Remembering a life rather than a death

My beloved partner of 20 years died of a cardiac arrest last Friday. He had been unwell for a few days but I did not realise how poorly he was. I cannot forget how he was gasping for breath and grunting in his last moments. They worked on him for 30 minutes but to no avail. The coroner just told me they are doing a post-mortem tomorrow. Only then can I start planning his funeral. I am determined to celebrate his life and time with me rather than his awful death. I hope he knew how much I loved him. I wish I had told him more often. So many questions … my head is in a spin and my heart is broken.


Dear @SSTC22

Welcome to the Community. I am sorry for the loss of your partner.

Having read your profile along with your post, you were not to know how unwell your partner was. Please do not blame yourself, you have done nothing wrong but did everything right by calling the Ambulance when you did. None of us know just how unwell a person is and it is even harder if they cannot tell us or in some circumstances they choose not to tell us so as not to worry us. That is love and I am sure your partner knew you loved him.

There will be many questions but hopefully the Coroners report will answer them for you. Take one day at a time and be gentle with yourself. Grief is a rollercoaster of emotions and there will be good days and bad days. Keep reaching out here. We are all here for you. The support is amazing.

You have such a positive attitude by saying his funeral will be a celebration of life and the arrangements will keep you focused. You have 20 wonderful years of memories and happy times to draw on for the celebration of your partners life.

I wish I could fix your broken heart but all I can say is just keep reaching out here and keep connecting with members who have experienced what you are going through. You are not alone. We are all here for you.

Please take care of yourself.


Thank you for all your kind words, Pepsi. They are much appreciated.

I decided to name an ultra-bright star after him, in the constellation of Leo because he was a Leo. Money permitting, I will also get his name added to the Wall of Honour of the Royal Society of Medicine, so that I can see it every time I visit. Also, the money goes to medical research and I think he would have liked that.

I tweeted a photo of him with the intention that he should be remembered (

Finally, I made the decision to move to a retirement complex where I can have my own space but also join others in the activities provided if I feel I can. I cannot stomach living in the same house. Too many memories, some very good but others (health-related) very painful.

I hope this is the right thing for me.