Matt my Ironman

by Errica

He was diagnosed June 2009 with an anaplastic astrocytoma (brain tumor). Per usual he took it on full force. That is how he did everything, once he set out to accomplish something he would. In 2005 he set out to run a marathon in order to raise money for the MS Society, his father had MS. He trained hard and I helped him riding my bike, carrying water, or whatever he needed. He did it but not in the time he really wanted so the next he trained again and finished with the time he wanted which got him qualified for the Boston Marathon.

Then in 2007 he announced he wanted to do an Ironman, yes 2.4mile swim, 112mile bike, and 26.2mile run all in one day. He entered the Lake Placid Ironman that was to be held in July 2008. Training would take up most of his time for the next year but watching him cross that finish line was amazing. So it was no surprise that while in treatment he ran Boston for the 4th time. His June 2010 MRI was clear; we let ourselves breathe and plan.

Then end of July he had a seizure, it was back. Nothing worked and it progressed quickly then on Dec 7th he passed. Now what do I do? I feel like he just needs to come home. We are too young for this, I'm too young to be a widow. We were to go someplace fun with my friends next year for my 40th now what?? And now it's Christmas!

Nothing is right without him, I feel empty. I wish we would have or could have discussed what to do now but the tumor was in his speech area and he couldn't talk. Is it really possible to miss someone this much, not fair.

Comments for Matt my Ironman

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Dec 24, 2010
we are sharing with you
by: Lyn Ann

Hi Errica -

I have a story which is not too much different than yours... My husband was healthy, active, strong... and then we found out he had esophageal cancer in May of this year. We thought he might have 2-5 years, but in early October we found that it had spread to the brain. It went quickly after that - everyday I lost more and more of the Jim that I knew and loved. I cared for him at home and literally spent every moment, waking and asleep, with him. But on November 20th he was gone...

Our son is 17 so life has to go on and I have to be strong for him, but it is very hard, particularly at Christmas.

This site is such a blessing - here you have the opportunity to share the really tough times and know that we all feel what you feel.

I'm keeping all of us in my prayers, for peace, - Lyn Ann

Dec 23, 2010
your iron man
by: Jen


I lost my husband two years ago last monday after brain cancer. This was his 3rd battle with cancer.

I was 38 when i lost him and as you say much much too young,

I am grateful tho that i got to spend 20 years with this wonderful man.
you're doing well. I wish you well with your onward journey. I ended up arranging my own 40th in june but you know what, it was a great night.

We can do it and we will, Stay strong....

Stay in touch

Dec 23, 2010
i understand
by: Tanya

dear errica,

i lost my daughter one month ago today on november 23, 2010 to a brain tumor. it's heart wrenching but i take comfort in the fact that there is more than just this life. i know we will be together again and you will be together with your ironman son : ) my daughter was 18 and was very brave. her cancer came back 3 times. i pray for your family, my family and all the families that have to face this time of year without our amazing children.
God Bless

Dec 23, 2010
My heart aches with you
by: Anonymous

Dear Mrs. Ironman,

My heart aches with you. My husband has been fighting cancer for a long time now, and we were told yesterday the latest scans show the tumors are progressing at a rapid rate and are resistant to the chemo cocktails they have been administering or know of. There is one more round of an aggressive chemo they are trying for us after the New Year, but the doctors seem afraid it will do more harm than good.

I could hear the grief in your writing, and feel the same: This man of mine is a Rock! He has fought cancer while enjoying life and giving his all to all the people around him. I am too young to be a widow. Except for my hours at work, every moment is spent with my husband - and pretty much always has been.

How could this be happening to us? I love him too much. I cannot imagine making a decision or experiencing any moments without him. And how is it possible for my heart to ache so very much and still go on?

I wrap my "virtual arms" around you, my Dear Friend in Grief and send you sympathy and love. And if you learn anything about how to go on, please let me know.
-yours in grief and love

Dec 23, 2010
Lost My Husband Dec. 3rd
by: Pat J

I lost my husband on December 3rd. He was on the UNOS list waiting for a heart transplant. I had a doctors appointment last week and having to circle W on the registration papers was traumatizing. I had a full blown anxiety attack. How do we go on without our husbands? I have no idea. I know right now the pain feels like it will never go away. I go to my empty bed each evening and lay there most of the night desperately trying to fall asleep. I miss my husband so much. I have two grown children (young adults) and they have their families. I can't expect them to be worrying about mom 24/7.

This Christmas holiday is very hard to face alone. A friend told me yesterday to hold on to what we have and love those around us ~ it does get better. It never goes away. I said, "But I don't want this life. I want my husband back." I know I can't have that but I am trying to hold on to his love. He loved me unconditionally. That is what I will miss for the rest of my life. I keep praying to God to help me to find some peace. We have to take one day at a time.

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