Patrick Swayze's widow Lisa Niemi discusses grief on 'Oprah'
Lisa Niemi, Patrick Swayze’s widow, was on Oprah today for her first TV interview, after an appearance earlier this week at the Women’s Conference 2009 roundtable on grief. Niemi told Oprah that she struggled with the shift from medical treatment to palliative care, and that she “feel[s] like he hasn’t left.” She also discussed the couple’s temporary separation in 2003 due to Swayze’s alcohol abuse at the time. “He was imploding pretty badly,” Niemi, his wife of 34 years, said. She described Swayze’s diagnosis with pancreatic cancer as “mind-numbing,” but said the two didn’t discuss death because they were “too positive.” “We were what we called optimist realists,” she said. More on the interview can be found on Oprah’s website.