Seems like being a widower means adjusting my view of the world to an existence of being damaged, marred and/or scarred for the rest of my life. Life is now about managing the constant reminders of love lost. Maybe, just like my poor eyesight, my grief is becoming a deficit that I will have to carry forward as I am constantly reminded of the song, Motherless Children by Blind Willie Johnson and covered by Eric Clapton, Bob Dylan and many others.
Mother’s Day, aka “Dead Mother’s Day,” came and went in the best way possible in these days of widowhood. We completely avoided all the mother celebrations in restaurants. Instead, we packed up most of Anisha’s sports equipment and we spent hours at the park and then came home for Lego, books and music. Sometimes, the best relaxation technique is being alone with my daughter and just focusing on us! Emerging myself in our lives makes dealing with my widowhood a lot easier. I know it sounds cliché, but focusing on my daughter recharges me so that I can deal with the social realities of grief.
I am starting to think that no one really moves on from grief, from the loss of a close loved one. This is probably how many people who have faced serious grief have felt—that society pressures us into acting as if ‘we have moved on.’ People feel more comfortable talking to me if I say I am no longer grieving. “Yes, I’m over it now and I am even dating.” They love, and I mean absolutely love to hear these words, especially the word, “dating.” Being romantic again means that everything in my world is just fine. If I am seeing a new woman, it must mean that I no longer miss Natasha. Also, I will probably not bring up missing my wife if I am being romantic again—at least that is the thoughts I see in the eyes of others when their faces brighten up as they hear those magical words, “I am dating again.”
Why does life have to be so much about bowing down to people with low self-esteem? You know, the ones who are terrified to discuss many of the most important topics about our existence, such as hospitals, death, funerals, memorials, cosmology or any other topic that challenges a person’s worldview.
I know that wisdom comes from life experience and that it is misguided of me to get frustrated with other people’s low self-esteem. I am totally down with the premise that we are all exactly where we should be. It is okay that some people can’t talk about grief, it is not their fault that they haven’t had enough death in their lives. I can no more snap them into my grieving reality, than a senior citizen can force feed a teenager wisdom. The teenager has to gain wisdom by living his/her life with all of its challenges.