Dear Wonderful Widows!
When Anneke was eight, a year after Mike died, I dropped her off at her Tae Kwon Do lesson and I was so relieved to have time alone that I forgot to pick her up. Forty-five minutes later as I unpacked the groceries she walked in the house having gotten a ride home from her instructor. She was incredulous and outraged. “You forgot me! You actually forgot me!” I was speechless. My daughter who forgives almost anything did not forgive this for a long time. A child who has been abandoned by her father does not take well to being forgotten by her mother. I had visions of the instructor reporting me to DSS.
It's Thursday. As I lay in my bed pondering all the emotions I've traveled through this week... I can't help but smile and shake my head... Wow. Where the heck did I go this week?? And how did I get back?!
Have you ever traveled through the depths of the "valley" of grief and lost recognition of who you are? I think and say things that surprise even myself while I'm making my way through the dark. I speak of doubt and my thoughts are easily consumed by hopelessness. I become lazy as the remote control becomes my best ally, my social skills go down the tubes, and I see no end.
The weather on the day of Daniel's funeral was spectacular. It was early November, 75 degrees and beautifully sunny. When they covered his grave, all of the funeral flowers were placed on top of it. Although the service was long over, family and friends still lingered, and no one seemed ready to leave. I know for me it was a finality I wasn't yet ready to experience. The kids were playing in the cemetery, picking flowers, running around the headstones, finding the joy in the situation as kids tend to do. I have a very clear memory of watching my son with his cousins as they each picked a flower to keep in Daniel's memory.Read more
There is not much I wouldn't do for my three kids. You know, jump in front of an on-coming train to save their lives, feed them first from my last ration of bread, offer myself as a meal for the hungry bear that is chasing them...pretty much anything.
In the normal course of life moms feed, bathe, clothe, soothe, encourage, celebrate, hold, hug, and protect their little ones through the bumps and bruises associated with living, learning and loving. But when death came knocking, I couldn't protect them.
Wishing someone a good day or a nice holiday weekend seems innocuous enough most of the time...but as a new widow well meant wishes from family, friends or strangers struck me like arrows. How exactly am I supposed to have a good day? Why do I care about this holiday? Have you forgotten for a moment that my husband is dead? Some days I could accept the kind words for what they were, other days I lashed out at unsuspecting humans with no screen for the kind of pain I was in.
So today, at my own personal risk, I am going to wish those of you who celebrate this day a Happy Easter. Yes, you heard me right, Happy Easter.
Dreams take on a whole new meaning after the loss of your soul mate. They are a realm you travel to each night, with their population and surroundings always a mystery. Sometimes I have dreams in which I see my love; that smile, that face, that counterpart of my being. There have been times I've been able to speak with him and other times in which I feel as if he cannot see me. There are times in which I am conscious of the fact that he is not alive and times when I feel that I've been thrown into a time machine taking me to a time when he was still here.Read more
I saw him. Seven months after he died, I saw him. I was standing outside the Coffee Obsession, and I swear to God, I saw him. It was Mike. He was about three blocks away and talking to a lady. I couldn’t see who she was, but it looked like he was giving her directions as he pointed down the street.
I stood frozen. I knew it wasn’t him. It couldn’t be him. He was gone and I had cried for seven months.
But there he was. It was Mike. It seemed like they talked forever. I was sure he was smiling.
I wanted to get a closer look.
Have you ever had to lie to protect yourself? To protect what's left of you?
I thought I was ready to go back to work 3 months after David was killed. I have no particular logic as to why I thought it was time to mingle with the "others" but I assumed if I just refused eye contact I'd be OK.
If there's one thing you can count on while on this road through widowhood (and there's not much!) ..... it's how constantly inconsistent everything seems to be ....... especially, but not limited to, our emotions.
I used to think I was crazy ..... early on the path. I mean, after the first few months of black blurriness, I started to emerge once in a while. And then I'd realize, at the end of a day, that that day had not been too bad. If fact, I might have almost called it "good" if that word hadn't seemed so inappropriate!Read more