My heart is raw. It breaks open easily. It doesn't take much. Another memory of the life I lost when Mike died. Another tragic story from another new member of our terrible club. Another heartbreak from a fellow widow having made the effort to find new love and life and been hurt. Another day of pain and sadness in a friend's ongoing attempt to move forward without a beloved partner. Another outcry from a wounded fellow traveler. Another experience of the unfair circumstances that befall any and each of us as survivors.
My heart is broken. I am broken. We are broken.Read more
I was talking to a widowed friend the other night about the whole idea of sharing this part of our life and how it changes over time. I remember well the first year after my fiance died. The first thing out of my mouth was this information. I told everyone and anyone. Friends, family, coworkers, customers, the mail man, police officers, the tech support guy, random strangers... No one was safe. I spewed my raw pain out all over the world like a continually erupting volcano.
My friend did the same. We talked about how at first, it is the only thing we wanted to talk about. It is the only thing that mattered. And for a while, it really did swallow up our identity. And we talked about how we felt like we lost the whole rest of our identity for a time to the label "widow". Which left us both feeling conflicted - simultaneously wanting to be completely defined by our love for this person, and resentful that people now only saw us as a widow.Read more
Chuck's first anniversary just passed. We had a remembrance for him and danced for the love he left behind for all of us. But I also needed, somehow, to mark this past year in a very personal way that was about me and who I am now and who I'm becoming. Who I want to be for the rest of my life. Thinking about it became a spiritual mediation for me and I wanted to translate that into something tangible.
I'm devastated to be without Chuck. He was my world, my universe, my heart, and I'm broken into pieces without him. But that isn't a bad thing. Broken pieces allow the light to shine forth and that's what I wanted to see into reality after this first year.
It's that time of year again. I've marched towards today for the past month and a half. Grumpy one day, fine the next - I think most of my family has felt the uncertainty of my moods but they have hung in there. This year was different for a couple of reasons - one, I forgot the day the march starts. Let me clarify that though, my conscious mind wasn't thinking about the day, but my subconscious was right on target. I was obviously in a sour-ish mood and I couldn't explain why. It was only a couple of days later that I realized the dates and figured it out. I think your entire body chemistry is changed by grief. My body grieves even when my mind isn't fully engaged - I have less energy, I'm more prone to getting sick. It's just weird.Read more
When he died, my faith died.
Faith in a god, life, living...
There was only one thing I wanted to believe, that he'd come back home.
When that didn't come to fruition, it was believing that life would end shortly thereafter.
It wouldn't change until I started believing.Read more
I wrote this post on my personal blog back in April of 2012, but it was ringing in my ears this week, as I was trying to remember details and was getting frustrated about the pieces I couldn't recover.
I had a horrifying experience this week:
I couldn't remember.Read more
.... like this picture of Jim .... no longer make me cry.
Well, the majority of the time.
There are always "one of those days/weeks", but they are few and far between now.
.... is different from moving on.
Moving on implies forgetting what is past.
Moving forward is more difficult. It involves carrying the past with you while you walk forward one step at a time. Never forgetting, but continuing to breathe and live.
Some days I can accomplish this.
Some days I can't.
Some days the past feels too heavy to carry with me.
But I'm getting there.Read more
The epitaph on Chris’s grave marker says, “Music Was My Refuge.” It is a most appropriate way to remember a man who was a church choir director, a pianist and an organist, a community theater actor, a Norwegian Folk dancer, and a longtime patron of the opera and symphony.Read more
Here in the North East, most public schools began their fall sessions this week.
My sister, a first grade teacher, told me in an email that never in her life had she heard so much crying, five and six year olds being asked to leave their parents, many for the first time. According to my sister, "The sound of sobbing was everywhere."