Today's post is really for all of the "newer" women who are on this path ...... the one we didn't want to be on, the club we didn't want to join.
I was trying to think of what to say to a new friend whose husband died a few months ago. She is in the middle of what I call the "black". I am not a veteran in this process, by any stretch of the imagination. But I can see that I'm slowly moving forward. And so I wanted to encourage her, and those of you who are in the "black".
My heart is so heavy for each one of you. I wish there was something I could say, something I could do to take some of the pain off of you. But I can't, can I?
All I can do is let you know that I am here (as are the other women on this site) ...... that you are not as alone as you feel (which is horribly, horribly alone) ..... and that the blackness surrounding you will one day ...... I promise ..... turn to a lighter shade of grey. And when you've realized it has become grey ...... you'll realize that you're stronger than you thought you were, you'll be surprised at how many "after" days are now behind you, and you'll be amazed that you're still here.
No, you won't like it any better, but it will be a bit easier to breathe. You'll still hate the "firsts" (which never seem to end) but you'll realize that you've survived too many to count.
I don't think you ever "get better", but you can feel better. I don't think you "move on" .... I think you "move forward" .... one step at a time. And I don't believe that in moving forward you leave your husband behind. He's right there with you, cheering on each of those hard-earned footsteps.
And he will be so happy when the day comes that you realize that you are smiling more ..... and maybe, just maybe, even laughing once in a while.
That day WILL come. Just be patient with yourself until then ..... and give yourself permission to grieve in whatever way you need.
Give yourself a little grace ..... and time. Take all the time you need to move forward. Don't let anyone pressure you into being someone or doing something you're not ready for.
Only you will know what is best for you.
And though I am not a veteran ..... and am not sure I'll ever consider myself one ..... I do promise you that you will one day look up ...... and find that your world has turned to a lighter shade of grey.
And I imagine that it might just slowly continue to turn lighter.
I'll keep you posted.