Utterly lost

Hello. This is my first post here. I lost my partner Clive, who I had been with for 28 years back in April. I am 49 and was his carer for much of the last 10 years, on and off depending on his health. The worst until this year was 2015 when I almost lost him while he waited for a transplant, but he pulled through that time. But at Christmas he became ill again and I knew, I just knew that this would be it.

I put everything on hold again and willingly - including the last semester of my degree - and did everything I could. I woudn’t have had it any other way. It was harrowing, terrifying and yet some of the most rewarding weeks of my life because we became closer than we had ever been. Our love was stronger than it had ever been. But a few weeks before he entered a hospice we had the terrible news that one of our dogs was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney failure. A week later his sister (they were both from the same litter) was also diagnosed. We lost them both within 48 hours, two days after Clive went into a hospice. For us, they weren’t just dogs, they were our children. We were a family unit. But just four weeks after that, I lost Clive to Covid pneumonitis. In the space of a month, my entire family had gone.

And then the hell of sorting, admin, clearing (he had a social housing flat due to his disabilities and not being able to work which I had 28 days to clear out). I’m now living on our narrowboat. Then the funeral to plan and I poured my heart and soul into that. He was a musician and I put on a heck of a show for him, one I know he was so proud of.

No sooner did I have his ashes back than the study deadlines started looming. I couldn’t afford to defer for a year and this was my final semester so I had to complete this year and pushed on and knocked out three presentations, an essay, a dissertation from scratch and today, my final exam. I did it all in 8 weeks.

Today is also our anniversary. I am exhausted beyond belief but I have done everything I had to do. The last few weeks have been so difficult to focus and try and compartmentalise my grief. Everyone comments on how strong I am and maybe I am but I just want to grieve properly and I don’t think I’ve been able to do that yet. I’m scared of it. Scared of the endless void that lies ahead and I just don’t know what I am supposed to do.

It was truly a privilege to have been the one who cared for him, to hold his hand as he took his last breath. But I just cannot see how I can build a life without him. I’ve carried on and done all these things because I had to. Now I don’t have to do anything and it terrifies me. How do you carry on?


By taking one slow step at a time. Stop thinking of the future and think of today, it’s the only day guaranteed.
You should be proud of yourself for doing everything that you have done.
Now face the grief as it’s the only way forward. You just have to hit it head on. I’m 6 months in from my partner’s sudden death and days are mixed. Mostly ok but some full on sobbing. But I own those days and let them happen.
Your future will be what it’ll be. What’s meant to happen will happen.
Take take it slowly, be kind to yourself and let people help you when they can.


Hi @Fraz1973 i have just read your post … so sorry for you and mine was a similar story to yours … i gave everything up for my husband to look after him and now i feel so empty without him. I live near the canal near keighley … is your narrow boat anywhere near there ? Take care and hope you can grieve properly now … x

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Hi @Deb5 thanks for your reply and I am so sorry for your loss. Yes, I’m very close by, down just past Apperley Bridge.

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Oh yeh apperley bridge , know it well. Nice area. X

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So sad, i hope you feel a little better, u miss my wife so very much too. I feel i have to make her proud in everything i do so that when we meet again see will see again how much i love her and i have made her proud. But its very hard, we must all stay strong

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