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Gone In Three Days!

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My wife, Nancy, had diabetes, as do I. I could not get her to get her blood work done, although she would go to the doctor every YEAR or so. Her feet swelled, and her toes were numb, but she just figured that "went with the territory". I had noticed that her memory was failing a small bit, and worried about Alzheimer's (we were both 63). Then on Saturday, May 10th, we were babysitting at our daughter Andrea's house (actually HER daughter, but we'd been married twenty years, and Andrea and I were as close as any father and daughter can be), and Nancy said she had a headache and an upset stomach, and laid down. When we got home, she took some Pepto-Bismol and went to bed. Sunday, she was no better, but no worse, but on Monday morning she was too weak to get out of bed, and asked me to call an ambulance. She got to the Emergency Room Monday morning; by that night she had no idea who I was, by Tuesday morning she had permanently closed her eyes and didn't know when anyone was in the room. By Wednesday morning, she was on a ventilator, and by Wednesday night she was in a coma. Thursday morning she was brain dead, and her heart stopped at 11:00 that same morning. It all happened so quick, my mind and heart couldn't keep up. Andrea, Nancy's son Stuart and I were with her constantly from Wednesday night until she died, rubbing her hands and feet, although she couldn't have known it.

I wouldn't allow an autopsy; I felt they had done enough to her with their restraints and ventilator and catheter, and pumping blood into her when her heart couldn't pump it and her hands and arms swelled up so bad we had to put her wedding ring on a chain around her neck in her casket, and no matter what they found, it wouldn't bring my sweet Nancy back. I also didn't allow the funeral home to embalm her or have an open casket, but we bought some pretty clothes for her to wear.

We got copies of all her medical records from all her doctors and the hospital, which I couldn't bring myself to look at, but Andrea is a paralegal specializing in Medical Malpractice, and reviewed everything, including the EKG strip, all the way until Nancy's heart stopped. She says Nancy's liver quit functioning, and the toxicity in her blood killed her. She was probably beyond help for a couple of YEARS before she died.

It's been extremely rough since Nancy died. I cry at the drop of a hat (as a matter of fact, I'm crying now), and my chest hurts all the time from anxiety. I take Xanax for the anxiety, but the small heart attack I had in February worries me, too. I don't sleep well at all. I've remodeled the house because I'd be watching TV and find myself turning to say something to Nancy!

Somehow I convinced myself that I was in love with Andrea! Nancy and I had both been seeing a psychiatrist for years, because we both were clinically depressed, and he told me the obsession with Andrea was both natural and very common and was my way of dealing with my grief. Although I finally stopped the "Andrea" obsession, because she and I are very close anyway I've become very dependent on her and very demanding. Now, Andrea refuses to allow me to have ANY contact with her until I get grief therapy. That hurts more than I can express, because she's not just my "Daughter", she's probably the best friend I've got! Nancy and I weren't very outgoing, so I don't have any friends here. My son cares, but he lives in Los Angeles. My first visit with the therapist is on October 11th. I'll keep everybody posted on how it goes.

Pray for me.

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Dewey, dear, I'm pleased to see that you found your way onto our site, where you will find some of the most caring, compassionate and loving people in the world ~ but I am so very sorry for your loss and all the reasons that brought you here. Your decision to seek grief therapy is a wise one, as is your decision to join us here -- and all of that tells me that you intend to take good care of yourself as you proceed through this journey of grief. Please know that you are not alone on this path, and rest assured that here you most certainly are being held in gentle thought and prayer.

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Hi Tampa,

I am so very, very sorry for all you've gone through and your current circumstances. Sometimes this life is so tough it takes all we have to deal with it. My husband had diabetes, also, so I know how that goes - but he got treatment for it. You really need to watch your health carefully, especially with all the stress you've been going through. I'm glad you're seeing someone to help you along. Many people in this group have found that "talking" with each other, without any judgment on anyone's part, has helped. There are so many stories here and we all are now struggling through or have struggled through our loved one's death - many of us are so much better now having met and conquered a multitude of emotions and feelings. You keep trying to hang in there even though it may look grim here and there. I will pray for your well being. Please take care and let us know how you're doing.

