Even as i type the title, it still hits me. My husband and i were together for 33 years. Holy Union ceremony in Chicago in 1984, then legalized in Minneapolis (moved up here 10 years ago) in 2013. Dick had been battling lung cancer for 5 years. Success...failure...success..failure. Got to the point where we thought we could do anything. We got final diagnosis that nothing more could be done on Wednesday, 1.27.16 and then 6 days later, he was gone on Tuesday, 2.2.16. I was with him and all i kept saying as i held him was whispering "i love you" in his ear. and shortly after that - no more. Dick comes from a large (10 kids) family up here in Minnesota. And we were out and showed our love to all who cared to see. His family has made it clear that i am just another brother. My co workers have been so supportive. Still, to this day and it's been 5 months. Five months. Seems forever ago and yet it feels like it was only yesterday. My neighbors have decided I need to be occupied - so dinner, movies, etc.

While I have made progress (is that what you'd call it?), there are those nasty "surprise" moments that come up. Long story, short - I have never had a driver's license. Never. Growing up in Chicago, I knew every bus line and how to hail a cab by the time i was 9 years old. Moved up here and Dick was always ready to drive us wherever we needed to go. One month after his death, I said "Fudge it (that's not what I actually said - but language rules here). I'm getting my license." So I went and took the test and passed and the first thing I did when I left the DMV was to call Dick. Surprise! And major tears followed. Right on the street. I didn't care. I just kept saying "This stuff is REAL. It's really happening." They tell you how to meet people, how to tell when you're in love, how to plan a wedding, have a family, but no one tells you the major life/head/heart change you're going experience with this.

I've read a great deal of your stories here. And I am touched and honored to be in such special, caring company. We're survivors. We're here to help each other walk our own paths, but offer a guiding hand. And to all of you I say - thank you. From the bottom of my heart. Thank you, you amazing human beings.

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Hello ed,

Welcome t the group.  I am so sorry about your loss of your husband Dick.  I lost my husband'Skip also from Lung Cancer 2 1/2 years ago.  (actually it was the surgical screw up from the cancer).  I have thought back to things that I did in the 2-3 months following and it seems so weird that i remember that I was already widowed even then.  It does not seem like that had already happened.  It took me over 2 years to stop saying "we"... Probably moving from our home helped change that.  I took care of my Dad who did live in this house so I remember my Dad being here before I was with them when they dies.  Today they both are in their respective urns on two tables.  They hit it off in life.  I will be changed forever and still finding my new identity as a son caregiver vs. a husband care giver.

I can say that as awful as it all was.  Both my husband and my dad left me better than they found me and my life is richer for having loved them both.  I'm glad your in-laws are still there for you.  i make a point to keep in touch w/ my mother in law on her birthday, xmas, mother's day and Skip's Birthday.  I'm just marching forward day by day as you will.  Didk is proud of you for everything you did for him and for getting your license.  It gives me comfort to know that sort of thing about Skip and my dad.

Again welcome. - Scott

Is it wrong that I joined this group just to offer condolences to a person who lost his life partner?  I don't belong here in that I'm heterosexual but we all feel the same deep grief when we lose that one person who was everything to us.  There shouldn't need to be separate groups. 

Scott.....I'm sorry for the loss of your husband.  It's quite a life changer when someone is here today gone tomorrow.  I lost my husband after 26 1/2 years of marriage and almost 30 years in total together.  He was sick as well for several years (not with cancer) so we've been through a lot.   I just lost him in January so I'm still feeling my way through this new life that I didn't ask for.  I wish I could say it will get better but I have to believe that for myself first.  All I can do is say I understand the pain you feel.  I'm sure Dick is still with you, he likely was there and feeling proud as you got your license. 

I wish you the best in the days to come.



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