The stars, the moon, the Universe. Something greater and more powerful than I. This is what I need to grasp and know and hold close because I'm foundering within that very Universe. For 24 years I was so certain of where my feet stood, what my life was, and I lived it with passion, appreciating every day of it with my beloved husband. Now that he's gone, I am untethered and unmoored.Read more
Well, here I am in the caves region of Kentucky. Last week I shared about the trip I would be on with my new guy - seeing each other in person for the first time since we met several months ago. As I write this, we're a few days into our trip. He is lying next to me now, munching away on donuts while I write. I'm finally ready to share a bit more about this person with you all... particularly because you may know him more than you think - or at least his writing. He is our very own Tuesday featured writer on Widow's Voice - Mike.
We met at Camp Widow East back in February. I sat down beside this guy at the meet & greet on Thursday night, and for the entire rest of the weekend we were inseparable. We shared our whole stories with one another and laughed more than either of us had in ages. Something certainly clicked... although I had no clue then that it would end up meaning I would fall for someone new and be sitting here states away on some whole other adventure...
There are many things I'm certain of in and of myself:
I am strong.
I am resilient.
I am confident.
I am driven.
I am passionate.
I am a rebel.
I am a lover.
I am a giver.
I am a life embracer.
But I must be honest.
Last year, I found myself challenged.
Something I’ve begun to distinguish since Dave died is clean pain versus dirty pain. I can’t remember the original source of this idea, though I’ve read about the concept several different times.
Clean pain is the pain we feel when we lose someone or something we love dearly. It’s the pain we naturally feel when we’re ripped from something precious. When we watch our love dying, when we begin to face each day without them, when we find out we have a terrible diagnosis, our child is hurt or dying, or our life simply changes in ways we didn’t anticipate or want. It’s natural grief. It’s suffering, and it’s a response to loss.
Dirty pain, on the other hand, is pain we create in our minds, with or without actual loss. Dirty pain isn’t wrong or right. It’s also natural. It’s just optional. Easier said than done, I know.