I haven’t done one of these since 2017, the year life changed. In the time between that post and this one everything in my life has changed, here’s what happened this year…
2019 was the year I lost my amazing husband, I became a widow and learned to live life by myself. I went from being wife and carer to, well, nothing really. It’s taken me until now and I’m still working on, who is Sarah? I’m not sure I remember anymore. The thing you don’t realise when your person dies is that part of you dies too and you’re left trying to revive what’s left at a time when you just don’t care and everything seems meaningless anyway.
2019 started with a crashing blow. In late 2018 we had thought B was in remission, this was a miracle from where he started and had been a FIGHT. Then he was hit with a brain tumour and my hope died that day. I’m thankful that he was never really aware of what had happened or what lay ahead. The first few weeks started with intense radiotherapy treatment. It bought him some time but made his overall condition worse and on January 11th he left our house for the last time for what should have been a routine hospital visit but ended up with him being admitted. I spent the next few weeks travelling into central London to spend visiting hours with him while they found him a place at a specialist unit where he could get the best treatment.
In the meantime, I juggled my business commitments, squeezing in a short visit to the US before racing back to the hospital straight from the airport. A few weeks later, he was admitted to a neuro unit here in Essex and the next six months are really a blur from there. I would go every day to be there for when they opened so when he woke up I would be there next to him so he didn’t get confused about where he was or why I wasn’t there. I’d take him his favourite foods, bits from home and on some days I’d bring Fuzzybutt for visits. We’d go for coffee in the Lounge like we were at home, chat to the other patients, visit the gardens on nice days and just hang out in bed watching daytime TV or James Bond films, anything I could do to make life normal for him. Watching your person slowly slip away from you is a torture I can’t begin to describe but I had to stay strong for him, I didn’t want him to ever see me cry or be down and be scared or know what was going to happen.
As soon as he fell asleep, I would race home to catch up on work, replying to emails, taking phone calls – everything I could to keep everything running smoothly. My team were an absolute Godsend during this time and I can never thank them enough for their help in allowing me the maximum time with B during his last months.
As most of you probably know, B slipped away in July after the strongest fight I’ve ever seen. I always knew he was an amazing man but the strength he showed blew me away and I feel so privileged to have been the one there for him in his final days, weeks and months.
Since July, I’ve been slowly piecing my life back together. I threw myself in to work. Passed my driving test (I had nightmare experiences with driving when I was younger – not my fault!) and bought my little dream car, Winnie. I went to Nashville and LA to get my US business flying again and basically took everything from coasting back to growing. I’ve also been slowly renovating my home, rediscovering a social life and I may even get back to some crafty stuff soon too – I’m feeling my mojo slowly coming back!
The last few years have pretty much broken me but I feel a little spark, I know B would want me to achieve all my dreams and be happy and I’m determined to make him proud so he can look down and say ‘thats my girl!’ like he used to when I was creating mischief when he was here.
I realise, having written this, that it’s more personal than work and business related although I tried to keep things brief but I think it reflects my year, my personal life really did overtake everything and thats the reality. I’ve not gone into much detail around caring / illness and all of those things but if anyone has questions or thinks my experience can help them in any way I’m happy to answer them. I’m sure the odd widow life post might creep in here and there as I try to navigate my new reality of being widowed in my 30’s, something I’m guessing no-one expects to happen.
(p.s. I’m not going to read this back because I’ll start crying again so please forgive any spelling mistakes or if I repeated myself.)
If like me, 2019 broke you, lets take the tiny spark thats left and a lot of faith and make 2020 our year! and if you had an amazing 2019, let’s hope 2020 is even better for you!