You Are Not Alone

Widowed people created Soaring Spirits because we discovered that connecting with other widowed people made the challenges of surviving a spouse or partner a little easier to manage.

There is a widowed community here at Soaring Spirits that offers widowed men and women understanding, friendship, inspiration, and encouragement as they learn to live without the person with whom they intended to spend the rest of their lives. 

Soaring Spirits communities, both online and in-person, are diverse, inclusive, secular, and positive. We share resources, ideas, energy, and most importantly, hope.

We believe that hope matters.


Live Forward

In less than one month it will be three years since Mike died.  With time and a lot of processing, the truth of his death has slowly leached into every cell of my body.  And, despite my initial rebellion against his death, my heart is finally no longer resisting what my mind understands.  Mike is gone.  He died. 

Even now, it is unthinkable that I will never share another moment with him, but this is a fact whether I like it or not.  Early on, every fibre of my being fought to survive without him.  Still, despite my efforts, a part of me died with him.  But, further, a big part of me also survived Mike's death.  And, it is this part of me who is fighting to live forward.


I have come to realize that it is Mike's death.  Not mine.  I did not die. 


In the early months I thought I might die from sadness.  But, I didn't, and neither will you.  For the last 2.11 years, I have chosen to focus on the living part of me.  The part of me that was not buried with Mike.  Sure, absolutely, I miss the person I used to be, but the life in which that woman existed died with him. It's over.  It is gone.  All of it - everything we were together - simply vanished when Mike died. Our life was built on solid ground, but when he died, everything imploded and what was once solid quickly turned into a quagmire of uncertainty.  I lost Mike and my identity.  Everything that I thought was certain  disappeared. My life was no longer recognizable to me.  And, in truth, it still isn’t nearly three years later. 

I lost my footing when Mike died and I have been fighting to recover it ever since.  Every day, I struggle to stay grounded here in this reality.  It remains my instinct to retreat to a place in my mind where I keep Mike alive.  But, my sensibilities urge me to live forward without the man I love.  So, for nearly three long years, I have worked to  find order among the wreckage of my life. 

Without him, my axis is off kilter.  I feel like I am spinning and without a sense of direction.  It’s been a long, long  road - and this is understating it.  Grief has been my constant companion since the moment I heard “he’s dead”.  Those two small words changed my life completely.  However,  I try hard not to focus on Mike’s deadness,  Instead I try to be grateful for his life.  A life he chose to share part of with me.  For me, there is no point in perseverating about what has been lost.  It’s gone.  Nothing can reverse any of it.  He is dead.  He is gone and I am left here without him.  Blunt.  Maybe.  But, what other way is there to describe the situation? 



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What's hard for Two Widowed People in Love: Card Canceling

Today Mike and I are writing together about a topic that our Friday writer Kelley asked about recently. Most people assume it is easier to be in a relationship with another widowed person when you are widowed. And it's true, a lot of things are simplified when you understand each other's loss. Kelley was curious to know what some of the specific challenges are when you have two widowed people in a relationship, so we thought we'd write a few posts on the topic... 

The first thing I thought of in relation to this question is that your widow card is basically canceled out. There is no way to leverage that card to your advantage during a fight when your partner has been through exactly as horrible of a loss too. I do know from others who have dated or married someone non-widowed, that it’s extremely tempting to use that widow card to trump their arguments and opinions. When I was with Drew, there were times that I used my “dead parents card” to trump him in fights or conjure up some extra pity and attention for myself. They aren’t proud moments, but I think it’s a very normal temptation to want to use victim tactics when you’ve been through a lot. 

That doesn’t work in a relationship with two widowed people. Even at times when we do try to lay down the widow card to trump each other, it doesn't really fly. We both have experienced losses in very different ways that are unfathomable to the other person… so there’s no hiding behind trump cards to manipulate a situation in our favor. 


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Approaching a Year

These past few weeks have been incredibly hard for me. I’ve been reliving what happened last year. It’s not that I welcome these thoughts, it’s that my brain keeps bringing them up. I remember the last lunch that we had as a family, just the day before my husband’s accident. I remember my daughter and I went to go have lunch with at his work. It bothered me that day that he didn’t like the color of my lipstick and made a joke out of it. Which seems so ridiculous now. It was a beautiful day though. We sat together in the courtyard and we had Asian cuisine. He held our baby girl and fed her, as we shared our last lunch. We joked and talked about our plans for that weekend. Life seemed so beautiful. 

That evening, when we all got home, he made me our last dinner together. He made me shrimp with a quinoa salad. It was delicious! He read a book to our baby girl and put her down for the very last time. After our daughter was down for the night, we went outside to our backyard and enjoyed a nice glass of wine. That night he told me that he wished I could step into his shoes to know how much he loved me. He had said that in a serious manner, which was normally not my husband. Those words had so much depth and sincerity, and little did I know I would never hear those words again. 

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