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Transition to the Surviving Caregiver Role

Caregiver1963's picture
Posts: 46
Joined: Jan 2010

My dear husband passed away from brain cancer early in the morning of July 11th. As many of you know I struggled with my decision to move him to a nursing home earlier this spring when his care got too much for me to manage at home. As his decadron was slowly tapered his condition gradually declined over the past few weeks and I don't think he recognized me most of the time the last 2 weeks of his life. The evening before he died his respirations increased and my gut feeling was to stay with him at the nursing home that night. I am sorry that I had fallen asleep when he died, but I hope he sensed that I was there with him. I am profoundly heartbroken that he is gone, but I know he is no longer suffering anymore.
I was off from work last week and this week and was planning to go back to work next week. I am starting to be unsure if I am ready to go back yet- I work at the health care facility where my husband got his care and I am a health care provider myself. I know everyone is different but wondered if anyone could give me advice about whether I am going back too early or not.

Thank you

Posts: 36
Joined: Feb 2010


My heart goes out to you. It has been 4 months since I lost Dale and I am still only half way functioning. I only took one week off after Dale passed away, I felt like I needed to jump back into life both feet first. It was a good decision for me, being around people helped more then hurt. Here is the but.. I have great employers who understood that most things cannot be handled until the death certificates come in, so I had the leeway to leave and do what I needed to do.. You are in my prayers as this the second most devastating time of your life has come. The first is finding out that you are dealing with this awful thing called cancer and the second is when we finally loose them to it..


Caregiver1963's picture
Posts: 46
Joined: Jan 2010

I am sorry for your loss and you are in my prayers as well.
I have decided return to work next Thursday and work part time for at least the first few days to see how I do. I notice that my concentration is a little bit better each day.

grandmafay's picture
Posts: 1639
Joined: Aug 2009

I am just getting back to posting regularly following a vacation. I wanted to tell you that I am sorry for your loss. I can't give you any advise about work because I am retired. Sometimes I think working might have helped me through those first months following my husband's death. Other times I am glad I don't have to work. I do think getting back into some kind of routine is important. We really do need to put one foot in front of the other and try to move forward. Sometimes it is two steps back for every step forward, but we need to try to keep that forward.motion. Come here when you feel the need for some understanding or support. Many of us have suffered loss, and we are all just doing the best we can. The grief and bereavement board is also a good posting place, Take care, Fay

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