jackie.jpgNine months after Jeff died, my beloved grandfather joined him in the great fishing grounds in the sky. My grandmother was, understandably bereft. She asked me, "Does it ever begin to feel any better?" In that moment, I was struck by one thing. We were now not only linked by blood and family, but by the kinship of grieving our spouse.

Marriage always ends. Either by divorce or death. I am unaware of a "sister/brotherhood of divorcees" as, fortunately, I have not had to endure this. But I have definitely become part of the fraternity known as "widowed".

I am so very often struck by the kinship and kindness that runs through this group. The nods of understanding and the gentle acknowledgement of each other's pain. Whether 20 or 80, we understand. The details are always different, but the pain of loss is always the same.

Us widows? We have each other's backs. We stand up for each other. We support each other. And we assist each other.

If I have to be part of either group, although I hate what has brought me here, I am glad to share it with all of you. Thank you for holding my hand, laughing with me through hysterics, helping me to jump my hurdles and lending an ear.

Let's all remember to be empathetic and sensitive to each other. Because at times, we are the only ones who understand. And I want each and every one of you to know how much you are appreciated.

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