Lost True Love Always

by Pam
(Muskogee, OK)

My husband was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer last March 2012. The doctors began aggressive treatments and over the past year he has had 42 radiation treatments and 20 chemo treatments, some with 3 drugs each treatment.

In March of 2013, I noticed my husband wasn't acting the same. He seemed delusional and confused. I called the doctor since we had an appointment that morning but were running late. She said to go on the ER and so we did. The next day the doctor told us that his cancer had spread and he was diagnosed with menigeal carcinomotosia. A rare complication of lung cancer that spreads to the cerebral fluid around the brain. From that Monday we went to the ER until my husband passed away was one week. His health declined so rapidly that I never even got to tell him what was happening. He was confused and occasionally would say he was so I know he knew something was not right.

The hospital doctor told us we needed to leave and go either home or find a facility for him. I elected to take my husband to the VA some 30 miles away. The only request that I ask for was that he be "stable" to make the trip. After making a big deal out of it to the hospital doctor, he assured me that my husband was stable to travel even though his blood pressure was 70/40.

The ambulance came to transfer my husband and I called the doctor again to verify my husbands stability. The doctor said again, he will be fine.
We made it about half way when the paramedic told me the news. My life was over.

How do I get over my anger issues about the last week. First the doctors never saw this new diagnosis coming and he would have had it for at least 6 weeks prior. Then my husband thinks he's going in the hospital and probably right back out and is confused about what is happening and I can't explain it to him in his condition and nor were the doctors able to. Then the doctor allowed him to be transported even though he was not stable and it was too much for him.

I feel guilty for not being able to talk to my husband about what was happening. I feel I left him confused and alone even though I never left his side. I am a very tender hearted person and my husband and I were very close, best friends, soul mates, everything to each other. We were married 25 years and had no children though he had 2 small girls when we married.

It has been a little over a month since my life was taken from me and my feelings of guilt,sorry, anger and saddness overwhelm me almost every moment. I also feel alot of resentment about being cheated by losing my husband so early.

Does anyone have any advice that can help?
Thank you.

Comments for Lost True Love Always

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Apr 24, 2013
Lost True Love Always
by: Pam

My email told me that I had a response to my comment so I wanted to read whatever someone had written to me. When I saw there were several replys, it just made me cry to know there are so many caring people out there.
I want you all to know, too, how sorry I am for everything that you are going through as well. It touches my heart that even with your pain, you reached out to comfort me.
Jennifer: I truly like the idea of thinking of good memories at least once every day. Usually when I think of something funny, I quickly replace it with feelings of guilt and saddness, but I am going to continue on with the happy memory. Also the advice on not trying to hide my feelings is good. I have really tried to be strong so no one would know I'm dying on the inside, but, it's making me miserable.
Lawrence: you were very fortunate to have your wife for a lifetime and I could also tell that you completely understood about not wanting to go on without them. I am 54 years old and if I live to be old, then it's hard to imagine going on that many years without my husband.
Pat: I really like the "I am faking it, until I make it." So many people ask how your doing and you really don't know what to say because you just want a short answer. Now I have one. Also, thank you for giving insight on what I may expect to feel later on....
Dave: I feel like we have lost our love close together. You 4 weeks, me 5 weeks. You are a good person, trying to reach out when you are hurting yourself, and so recently. I also do the same thing, just try to get through each day, sometimes just the next minute. I agree with you that it actually does get harder as time passes by.
Doreen: You---gave me the most comforting words ---- I couldn't help but break down when I read them ---- That I actually spared him the stress of coping with everything -- that I carreid it for him. Thank you for giving me that... I know I will think of that more than a million times.
I truly appreciate hearing from everyone.. Yes, I am full of grief, but have found some comfort today. Thank you all. Pam

Apr 23, 2013
Lost True Love Aloways
by: Anonymous

Hello Pam,

I'm yet another in this litany of lost loves. Except that mine lives on, felled by a catastrophic stroke over a year ago. This has turned my handsome, intelligent, witty husband into a 6-year-o1d, who cries at the drop of a hat.

My heart goes out to you. But, please, please, please don't burden yourself with guilt. As you have said, your grief is overwhelming and will continue to be so for quite some time. Guilt is destructive and will tear away at the little shreds of self-esteem you now have. Besides that, you have NOTHING to feel guilty for. You did the very best you could - and nobody can do more.

You will be riding your current emotional rollercoaster for a while yet. Try to spend at least a few minutes every day cherishing your good memories. You still have them, and always will. Little by little, they will displace part of your mourning and you will be able to smile again - I know, I'm at this point now. In the meantime, cherish yourself. Talk to close friends and be honest about your feelings. Have a drink (a glass of good wine helps me - but only one!), try to eat well, but that can be difficult. Last year I existed on chocolate and ice cream for many months. Not the best, admittedly, but they did get me through.

