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But such, it was written, is the nature of truth, it only wants, and it only needs, the liberty of appearing. Truth, when it embraces a loving couple when one is dying, is hard to confront - do you, as the caregiver, suggest it is all right to let go and we who love you will be all right or do you suggest fighting on through the pain you, as a caregiver, cannot comprehend? There is no right answer. One sleeps, wakes and moves through the day like ordinary people but it is not ordinary when your soul mate is dying - you can ignore it but you cannot deny it - it is real. Real is no fun. Paris was fun, sailing was fun, seeing three guys and a gal grow up as neat people was fun - dying and care giving is not fun and we did not sign up for this - nobody did but it is there. She just woke up from a fitful, pain filled quasi sleep - I asked what can I do but the pain masked what, just a year ago, would have been a bit of snappy repartee but, now, is a whimper of pain.

We are not the first, nor certainly the last, who will go through this as a loving couple but it is the first time we have experienced it. For some reason, that makes us special, at least to us. Our loving children go on with their lives, appropriately so, and express constant loving concern, but we deal with it every minute of every very long day. As a song writer once wrote, "the night is as long as six weeks on Paris Island" and every night in our loving home is much longer than many more weeks anywhere.

We shall, as they say, overcome. The love is consummate and the caring is forever. But the life we knew and the fun times are no more - everyone will experience this at some point - it may not be twenty months of agony but it will happen to all of us - one hopes it will happen to you, as with us, in a very loving environment, surrounded by family and good friends. It makes it all very worthwhile.

And then, she died peacefully at the Lund Family Hospice.

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My friend, we are so very sorry to learn of the death of your beloved ~ but ready and willing to welcome you to this warm and caring group, where you will find yourself surrounded with compassionate and caring individuals, all of us bound by the common experience of loss. You are not alone, and I hope you can feel our loving arms around you as we stand ready to accompany you on your own grief journey.

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So very sorry to hear of your loss. We are here for you.

For the final three years of My Paulas life I was her caregiver. It is a hard task but tempered with love for that special person. Those of us choosing to be caregivers are so very strong indeed. We may not feel that way sometimes but we are. We have to be. We love that person to the point of self-sacrifice gladly.

My Paula and I dealt with her cancer for three years. Getting progressively worse we knew the time was coming when a hard decision had to be made. In our case My Paulas decision was to not prolong her pain. I was so extremely proud that she trusted me and allowed me the honor of making that final decision for her. So very hard to do but honoring her wishes and doing what was best for her was my responsability.

This past April 15 that decision had to be made. My Paula passed away in the early morning hours of April 16th. Under Hospice care and my directive I allowed her to leave this existance of constant pain. A very heart-wrenching decision but the correct one for my dear wife of 35 years.

I have no regrets or second-thoughts regarding my decision, my responsability to My Paula. It was my solemn duty to honor her wish. One I proudly accepted. As did you.

We do what we must out of deep love and respect for that special love in our lives. We owe them that.

Be proud of yourself for the sacrifices made on her behalf. She is proud of you. Grieve as you need to. Remember her always.

Many in this group have reached out to me with support. I appreciate them all.

If you will allow us, we will support you too.


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I am sorry for your loss. You very eloquently wrote what you went through...what so many of us have gone through. I know the moment of death is a defining point from which everything else is now "before" or "after"...just as that original diagnosis was.

I hope you will continue to come here...the next few days may be a blur of activity as there is much to do when one's loved one passes away...much of it you may not feel like doing, it is so hard when your brain feels like mush and everything is a fog. In those days ahead, when everyone has gone home, it may help you to come here, where others have walked your path, where others "get it". We'll be here, if you choose to come here, we'll help you through it.

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Guest Kathy K-H

Dear W. Morgan,

Your eloquent post is like a song from your heart. It suggests the inexpressible poetry in a loving relationship like yours with your wife. There are few words that can convey the heartbreak of seeing our partner to the end of their lives, but your words reached many of us in just that way.

I am part of Hospice of the Valley's grief support program, and I want to make sure you know how much is here for you as time goes on. Many of our families benefit from meeting one on one with a grief counselor for a while. When we are mourning, all the good things we know to do for ourselves don't work as well as they used to, and it's an excellent time to learn new things to help get through the grieving. We also offer grief support groups. These are places where mourning is accepted and understood. One member recently said, We are an exclusive club, but the membership dues are the highest we will ever pay. We offer helpful reading material and resources too.

When you are ready to explore any of these choices, please give us a call at 602-530-6970.

My deepest sympathies go out to you. Kathy

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As a caregiver of my beloved Jim I can stand up and proudly and humbly say thank you to all who work in the HOV service. Kathy, your loving words are part of what makes this a 'safe' place to share - it's our very own online support group. Those of us here are determined to walk with each other and move in and away from the 'fire' that we gather around. The needs differ for each of us, but we are a proud 'tribe' as one of us labeled this group. I am a proud recipient of not only the HOV Team but also a very grateful person who has the special services of a grief counselor. Our moderator (Marty) joins with us and helps us to move forward in our journeys. We are blessed. And if I had a big billboard sign the number you posted would be in glowing lights.

My dear new member (wmorgan) of this 'tribe' welcome and know that none of us walks alone. I am so sorry for your loss. We are strong and when we can't be then there are people here helping us. Anne

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Dear W Morgan,

I am so sorry for your loss. Yes, as a caregiver to my husband for several years, he died of Alzheimer related health issues 3 years ago. I would do it all over again in a heart beat and was blessed to hold him in my arms as he went through that veil, fragile as it is, to the other side. I understand your words. The days are lonely and the silence in the house is deafening and I am relieved that it is I who is going through this loss instead of him. I, too, told Bill I would be ok but little did I know how difficult this journey would be. I have learned and am learning how to integrate grief into my life, find a new normal and carry this load with greater ease...though I hate to use that word because this is NOT an easy journey and grief is with us forever. It does get a bit easier to carry however.

I hope you will continue to post and meet our members...a very loving and compassionate and nonjudgmental "family" who all understand this horrific loss.



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