there are some things that I will hang on to forever. I can remember him wearing his suits to church or his work uniform and I just dont think I will ever be ready to get rid of everything. My girls were 3 & 5 when their dad died and they too asked questions so I hung them on them in a corner of the closet, but they are 12 & 14 and when they look in my closet and see his things still hanging there they ask questions about their dad I feel like having his things around helps them connect with him in a way. If you do get rid of his things keep a few items for your kids they will truly appreciate it someday. I wish you all the best in life and I hope that I have said something that may help you.

Denise - posted on 05/28/2009

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my husband died july 2007. he was sick 2 yrs before that with cancer. i moved from our house shortly after that which made me pack his things up quickly. for me i had to make these choices fast. coming home an him not there was killing me an i knew i had to get away to be better for myself an kids. i keep things of memory an gave to family an sent other things to good will. today my husband is still with me an it still hurts but having those things around me seemed to be extending the pain. my girls did better after that also even though they would not take part in moving his things. everyone deals with death different. some move on an some never does. theirs no answer for you. you know what to do an i think thats why your asking. the first step is the hardest.

Kristine - posted on 03/26/2009

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Hi Kim,



I am sorry to here about your daughter being so upset. When I packed my husband's things I had the kids help. They were ok with putting things away as long as I wasn't getting rid of his favorite things. It is so hard to see the kid's suffer. So far my kids have been doing ok. My youngest son acts out occasionally. Enjoy your vacation. Best of luck to you.



Kristine

Betty - posted on 03/25/2009

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Gee Kim...it was unfortunate that your daughters stumbled upon your thoughts in that manner. However, I think it was a opening to see how your daughters were feeling and this was a step in bringing their sorrow to the surface. My daughter is so completely opposite of how your daughters were. She hardly blinked when I removed all of her dad's belongings (save for some sentimental items) and till this day, she hasn't really expressed much sadness. I know in my heart that she mourns him but in a different way - she is so much more practical about things. I try to ask her from time to time about how she is feeling but she always say she is ok. My four yr. old son will say from time to time that he misses his daddy and that he wants daddy to come home. I always tell people that the kids and I are beginning a new journey and we have done just that. It's almost a year since my husband's passing - not a day goes by without me missing him. But I have to believe that there's another plan out there for me & the kids and I'm waiting to see what it reveals.

You are right - have a terrific vacation! Patience will be the answer in the end - the 3 of you will know when the right time is - and be in harmony about it!

Kim - posted on 03/25/2009

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Hi Everyone,
I can't believe it has been two months since my original post. Thank you so much to all of you for your words of advice and encouragement.
To update you all, my husbands clothes still hang in my closet. Back in January when I first posted, my 11 year old daughter somehow read my post (i must have walked away from the computer and she saw it). Within days she was not herself and I was called to school because she was having a very difficult day. When I got to her she was a mess and couldn't stop crying. I hugged her and talked with her about her feelings and eventually it came out that she saw my post. She told me she wasn't ready to take care of his clothes because she said that his clothes are all we have of him. I told her I understand her anxiety and fear, but we have so much of her dad in our hearts and in our memories. She also expressed fear of me dating. Apparently one of her girlfriends mom has asked her more than once if i am seeing anyone. I honestly don't think Danica thought about the possibility of me dating. So anyway I think she became overwhelmed with everything and had a break down. I told her we would not just get rid of her dad's clothes. I would buy 5 rubber maids (one for each of us) and we could each keep whatever we wanted and probably after we did that there wouldn't be much left. I explained to her that her container of clothes would be hers forever and maybe someday we could have a memory quilt made, if that is what she wanted.
So because of her break down, I put off the closet. Then when I thought we could take on the challenge at a later date, my 8 year old started having issues herself. This was probably a month after my 11 year old. Again I couldn't figure out what was going on with her. All of a sudden she didn't want to go to school anymore. I would take her to school and she would cry and not want to leave me. This was not characteristic of her at all. She has always loved school and been a straight 'A' student. I knew something had happened but she wouldn't talk to me. Long story short I eventually figured out that she had found and read a journal that her dad had made one entry in right before he passed. I used that same journal only maybe 6 times after he passed away and the words I wrote were very raw and with much emotion of anger, fear, etc.... Once I knew she read it, everything made sense. I explained to her that what she read was how I was feeling at that time, but I am better now. It took a couple of weeks of talking and meeting with her counselor again for her to go back to her old self. She appears better now and I am fully aware that we will have more of these times. It is just SO incredibly painful to see your children hurting. It is hard enough for me.
So there you have it. The clothes are still there. We are going on vacation for 2 weeks and I am hoping when we return that all will be well with all of us and we can do the closet together.
Patience is all we need. Eventually we will all be on the same page and be able to walk forward together in this journey called life.
Kim

