Double grief

My wonderful husband died very suddenly of a heart attack the day before my birthday on 16.10.17. He was only 49, we had been together for 27 years. The first Christmas without him was unbearable and I was so relieved to get the festive season over. Around 6 months after his death I met my first boyfriend from school. We were both sad and lonely and found comfort and happiness together and quickly fell in love. I knew he had pancreatic cancer before we got together but he was doing so well we convinced ourselves he was going to be one of the lucky ones. Sadly around 5 months ago he became very ill and has been told there’s nothing more they can do and it’s end of life. We’re hoping he makes it through Christmas but he is very poorly. Life is so hard and seems so unfair. My husband died at my birthday and now I think my partner might die at Christmas. I’m grieving for them both and love them so much.

Hi Clare.My husband also passed of PC in 2018.It is so difficult to predict how things will go. My husband lived 16 months from diagnosis. I had a friend who lost her hubby who she had been with for about 38 yrs. She too met someone else but she would not marry him because she was so afraid the same thing might happen again, and it did. I am so sorry that you are facing the same thing but there is hope and I pray your new partner will gain strength.God bless.x

Hi Clare,

I don’t know what to say apart from to agree with you that life is so bitterly unfair. I hope you have really good palliative care in place - access 24/7 to nurses and a doctor if you need one. If not, make sure you have what you need ASAP.
My husband died from a rare brain tumour in September. We didn’t have good palliative care - we hardly had any - I realised afterwards that it would have made such a difference.
End of life is different for everyone. The one good district nurse who visited us told me that sometimes even a very poorly cancer patient can suddenly rally and go on to have a good few weeks or even a month or more. Others sadly do not. (The third time she visited, she took me into another room where he couldn’t hear us and explained gently that he wasn’t going to get better and then did everything she could to ensure I had everything I needed.)
I can only suggest that you take it a moment at a time. Ask your partner what he wants to do and do that. Sit quietly holding his hand, stroking his forehead. Give him a kiss often and tell him that you love him. Play his favourite music, if he has the energy watch a film or TV show together.
Do you have any family to help you? If you have, let them do just that. I hope you have carers coming in regularly. They can do anything for you, such as clearing up the kitchen, washing/ironing clothes, fetching shopping if you don’t want to leave the house.
Beyond that, I can only send you my wish that you both have a peaceful and contented Christmas as you endure this most difficult of times.
Christie xxx

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