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Coping After the Loss of My Wife

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GRIEF
Alamy

I am an organised person.

I run my own business helping dentists with their marketing and I have trained as a business and life coach so I have (correction 'had') a great big life goal.

We were going to grow old together, we were going to live in a house by the sea working only two days a week each and spending the remainder of the time travelling the UK & Europe in our campervan with our little dog.

The house was on the market, we have found a new one 15- minute walk from the beach, we'd been to look at some campervans and last year we bought our little dog - it was all slowly coming together after the years we have dedicated to bringing up our children now aged 14, 16, 16 & 18.

And then she died.

My name is Mark Oborn and I had been married to the wonderful Claire for 22 years, we had even been dating six years before that, since we were 16 years old. We only ever had each other and we were the love of each other's lives.

Claire who was 43 had been in good health, so we thought, but on 17 April 2013 she woke up with a headache and mild sickness, we'd been for a curry the night before to celebrate my birthday and so weren't overly concerned. By 10:30 she was vomiting heavily and I took to her bed. When I got home from work at 17:30 she was so ill that her sister, who was visiting, decided to take her to the local hospital accident and emergency.

By 18:30 she had had a cardiac arrest and was on a ventilator, they sedated her and took her for a CT scan for her head and stomach to find out what the problem was.

She never made it to the scan as she had another cardiac arrest, and by 19:30 she was gone. The doctors fought to save her but because she deteriorated so rapidly they have absolutely no idea what was wrong with her and so had no way of treating her. (Read the full story here)

So where does that leave me now? It leaves me with the largest hole in my life that I have ever known and leads me on a journey to rebuilding my 'assumed future'.

You see, we all have assumptions about how our future will pan out. Because I work as a coach and help others create their future by setting a life goal I had also done this for myself. My goal was extremely compelling, I lived it and breathed it everyday and it was all for my wonderful wife.

Take that motivation away and everything seems to fall apart.

Even if you have never written a life goal you will have an assumption about what is going to happen in the future. Claire's sister assumed that she would always have a sister who would write her a Christmas card. Her mum and dad assumed that they would not see their daughter pass away. My children assumed that their mum would be there for them to continue to teach them how life works.

When someone dies not only do we experience the loss of that person, but we experience the loss of our assumed future.

Rebuilding my assumptions will take time and this blog is a documentation of my story. I speak from the heart, I hold nothing back and I come to this process broken but slowly being rebuilt. I know I won't get everything right but I will do the best with the resources I have available to me at this moment in time...

And that's all we can do isn't it?

Around the Web

Love after bereavement - NetDoctor.co.uk

Coping if you have been recently or suddenly bereaved | BPS

How to Live After the Death of a Spouse: 10 Steps - wikiHow

Coping with Bereavement

Grief, Bereavement, and Coping With Loss - National Cancer Institute

Death Of Spouse - Recover From Grief

Coping with bereavement - Live Well - NHS Choices

Losing Your Partner Web 2 - BBC

Learning to Love by Sheryl Browne