Kate Garraway has opened up about the one big milestone her husband Derek Draper will miss this autumn, as he continues to recover in hospital.
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Speaking to HELLO! in this week's issue, Kate said: "I have been living at the end of the phone 24/7, waiting for news of Derek. But the doctors have warned that his condition could persist for years so I have to get on with life whilst we are waiting for him to get better."
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Referencing her son Billy's milestone, she said: "Billy starts secondary school in September, but Derek's doctors say he won't be out of hospital by then. My priority is to make the children feel safe, not to let them see me feeling vulnerable in the world where Derek was my rock.
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"So that they don't see me cry, I lock myself in the bathroom and tell them I'm washing my hair. I run the bath to drown out my sobs."
Kate pictured with her husband Derek last year
Derek would often do the school run while Kate worked at Good Morning Britain and Smooth Radio. The brave star, 53, also revealed that doctors had advised her to return to work and form some normality in her life.
"They've told me that I need to go back to work and create a routine in our lives again," said Kate, who will be back on GMB on Monday alongside Ben Shephard. "The children and Derek are all I've thought about and they're the most important people in my life, but I must create structure and normality for the children, to clean the bath, put the plates in the dishwasher, and tidy the house.
"I also need to get back to work so that I can provide for the children and we can do things together, to make them feel that the light hasn't gone out of their lives, that there's hope for the future."
Kate shared this hilarious photo of her son back in March
Derek was admitted to hospital in March with coronavirus. The former political adviser, now a psychologist, was placed in an induced coma. He has since emerged from a deeper coma into a minimum state of consciousness and in a recent breakthrough he opened his eyes.
Although Derek remains verbally unresponsive and doctors warn he could persist in his current state, there are encouraging signs that he can hear, and Kate – who has not been able to visit due to current hospital regulations – remains positive.
"Derek was the biggest advocate of cracking on and I hear his voice in my head telling me: 'Come on, you've got to get going,'" she said. "I just keep focusing on all the positive things: that Derek's still here and there are flickers of him getting stronger. And I've got to give him a good life to come back to. I still believe he'll get better and come home."
Pick up this week's issue of HELLO! magazine out now for the full interview and exclusive photos.
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