That's what this is all about: getting through. And you will. Books, videos, movies, music and good company are all helpful. Don't try to hide or control your feelings, let 'em rip. This is one time you really need to indulge. And, if anyone tells you otherwise, you don't need them in your life.

Try to find a grief counsellor or support group. I found both - eventually, and they have made
quite a difference.

Be good to yourself. Share your feelings with us, as well We have all coped with what you're going through - well, more or less, and we do understand. So post, and you'll receive thoughtful, caring replies.

We're all sending good, kind thoughts and prayers your way.


Apr 23, 2013
Lost True Love Always
by: Pat J.Green Bay,WI

Dear Pam,
You have posted on this site because you now belong to a club of broken hearts and lives forever changed because we lost our spouse.
On June 27,2011, the day after our 46th wedding anniversary, I lost my husband to a massive heart attack. No chance to say "goodbye". At his grave I still tell him after almost 2 years, I will never say goodbye.
When we lose someone we love, we never quite get over it, we slowly learn how to go on without them, always keeping them tucked safely in our hearts. The ache in my heart for him will never go away. Tears are always just around the corner. We just really learn how to go on without them. What else can we do? We either want to be a survivor or a victim. Our spouses would want us all to be survivors, until God call us home to join them again.
Take it one day at a time. I would say,"I am faking it, until I make it". I am making it, but it sure isn't easy.

Apr 23, 2013
by: Lawrence

Dear Pam,
You have been and are still going through a nightmare that was not of you making so please do not feel guilty about anything, what happens Happens and there is not a lot we can do about it, I think they call it FATE; doctors make mistakes all the time, you only have to read the newspapers to see that.
The grief and overwhelming anguish you are feeling has been experienced by everyone on this website and nothing I can say will take away the intense heartache.
I know because I lost a wonderful wife four months ago and the agony and pain are with me all the time. We were a couple for nearly seventy years and facing life without her is something I don’t think I can manage, but I have daughters and grandchildren so I have to put on a brave face and get on with my life, but inside I feel dead..
I know my daughters are suffering too having lost a wonderful mum.
Losing a precious partner is something that will happen inevitably to all but much later in life, usually. I consider myself very lucky to have had all those wonder happy years together.
I know this letter doesn’t help very much but get help where you can, grief counseling, ministers at your church, even the doctor who will make suggestions and take anti depression if he suggests it, but don’t suffer alone.
We are all praying for you on this site.

Apr 23, 2013
I also lost the love of my life
by: Dave

I am so sorry for your loss. Four weeks ago, I lost my wife, my love, my soulmate. She was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer and passed within 4 weeks of the diagnosis. I am also heartbroken & devistated. I do not know how much it will be but everytime that I look at my wedding ring, I have to think to myself, "just get through today". If you try to get your head around the entire thing, you will drive yourself crazy. Let me tell you that 4 weeks into this and it is harder then it was in the past weeks.

Try to stay strong!

Apr 23, 2013
Lost True Love Always
by: Doreen U.K.

Pam I am sorry for your loss of your precious husband to lung cancer. You are going through the normal stages of grief where Anger is a strong part of this when things have not gone right in your husband's care. Your resentment and all those awkward feelings rushing into your system is all part of the grief. I have them also.
Try and not worry about not being able to explain things to your husband so he is less confused. It wouldn't have made a difference. You actually spared him the stress of coping with it. You carried it for him. Your husband in his confused state would not have been able to process such information. It was part of wisdom to say nothing. You are the one left holding all the guilt and stress and it will have to work itself out of your system. If it doesn't then go and see a grief counsellor or get in a good grief group and you will start to feel more at ease with everything.
My husband of 44yrs. was diagnosed with MESOTHELIOMA (lung cancer which was inoperable, incurable, and aggressive.) My grief started on the day of diagnosis. I went on to be his caregiver for 3yrs.39days and had to watch him die slowly and feel helpless that I couldn't save him. As wives we do all we can and know how to do. My husband became confused towards the end of his life and I accepted this as part of his condition. When he wondered what it felt like to die, I simply told him what the Bible says. Death is but a sleep. You just go to sleep and never wake up. I comforted him by not making things complicated for him to understand and to also give him Hope. "It is not over till God says it is over." This gave him comfort and Hope. I was more interested in him being right with God so that I could be confident with Hope that I would see him on the other side. It is not always good to have everything explained to the one who is dying. As wives we have to shield them from this and carry this burden for them.
My husband had a rough time with things not going well for his care. His greatest hurt was feeling abandoned by the medical profession. Times he felt all alone. He didn't want to die. He was so sad. It was painful for those 3yrs. when his quality of life was so poor life made no sense to him. His cancer grew in his lungs slowly for 40yrs. It takes between 40-60yrs. to develop. He was in his 20's when this developed. He is robbed of life and so am I. I face retirement now alone without him here to enjoy the fruits of his labours.
Only time will get us through our grief till we can find our way back. But life will never be the same for any of us. May God comfort you in your sorrow and grief.

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