Neal and I married after only knowing each other 2 1/2 months and were married for 40 years 8 months. Neal was 19 years old and I was 17 years old. During our marriage we learned about each other and our love grew each day. Nine months after we were married we were blessed with our first child, a son, Neal Jr. Then 10 years later we were blessed with our second son, Jeremy.
During the first years of our marriage, we struggled alot. Struggled with finances, getting to know each other, having a new baby and just all of the things everyone goes through. But we made it. We became as one. We liked the same things and as time went by we could even finish each others sentences.
Neal was never one to be sick. If he did get a cold or something he never stopped he kept going. His favorite medicine was Goody powders. That is about all he ever took. He would take 2 powders and wash them down with a beer. But April 19th 2010, he had a spell where he could not remember stuff. He was on a job site and could not find his way home. So he went to our doctor, which he hardly ever did. His sodium level was so low the doctor put him in the hospital. They did all kinds of test and on April 27, 2010 they told us he had lung cancer. After a biopsy they also told us it was inoperable and it was the fast growing type. He did 4 chemo treatments and had to stop because the side affects were so bad on him. Then September 10, 2010 the doctors told us the cancer had spread to his liver, lungs and brain. I will skip all the awful things the cancer did to him and just tell you that he kept going as hard as he could up until the last week of his life. I watched my 6 foot 230 pounds husband who was a true outdoorsman go to 185 pounds and barely able to walk and not able to remember even how to turn the TV on. It was just heartbreaking. But his main concern was me, he kept saying it was not fair to me, he also kept saying he hated not being able to finish teaching his grandsons all he had wanted to.
Then on October 15, 2010, the love of my life lost his battle with cancer. He passed away with Neal Jr on one side of him, Jeremy on the other and me sitting at his feet holding his hands. That day I lost my husband, my lover, my friend and everything I knew. My sons lost their "Pop", their teacher and their fishing and hunting buddy. My grandsons lost their hero.
Life as I knew it is gone, replaced with the unknown. My concentration is shattered, answering the phone is a hassel, doing anything is a chore. And my eating right is just gone. I have no idea who I am anymore. I have no purpose in life anymore and I just muddle through each day, one at a time.
At this point in my life I don't know what I will do the rest of my life without Neal. My life was his life. I was his wife, lover, friend and at the end his caretaker. Only time will tell what the rest of my life will be.