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The love of my life and best friend, Don passed away on April 15, 2015. We were married 28 years last February 15. I'm so lost and the hurt is so great... Don had heart surgery on May 9, 2011, he came through 9 hours of surgery, and was in recovery when he coded twice. They brought him back and somehow got him to an other hospital in Austin with 2 heart pump machines... the doctors later told me he has less than a 15% chance that he'd make the 25 mile trip. After 28 days in ICU, he was finally off the ventilator. We went home the following week. From that point on... we lived life to the fullest. We took trips and did "bucket list" stuff.... His Congestive Heart Failure went into remission... thanks to great doctors and modern medicine and life went back to the new normal... yet the end was always there.

We've never been closer... every I love you meant it. In February, we took a 2 week vacation, including a 10 day cruise. One of the highlights was him catching an 89" sailfish in Florida.... Beginning in March, he took a sudden turn from the worse. The doctors put him on the last medicine... he'd already been tested and wasn't a candidate for a heart transplant and he didn't want to live with a VAD. So we knew the end would be soon. He retired compleletly on March 27... that was so hard for him as he loved his job and his team. Every moment was precious... but I knew the end would come... soon as he got weaker.

Trying to be "normal", I had a conference about 50 miles away... Don assured me he'd be fine. I went.... I felt I needed to be away and normal for just a day.... when I came home on Tuesday. .... He'd fallen before I got home. We talked... he ate lunch... then told me he had a headache.... He had a massive bleed and lost consciousness before 911 arrive. I was there.... I think I said goodbye.

We'd talked a little about his service... he'd chosen music.... I did the best I could in planning something he'd like. I knew this would be hard, heck, I thought I would be prepared.... but no.... I wasn't at all.

The emptyness and heartache are so bad and I don't even want to go on.... I know I will. We have 2 boys... the youngest is 22. They will miss there dad so much..

The day after he passed, a friend was talking me to eat... I couldn't eat. The weather was dark and stormy, then the darkness stopped, yet it still rained amongst the sunshine..... I looked to the east and there was the most perfect rainbow I have ever seen.... a perfect end to end rainbow with the brightest colors I've ever seen. I cried.... but I know it was from Don, letting me know he was with God and he was okay, and that I too would be okay.

Right now, I'm just trying to get through the day. I have a strong support system... family, fabulous friends, and wonderful sons. But this is still so HARD,.

Micki post-17318-0-62215200-1429503136_thumb.jpost-17318-0-35714800-1429503189_thumb.j

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Micki I am so sorry for your loss. While we can sometimes see the end coming, it does little to prepare us for how it feels. Hope you find comfort here as well as tools to help navigate this sad journey you now find yourself on. How poignant that your world is upside down yet still can be seen the joy and love on your faces.

Warm thoughts to you from those of us who have been on this road longer.


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I am so sorry you lost the love of your life, Don. I don't think a person can ever be fully prepared for what is to come, how could we possibly know what we're getting into!

I'm glad he was able to do some bucket list, I'm sure it gave you many specialmemories.

My husband also died of a heart attack, only we didn't get much warning. He'd had one six months earlier but we hadn't known that's what happened (he had Diabetes and blacked out when he was driving.) I went away with my sisters one weekend and he had a heart attack that landed him in the hospital. 2 1/2 days later he died. He'd just turned 51.

I'm glad you came here, this is a safe understanding place to be. I hope you will continue to come here so we can walk with you in your grief journey.

I'm reposting your picture so people can see it. It's a lovely picture!


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I am so sorry for your loss Micki. I love the picture of you and Don. The rainbow is breath-taking and I believe a sign from your Don.

Please take loving care of yourself right now. We are here and will walk with you on your journey. Continue to lean on the wonderful support you have around you.


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Thank you so much!

Even through I have great friends and family, I often feel so alone. I know time will make the pain ease, its just hard. It's nice to know others are there.... you really can't imagine what this is like until it happens to you.


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I will keep you in my thoughts. I know that these first few weeks are so raw and dark. I am so glad that you were able to see the rainbow and even more so that you have some truly wonderful memories of Don to sustain you through this time.

This is the poem that I used for my husband, Daniel's service in January. It was the way he lived his life and it sounds like Don would want to say the same to you.

Afterglow by Helen Lowrie Marshall
I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one
I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done.
I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways
of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.
I’d like the tears of those who grieve to dry before the sun
of happy memories that I leave behind when day is done.
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Oh Amy... That is beautiful! Don left 6 songs that he'd picked out for his service. The first time I picked up his iPod and listened to his most recent playlist... I lost it. Then I listened to the words and melodies of the songs he'd choosen. One was "voices in the sky", and it stays with me. I think he choose each to one of the songs to express his love and his feelings about death. It makes me cry... but at the same time it gives me peace.

It is a week today.... I miss him so much... the fog is endless. It still hurts so much.

Its comforting to be able to reach out to others who have been here and know what this feels like.


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