I worked hard my whole life. My husband and I met when we were sixteen. By 29, we decided it was time to finally get married! Because of geographical complications of most of our family living on the other side of the country, we decided it would be financially prudent to elope. So one day, after work, we packed up and flew to Las Vegas. No fanfare, no wild parties. We were low key in everything we did. So long as we had each other, we were happy.
Time passed, and two children arrived on the scene. I continued to work full time and at around 40, I woke up one morning wanting something more and decided to go back to school. My husband suggested that I monitor a class at the local university and see how it went. I loved it. After successfully convincing the professor that I could handle his class, I got a letter of recommendation from him and completed applications to pursue my PhD. Even though I was the oldest student in my program, I enjoyedbeing back in school. My husband was supportive and the kids got a kick out of all of us sitting at the dining room table after dinner and doing homework together. As a family, we liked spending time together. Approximately five years later, I graduated, got a new job in my new field and everything was going smoothly.
And then one day it wasn’t. Shortly after returning from a family camping vacation, Frank, my husband, came home from work feeling extremely fatigued. We all shrugged it off as him being tired from being outdoors and hiking when he was slightly out of shape. Then into the second week, we all thought, well, maybe he has the flu. After two weeks we realized it was more than just the flu. He went for tests and the results were not good. For six years he struggled with stomach cancer. Our calm, fairy tale existence was shattered. He fought with western medications and alternative treatments. In spite of minor breakthroughs, he lost the battle.
The loneliness cut to my bones. I dragged through life, missing my beloved childhood sweetheart and long-time husband. I continued on, raising our two children on my own, putting them through college and continuing in my work. It’s been many years now. My children are succeeding in their chosen careers, I have achieved a good amount of success in my job and I have even started dating a wonderful man. I was so lonely for the first four years after Frank passed that I was grateful to find my new guy at work. The only problem is that although he says his marriage is long over, this new fellow never completed his divorce…
Has this happened to you? What advice would you give to someone in this situation?
Please share your response in the comments section below.