Kristine - posted on 03/25/2009

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Hi Kim,



I am sorry for your loss. Like you I have 4 kids. I just lost my husband in Jan 09 after a two yr battle with cancer. I have already packed his clothes away. It was to hard for me to see his things in the closet. My brother -in-law actually borrowed one of his outfits for the wake and I cried. It was to hard to see one of his favorite outfits on someone else even if it was family. I am in the process of moving so that is the other reason I had to pack up his things. I do not know how long I will hold onto his things but it will be a long time. When going through his things I found an outfit he wanted really bad for the summer so we got it for him last year and he never had the chance to wear it. I felt bad because of that. My husband was also a huge Cubs and Bears fan. He has hats and t-shirts galore. I kept the shirts for myself so I could feel close to him. He used to get annoyed by me wearing his shirts but I know he was kidding around. I hope this helps you. Just take your time and you will move on when you are ready. I think the idea about a memory quilt is a fantastic idea. I may end up trying that one for our family as well. Take care.



Kristine

Cindy - posted on 03/24/2009

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My sister is pushing me to do this for some reason. My husband is only gone 6 weeks. I too find comfort in opening up his closet and drawers and seeing all of his things in there. My son is 22 and has been wearing some of his stuff and i enjoy seeing that. I dont believe that there is a specific time that is "right" to do this....its when youre ready.

Connie - posted on 03/17/2009

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Hi, Kim - my children were 2 1/2 and 4 1/2 when their dad unexpectantly passed away ,,, it took me over a year to deal with anything beyond the socks and underwear.  I had to do it in stages -- I put his shoes into Rubbermaids in the back of the closet, and they stayed there for another year until I could give them away (my husband loved to pass things on to his friends or to people who needed/.could use them, so it was just a matter of when I was ready to let go)... just yesterday I saw a pair of his shoes on one of our pastors and got the joy all over again!  Coats were the same -- I gave them to family and friends but not for about 2 years.  I actually bought an antique cedar chest to store things for when the kids were older -- my son was so young he doesn't remember his dad much, but he just recently asked if he could have a shirt of his dads to sleep in (like his sister does sometimes)... I am glad I know where to get one.  I made myself get rid of anything except pictures/papers that would not fit into that chest (my husband had more clothes by far than I did!! :-) ) so it also worked for boundaries for me !  But now the stuff is out of sight and, 3.5 years later, out of mind most of the time as well.  I figured I could do a better job of sorting the rest when the kids were much older and could help and we could talk about memories with fondness and joy.  I look forward to the day when we can do this -- I think it will be a wonderful celebration of his life!    P.S.  I still have his cologne in the medicine cabinet where he kept it -- every now and then my daughter likes a little spray on her "daddy shirt" when she goes to bed... its the little things that make a difference :-)

Susan - posted on 03/12/2009

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Hello Kim



I read your story and had to write to you.   I too was 34 when I lost my husband with Melanoma,he was also 34.   After 14 years i still have many of my husbands clothes in my wardrobe,certain things have never been able to throw out.  Although my children were older when their father passed than your children they also kept certain things.  I believe that when you are really ready you will take this step,dont push yourself,and dont let other people push into it either.    All the best for the future,please dont be scared be courageous,your a woman and we can get through anything..............Sincerely 



                                                                                                                            Sue Cooper

Debbie - posted on 03/11/2009

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I lost my husband 15 years ago, suddenly in a car accident, he was 34 and I was 29.



The only thing I can add to this make sure you save things until you are in a better place, I made the mistake of getting rid of stuff thinking it would help my grieving, now I wish I had back some of the things I gave away. I do have a small box of momentos that slowly I am passing on to our kids who were 5 and 10 at the time all by myself, now they are both grown and on their own.



I have never remarried but I am in 3 year relationship with a man who very much respects the memory of my late husband.