Your friend, Karen

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Dear Sad,

My heart goes out to you and you are in my prayers. My husband also had diabetes and was suffering from liver failure. The meds they gave him to control the toxicity in his blood started to shut down his kidneys. He was admitted on a Tuesday. He kept telling me "They got the wrong guy. I don't feel sick." The doctors at our local hospital said he needed to be seen at the U of M and evaluated for a liver transplant. The U of M disagreed, saying he wasn't sick enough. By Friday, they let me transfer him and they started a battery of tests. It was a major holiday weekend, so they were short staffed, but ran through them as best they could. He kept getting sicker. The following Tuesday, I met with the transplant specialist and was told he would be added to the list that afternoon and as bad as he was, he would be at the top of the list. By this time, he was having trouble breathing and was put on a ventilator. They were going to move him to a different room to moniter him better. I said good-bye and had to leave to get my children to their activities. His daughter stayed to see him get settled in the new room.

When I got home, we cheered that their dad had made the list. We were optimistic. A half-hour later I got the call from his daughter saying he coded. They worked on him all night, but it didn't make a difference. He was no longer getting blood flow to his organs. In the morning, we let him go home to the Lord. I also, refused the autopsy as they had poked and prodded enough in the four days he'd been there. I couldn't bear to put him through any more.

It hasn't been an easy journey, but I have learned that we go on. I do my best to embrace my grief and my kids are doing really well. They are my greatest blessing. The tears are a constant companion. I loved how Frank McCourt says in his book "Teacher Man" that it is because I am wearing my "bladder near my eye."

I feel your pain and I have hope you will find the help you need. I learned that my faith in God is not dependent on living a trouble free life. I pray He is there for you. Keep on talking here. You don't need to go through this alone.


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I'm glad you found your way to this site. Something positive has happened to you. I can attest to that! I started attending a local grief support group not long after my husband died suddenly last December 22nd. But they only meet 2 times a month. I was in desperate need of more time with others in my situation. I searched the internet and was blessed to find these wonderful people to express my feelings or just "listen" to. I know that you will be blessed as well. I'll be praying for you. I'm so about the passing of your dear Nancy.


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Hi Tampa:

I am sorry to hear of the loss of your wife and that you have found this site. My husband suffered a heart attack and was in the hospital for 5 months, but got septic shock and died within 5 days. That is probably the same thing that happened to your wife. I know this must be very hard for you and everything else that you are going through.

Just what Karen has said in her post that you must take care of yourself, especially at this time. I normally have low pressure. But when my husband got sick my pressure was up a little and stayed up for some time. It wasn't at a dangerous level, because my normal pressure is low. So you see, stress and all the rest you are going through can contribute to your health.

It's wonderful that you are going to see a therapist. I hope that goes well and starts you on the road to recovery. Believe me, you are not alone in this struggle. Many of us are dealing with this for a long time. But there is good news. You will see from reading other posts that people do recover from their grieve and go on to lead a normal life.

I will pray for you.

Love and God Bless,


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Sad in Tampa,

I am so sorry you lost your wife, Nancy, and especially so suddenly. You have found a very compassionate site, and we're here for you. We've all been through this ande are going through it still.

I don't know anything about transference, but a grief counselor would be a very good idea, so please listen to your daughter and seek some help. We are here any time you want someone to listen, nearly always one of us is on line.

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Guest moparlicious

Sad In Tampa,

I am so sorry to hear of your loss of your beloved Nancy. We are all here to listen. I would not be here today if it wasn't for this site and everyone on here, I love everyone of you here, you all are so special to me and mean the world to me, may God and all of us hold you dear, and help you make it through one more hour.God Bless, Love, Kim

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You are so brave to share how you are feeling and what you are going through with Andrea. I question my sanity all the time and just KNOW that others who see some of the things I do or read some of my thoughts here must think I am a real nut case.

Grief does make us do crazy things and act like we are not all there. Isn't it funny how all of us react in such different ways but in the end it is really all the same? We are so devastated by our loss, we just all manifest it in the ways that our brain and heart leads us to!

Thank you for being able to share this......it made me realize that there are others out there who really do "get it". Best wishes and prayers go out to you!


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