I too feel the same way, buying food that I like and not what Peter used to like, my shopping always centred around him, even before he was ill because I could eat anything but Curry and Peter loved his basic meals, he was a meat and two veg man, Sunday dinners during the week and he too hated Curry.
When I look back, Peter was an apprentice electrician when we met and then three years later, when he qualified, we got married, bought a brand new home and everything inside was brand new. His mum had died when he was 18, a few weeks after we met in 1964 and the house they lived in became Peters. He sold the house and put the money towards our new home in 1967 which meant we had a small mortgage and I still live here to this day, so many memories tied up in our home.
Peter applied for promotion after promotion and when he retired he was in charge of the city’s electrical system and then the council decided to privatise it and everything went downhill, faults everywhere so he applied for early retirement as he wasn’t feeling well and kept having chest infections, little did we know that by the following year he would be diagnosed with the illness that killed him. We spent the next 8 years together day in and day out, sitting in the garden in the summer, going for days out until he only wanted to drive short distances, we could be out for an hour, but it took us two hours to get him ready as he could hardly walk but once he was settled in our eight seater SUV (we bought it because it was massive and airy for him and he could sit high up) he loved that SUV but when we got back home again it took us an hour to get him out of it and back into the house so he could recover.
I was lucky, apart from my hair falling out and chest pains due to stress I was able to care for him on my own. I promised him that he would never have to go into a care home as long as I had breath in my body and he didn’t. We had some ding dongs as he got so impatient with me if I didn’t get to him fast enough, my showers took one minute, turn on the shower, then jump in and jump out, washing my hair was a nightmare I had to wash it in the kitchen sink when he was in the next room. I have lost times of my hair dripping all over the place when he called for me to help him. I bought a massive shower cap that was towel lined so when he called I could plonk it on my head to stop water dripping all over the place. I got into a system where everything was done down to a tee. I bought walkie talkies and attached them to our clothes so when I hung washing out or was changing the beds he could press the button and I could be with him in seconds.
The last time he was taken into hospital I stayed with him all night until he passed away in my arms the following afternoon with all his family around him. I have no regrets apart from the fact that when he got bad tempered with me I shouted back and called him selfish but I don’t dwell on that at all, I knew I could not have done anything more than what I did for Peter. I stayed all day when he was admitted to hospital during the years he was ill, he would not let the nurses wash him, he would wait until I turned up and I would get a bowl of water and wash him down and change his clothes, go down to the coffee shop and bring him back some sandwiches etc. and newspapers, I went home in the afternoon when he wanted to sleep, Fed and took our German Shepherd out for a walk then got a taxi back to the hospital where I stayed until early evening. The staff got used to me and I was even offered a meal if I wanted one, the meals were delicious but Peter wanted Sub Sandwiches and Paninis.
I hope that someone will be there for me and look after me the way I looked after my mum and Peter but somehow I doubt it. If we had had daughters then perhaps it would have been different but with sons? A son is a son 'til he gets him a wife, a daughter’s a daughter for all of her life.