Tammy - posted on 02/27/2009

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Hi Kim - wow, you definitely have your hands full with 4 kids to raise. God Bless You. I clearly understand what you are going through. I lost my husband to ALS - 9/11/06. He had it for 6 years. But we never discussed what to do with his stuff. And I wish we would have done that, then it would of been much easier for me to deal with. When he was diagnose with ALS I had 2 boys(one in college the other in grade school) & 1 daughter in High School. We were married 28 years and there is so many memories in his stuff that it is too hard to let go. I was 48 yrs old and he was 49. I still have all of his stuff and am dealing with the same issues as you are. I go to counseling and they tell me, there is no hurry in getting rid of his stuff. It is up to me when I am ready to deal with it & I will know when that time comes. Each person is different when it comes to packing up your loved ones stuff. You will know in your heart when you are ready. Don't let anyone tell you when to do it. I have heard stories of people who had regrets when they realized they were not ready at the time they did it. It will be painful when the time comes, but just do a little at a time. I know this is a hard time, but as each day passes, it does get better & the pain eases up. You will never forget him. He will always be in your heart.

Joan - posted on 02/26/2009

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Hi Kim, my name is joan, and I lost my husband april of 2007, It was the hardest time of my life for we were married for 18 yrs. He was the love of my life and we have 3 kids. I, myself had trouble getting rid of his things...I've given some of his clothes to my relatives and my kids.. still have his nice Jackets that he use when he ride his sportsbike. I had him cremated and part of him was burried and part of him I kept it. It is sitting next to my altar here in my bedroom. I taken down some of his picture but I still have one in my wallet and in my room. I started dating someone hoping it will make it a lot easier for me to move on but I still find myself looking for him.



It was hard putting his things away i know, coz i still have trouble myself. Half of my husband personal belongings still hiding in my closet but I was able to move some of the clothes I kept in another bedroom closet where I do not get to see it all the time. My friends tells me all the time that I should move on and start letting go of him...easy to say but slowly I am doing it... So I hope you to can do the same slowly....Good Luck and God Bless...

Julie - posted on 02/23/2009

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its ok to keep them maybe pack up only a few at a time. Its almost been 5 years ago for me and i just put away a few at a time. I never got rid of them but did put them away for my son hes 13 now i also have a 11 yr old and 7 girl. they also ware the t-shirts to bed. hope this helps julie

Pamela - posted on 02/21/2009

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Kim,



My husband passed suddenly 21/2yrs ago.  I found myself with no way to pay the rent and though our landlord was understanding, I knew I had to move.  Friends took my daughter and I in and I had to move within a month of my husband's passing.  I let family come and get what they wanted.  After that I took some shirts and the last clothes he wore.  Everything else was donated as I had no place to store these things.   A part of me was upset that I had to part with so much so soon, but looking back I think it was a blessing in disguise.  It forced me to put that part of him away.  Last year I gave away the last of the shirts.  I no longer felt I needed that reminder.  I still have a few things and someday I suppose those will go too, but for now I 'm content to keep them hanging in my closet.  The house my daughter and I live in now, my husband never lived in.  It was a new beginning,but I couldn't ever forget him no matter what things I have.  You will know when the time's right.  Thinking about it is the first step and one day you'll just know it needs to be done.  No one, but you will know that.  Just take it in stages is the best way, I think., a little at a time.  I wish you and your children the best of luck!

Connie - posted on 02/20/2009

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Kim



My husband had pancreatic cancer too. Although we had some time to say good-bye, I feel the same way as you. I need him here to watch our kids grow. The whole clothes issue....you do it whenever you are good and ready. My husband was 43 when he passed away, I was 35, our kids were 3, 4, & 6. Honesty with the kids is the best thing I have found. I kept his clothes for quite a while. I would slowly go through them and remember that he didn't wear this shirt that often and then I would put a few in a box or bag. The favorite things I have kept and I will for as long as I want. It has been 4 years for us as of Feb 19. Do what you feel when you feel it. Don't let anyone else tell you otherwise. Try to get to the point where you are feeling him tell you to do things. He is in your heart and when you listen closely you will hear him inside of you. If you are not sure why you are doing something that is out of the norm, it is him talking to you. I hope this helps Kim.



