15 November 2016

A different battle

On Remembrance Sunday I watched a TV interview with a woman about her husband who had fought and died in Afghanistan three years ago. He had left behind a young widow and two very young sons. She was saying how she has good days and bad days; that she wishes he were still here to grow old with her and see the changes in her sons as they grow older. She was later shown walking proudly with all the veterans past the Cenotaph in Whitehall.

It got me thinking.

My husband died in a different battle. Not one against other human beings but against a much more subtle enemy.  Alcohol.  A different enemy but the same outcome. He's not here to see my daughter grow up and develop into a clever young doctor, to walk her down the aisle, see her married or have grandchildren. He's not here to experience a thousand news stories that his own thoughts had shaped in the past - not Brexit, the rise of the Trump, or the countless things that will happen to us all in the future. He's not here to grow old with me.

He's not here.

At least the fallen soldiers are remembered in a way their families can feel proud. For those families who have been devastated by an alcoholic enemy, there is no such redress. In fact most of us carry the burden, the shame and the guilt of having been somehow responsible, even if that is not true. For us, no medal to polish. Not even some foreign field that is forever England.


Flowerpot said...

Sad but true words, Addy. Though as someone else who lost their husband before time, it can happen just due to fate X

Maggie May said...

That's sad but I suppose that's how it seems....... you both fought a long battle but there's no medal.
I think you really deserve one and it's by no means your fault. It's natural to think that after someone dies. I felt the same.

It hurts when you can't tell them the things that have happened since they died. Sometimes I find myself telling him anyway.
Feeling for you.
Maggie x

Valerie said...

I know exactly what you mean. It's not easy, is it? For the first time ever I made myself sit down and watch the Remembrance Day procession and service.... and cried plenty.

hyperCRYPTICal said...

Regrettably there is no medal for those who care (as you did) and in doing so, deny them their great value.
I feel for you too Addy.
Kind regards
Anna :o]

John said...

Medals are seldom given to all those who deserve them but succumbing to an illness should not be a cause of shame either. Many of us and I include myself, have an uneasy relationship with alcohol. It can be a fickle friend, bringing fun one minute and despair the next. Your blog serves to remind us that we need to treat that friend with great caution. Take care.

Knightsfeather said...

For me, I don't fault her one iota for ever having done or not done, said or not said, anything inglorious. It doesn't matter one bit now. Medals or no medals, to me, she lives perfected in my mind.

I do, however, constantly fault myself for all I did or did not do, said or did not say, while she was alive. To which, if she was still alive, would say, "Don't worry about it; it's no big deal." That's how she was.

I often wish, if but for one second, she could know the grief that I endured and still endure since her passing, and perhaps grant me partial absolution for my own shortcomings toward her.



Shammickite said...

I am with you on this, and I have experienced much the same as you have, but have never really put it into words. Not publicly anyway.

Victor Tsan said...

Alcohol probably is even stronger and more dangerous enemy than drugs, because it is officially legalized. However, it kills same way as narcotics and other substances.
Don't let alcohol addiction grow and develop in your body. Fight it immediately at the first signs of addiction. Think about Esperal Implant that contains Disulfiram. Most narcologists believe that this is the best approach for alcoholism cure.