Dreading New year

I’ve managed to get through my first Christmas without my husband, with the help of my daughter (I’m so lucky I have her to lean on). I’ve never lived alone and find it really hard particularly when I’ve been out with friends or family and come back to a house without him there.
New Year’s Eve is a time I would have spent just with him and I’ve just been crying at the thought of it. I don’t know how I’ll cope with being on my own with the memories of celebrating with him.
I’m also going through cancer treatment starting tomorrow, which is an added stress at this time of year and he’s not here to support me.
I wish I could just disappear for a while, fast forward to a time when things will not be as painful. What do you do that helps?

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Hi Celie
I am in a very similar situation to you. My husband passed away 6 weeks ago and I to am starting breast cancer treatment I didn’t think there was anyone like me in the same situation. I to am dreading New Year’s Eve. My daughter and her husband and my 2 little grandchildren are coming over to stay overnight and we are going to have a takeaway. Is there anyone who can stay overnight with you? I don’t know how to do this awful journey either but just somehow muddle through… I cry to every day and am dreading chemotherapy and Radiotherapy without his support. Maybe we can support each other?

Hello both, reading your posts has made me realise I’m not alone in my situation. Thank you both so very much. My husband of 39 years died very suddenly without warning from a coronary thrombosis and as we lived in the country I had to do CPR until medics arrived. After an hour they stopped and the nightmare turned into utter desolation. Like you, I have a loving family but they can’t really understand how I feel. A few days after the funeral I was rushed in from my GPs surgery to hospital and was told I was in heart failure. Since then I was persuaded to move nearer to family and help, but feel I abandoned our home. I’m now living in a city, but feel so lonely that I wish it had been me that had died, that my husband did not deserve to have his life cut short after just a few months living in his dream retirement home with an acre of garden to play with. Part of me feels that I could die of a broken heart, but I struggle on going to see consultants, taking medication and wearing an awful oxygen mask at nighttime. But through all of that one of the hardest things to face is leaving 2023 behind. At the moment I can tell people my husband died only last year - it makes it feel closer somehow. Ridiculous though it sounds, I dread having to say my husband died the year before last. I don’t know why l feel like this, it sounds so silly after all it’s only a date and I’ve been through all the ‘first’ anniversaries. The truth is that this second year is feeling even harder than the first and I’m struggling to see a future. Reading about your situations I realise I’m not the only one who is suffering from life threatening illnesses as well as losing their partner. Life is so unfair, isn’t it? Love and hugs to you x

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Hi JanieM thank you for your kind words. I am so sorry you have been through a very traumatic time and for your ongoing health problems to. I absolutely understand how you are feeling it’s such a horrible journey we are all on. I have ups and downs every day some days are mostly down but I am lucky and have 2 amazing daughters and 3 gorgeous grandchildren who keep me living … Trust that we will get through this together x

I’m sorry to hear about your husband and diagnosis. To be honest I didn’t think I’d find anyone else in my situation.
Your bereavement is more recent than mine. I had a few months to start to process what had happened and then I got my breast cancer diagnosis, Since then it’s been a bit of a whirlwind of appointments,scans and so forth.
It all feels too much. You probably feel the same.
I’m glad you’ve got someone to spend New Year’s Eve with. I spent Christmas with my daughter so she’s going to a friend’s at new year. She’s been so supportive I have to be careful not to lean on her too much.
I’ve started radiotherapy this week and have a few more sessions straight after New Year.
I hope we can support each other.
I’ve just logged back in and fellow sufferer has joined us. :heart:. I don’t know how to get back to either of your posts to read/answer :roll_eyes:so I’ll finish there. Sending hugs.

Hello Janie,
I’m so sorry to hear about your husband and your own diagnosis. This all sounds very familiar and I can totally understand what you’re going through.

My husband of 48 years died suddenly, shockingly, in front of me and like you, I tried CPR too and managed to call for a neighbour who helped me, but it was so traumatic. My husband wasn’t well, but I never imagined I had so little time left with him. I think one of the hardest things was that we didn’t say goodbye. It makes me cry just to think of all the things I wanted to say before he left me for good, but didn’t have time, it’s just heartbreaking…as you know.