Just listen =)

Betty - posted on 02/01/2009

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Hi Kim - I'm so sorry for your loss! My husband passed away last April of 2008 from liver cancer. At first I was so preoccupied with filing paperwork that I put the clothes situation in the back burner. However, when my nephew moved in with me in June I found myself looking for closet space (my daughter sleeps in the same room with me & my 4 yr. old). While my sister-in-law was visiting, it just seemed like the right time to get rid of my husbands's clothes with the help of my sister-in-law. It was really spontaneous and although I felt bittersweet about getting rid of his clothes, I knew it needed to be done. I kept some items that meant something to me. Conclusion: there is never the right time - you will know when it is right. However, it gave me a cleansing feeling after I did it. Trust me - you will know when it is time. Good luck - I know how you are feeling. I still miss my husband too and there are days when I still can't believe that he is not here anymore to share in me & the kids' lives.

[deleted account]

I think everyone is correct here - you will do it when you are ready.  I still have some of my husbands things - things I have for me.  I keep some of his shirts to wear to sleep to be close to him.  I also kept some things for my son.  My husband died March 15, 2005 (unexpectedly 3 days after our wedding!!!  We had been together for 8 years!) my son was 7 when his father died.  On the year anniversary of my husband's death we had a 'celebration of his life'.  All his best friends, family, my son, and my husbands 2 older son's from his frist marriage - we all got together for lunch at our favorite 'Wednesday lunch spot' and while we were there we wrote a card to him.  We picked up balloons on the way to the cemetary and released the balloons with our cards. During the dinner that night I honored my husbands 2 best friends and his sister with one of Steve's shirts (my husband was a big guy - Tall 6'5" and 280, so his clothes were able to fit them - BIG).  They honor that gift to this day.  AND - I did give the boys something too.  Quinn, my son has Steve's watch and Bible. Ian the oldest wanted his ID braclet and Nolan the middle guy wanted his money clip.  Small things they can keep and carry with them.




It's not easy. I know - but it helped me to know that they people closest to my husbands heart got a piece of him to have always too.  Good Luck.

Trish - posted on 01/27/2009

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my husband died sept 07. I have just recently cleared enough of his stuff so I could open his closet door. There were bags of things he accumulated while at the local hospice house which have been sitting. I have a few dear, dear friends who have offered to come & help or just sit any time I am ready to pack his stuff if I want company. so far I have only packed the clothes in his dresser. I spent over a hour on the phone with one of these friends while doing it. You will know when the time is right. My son is 6, & he is concerned that I will throw out daddy's things. I let him see things are going in a box & are just moving to another room, or explaining what is leaving the house & why (a his friends dad wears the same size pants his daddy did). I know it is hard. Good luck

Josephine - posted on 01/27/2009

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Hi Kim. I read your post yesterday and have thought about it since. If you're ready to pack his clothes away do so. It's got nothing to do with putting him aside, or being ready to move on. It just means that you've come to terms with the physical side of the fact that he won't be back to use them. He's still there showing his love for you through your 4 marvelous children.Why not let each child chose something personal to keep for themselves and then pack everything else away? I lost my husband to cancer 15 years ago. He was 50, our daughter 14. When she married 3 years ago the "something old" she took to the altar was the little prayer book her father had received from his godmother for his first comunion. I gave his gold wrist-watch to the son-in-law he never met. You don't move on, life does, just go with it. You won't forget him, or love him less than you ever did. You'll do a great job of raising your children, you'll probably surprise yourself.... One step at a time.... My thoughts are with you.

Tammie - posted on 01/24/2009

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Hi Kim - four kids, God Bless you!  I'm so sorry for your loss.  My husband passed away suddenly of a heart attack on Sept. 6, 2006.  Do it a little at a time.  I had a friend come over and help.  I got rid of old clothes, underwear, things I never liked anyway :), and a ridiculous pair of Speedos from our honeymoon, but there are still plenty of his signature haiwian (?)shirts and jackets hanging up.



I like the memory quilt idea - hadn't really thought about that as an option.  Practically, my son is 15 and may soon be able to wear some of the shirts.  We also have a bunch of t-shirts commemorating events that the kids participated in.  I think I am going to box up anything that I think I would regret giving away and just put it out in the garage for now.  That way when the kids want to, they can rummage through and take what they want.  I think I will definitely limit it to one box.  I won't show the kids the give aways - just makes it too hard. 



