Lost husband four years ago and miss him terribly today

by Sue Bunning
(Statesboro, GA, USA)

My husband, Jim, and I were married in June, 1982. We had our son, Jason, in May, 1984. Jim got sick in April 1984 with a rare virus that damaged two thirds of his heart. In July, 1985 he was the first successful human heart transplant at Vanderbilt Medical Center. He went back to work a year later and had 10 years of very good health. He was a wonderful husband and father, very dedicated and nurturing.

When Jason was in 5th grade Jim lost his last kidney and was on dialysis for 13 months and then received a kidney transplant. In 2000 and 2001 Jim lost both legs below the knee. He had been an athlete and really breezed through his rehab. Through all of this he worked full time off and on and later part time.

In between Jim was life flighted to Vanderbilt a couple of times for systemic infections but made it through.

All through this Jim, Jason and I enjoyed the everyday things and supported each other. Some of the most memorable times were when Jason would bundle Jim up in the car with his wheelchair when he was recouping from his amputation and take him to the soccer tournaments out of town. He would get him out the car and situated and then go and stretch before his soccer match. Jason played soccer since he was 4 years old through 4 years of college and his father was there for almost all his games. When he was in college his father went up to a college game while I was working and went to eat pizza with the team. When Jim had to leave to drive back home Jason stood up and hugged his dad and said "I love you Pops" and wasn' t the least embarrassed in front of his teammates.

May 8, 2008 Jim's heart stopped and the local hospital could not bring him back. I am so glad we had a chance to be a family for so many years but I miss him so much. My son is married now and I have a granddaughter but I live 10 hours away. We keep in contact but I miss my son and being more a part of his life too.

I have made many friends where I live now and have a good job . I just miss that closeness we all felt for so long.

God really blessed us!

Comments for Lost husband four years ago and miss him terribly today

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Sep 13, 2012
lost husband 4 years ago and miss him
by: silver

Dear Sue, I can't imagine the strength it took for you and your son to go through so many years of the medical problems your dear husband had to go through. I can empathize with some of it. My husband was diagnosed diabetic 25 yrs before he died. Unfortunately he also smoked.Seven years before he was diagnosed with emphysema.Two years before he had 2 bladder cancers and then chemo for the second one. About a year before I got him to go to a Pulmonologist who gave him a breathing test. He had 40% of his lung power left. Towards the end of May(our anniversary was May 22)he developed pneumonia and was admitted to the hospital on May 24th.They couldn't get his blood oxygen level out of the critical zone so they intubated him and he went to ICU.The pneumonia went septic and killed his kidneys. They tried dialysis and it began killing his heart. Without dialysis it was only a matter of time before his body would be poisoned.One week after our anniversary I called our sons in,we said our good byes and turned off the respirator. I have a sister who is watching her husband the same way you are.He has episodal Multiple Sclerosis. He has recently had to quit work. Like you he was able to see his sons grow up and get married.GOD BLESS you and give you his strength to get through and go on.

Sep 11, 2012
Lost husband four years ago and miss him terribly today
by: Doreen U.K.

Sue I am sorry for your loss of your husband Jim. It has been some 4 years for you and you seem to have somehow moved forward in your grief. You will always feel this VOID. I don't think one can lose a husband and in time get over it so to speak. I lost my husband to cancer almost 5 months ago, and I can't begin to tell you how I feel daily. Often I wake up and think It was all a dream only to find that the dream is REALITY. I see my husband's face a lot and wonder where he is. Why he isn't coming home. I can't bear it. I then wish that my life was over as it doesn't have any value anymore. Our world is our family and when they are all grown and leading their own lives we feel redundant mothers. As a wife we do miss that closeness as you say that bonds us together and when that bond is cut. IT HURTS. I miss seeing my husband come in the door from work. I miss him watching all the food programmes and then going in and cooking. Just the small simple things hurt so much. That daily interaction. I don't know if this will ever change and we just get used to living alone. Every day seems to be longer and lonlier and empty. Life on my own feels like an eternity and it has only been almost 5 months. Sue I am glad you have good friends and a job that will keep you occupied this does make a difference. I am retired. I have done voluntary work for 8 years in the past so this is an option for me when I can get over this grief that wears me out. I hope that you will have better days ahead

Sep 10, 2012
same feeling
by: Ted

Sue, your post was so warm and caring. You had a wonderful family experience and as a family unit, you carved a terrific life together through some tough adversities that you were able to turn into opportunities. I lost my partner very suddenly after knowing him for 4 1/2 years and living together for only 7 months - but we always talked about how we had enjoyed more in our short time together than what some people accomplished in 50 years of "distant togetherness" or co-existense. A memorial to my partner (Ron Serediuk) is captured on "their space" on this site. I feel your pain in missing the closeness that you shared as a family - it is undescribable to those that have not experienced such closeness, love and compatability, etc.- and it is a void that can never be replaced, but it provided memories to be cherished and treasured. However, it just emphasizes the fact that we should "live for the moment" and enjoy what we have as it can be taken away in a heartbeat. One can never get over losses such as you have experienced - but one can (as you have done) learn to live with it and from it.

Thank you so much for sharing your inspiring story!

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