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The prelude to losing my beloved Lynne was us packing a "hospital bag", then leaving, as had been done a number of times before, so it was nothing new to our dog Merlin. For the next 29 days, I only saw Merlin twice a day, for a few minutes to feed him & let him out to "do his business". 

At dawn on "Day 29", I left the hospital for the last time, came home an utter mess, profoundly exhausted, yet very much unable to sleep. I was now a widower. Merlin sensed my distress, came to me, leaned his head against my leg. He knew something was very wrong, but had no idea what it was. He just wanted to help.

Merlin was adopted from the local Humane Society in early 2008, he has given Lynne & myself a huge amount of love & companionship. 

At home over the coming weeks, his unconditional love was a great source of comfort as I dealt with this "new reality" that had been forced upon me. I came home to a house that wasn't silent and dark, but had a small, happy face looking up at me. I know it wasn't some grand "fix", but it was a definite help!

My beloved Lynne was on 24/7 oxygen the last few years of her life. After she passed, the leased oxygen concentrator and 24 or so 2-liter oxygen tanks needed to be returned to the supplier. I opened the front door, began carrying them to the porch, where I would later transfer them to my truck. Merlin stared at this operation for a moment, hung his head, began pacing quickly in a tight, small circle. He then went and pressed and held his "hung head" against the front wall. After all of the cylinders were out on the porch, I sat on the floor, held him, gently, silently, rocking back & forth.

He knew, I knew, we knew.

Gotta go now. Cherish your loved ones- Nick

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My Grandmother, Bestfriend, & then my husband died.  My best friend & husband were sudden shocks.  My wonderful Yorkie Drusilla got me through those.  If it wasn't for her I wouldn't have gone out.  Humans of course, think we all should be "over it" in 2 months, so they all vanish.  I have no family so it was me & Drusilla.  When she passed away a year & a half later, it broke my heart, then I was completely alone.  Sitting in the vet parking lot I had no reason to go home.  I had no reason to go ay where.  I was a battle to decide I had to keep going.  I got a sweet Biewer Terrier & then a rescue dog.  They have been amazing we vacation together & they have given me strength in some very awful situations

Nick,

Sorry for the loss of your wife. Your post  is sad yet sweet at the same time.  I believe pets can sense these things and even mourn in their own way. So glad you had Merlin to help support you.  Animals can’t talk but we can look into their eyes and read them. You have an understanding pal there!

My MIL was at home with hospice care and her dog often laid on the floor by her bed. The dog began making noise (kind of howling) when she passed. I know, I was there.

Hi, I have a little Yorkie that grieved with us.  She seems to be over it now, but she's very helpful to me.  

Our dog has been the most important thing that helped me cope. She makes me laugh, go for walks even when I don’t want to, and is there every night in our bed. I don’t know how I would have made it through the darkest days without her.

Susan and I had a kennel in Norfolk Va.  King size German Shepherds.  We wound up selling the kennel when a job change brought us to Denver where we worked as a team as GM's for the La Quinta Hotel chain.  The job came with an apartment in the hotel.  Susan was lost without the dogs and we decided to pick pick up a pair of female kittens.  They went with us through another job change were we became property managers for Public Storage.  We spent 20 years in a 2 bedroom apartment/office combination.  One of the cats lived to be 18 and the other 26.  We lasted two weeks when Susan came into the office and said that she missed our "Furry Friends." We went out after work that day and found two more kittens.  One, a black cat took to Susan and she named it Licorice.  The other was a typical Tabby and she took to me. I call her Butterscotch.  We retired, and moved to our home in the mountains and 3 months later Susan passed in her sleep of a Silent Heart Attack.  These two cats have been a god send to me as I waded through my grief.  They hold what I call the Feline 500 each night around 2 or 3 in the morning. One will swipe the other waking it from a sound sleep and they jump off the bed and race to the other end of the house and back where they leap on the bed, bounce onto me and then back again.  One day Butterscotch was at one of the windows hissing and spitting.  I looked to see what had her so upset, and she was nose to nose facing off with doe who dared to be in her yard.  We have a bobcat that regularly sits on the deck looking into the living room through a 6 foot, dual pane, storm door and the three of them stare at each other.  Butterscotch met her match when a brown bear tried to get into the house. It took her a couple of months before she would lay in the sun in the open utility room door.  I tell folks its just me and my two Attack House Cats. Susan passed in December of 2012.  As I've gone through my grief, Licorice has begun to accept me and vies with Butterscotch for my lap as I watch TV.  When I start to cry she seems to sense it and comes to my lap and reaches out with her paw to pat my face.  Both have become more vocal, and both seem to sense when I see something on TV that brings me to tears.  I could swear that Susan is pulling that cats strings!  I really don't know what I'd have done without our pets.

