7 weeks

Hello my name is Joan I lost my hubby 7 weeks ago …he was coming home from getting newspaper which he did everyday …but didn’t get home …he had a massive heart attack 3 doors away from home…my neighbour came for me and we stood watching paramedics working on him to no avail…I am 74 Roy was 76 …we lost our son to cancer 18 yrs ago he was 34
I have a daughter who is 50 and my grandson who is 20 …my granddaughter from my son is 23. …I still cannot believe Roy’s gone …I have his ashes here for now…but one minute it’s as if he’s gone out then it hits me …I’m just confused with my feelings …we been married 54 yrs .

Dear Saffy, like you, we had been married for a lovely long time, in our case, 57 years. I think that makes it harder to cope with it all. Nothing will be the same again, but I try to comfort myself with the facts that a) we were married for so long, b) we adored each other and were so happy, and c) we had two wonderful daughters who, with the grandchildren, as supporting me through this.
I don’t suppose we will ever be truly happy again, but we should try to if we can.
Thinking of you and wishing you a better time. Ann x

Sorry Joan, I automatically replied to you as Saffy., I meant to say also, that it must have been horrendous for you watching everything, knowing there was nothing you could do. That’s awful, and I feel for you.
My husband always used to say that when his time came, he wanted it to be very quick and not long and drawn out. He didn’t quite manage that, so I feel it is a blessing that your husband did not have to suffer. That might be a small consolation. X

Thank you for your reply…I am glad it was quick for him but we all feel as if someone has just taken him away …he wasn’t ill …I nursed my son the last 3 weeks of his life. We knew for 4 months he was terminal and it was a relief for him when he passed…but this is so different so

Hello Joan,

My husband died in September 2020 after a short illness (not COVID). For about the first 2 - 3 months, I was numb, I was working on autopilot. It was really Christmas time when I started to grieve.

I don’t know what to say, because you spent your entire adult life with your husband. I only had just under 20 years. It sounds like your husband was your soulmate, your life was each other and your family, and you’d already had the awful experience of watching your son die.

All I can suggest is that for the next few weeks, maybe months, be very kind to yourself. If you feel like spending a day indoors, then do that. If you’d like your daughter to visit, tell her that. Perhaps you can help each other grieve.

I am finding mourning to be so terribly difficult. I feel this constant need to tell everyone what a good man my husband was. I’ve been told I have complex grief and I am seeing a psychologist this Friday. My thoughts and emotions are all tangled up like a spider’s web.

That’s me. We all grieve differently. I have a friend who is in a position that is similar to you. He lost his wife of 50 years just over a year ago. He knew it was coming, because his wife had cancer. He says sometimes he feels OK, when he’s able to get out of the house and do some work in his garden, or work elsewhere. He’s a farmer, and he’s been working all his life. To an extent, working is his solace. Then he goes into the house where he lived with his wife, and the memories come flooding in. He lives in a small community, his children are all alive with lives of their own. They keep on coming to see him, to make sure he’s OK. Sometimes that feels good, he says, but sometimes he just wishes they would go away. His grandchildren are always a comfort, though.

There’s no map, no guidance that tells you what to do. We’re all different, you will mourn in a different way to me. Sometimes it helps to talk to someone you don’t know who is experienced at helping people to grieve, like a counsellor. In the very early stages, often people are not ready for that. Have you talked to your GP? That can be a good idea, because simple things like a course of sleeping pills can help.

Christie xxx

Oh thank you Christy…you are so right…I lay at night looking at his picture and ask myself what are you feeling and my mind goes blank no feelings …yet the tears come when I’m frustrated or angry and worst lonely…I’ve borrowed one of my daughters dogs Tetley he’s used to being here and has been a godsend … The future at the moment looks bleak… to be together 54 years married and now gone is so hard…but thank you for your lovely words xx