Hanging on by a thread

I have been out today and though my dear sister is trying to get me through this devastating period by meeting for coffee and talking I feel like curling up into a ball and weeping.
My partner was everything to me, he bolstered my confidence and was always supportive.
It's only five days since his sudden death but feels like eternity.
He had dementia and this has caused a great gaping hole in my life. From doing everything for him now there is nothing.
I was determined to care for him myself, now people say the usual expected things that I was wonderful with him and I might not see it now but it might have been better than if he had become even worse and of course the usual if there's anything they can do....
Perhaps I sound bitter but I wish we had died together then I wouldn't be faced with this emptiness, desolation.
I go over and over things thinking I should have been much more patient, I should have called an ambulance more quickly, I should....

My wife of 38 years died very suddenly and unexpectedly on 10 December. I feel the loneliness and desperation you feel. I am also blaming myself for not having called an ambulance sooner. I have few, if any, real friends and my only family is one son who comes to see me occasionally. He has two daughters who came round the week after my wife died but I have heard nothing since. I sit all day watching the TV or reading. My wife always said that we were so close and absorbed with each other that it would be best if we died together and I agree with her. My life seems to stretch before me like an arid desert. I know this is little comfort to you, other than perhaps for you to know that you are not alone in feeling as you do.

I am so very sorry you feel this way as well, I wished we had gone together too but realise now he would never have wanted me to be feeling so desolate without him.
People say the right things but really they wish to get on with their own lives.
I read a post on here that said how someone no longer wanted to feel pitied and were determined to forge a life as their own person not as a half of a couple left behind. It was strong and positive, too soon probably for both of us but it made me think.
I wish you comfort as well at this awful time.
Please please get in touch whenever you feel the need to reach out to someone.

In reply to 12remember

Hi 12remember
I'd love to be able to give you a guidebook or road map giving details of how to move forward. Unfortunately I don't have one but I can tell you how things are going for me.
My wife died in August 2018 although I had know she was dying for four years, not " if" and not even "when". I thought I was prepared but I wasn't really. I was with her when she died and she was relatively peaceful and pain-free. One of my daughters was on holiday at the time and she came home immediately, and suggested I go back with her and stay for a few days. I went a few days later and I managed to survive in the company of three young grandsons. I've been away on my own a few times since and whilst it's difficult to be enthusiastic and interested it's certainly different to sitting at home and being paralysed by my grief.
I'm a member of U3A and I signed up for several groups..... a real variety of things. I've found it useful to have a reason to go out and mix with people who don't know my back story. It's a bit like trying to gain strength from doing things.
I like to be outside and walk a lot and cycle sometimes. I think trying to be active can provide some dividends.
It's much too early for you to look too far ahead but it might be that you could identify things that you are interested in.
I've absolutely no suggestions as how to deal with the shuddering loneliness of being at home alone and I can feel alone in a room full of people.
I live at the edge of a small town but use buses and trains to visit galleries and museums in other towns and cities. It acts as a distraction and occasionally I forget myself and become interested in things.
I firmly believe that we can't rely on others to frame our future and that, somehow, we have to find it within ourselves to live on.

Thank you, this loss is so recent I can't even begin to think of starting new projects just yet but know I must do so in the future or sink without trace.
We were both involved in the arts but our lives revolved around one another especially in the last several years.
No one can really help me other than myself and I cannot drag my wonderful sister and my son into a downward spiral.
I think it's a matter of simply trying to cope for the next few weeks and slowly rebuilding some kind of life with a huge piece missing.
Thank you again.

I am so sorry for the sudden loss of your husband . My husband died totally unexpectedly at the end of July . In the beginning I felt that the grief was almost a physical pain it was so intense . Five months on it doesn’t hurt like that any more but I still cry at least once a day . It all gets a bit much carrying on doing everything you have to do ...run a house , run a business , try to keep it together for my mum and my kids and our employees when all I really want is to hug and talk to my husband . In the beginning I found it helped to split my day into morning , afternoon and evening and try to do something constructive in each bit whether it was walking the dogs , going to work or whatever . I’ve started to get more into a routine but the emotional pain is always there . I wish I had something more useful to say to you but it’s just something each and every one of us in this forum has got to try to get through in our own ways . Everyone on here understands how painful grief is and have been incredibly supportive especially when I have had a crying fit in the early hours if the morning and couldn’t stop one night . Post on here as often as you want . It will help to get it off your chest instead of having to tell your sister and son every time . It has helped me .
Sending hugs and understanding
Romy xxx

Thank you Romy.
People are being supportive, it's such a shock seeing how many people are hurting so badly and understand the pain we all suffer in different ways after a loss.
Hugs to everyone.

Hi to you all
I agree, it is a shock to know so many people are suffering just as you are. It helped me though. I began to realise that I wasn't going completely mad, such was my grief when My Brian passed away in November. Knew it was coming but this doesn't make it any easier. Like so many of you we lived for each other and led an interesting life. Keen walkers, cycling, veg growing, My husband was a keen photographer, painter, musician. So many people are sympathetic at first but don't really want to be involved after a few weeks. We did so much. Like you Romy I split my days and always try to do something with my time. Then I write everything down that I have done as if writing a letter to my husband. I also go to the cemetery and have a chat with him every day. I have my lovely dogs for company and if things get too tough in the house I go for a walk with them. Can't bring myself to go for the long walks we used to do together or with the Ramblers (we was both members) but perhaps it will happen one day.

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