I’m not the only one suffering…

So, it’s been 5 weeks since my mother died.

She passed on a Saturday and the very next day my stepfather fell again at the nursing home. He was so distraught about my moms’ death that when he tried to get up from his wheelchair to go to the bathroom, he forgot to lock the wheels and the chair slipped out from under him when he stood. This caused him to fall to the ground and he landed – hard – on his freshly postop left hip. The one that had necessitated this entire lifestyle change for both my parents barely 2 weeks prior.

The nursing home called me to tell me he fell and they were sending him back to the hospital for xrays. He was filmed, then sent home.

For the next two days, he lay in bed, alternating between crying about my mother’s loss and the pain in his hip. They finally sent him back to the emergency room, and a CAT scan was done. Long story short, he’d broken the rod holding his leg to his hip and shattered the ball joint.

The surgeon who performed the first surgery did not want to repair it because the repair was too involved, so my dad was shipped to the nearest tertiary care hospital in Hartford, CT.

Can you imagine what it was like for him? Already infirm due to the first hip break, he’s just lost his wife, very unexpectedly, and now he’s heading to a strange environment for another major surgery, less than 2 weeks after the first one.

The poor man was so despondent, especially because he was all alone in the hospital, with no family, no one who knew him. I drove four hours every day for a week while he was there ( 2 going, 2 coming back)just so he wouldn’t feel so alone.

All he did was cry.

In pain. In grief. In loss.

Once the leg was finally repaired and he was sent back to the nursing home, his depression was stark on his face and in his voice.

Whenever I visit him or talk to him on the phone, he cries about my mom. More than once he’s said, “I just want to hold her one more time.”

My heart breaks anew every time. Every. Time.

In the span of two weeks, this poor man lost his physical independence, his home, his wife of 57 years, and his way of life.

I’d cry too.



Filed under Writing

13 responses to “I’m not the only one suffering…

  1. My heart breaks for your stepfather and for you, Peggy. I have no words, just prayers for healing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ugh, I’m so sorry. I wish there was something I could do for you. Sending hugs and love your way.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I do think men grieve harder, but this is extraordinarily hard on your stepfather, and you too because women are greater worriers. Please, tell him that she’s waiting for him. And know she’s watching over you, Peggy. My parents were married for 68 1/2 years. My mom lived five hard dementia-ridden years after my father passed, and I have no doubt that he waited every single day for her. I felt him with us so very often. He was my comfort as well as hers. When she passed, I felt them both leave. Love is incredibly strong.
    I’m praying for both of you and may God Bless you both. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Peggy Jaeger

      Amy your words touched me so much. Thank you. I agree I think men do grieve harder. My father has always been a stoic, strong, Italian man. Now he is a shell of himself. My mom was def. the alpha in the relationship when it came to dealing with emotional stuff. Thanks again for the kindness and support. I truly, truly appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh Peggy, I’m so sorry. I wish there was something more I could offer you. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh, Peggy! How heartbreaking! There’s nothing worse than watching a loved one suffer and feel there isn’t anything you can do to help them. In being with him you’ve given him a very special gift. I can’t imagine how tired you must be. The driving, the hospital life, dealing with his grief and dealing with your own… I’m sending up prayers right now and will continue to keep you in our daily prayers. May you receive strength and comfort!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So sorry to hear of your loss and stepfather’s suffering. My heart goes out to you both. My deepest sympathies and prayers for strength and peace. Please take care and know that others are thinking of you in your time if need. Blessings & love.


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