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Old 08-17-2015, 08:02 PM   #1
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City: Merritt Island,Fl
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Sue Marie
Vessel Model: Prarie 29
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 239
Long, Painfull Decline Over

My wife has been fighting Alzheimer's for almost 7 years. The last three have been brutal. Our Prairie 29 has not left her slip in over a year. The last 6 months have seemed like a living hell. She has riddled with pain from the Parkinson's affliction resulting in pain medicine that further dulls the senses. Last Monday 8/10/15 five days before 50th wedding anniversary she passed peacefully into a far better place.

Sub consciously I have been praying for the pain and suffering to end, thinking I was ready to deal with. No way. The reality knocked me off my feet and left a lump of tears and denial hovering like a glop of slurp. Now I am in a state of semi recovery trying to determine the next steps. Soon, I am heading to spend some quality time on the Sue Marie, named for my wife. Its time to bring her back to life and see if I can move on. It is going to strange and a huge challenge without love, but I am going to give it all I have, because she wanted me to. I am a very lucky man, we never fell out of love, we never disliked our In-Laws, resulting in fifty(almost) wonderful years.

I will let you know how this single handed stuff works, once I get the hang of it myself.

Thanks for letting me rant a little.


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Old 08-17-2015, 08:06 PM   #2
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City: Fort McAllister, Ga
Country: Us
Vessel Name: Hot Shot
Vessel Model: Mainship 390
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 77
Thanks for sharing. Don't know you, but admire your attitude and courage.

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Old 08-17-2015, 08:10 PM   #3
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City: Jacksonville Beach, FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Shallow Minded
Vessel Model: Shoal Cat
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 230
Peace to Sue Marie, and to you too, John.
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:29 PM   #4
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City: Vallejo, California
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Mahalo Moi
Vessel Model: Grand Banks 42 Classic
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,325
That is sad news, John. I don't know how I would deal with your loss. Sounds like you're headed on the right path by starting this thread. Keep posting, I'm sure you'll receive some love from us strangers who appreciate your honesty and reach for life's answers.

My condolences.
"Mahalo Moi"
1986 GB-42 Classic
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:43 PM   #5
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City: Paris,TN
Country: USA
Vessel Name: William
Vessel Model: Outer reef 32
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,781
John, sorry for your loss my thoughts are with you . Peace to you .
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:44 PM   #6
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City: Westport, CT
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Magic
Vessel Model: Grand Banks 46 Europa
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 1,482
You won't be alone onboard; she will be in your heart. All the best wishes for your speedy return to a happy life and all my sympathies to you. Howard
Magic, 1996 Grand Banks Europa
Westport, CT and Stuart, FL
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:45 PM   #7
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City: Kitimat, North Coast BC
Country: Canada
Vessel Name: Badger
Vessel Model: 30' Sundowner Tug
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,402
Thanks for letting us know, John. Reaching out on an online forum can be very helpful, as I found out while quiting drinking...there's something cathartic about it even though distances are great and many are strangers.

Hopefully your transition through this time will be as smooth as possible. Also hope you find peace on your boat, and that in some way you feel it is still a shared experience with your wife.

Take care,

"The most interesting path between two points is not a straight line" Murray Minchin
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Old 08-17-2015, 08:52 PM   #8
City: Hotel, CA
Country: Fried
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 7,577
Feel free to reach out anytime John either on the board or via PM. It saddened me a year or so ago when you shared a bit of what you've been going through. My prayer is that your heart finds peace in the middle of this roller coaster.
Craig - AKA Some Clueless Idiot

The person who is saying something is impossible should not interrupt the person who is doing it.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:00 PM   #9
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City: Fort Myers, FL... Summers in Crisfield, MD
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Slow Hand
Vessel Model: Cherubini Independence 45
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 3,380
John, very sorry for your loss. You will never forget. Focus on the good memories. The pain and the roller coaster will pass. Concentrate on your boat. Idle time is the worst time when you're trying to move ahead.

I'm tired of fast moves, I've got a slow groove, on my mind.....
I want to spend some time, Not come and go in a heated rush.....
"Slow Hand" by The Pointer Sisters
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:05 PM   #10
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City: Vallejo CA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Carquinez Coot
Vessel Model: 2011 Seahorse Marine Coot hull #6
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 9,113
My almost-97-year-old father has outlived a son, two wives, and last night, a long-term companion. Fortunately, she was in good spirits last night, enjoying dinner and an evening movie, but left us in the middle of the night. Fortunately, the multi-generation Pierces and companions gathered to enjoy the play "Mary Poppins" and a restaurant meal last month.

