Learning to live alone

Where and how do we learn to live alone. It is so hard when you have been joined at the hip for over 40 years, when you have grown up together and every one of life’s most important moments has been shared. The person we talk to when we are worried or scared is not there, the person who has loved and cherished us is not holding our hand, reassuring us or just listening. But some people live alone as they have never managed to find the one special person - and some actually like living alone. How do they do that? Is it because their normal is doing everything for themselves and they are happy being self sufficient and independent ? I know single friends rarely have empty weekends but if they do they are OK with that. So I need to find contentment in what I have - I need to find an inner peace that will grow from the small seed of appreciation for what I had and what will always be mine. I need to learn to be content on my own. Yes we talked all the time -for a man he was a real chatter! I am fortunate - so much more so than so many. I was truly and utterly loved by someone who should still be here - but I had that special love and from that knowledge I need to grow in myself and be strong and positive. No it is not easy - the smallest thing can make me cry as it stirs a memory. Happy memories or just everyday things can knock us over and magnify what we no longer have. But whilst I know that I will never love or be loved like that and that I will miss him every day in everything I do, I also want to learn to be content to appreciate what I do have when so many have nothing, not even lovely memories. Like most people I also miss the future - the things we still had to do or see. Not some impressive bucket list full of daring things, just little things like watching a storm from our flat that looks out over the sea - in nearly five years of owning it we had never watched the lightning over the bay together. Of course there are bigger things that we will not face together or talk about and every time I look at his photo I tell him how much I love him, how much I miss him. But I had him for forty years and for that I am very grateful - so much love, so much fun and two great children. Yes I have a lot to be thankful for and listening to the wind and rain howling outside from inside my warm cosy home, I appreciate this home we made together. He is still here - everywhere I look I can see him, I can feel him and I still love him. All I need to do now is learn to live each day without him.
Take care all in this horrible weather. xx

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Hi Trisha. Situation similar. Partner of 29 years died on 23rd November 2019 from lung cancer. From diagnosis to he passed was only just 11 months. He didn’t really accept it was happening.
The sentiment within your message is the same. Past, present and future. Sometimes I find it all just too much to bear. I miss him so much and what we now won’t have. We still had so much to say to each other, I admit that I talk out loud to my Peter, sometimes it’s comforting and sometimes it just seems to make it worse.
I wish you solace and future happiness x

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Hi Trisha,
How do we live a life without our men? It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do ! 40 years with our darling funny loving ,caring husbands and now what ?
Your posts always amaze me because they mirror my past life. I really hope I can also start to appreciate all that we had and be great full , but it’s so hard when we are missing our other half. I feel lost on my own, I’ve always been part of a couple. I’m so thankful for my boys and family however feel so alone !
You write so lovely you inspire me to try my best as you do
Take care x

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Dear Ang
We are and were so lucky. Some days are much harder than others aren’t they. I am sitting doing nothing and the room is cosy and warm and the tv is on - but it is silent and it was never silent in our house. But it is still our home and I refer to it as our home not mine - because I can still see him on the settee opposite - sunday night Kronenberg on the table - just being together was enough. I think that strange ache around the heart area will always be there - but I now I am making progress as now I can laugh about some of the things he got up to - where as before I could not bear to talk about them for fear of making me cry. I was with my best friend today who was our neighbour when we first moved in together and I could talk and laugh about those early days. But she told me she had found a picture of him on her phone when we were all away last year - but that I could not look at as that would make me cry. One day - when I am ready I will look at the photo and we will probably laugh and cry together. We are lucky with our children - but we are still alone. Not sure we will ever get used to it but going to have to try. Take care and we really will chat soon xx

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I too talk out loud to him all the time. I chat away in the car and even pat the seat next to me as if tapping him on the leg. It is very very early days for you - it was three months before I could face work - and that helped. I need to be doing things - anything. I write in a journal to him and tell him about my day - just as I would talk to him. It really helps me.
Take care xxx

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Dear Trisha and Ang

Reading your posts it’s exactly how I’m feeling, can still hear his voice and laughter everywhere, just miss Chris so much my heart aches and I can hardly breathe, today has not been a good day so much emotion I don’t know why but part of trying to live on your own I really don’t like it, if I didn’t have my dog I think I would go completely of the rails.

