An Eastwood grandmother was given the chance of freedom after slashing her partner with a knife and leaving a kitchen "looking like a murder scene."
When police arrived at his house in the town, Christine Nurse was still there and the attacked man was "caked in blood," a court heard.
The pair had been drinking together and had an argument but went to bed - with Nurse also "covered in blood" because he bled as they slept.
Nurse, aged 52 and homeless at the time, admitted unlawful wounding and had been in custody since the offence on October 26.
Judge Gregory Dickinson QC imposed a one-year prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.
She must obey a curfew between 9pm and 6am at a relative's home and spend 40 sessions of rehab.
He said that the victim could have lost an eye and told her: "There may have been a devastating injury. Thank goodness there was not.
"One slash wound was to the top of the head which required four stitches. As a doctor would say, the others needed superficial treatment."
He pointed out that Nurse only started getting into trouble after the death of "your beloved husband and father of your four children," which left her resorting to drink.
"It is not just the victim and defendant who suffered, it affects family on both sides. You see it time and again, the ripple effect of crime," the judge added.
Jonathan Fountain, prosecuting, said the man had problems with his speech and mobility because of an earlier stroke. He was found "caked in blood" and Mr Fountain said: "Reluctantly, he said Mrs Nurse cut him and pointed to a long knife."
He had been found by a daughter at 1pm on October 26 when the family were unable to contact him and became worried. Mr Fountain went on: "She said the kitchen looked like a murder scene.
"He had six small nicks to the top of the head and a 1.5 inch slash wound to the back of the head."
Simon Eckersley, mitigating, said that it had been a difficult relationship but they felt it was "mutually beneficial." It would not be resumed.
"It is very heartwarming and relatively unusual that Christine Nurse's four children are here," said Mr Eckersley.
Nurse married in her early 20s and was "very much in love" with her husband, giving up work to look after their children.
"After her husband died, she has been depressed. She self-medicated on alcohol," he said.
Nurse managed to stop drinking for a while. As a lager drinker, she had whisky on the night of the attack and that could have played a part.
Mr Eckersley said that she immediately took responsibility. When questioned by police officers, she said: "It is obvious what I have done."