My Wife of 39 Years

by James Howard
(Calhoun, GA, USA)

My wife passed away March 14, 2010. I quit work ten years ago to take care of her, she had MS and toward the end she could not do anything for herself. I was her primary care giver. I fed, bathed; did everything I could for her. But then it happened. She was sick and I knew the end would be soon. But when it came, I thought it was all a dream, and she would return any moment. It was just so surreal.

After about six months, I started to get down and depressed. I talked to my doctor and he said just ride my bike and it will be alright. Nobody along the way told me it was alright to cry as part of the grieving process. I had a lot of tears stored up, and still do.

I started to clean around the house and I would run across something that reminded of Teresa. This really triggered the tears. I sat in the floor and squalled. We had been married 39 years and our 40th anniversary would only be a week or two later.

One of the things I found was an old love letter from high school (we were childhood sweethearts). Boy, that was something! I found a scrap book with pictures of us and cards she had sent me this and her pictures from high school and college, I keep in a special place. I talk to her everyday and tell her how much I love her and hope to see her again one day. I cry over these, but they bring back great memories of our time together.

Teresa was totally disabled three years before her death, and I would do it all over again for her. I LOVE my wife and tell her everyday. Teresa I LOVE YOU!!

Comments for My Wife of 39 Years

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Nov 12, 2010
for James
by: Mari

Hi James, I was reading some posts again and the Lord laid it on my heart to pray for you. As I read your message I prayed.

It is perfectly alright to cry. Crying releases pent up feelings and helps in the healing process. God cares for you and will bring you comfort.

The process of grieving is different for everyone and it takes time. Your wife was a part of you and that is a huge loss. I hope you will post often and that you have people around to talk to. It is real important. But one thing to remember is that God cares and He is with you right now.

My husband passed away Nov 22 2009. It has been hard for me indeed. I still cry. I have his picture where I can see it. He was so handsome. He loved me and loved my children and grandchildren. If one of my 5 children needed something or the grandchildren, he gave it to them.

I am doing better with God's help but have a ways to go. Take care and post often. Mari

Nov 11, 2010
Thanks for comments
by: James

I have tried to write a thank you note to you all but I kept tearing it up. Because as now it hurts so much to think of her. I cry every day, all day long some days. But with the wonderful thoughts and prayers you offer I get through the day.

LORD IT HURTS SO MUCH!! I could not cry until recently, my wife passed on March 14, 2010, it started small then rose to a torrent. I get so lonely here thinking of her.

Again, thank you for your so thoughtful comments.

AS I sit here squalling, I LOVE YOU TERESA!!!


Nov 08, 2010
Your Tears
by: Anonymous

Washington Irving said this about crying: "There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief... and unspeakable love" I lost my precious baby Granddaughter two months ago. I don't think my tears will ever stop. God bless you

Nov 08, 2010
For James
by: Mari

James I am sorry to hear of your loss. May God be with you and bring you healing.
You are a very special person, caring and compassionate. I can see that your love was very special indeed.

It is alright to cry, in fact it helps with the healing process. It is good also to have someone to discuss your feelings with, a friend or pastor. As for riding your bike that is a good idea too. It sounds as if your wife was total care, as you attended her every need. It is hard when all of a sudden you are no longer doing that.

May God bless you for being the person you are. Just take each day as it comes and keep your faith. Healing takes time. The stages of grief have to be gone through.

We are here for you whenever you want to talk. This is a great board. We all care. It is important for you to take good care of yourself and just take things a day at a time. You just need time. Your wife is safe with the Lord. Keep posting.

Nov 08, 2010
my wife of 39 years
by: jules

You sound like a lovely person, it takes a lot to care for someone with your wife's disability - so you must be a strong person.

As others have said on here, just keep on taking baby steps - even if they are two steps forward and one back, I can't say it will get easier, because it doesn't - my husband has been gone since November 2009, and I miss him every day - I have made a new life for myself, new friends, new place to live, new hobbies - but I still feel like I am just marking time most days - waiting for something - I don't what, but something.

It doesn't take much for tears to come to my eyes, but I go out, mix with people, enjoy my grandsons, and my daughter, go out and meet new people.

Keep going, write on this site, at any time of the day or night, there is usually someone here.

Stay strong - remember the good times.


Nov 08, 2010
My Husband of 35 years
by: Davida

Dear James...

I am so saddened for your loss. My Joe left on August 27th--just 10 weeks ago, and we were together 35 years. Those who've not known a great marriage will never understand that care-giving is a labor of love and though stressful, we would have them back if we could.

I shall ask the Lord to remind me to pray for you and your family as I know all too well this painful journey is not over yet for either one of us. It never will be completely, but we have the promise of hope.

"I would have lost heart had I not believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living." ~ Psalm 27

Nov 06, 2010
by: Jared

I'm praying for God's peace through Jesus Christ to settle upon you!!

He gives an amazing peace that is beyond comprehension!!

In Christ, we have no fear of death, but know that we will be entering the presence of God!

Again, praying for you to have peace!

Nov 05, 2010
Bless You....
by: Donna

God Bless you for the care you took for your wife...I'm sure she is very close and lovingly watching over you. They may leave their bodies...but their spirits will fill us always..Expect only will come. I lost my husband to cancer; we had a beautiful marriage. I too, cared for him as you did Teresa....One moment, and then the next my friend.

Be Well

Nov 05, 2010
devoted love
by: Jen


You sound like a lovely lovely man and your story sounds an absolute story of devoted love.

I lost my husband nearly two years ago at the age of 41 and the tears still flow. Grief is an awful journey but one we must do at our own pace and speed with many ups and downs along the way.
You have shared a lifetime together and have so so many wonderful memories together im sure.

Cling on to these and keep the tears coming and talk as this is an awful situation for everyone.
This site genuinely is a lifeline to me as we correspond with many wonderful people. Keep writing and we will listen. We are all in various locations around the world but know we are here for you anytime.
I wish you well,


Nov 05, 2010
Your Love

Your Love was the kind of Love that few experience. For better or for worse few can do that now a days. I was my husbands caretaker for a little over a year after his debilitating surgery. But having watched my father take care of my mother with Alzheimer for 20 years. He Loved her and is now with her in heaven hiking, doing all the things that they would have done together after his retirement had they been able.

Please read more on grieving and how everyone's grief is different. I went to one grief group where there were just men, I the only woman and I know that although men might feel the same grief, they have been conditioned not to express anything that might make them unmanly like tears, sobbing and the kind of grief that makes it hard to just get through the day.

Not only is it o.k to feel that way but it is also o.k to express those feelings. Like me, you lost your wife twice once to M.S then the final time that she was totally taken away from you.

Somehow as caregivers we think that we will accept it or be able to deal with it easier; nothing is further from the truth. Please join us here and let out everything that you feel, its o.k to be or feel helpless. We all are in varying stages. Some days its all we can do to go through our daily routine.

At 11 months (11/06/10) I am going to go through 2 rooms that have only been storerooms since my Love died. We are here for you 24/7 and will never judge you, only listen. We are all trying to get though this. If it weren't for these wonderful people I would be a basket case.

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