Annie

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Dear Annie
My husband died suddenly and was only 60 - no warning he died whilst I was at work. No time to say goodbye and tell him how much I loved him. But he knew - he always knew - just like I knew he loved me till the ends of the earth. I know we had something so unbelievably special - too good to be true - so it was taken away. I know I am no longer scared of dying - but our lovely children are way too precious for me to leave them willingly - so I do what I can to appreciate the little things. Things once upon a time I may have passed by - but now are little seeds of positivity. Dogs are amazing companions -I really would like one - but will have to make do with my big grey cat until I retire xx

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So many people missing our partners and feeling this pain ! Yes Trisha we are lucky to have had so many wonderful years together. If only we could have grown old together, so many plans , so many things to share.
We used to love our busy weekends . So many lovely memories, I also find comfort and smile now looking at photos and recalling the fun we had as a family.
But some days harder than other ! Today is not so good…
The silence is deafening
Hugs to everyone feeling sad x

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Hi Trisha

Chris was 54 we were away on holiday in Jamaica and he had a cardiac arrest in the early hours if the morning I was with him but he had no idea neither did I that he was going to die, he hadn’t been ill nothing, all he said was O No and then he died gone so quickly he was my everything, we did everything together, and now eight months on still trying to sort all the official paperwork with the foreign office ie death certificate with Jamaica it’s a nightmare
Annie

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Oh dear Anny how dreadful for you. I’m so sorry for your loss. The shock is horrendous and life seems so unfair. 8 months is no time at all. It is 12 months since I lost my husband suddenly
He was only 60. No warning neither. My only comfort is that he didn’t suffer or know what was happening.
Take care
Ang x

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Thank you for you kind words,
Annie

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Oh Annie
how awful for you to still be sorting it out. Gary had a heart attack when he was 37 and so I had another 23 years - but he too died of cardiac arrest - I just prayed he did not know what was happening and I don’t think they do it is so sudden. So hard for us and they were way too young. When I get upset I sound like a child repeating over and over again its not fair. But my answer to my children when they said that about something when they were young was Life is Not Fair. And it isn’t is it. I cannot imagine how hard it is for you with the paperwork - my stuff is simple in comparison but even now things to do with his pension keep popping up just when you think it is all sorted. And sometimes you just look at it and think what next I really cannot be bothered. Then you find a little bit of energy from somewhere and manage a little bit of progress… but it is hard going it alone. I know he would not have coped if it had been the other way round - the children who he adored said it were the other way round we would have lost him too by now. Keep going my dear. We are all here for each other xxx

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Dear Ang - some days are so much worse than others. I am waiting for daughter to come home and of course anxious about her getting home as the weather is so dreadful. I have managed OK today - but last Thursday sobbed all the way home. You just never know when its going to hit. xxx

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Hi Trisha

Yes it’s all so unfair both of them taken too soon, I think it’s more that I have to rely on the foreign office sorting it , I’ve tried all different avenues but nothing hurries them
Annie

Hope your daughter arrives home soon , it’s calmed down a bit here,

Bloody bureacracy - I am sorry it must be so hard and frustrating. Just paperwork to them no thoughts for how you must feel. xx

Trisha

I have to contact them every time they have no idea, they have told me it could take up to two years , which I try not to think about because it never ending can’t move on with it all

I am so sorry - that must be so hard for you. Wish I could suggest something. Is it worth asking your MP… it is just awful.

Trisha

I’ve spoken to my MP they can’t help even though Jamaica is part of the commonwealth they can’t get involved with the legal stuff, stupid isn’t it xx

Is your daughter home yet ??