#TellUsAnything: Losing my husband

#TellUsAnything: Losing my husband

My husband, Jim and I, had been married for 28 years. Always a rocky marriage, we divorced this past January.

Neither of us knew he was sick at the time. He started having breathing difficulties and went to his doctor. A scan showed three spots on one lung. He was scheduled for a biopsy.

Before he could report for the biopsy, he had a heart attack. When admitted to the Naval Hospital they had a hard time getting his heart back into rhythm. They did blood tests, and the results was, he had “cancer”.

They moved him to another hospital that was suppose to do more for him. The doctors there refused to admit that Jim had had a heart attack. Even thought the Navy Hospital pointed out to them what had happened.

Jim was in the hospital over a week before they did a biopsy. The anatheologest was against doing it, because he was worried about the fact that Jim hadn’t had any test done, and wasn’t sure what was going to happen when they put him under for the operation. At the doctor’s assistance, they went ahead and did it.

The results were that all the lymph nodes were cancerous. I asked if that meant he was terminal. The doctor said, “I’m not saying that.” But, when we went in to see him, I mentioned to Jim’s sister that I wondered what we should do next. The nurse replied, “All you can do is make him comfortable.”

The doctor told Jim he only had a year to live. We would have liked to have been there when he was told that, to support and comfort him. Jim only lasted two and a half weeks from when he had the heart attack.

I wish the doctor would have been more open. We had no idea we would lose him that soon. I realize that even if the doctor had “been there” for us that Jim still would have died. He had a very aggressive cancer. But it would have helped us be more prepared for what happened.

Jim was a three or more pack a day smoker, and I realized he caused his own death. But I can’t help wishing his doctor had been a lot more compassionate.

–Anonymous in Florida

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