My husband has lung cancer and has finished chemo, going to oncologist in Sept. I know that there is no cure for this and his dr.has said that this is likely his expected last year of life. Yesterday I thought I was truly losing my mind, I couldn't stop crying. He is 66 and we have only been together for 9 years. It all seems so unreal to me, like I am just doing the motions of life. I hate knowing this ahead of time! although I am thinking about how things will be without him. Right from finances to mowing the lawn(we bought a self propelled mover that starts with a key).
I think I need to communicate with other people that are going through this, I feel so alone right now. Sometimes I sit in the back yard and think about him not being here and the tears start, or he is out somewhere and he will never come home again. Not to hear him breathing beside me at night. Am I torturing myself? How do I keep it together for him while he is still here?
Hello itzy, and welcome to the boards. You have found a great place to get support, and kind understanding, from others who care.
Of course, the stresses on those who love and take care of the terminally ill are incredible. While you try to keep a smile on your face around your husband, the fear and pain you have, is often overlooked...and leaves you crying while no one is looking. That is where we come in.
One thing that a medical crisis can cause, is a new appreciation for the tiny little joys in life...the special moments, the sweetest thoughts. While the overall acceptance of serious illness is scary and lonely, it's the perfect time to deepen your bond with your husband, which will serve you both well in the long run.
I have learned so much about the very special relationship the seriously ill have with their loving caretakers...because I am one. No, not a caretaker, but as a patient. We want you to be taken care of too. We want you to have a place to share, and receive the support you need too.
I too understand what you're going through as I am going through it too with my mom. She is 78 and has stage IV colon cancer which has spread throughout her body. She is in hospice and we've been told to expect no more than a few weeks. The thought that brings the tears on immediately is when I think of her just not being here anymore...I just can't even imagine it. I get such an overwhelming feeling of dread and grief when I think of it. A dear friend of mine suggesting I seek grief counseling now instead of later and I'm going to do that. I'll see someone tomorrow and I'm hoping she can help me figure out how to deal with this. I don't think there is any easy way.
But, I do know that I look at every moment I have with my mom differently and I'm starting to look at moments I have with everyone in my life differently. We can't prevent the inevitable, but we can do our best to make the most of every second while we can. At least we have some warning...my heart really breaks for those who have lost loved ones suddenly.
Please know you're not alone....perhaps counseling now would help you too!
When my husband was diagnosed with progressive kidney failure, June 7th, 2003, I knew I wouldn't have him in my twilight years but I thought I'd have him longer than 2 years.
At first, he didn't want me with him during his doctor appointments and stuff but my co-worker told me to force myself in there. I'm glad I did. I kept a binder of his test results, his doctor appointments, contra-indications sheets of all the drugs he was taking, etc.
I took him to all his hospital medical crisis' that came up, etc.
I also slept fritfully -- I would get up in the middle of the nights, many nights, go downstairs to the basement, stuff a towel in my mouth and cry so hard for God to tell me what to do, how to get through it, etc.
I was filled with God's strength. I started looking at volunteer opportunities that would be there when he was no longer in need of me and my love. I looked for organizations to join to keep me busy.
I had two children 20 and 18 at the time. I needed to show them that when he died, we'd be okay. I am working full-time, etc.
Did I grieve (yes -- for a full year) I'd come home from work and go into my bedroom not coming out but leaving my door open for inter-relations with my kids.
I stayed in bed for entire weekends once I got home from work on Friday until I needed to back to work on Monday. BUT then I started to live life again. I had to travel for business -- so that helped. one child worked a musical tour and while he didn't want to leave me and was suffering himself from panic attacks, etc. I made him go, telling him there would be a plane ticket home from anywhere but he needed to do this for himself and us.
Its now 4 years. Do I still grieve for my soul-mate, yes. I taught literacy for about a year but found I was putting more energy into it than the students I taught. I also looked into the red-hat society but found that while working, that wasn't a possibility.
You need to do exactly what you are doing. Helping him, loving him, spending time with him, while structuring your life and surroundings so you'll be able to function as well as possible when he's gone.
God lends us the people we have in our lives and when he needs them, he calls them back home. We have to love those he lends us while we have them but we have to be strong to let them go. We also need to continue to live in his goodness and grace and continue our do-good work for him until he calls us home.