I am looking for some tips I suppose from other who have experienced the same.
Hubby of 40 years has been given bad news and we have been advised to get our affairs in order.
I am in the process of doing this and it is very rough - so clinical and raw. Plus I am seeing hubby go down hill quickly and he is sooo sad . He constantly worries about everything.
We have had the pallative care nurse here and although he is not in pain yet I am concerned. Watching all this unfold is difficult to say the least.
I am getting as much help and support as I can but it is so damn hard !!!!
Hello @mrsvicki We will find out what the prognosis for my husband of 36 years looks like next week following some concerning features on his staging scan (booked for MRI next week) but I suspect the outlook will be poor.
Hi There Mrsvicki, I hope to help you by sharing what I do to try to care for my husband as well as I can, however it is so damn hard, you are right about that. My husband was diagnosed 2 years ago, but was given terminal diagnosis in January. The only way I could initially cope was to manage all the concrete things I could, I contacted a financial planner, got insurance sorted, redid our wills, got quotes for funeral, established a record of all details about our home such as how to operate the pool filter, all the things my husband did. That helped me cope, getting everything in order so I would not have those worries when he required all of my attention and care. This sounds cold I know but it was practical. We have 3 teenagers to care for too so I felt being organised was important. After a time I fell in a heap and realised I had to take some care of myself so I went to a counsellor and tried to follow the advice I was given to get a massage or a haircut every now and again, this is important and really works. Caring for someone you love is bloody hard, but like the air stewardess’ tell us when they give the safety talk on the plane, you have to put your own oxygen mask on first before you try to help anyone else. The changes in our relationship, for me have been difficult. I ring the cancer council help line often and chat and this helps. Overall I educate myself as much as I can about each stage of his cancer and the impact on him and possible impact on the family. Also we have had a counsellor come to the house and talk to us about dying. Speaking these words and sharing our fears was helpful and in a way have us some peace. I am not sure where you are but I approached the Karuna organisation in Brisbane and am so glad I did. The support has been phenomenal. I was very worried about my husbands mental health and spoke to his palliative care tea, a bout this and they gave him medication to assist him. You can have appointments by yourself with your doctor, and discuss your concerns. Take care. I wish I could wave a magic wand for you. I’m sorry my post sound clinical and cold I’m only sharing what works for me. All the best.
Focusing on what we can do is often how we cope @Kingfisher and we do need to be realistic and not bury our head in the sand, with three teenagers relying on you it is worthwhile doing whatever you can that will make life easier for you down the track.
When the time comes I will not be getting any insurance payout and currently work part time (I get the carer payment as my husband has other conditions) but have to face the reality that when the time comes things will be tight and I will likely have to go on Newstart.
Am hearing about hairdresser appts being delayed (my last one was months overdue) and doing those little self care things for ourselves is important.
thankyou @Kingfisher , this is exactly what I needed to read.
I have completed all the required tasks which I agree are necessary but make it all the more real as sometimes you think you are living a dream and you will wake up!!
I am concerned about his mental health as he is stressing out about the most littlest of things eg ant rid getting damp - this is his way of being my husband I know as he has always done all the practical things around the house & is worried he is leaving me with unfinished tasks to manage.
No matter how much reassuring I do he still worries.
We have an appointment with the oncologist tomorrow so I am going to request some calming medication as I said to him just a while ago if you don't calm down you will have a heart attack.
Have organised for this week 2 lots of organisation that can help with chores & a 'Gary sitter' so I can go out and have a massage, get chores done etc. Also a medi alert is coming Tuesday.
It is so overwhelming and exhausting - patience has to be in abundance.
I will as always continue to help him on this final journey as much as I can.
Appreciate your reply x
Dear Mrsvicki it is overwhelming and exhausting and sometimes by just saying so helps. My USB and was given antidepressants and that really helped him, he was also given Valium for nights when panic attacks began to occur but he hasn’t taken that as yet. I had a good conversation with palliative care nurses on the phone and that helped me. My heart goes out to you. My husband has moments when he is like the old guy I knew and is in control, but then in the next minute I am in charge of everything, this is tricky but understanding his need to still be the ‘man of the house’ and then watching him have no control is hard. Sending you much support and warmth.
Thank you @Darcy for reaching out, much appreciated.
We have reached some milestones et Christmas & new Year as hubby did not think he would make it.
Now he has pain management under control ( a bit of a challenge as he is very stoic). See what 2021 has in store for us.
I have been doing a lot of self care & have found wonderful local services, meditation apps etc.
Also a facebook group called caring for husbands with cancer, I think I found reference to it on this site but not 100% sure. Anyways I joined to group and the women on there are amazing & what I am thinking and feeling is normal and expected.
So all of the above is helping be stay calm while on this journey so I can help hubby more get through this.
Again thank you & hope all is going ok with you - kind regards
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