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Donna & i knew each other for 45+ years, we were marred 40 of those years. On November 8, 2011 she passed; Having been diagnosed in '07 we did have some time to purposely make memories. Being on home hospice the last few weeks, our three adult children, her sister and I were by her side to the end. The people she needed to see in those last days, she saw. The immediate shock and disbelief can be crippling; the sense of the future, foggy and uncertain. The greatest gift she gave to me was her caring nature, me, being naturally contrary and selfish was able to pick up some of that caring, and i think it made me a better person. Our children have been wonderful as has her sister; we began supporting each other intensely before Donna died, & continue to do so now, but for me, the sense of despair is sometimes overwhelming. Donna is my baby, my partner, the woman i truly came to love more each day we were together. Sure, our marriage had it's ups and downs, buy the ups really do outweigh the downs. It is my decision that she will always be with me, at my side, only a thought away. It gives me great comfort to come to this forum and read the lessons of the journeys of others through this and see just how they are coping with their loss. My sympathy goes out to all those who are suffering. My faith leads me to believe it will get better.

pax,

h2

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Dear h2,

I am so sorry for your loss and that you had to find yourself here with all of us...though it is the best place to be given the circumstances. You will find people willing to listen with an understanding that those who have not lost a beloved can have. We will support you as we also journey this path. I lost my husband 21 months ago. The pain is still quite keen with waves of grief coming and going. I agree with you...Bill will always always be at my side and somehow we shall meet again when I cross death's threshold. In the meantime we are challenged to learn how to live with the grief and over time you will learn how to do that. Right now the best you can do is take one day at a time, be gentle with yourself, ignore people who say to get on with life (they either have never lost someone close or did not deal with it...we are all different). Take care and keep posting....Mary

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h2,

I am sorry you lost your wife, it's undoubtedly the hardest thing you'll ever face. I lost my husband 6 1/2 years ago...at the time I couldn't imagine surviving a year, let alone this long. I've been able to one day at a time with the support of this group. There are phases in the grief journey, and each person's journey is unique. We never stop missing them but the tears become more infrequent, I guess we eventually get used to living with this loss.

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Thank you kayc & mfh for your kind words.

Where to begin...introduction eh, my name is Fred, & on the first day of summer in 1966 I

met the person who created the greatest ripple to ever pass through my life; greater even

than the current waves of grief I am now enduring. There's a phrase from a song i love

that describes it perfectly: 'you were passing me by when you caught my eye...I have never

seen a dream go walking like the way you did that day, stole my heart away, please keep it

dear till we're old and gray...' Well, she did and she did, stole my heart and kept it.

From that day in 1966 until she passed, we were involved in some way every day (my going

overseas not withstanding). We married and had 3 wonderful children, Donna made a fine

home for us where ever that might be. I can truly say she was at the top of the list in

thinking of others and in putting me first...I'll miss that about her. There is no doubt

in my mind that i have been blessed with having had her in my life and I am grateful for

that. The current sea of pain and confusion I find myself in is scary (read different,

new) and unwanted. Understanding that life goes on, that the wheel must come full circle,

that this is the natural order of things, that everybody gets a turn,does very little to

ease the magnitude of the loss or the depth of the pain. I'm (in no particular order)

sad, angry, lost, shocked, dumbfounded, scared, hurt...I could go on, but i believe

all of you here know what I mean.

Needed to put this down in writing, needed to see the words on the page, mabey to help me

accept the facts of the situation, to understand that yes, it really happened. Some days I

cry, some days I just think about our life together. I hesitate to say i want her back

only because I would not want her to have to endure the pain & misery of the illness. For

years my prayers ended with 'Your will, not mine, be done', these are the times that the faith

in what you say you believe is challenged; I've been saying it, now I need to act like I

truly believe it. It is tough, the toughest thing I've ever done in my life.

It never occurred to me that I would be so sad and lonely.

My best wishes goes out to all those suffering, and you are in my prayers.

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Fred, we had no idea George would die so young. He had just turned 51, we thought we had years together yet. The times we'd discussed death, I'd assumed he'd have a hard time without me, but I had always been the independent one, the strong one...I was ill prepared for the stunning slam that so altered my world. How presumptuous I'd been! This is the hardest thing I've ever gone through. I'm reduced to toast, same as he would have been, the fact is, we were so great together, and with either of us missing, it's just...wrong.

The best and safest way to pray is "Thy will be done" but sometimes that comes with a price. We can console ourselves that in so praying, and in living the aftermath, at least they are spared the pain, emotional and physical, and it is us that endure it and not them. I would not wish this on my George for anything in the world. How fortunate he is to have escaped it!

You shared your lifetime together. I envy you that, I only got to be married to George for 3 years, 8 months...it took me my lifetime to find him and then he was ripped away from me. But it's got to be harder in a way to lose someone you've spent your entire life with, and I don't envy you that. It's got to be hard to function when the other half of the equation is missing. One day at a time...

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