We had moved to a bungalow earlier this year and the realisation keeps on hitting me, that he’s not going to do any of the things we had planned. He’s not going to see what the new garden looks like when the seasons change, or decorate the house with me, choose a new car. I keep thinking, he was sorting his fishing gear out but didn’t even get to use it. It’s so painful to see his things, the things he had cared about, touched and used over the years, just lying there.

Unlike you, I’m only a reasonably short drive away from where we lived before, so I don’t feel isolated which must be very hard for you. I have had people ask me, will you move house? I honestly don’t know how to answer and can’t understand why they would ask me that. Questions come into my head like, why would I move? where to? How would moving help at all? I can’t even think of a future without him, let alone move house again.

I have had some counselling which has helped a bit. One of the things I was told was, that the grief stays the same but, the world gets bigger around it as time goes by. There were other ways of looking at grief too in a ‘group’ counselling session I did on ‘zoom’, which helped to process what I was feeling. Have you tried any counselling?

I understand the feeling that you’re getting further from the time when your husband died and a new year is another step away from it. The grief is still there for us isn’t it, no matter how much time goes by, those feelings about our husbands will still take up a huge space in our minds and memories. It has been 7 months for me and longer for you but it is still the same grief that we live with.

When I started to look online for help to cope with everything I’ve been through, I found it hard because there are groups where people have cancer or other illnesses and there are bereavement groups, but I couldn’t find one which had both.

I’m glad you both answered my post as we have a shared understanding of what it’s like to lose a husband and then to be diagnosed with a disease and being unable to have the support of that loved one.

I do feel lucky though to have a daughter, son, grandchildren and friends to help me through. But it also helps to talk to people who have been through the same experience as me. Over the last few years I have lost my lovely mum and dad and been incredibly sad at their loss, but nothing in my life has prepared me for how I feel now.

Sending love to you both xx

Hi Celie, thank you SO much for your post. Not having the time to say a last ‘I love you’ is one of the hardest things to live with, as you know. With me, I’d been told by the 999 person to make my husband comfortable and for him to sit down as I’d arrived downstairs talking to them to find my husband standing up in the middle of our living room hitting his chest because of the pain. I got him to sit down, then said he’s looking worse and to hurry and at that point he stopped breathing and I had to start CPR until the ambulance arrived sometime later. Like you, there were so many things I wanted to say but never had the chance and that hurts so much. I tried to get counselling because a health professional told me she thought I had PTSD, but there’s a long waiting list where I am. I did manage to get 6 weeks of a weekly phone chat for 45 minutes, but it wasn’t very successful as I have a poor phone signal here plus a bit of a language barrier with the counsellor, so the conversations were interrupted by many ‘what did you say?’ questions - to be honest, looking back on it it was more like a Two Ronnie’s routine than anything. I can laugh now, but it was a painful and unsuccessful form of counselling.
I think what’s made things so difficult for us is that we’re trying to cope with 2 huge and incredibly stressful situations. Under any circumstances losing a partner changes your life completely in an instant. Add to that to then be faced with a life threatening illness without the support of your partner, life can become so bleak and frightening.
Like you, I do have close family and some good friends but no matter how good they are they can’t replace what we’ve lost. Moving house during that first year has become a bit of a blur now. I had to move, so I buried my feelings about leaving our dream retirement home. It did mean down sizing and having to find homes for my husband’s enormous amount of hobby related stuff. He was into gardening, astronomy, wine making, ancient history, IT and eco-living. I think I could have stocked a decent sized library, never mind any practical equipment! At that time I was so unwell I let my son and daughter get on with it, which they did over many visits and taking away car loads of stuff. They were incredibly helpful and worked so hard, but I do feel guilty that I just let them make the difficult decisions.
I also lost my mum 2 years before my husband died, we have a lot in common don’t we! It is good to find some people in the same situation, Apart from anything else, I find explaining my situation to new doctors etc. so difficult. I feel sometimes that I must sound as if I have a long list of moans. Anyway, I’m really glad to find you both, love and best wishes, Janie xx

Hi ladies

I think it would be nice if we can all support each other too xx

That’s a great idea x

Good idea xx