It will be hard, but there can be joy and hope ahead if you want.
Kar-KEEN-ez Koot
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:31 PM   #11
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City: Sitka
Country: Same
Vessel Model: Transpacific Marine Eagle 32
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 405
John, may peace enter your life and comfort you.
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:33 PM   #12
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City: Victoria TX
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bijou
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 2,160

My sincerest condolences. I agree with others that reaching out here on TF could be cathartic. If there is anything I can do please let me know.

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Old 08-17-2015, 09:39 PM   #13
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City: Longboat Key, FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Bucky
Vessel Model: Krogen Manatee 36 North Sea
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,836
Only last year, our esteemed member, Skipperdude, also lost his 1st mate. It was really good to see Skip come back and share with us again recently. It's great to have you share your sadness here now….you've been through so much. There's a bunch of us here on the Gulf Coast and it's time we get together to talk about whatever is important to us, heck, even boating. Anyway, just keep doing it the way you are. Single handling the boat may become a whole new adventure……different, yes, but how bad could it be for you to be cruising up the ICW, standing outside the pilothouse, coffee in hand, wind in your face. It's healing and you've got to do a lot of that now. Stay in touch.

"I'd rather be happy than dignified".
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Old 08-17-2015, 09:52 PM   #14
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 5,861
Please accept my kind thoughts for you in this sadness. In my experience, no matter how much you expect the loss of a loved one, you are never prepared when it happens. Your first cruise alone will be hard, but it may also a great comfort, as you adjust to your changed life.
Island Gypsy 36 Europa "Doriana"
Sydney Australia
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:04 PM   #15
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City: Brisbane River
Country: Australia
Vessel Name: Insequent
Vessel Model: Ocean Alexander 50 Mk I
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 912
John, I extend my condolences and best wishes along with others above.

I lost my wife to cancer some years ago, and it does take a while to get to a new normal. Its rough on the whole family during the decline, but the stress levels do go down fairly quickly thank goodness. Do stuff, and particularly get some water moving under Sue Marie's keel as often as you can. Delay any big decisions that don't need to be made straightaway - in a few months time you might have different perspectives. And do catch up with the Gulf Coast TF folks, even if just for a quick coffee or sundowner. Even from this distance I can tell that there are some top people right close by to you.

Singlehanding is pretty easy really, and very satisfying. Just a bit more planning.
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:09 PM   #16
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City: AR
Country: USA
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 891
I lost my husband to a 3 year losing battle with multiple myeloma and my mother to a 7 year descent into the hell that is Alzheimers. There came a time with both of them when I prayed for their suffering to be over. But no matter how ready you think you are, no matter how much you want that day to come, when it does you aren't ready at all. So I think I know what you must be going through, and my prayers are with you.
© 2016 Peggie Hall
Specializing in marine sanitation since '87.
Author "The NEW Get Rid of Boat Odors"
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:10 PM   #17
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City: Sarasota/Ft. Lauderdale
Country: USA
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 4,552
Good luck and best wishes on your new journey. As others have said, you will never be alone on that boat.
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:14 PM   #18
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City: Tri Cities, WA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Beachcomber
Vessel Model: Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 2,149
John, I can't begin to feel what you're feeling but let me suggest that you take both Sue Marie's out and spend some quiet time with just your thoughts. All three of you will appreciate the time aboard.
Mike and Tina
Beachcomber 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:27 PM   #19
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City: Sidney BC
Country: Canada
Vessel Name: Rochepoint
Vessel Model: Cheer Men PT38 Sedan
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,057
Our condolences, remember the good times together.....forget the bad. Agree with GFC's post take time on the boat and appreciate some quiet time.
Mike Barge
MV Rochepoint
Sidney, British Columbia.
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:41 PM   #20
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City: Santa Cruz, CA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Frisky
Vessel Model: 99 Nordic Tug
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,083
There is a gentleman at our marina who has a mainship 34. His wife has Alzheimer as well. He has a caregiver that comes every other Saturday or so for 4 hours that allow him to putter around on his boat for a few hours. The boat hasn't left the slip that I know of, but he is there, getting his little bit of time in and I can tell he enjoys his precious few hours. I always make sure to go say hello to him when I see him aboard.

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