After we are done creating our personal stories, will need to create a section called "The Appendix". Usually the appendix is a location where reference sheets are added or templates or even samples of work. But as widows, what will be in our appendix? I think my appendix may contain sections for every year I've been widowed. I'm only three years out. So my story would now end with three inserts in my appendix.
The year one section in my appendix will have would have coping strategies on how to deal with loss. Not just the loss of your spouse. But the loss of friendships, family circles and routines. All of which contributed to my depression during year one. Each one played a significant role in my sadness, my isolation and my inner hatred. My story will contain all of the milestones that I had to overcome as a newly widowed individual.
My second year section of my appendix will contain all of the resources that I utilized to help me, to nurture me, to reposition me and to recreate my individual being. This was my worse year thus far. My first year i was numb, but the second year, things become more clear, and the hurt seemed to never go away. But this was also the year that I sought out help. I joined Soaring Spirits International, and began attending camps and using the "Chat Now!" My story will outline the friendships I developed, it will document conversations I've had with people from all over the world who were in the same space as I was. The second year story will talk about my courage, and the voice that developed from within.
My year three which is still in progress will talk about the choices I have made to Live! To find my inner purpose and to live my life on purpose. So the appendix for this chapter will be updated frequently. Now I know it will contain pictures of me smiling again. It will outline all of the services I have performed for Soaring Spirits International and other organizations to help other widows along their path. It will outline activities I participated in, all of which have contributed to my road to happiness. I am still updating my appendix for this year.
I hope that someday, someone will read my story and embrace their widowhood as I have embraced mine and that they take that leap into their next chapter with hope, resilience and faith.