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We're friends, not doctors, financial or legal professionals, and we're not "grief experts." But we are here, and we've been "there."

I was with Mark for pretty much my whole adult life, we were a team and each had our own areas of expertise.

Mine was managing the finances and keeping the house - his was everything else.

I never used to think he did that much just make all things technical work  and do a few chores now and then.

I have learned a lot about what he did and how much harder it is to do these things on your own in the last 11 months.

Simple things like going in to the attic to get a case down can result in a trip to the hospital if you aren't paying attention to where the loft hatch is..

Changing a light bulb became like a battle between me and the fitting, I even resorted to launching stealth attacks in the hope I could take it by surprise until I finally gave in and got a man to do it for me.

Painting the bathroom seemed like such a simple task, he used to do it in a few hours with no effort....

Took me 2 days and still looks patchy and I managed to fall off the ladder and throw paint all over the floor breaking my ribs.

The sound on the TV went off, took me 3 days before I got it back on and when the TV in the spare room wouldn't come on I resorted to the technical support phone line only to be told to press the on switch..

And technology - internet, laptops, satellite TV, well they could have their own blog

I would not be surprised to learn that my picture is on the wall of fame for stupid people, in the No 1 spot and that I feature in the stupid people training for new staff - I am only amazed they haven't blocked my number..

The garden - well there is a whole new world of hazards I never knew existed, lawnmowers that sneak under your legs when you aren't looking and make you fall in the flower beds, strimmers that cut your leg far better than they do the grass and weeds - like where do these things come from, I feel like I have been dropped in a war zone - me against the sneaky blighters and they are winning so far.

Putting a new blind up in the kitchen - how was I supposed to remember that if I am stood on the worktop to drill a hole (another first, kitchen has since been decorated to hide the damage), stepping back to get a bit more weight behind the drill is not a wise move - you will fall in a heap on the floor!

The car - who knew you have to add oil and water to keep it happy huh, my mechanic is my new best friend, I have his number on speed dial.

Its been a steep learning curve, and I have a whole new admiration for the way he made it all look so easy, but you know what I have done it all and survived (just) to tell the tale.

I have a whole new list of contacts in my phone of handy people, know the staff at my local emergency dept pretty well, have discovered that broken bones hurt but stitches don't and all of it heals.

I am getting there and I think that one day I might even be safe to go out on my own.

I am sure there are lots more things to learn and experience, look out world is all I can say...

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Comment by lonelyinaz on February 23, 2015 at 10:03pm
Not funny but funny. Gosh im thinking of going on one of those home improv sites and give free tips. I get it gal plumber, tree guys. Mechanics, roofers all love me and my inability to do it myself without making it worst. Did i mention havac guy? I hear hubby say "honey sell now" but, i just cant handle that stress yet. I can weed though so horray for me. What a life what i took for granted!
Comment by Callie2 on February 23, 2015 at 2:04pm
Hi TJ,
You said a mouthful girl. The first dumb thing I did was to try to change the bulb on my patio light that burned out. So, I went into the garage and got the ladder and removed the old bulb. How was I to know there are different types of bulbs? The one that burned out was a sodium bulb, the ballister is a special type. So I replaced it with a mercury type. As I stood at the top of the ladder, it began to smoke like crazy! I quickly removed it (glad I didn't walk away!) I have lots of stories, but I have learned to manage. It helps greatly when you're able to think clearly again. Sometimes when I am having problems with doing something, I will just try to wait till I'm up for the challenge. I think the important thing for us to recognize is there are some things best left for a handyman-- know your capabilities.
Comment by Barbie Doll on February 23, 2015 at 11:48am

Trudi, I'm with you.  I had no idea just how much of the load my husband carried!  I always though if anything ever happened to him that I would be fine.  Boy was I wrong.  It's been 3 years now and I'm finally getting there but it's still very difficult to do it all on my own.  

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