 



The presents . . . what about letting the kids open them?  Use it as a time to talk about what Dad would have liked about the gift.  Maybe you all could decide to donate the gifts to a charity - one that he would have liked.



Finally - we widows are tough chicks!  Having courage doesn't mean you aren't scared.  Having courage means you do what you know you need to do despite your fear.

Teri - posted on 01/21/2009

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A friend gave me the name of a lady who makes memory quilts, and memory bears, seh uses patches from the clothing of a love one. I am not ready to pack away my husbands things, but I know when I am that I will have made a quilt for each child as well as memory bears for the little ones. I don't know when the time will be right for this but I know I am just not ready yet.



Teri

Kim - posted on 01/21/2009

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Thanks Angie,
I really like when you said moving on is finding someone else, continuing on is raising our kids.
Thanks,
Kim

Pati - posted on 01/19/2009

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Quoting Jocelyn:

i lost my husband just this Aug. I am only 33 he was 35. I have 2 boys 7 and 3, he was 2 when the accident happened. I of course still have my husbands stuff in the closet. I am in the process of trying to get boxes for them. What I am gonna do with his items is make a quilt out of his clothes for the boys and I. I would love to give them to good will for people that need them, but this way we will always have a part of him with us. I was gonna try and do them myself but I'm not sure if I can be strong enough to cut his clothes for the quilt.



 I made one of his shirts into a pillow. never thought about a blanket/quilt. That is a wonderful idea!

Jocelyn - posted on 01/18/2009

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i lost my husband just this Aug. I am only 33 he was 35. I have 2 boys 7 and 3, he was 2 when the accident happened. I of course still have my husbands stuff in the closet. I am in the process of trying to get boxes for them. What I am gonna do with his items is make a quilt out of his clothes for the boys and I. I would love to give them to good will for people that need them, but this way we will always have a part of him with us. I was gonna try and do them myself but I'm not sure if I can be strong enough to cut his clothes for the quilt.

Angie - posted on 01/14/2009

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Kim- I can relate to where you are coming from. My husband died in July 2007. When he died I knew there would come a day when I would pack up his things. I started thinking about it this december. I thought it would be a good way to end 2008 and start the new year. I came to realize that he would always be with me just not physically. So on new years eve I stayed home and took a hard but wonderful trip down memory lane. I packed up his work boots that had been by the door, his clothes that he wore the day before, and the rest of his clothes from the dresser and closet. It was so hard putting his clothes in that container. The different outfits he wore for different things. Then I went through all of the special boxes. These were the boxes that held all of the cards, notes, letters to each other, pictures, and tokens from vactions. That was the best part of the night. I had forgotten how much love was there. It was nice to remember all of the things we had done and wrote. I was also scared and felt guilty. I thought I was ready but wasn't sure. Am I ready to move on? I don't know, but I am ready for the next chapter in my life. Please don't feel like it is not ok to continue on. I often wonder if my husband would be ok with me packing up his things. You know the feeling, like what would he think. I don't know what he would think, but am hoping that he would want whats best for me and the kids. They will never be forgotten, they will always be with us. It might be a song, a feeling, a thought, a picture, or even something your children do, but they are with us. I think knowing that he will always be with me helped me to pack his things. I don't need the material things all around the house. It was hard always seeing them. It was like a mind trip, like he might be coming home soon. I have pictures around the house and dads wall so we can always remember him. If we could only have them back. Even if it was only until all of the kids were grown. Wouldn't that be great. To bad we have no choice. We are strong and will make it. Good luck with the decision you make. You may not be ready to move on but you might be ready to continue on. I think that there is a difference. Moving on to me is going to find someone else. Continuing on is raising my kids and if someone comes along then great if not ohh well.

Teri - posted on 01/14/2009

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I so understand what you are feeling. I still can not imagine moving my husbands things from our closet. His new firefighters uniform came in while he was in the hospital and he never got to wear it. I cannot put it away, I too find myself dusting it off and then saying to myself that I am not ready yet. My youngest was only18 months old when he died and he only knows him from his pictures. I cannot imagine not having his things there, sometimes I just go into the closet and hug his things and cry, I think that it is still my place to go and so I cannot let go of it. I sometimes will even put on his clothes to sleep in, I guess it makes me feel like I still have some part of him. I am so sorry for your loss.

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