Sincerely,

Frank

I have a female cat...they're different from dogs...i love their sense of independence...cats don't have need to be with someone..they're able to adapt to the situation...so they make the best of everything.. They're great master of the life...she teach me how overcome sad times, how appreciate the life again...she teach me not to be self-pity...she comfort me in my dark nights with her volunteered love...i envy her wonderful skill to forgot and simply live without pain...i'd want to be like her but i can't...ciao roxi

I am sorry for your loss Nick. My husband John passed away in December after fighting cancer for two years. We had hospice at home so he was here when he died. My dog Cody knew exactly what was happening. The day before John died Cody would not leave his side and kept sniffing his fingers. After John took his last breath Cody climbed up on to the bed with him. I will never forget the sadness in his eyes. I swear he was feeling my sadness too. Now if I start crying he jumps up on my lap and practically smothers me. At 80 lbs, he isn't very graceful about it and I usually go from crying to laughing at him.  Cody's Mom, Dixie had to be put to sleep in June,(cancer) and my Mom passed away in August. Cody and I have become very attached through it all. I think he has developed separation anxiety; he gets so upset when I leave the house and is with me all the time when  I am home. I hope it gets better as we both learn to live with our Grief.

Warm Regards,

Nancy

Our Yorkie Milton knew my husbands cancer was back before the MRI results came in.  Milton had been avoiding my husband for about a month,  When he did sit with my husband Doug ,he would intensely smell his head.  My husband had brain cancer stage 4 this time.

When my husband passed 2 months ago Milton became super clingy and skitterish.  I think he senses my sadness and the energy that is no longer in our home.

I think he is getting a little more back to "normal" after 2 months.

I am so grateful to have Milton with me. He's the best little one.  A bundle of love

We lost our little Dory in June to congestive heart failure and Denny in July. He had insisted we have her cremated so she was buried with him. She was the queen of the house, he would come in and say “ there’s my girls”  About a week after his funeral a dirty little street dog came into my life. The truth is he is the only reason I get up some days, to take care of him. He seems to know how sad I am and will get in my lap and lay his head on my heart. He’s just so sweet and everyone says he was sent to me for a reason. I lost my Dory in June, my love Denny in July, and my best friend in November, the same day my Aunt was killed in an auto accident.  I think having an animal to care for and love you gives you a reason to do something each day. 

As of tomorrow it's been a year since our oldest Bichon, Maggie, passed away just a week shy of her 16th birthday.  Thankfully I still had Sophie (11 yrs) after my husband died Sept. 22/18.  Sophie had major back surgery the day before I had to take my husband to the hospital.  The veterinary hospital kept her for an extra 3 days to help me out.  For the next three weeks I went back and forth to home and hospital every 3 hrs as I had to pen her up so she didn't move too much and she couldn't use her doggy door.  The final week before my husband passed away my youngest brother took care of her each day.  Letting her in and out and feeding her.  I am so very thankful I have her as she sat on my lap each evening when I came home from the hospital and licked my tears away.  Having to get up each day to feed her and let her out has been my saving grace.  Without her I have no idea how I would have made it even this far.  Sadly my youngest brother who was so much help taking care of her passed away tragically on Oct. 11/18.  I hadn't even had a chance to absorb the fact that my husband was gone then my baby brother was also gone.  Thankfully he and my sister-in-law have a wonderful dog and it gets her out of the house taking him for his walks.  Our pets are our lifesavers!  Sophie knew something was wrong and for a few weeks after my husband was gone she would go in to his TV room and sit on his chair. She had two major losses in less than a year but she has rebounded and I've lavished attention on her to keep her spirits up and that seemed to have helped.  

My wife Lisa and I decided that we would get a cat for the kids and me in October 2018, our little Rosey knew something was going on and would curl up next to Lisa when she was asleep in bed, when my wife went away on holiday with our kids in Dec 2018, Rosey would come in and sleep next me and when Lisa was in Hospital Palliative care in Jan 2019 she knew that I was alone and she would spend more time with me or the kids. 

I believe she even knew when Lisa passed on the 24th Jan 2019, because she came into my room and stayed with me for a few hours and just purred and would come in and sleep next to my computer desk or under it or behind my seat for a week or so.

When my wife was in hospice, I remember the nurse got upset because our cat wanted to jump in the bed with Lupe.   I think he wanted to take care of her as best he could.   Now he's getting old and its my turn to take care of him.   I've nursed him back from a bad infection that caused him to lose a lot of weight in the past week.

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