My Mom went to live with my sister shortly after my Dad passed away. I became at widow at 56, she, 83. My Mom uses a walker and has a pacemaker so my Dad took care of her for many years. Their lives had been fairly limited for quite some time to their small apartment and she’s never spent more than a few hours alone. I was young compared to my Mom so my life was still healthy and active with plenty to do, like a full time job and many outside activities I shared with my husband. I had to figure out how to do things I never did before, learn to be comfortable with being alone, and find the courage to enjoy all those outside activities on my own. My Mom had a week to prepare for my Dad’s death and she got to tell him what was happening and it was OK to go. My husband died hours before I even knew he was gone, so I didn’t get the chance to tell him anything, including good bye, I love you, and it’s not OK to go. So many differences, and yet we share the same loss.