Summer is winding down and I have no idea where the time went. And when I say I have no idea, I mean it both figuratively and literally. Figuratively, because the time has flown by as it always does, and literally because I cannot remember what I did for the last two months. Honestly. I feel like my brain doesn’t work anymore at all. Is this to be a life long by product of Ben’s death?
Ben’s gone forever. Did he have to take my brain with him?Read more
It's been a busy week, and the highlight was a visit with my friend Margaret who flew in for a nice long weekend from her home in the Bay area. Her husband Dave, who was healthy and fit, died of a sudden, massive stroke at age 50 three months after Mike died, and she and I were put together by mutual friends and family who saw us both falling apart and thought we might benefit from a friendship. They were right.
We have a lot in common, being suddenly and unexpectedly widowed in middle age, and without our own children (I have two beautiful adult stepdaughters). When life throws you a curveball like this - well, having someone with which to share the burden of grief, who reallygets what you're going through, can make all the difference. We spent those early days emailing, texting and chatting like mad, sobbing and laughing together nearly every day, and I went to meet her in SF when I was there to visit family the summer before last.Read more
Ok, "rose" isn't exactly the first term that comes to mind when thinking of widow, but I'll go with the literary, Shakespearian reference for this post.
I could be posting on getting through the third anniversary of Ian getting sick, which coincided with his birthday on St Patrick's Day.
But much to my surprise, that anniversary passed without too much impact. Much like his surgery date. I guess the best term to use is that the anniversaries now feel 'integrated' into my life, rather than sharp, stark periods.
"No one can tell what goes on in between the person you were and the person you become. No one can chart that blue and lonely section of hell. There are no maps of the change. You just come out the other side.
Or you don’t."
I will apologize in advance for my perhaps over-use of metaphor. But I guess that’s just how my mind works, because the other night as I lay in bed thinking about everything, I had a sudden vision of myself as a patchwork doll.
I was thinking about the person I was, and the life I had, before I met Mike. All the places I went, people I knew, things I did. How I used to perceive the world, and my life. Then I drifted into the years I spent with him and how much he changed me - how much I grew and developed during that chapter of my life, knowing him, and being married.Read more
Our culture, I think, is filled with contradictions. In general and most certainly when it comes to grief. Here's a few I've encountered.
People love a good love story. The public especially seems to admire and go awww when a couple long married, die within hours of each other, unable, even unconsciously, to face life without one another.
When we're widowed, and speak of not wishing to go on without our loved one, there is an immediate rush of but you must he/she would want you to be happy, you have to live for both of you now you can't give up it isn't healthy to think that way!
I'm filling in for Kelley Lynn today, she will be back next week! This post was written about four years after Phil died. It's amazing how the written words mean the same thing literally, but six years later their figurative meaning has shifted yet again.Read more
“We envy others, for we see their lives in broad outline, while forced to live ours in every detail.”
— Robert Brault
I'm leading a weekend with a group of widows for our organization and there was one commonality within the group:Read more
...... the way I expected it to look ...... 6 years ago.
Six years ago he was still alive.
Although for only 14 more days, unbeknownst to any of us.
Over the years, I remember looking at people I knew, who had lost their spouse, and wondering, "What were they thinking 24 hours before?" Seriously. I thought that. I wondered.
I don't know why.
But I did.
I have decided to carry on Michele's theme of "What I Miss" on Sunday. Because for the past week or so one fact has been glaring me in the face ..... and all over me:
I miss being physically touched.