AceShowbiz - Richard E. Grant was caught unprepared by his wife's death - even though she was terminally ill. After losing his wife Joan in 2021 after she was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, the 65-year-old actor admits that he struggled to deal with the heartbreak.
"At 7pm, her breathing slows quite suddenly. Keep repeating, 'It's all okay, my angel. Don't hold on. We all love you so. So, so much.' After each intake of breath, the gap until the next inhalation gets longer. At 7.25, I thought that her hand felt like it was cooling in mine," Richard - who had one daughter, Olivia, with Joan - recalled to the Daily Mail newspaper.
" 'Was I just imagining this? No, it is getting colder. Do I let go of her hand and call Oilly to come? Can't let go now.' Then another breath, and count the seconds before the next one. None comes. She died at 7.30pm."
Richard still has vivid memories of his own response to his wife's death. And although Joan was terminally ill, the actor was unprepared to deal with his grief.
He said, "Let go of her hand and call out for Oilly to come quickly. Feels like my heart is going to explode out of my chest, such is the intensity of this grief. Even though we had warning that this was imminent. Even though we knew that her time was terminally measured out in months, weeks and days. Even though we knew all of this. Nothing can properly prepare us for this moment."
Richard also recalled feeling like he was drowning in grief the day after. He shared, "Moment my eyes opened, was hit by a tsunami of grief. So overwhelming, I felt like I would drown. Her handbag is next to our bed. As is her tapestry kit, with the needle and thread waiting for her next move."
"Make-up on the chest of drawers with a lipstick that's no longer needed. Her pile of bedside books. Her handwriting in her book of crossword puzzles. All hers and yet no her here anymore."