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The third sadiversary of Don’s passing is coming up soon and I don’t know how to feel about that. I do know that I’ve let him go and I am at peace with where he’s at. But I still think of him daily. How could I not? I often feel him still around me. It may seem overly dramatic to quote a well-known poem here but I’m going to do it anyway. It was printed on the remembrance cards handed out at Don’s memorial service and sometimes when I read it, it speaks so softly to me I can barely hear it; other times it shouts out, ”Listen, widow lady!----”
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I give you this one thought to keep –
I am with you still--- do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am a diamond glints on snow,
I am the sunlight on ripened grains,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush,
I am the sweet uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
The soft stars that shine at night.
Do not think of me as gone,
I am with you still in each new dawn.
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Many widows know exactly what I mean when I say sometimes I feel my deceased husband around me. It’s a palatable feeling that probably comes from having known another person so well, you know exactly what they’d say and feel in any given situation. But I’m willing to believe it could go deeper, more mystical than that. If a 3-D copy machine can make real, three dimensional things like car parts---and they can---then why can’t the universe turn three dimensional living beings back into energy forces that can’t be seen? If Man can build a ‘magic machine’ like that then why should we put limitations on what Mother Nature can do? Spirits on another plane of existence? Why not? 
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At my first sadiversary I pronounced my first year of widowhood had been all about survival and as my mission statement for the second year ahead, I proclaimed it would be a year for rebuilding a social life as a single woman. My success at that mission was a mixed bag, given the fact that often it’s a hollow feeling social life that I created with no deep attachments formed. But I get out of the house, see people, and have a little fun here and there. I don’t stay at home doing comedy acts in the dark on the off chance they might entertain a ghost in the house. Recently a fellow blogger posted a comment about my failed attempt to find a few close friends that is worth repeating in this post. Jean from Step into the Future wrote: 
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"After my marriage ended when I was about thirty, I went through something similar regarding friendships. I kept trying to create a single ‘best friend’ pair bond that would have all the emotional characteristics of a good marriage -- one person that, above all others, you can confide in and rely on in the world. It took me many years to realize that friendship is different from marriage and that I need different friendships for different aspects of my life, needs, and interests. It can be an uphill battle, though, because I think our culture is always telling us that meeting our needs with many relationships is inferior to meeting them with just one primary relationship.” 
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She is one smart woman and I’m so glad she shared those wise words here. I get it now, you can’t replace a soul mate like he/she was just goldfish floating at the top of the tank.
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At my second sadiversary (a year ago) I wrote a new mission statement: To seek contentment and I’d give myself a C+ on reaching that goal. I have lots of room for improvement but I don’t have to hang my head in shame. I didn’t stand still emotionally this past year while taking up space here on Widowhood Lane. I feel calmer inside, more in control of managing my expectations. Less desperate because I realize, now, that “being alone in the world” is a false perception that I’d nursed to perfection since Don passed away. It was never true. Family, old friends---they’ll be here if I truly have a need. They can't walk my walk, but they'd be here....
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This week I’m at the dawning of my fourth year of widowhood and I’m still working on a mission statement for the coming twelve months. The fact that I don’t have one might actually be a good sign? Maybe deep inside I know I no longer need a mission statement to motive myself to put one foot in front of the other when I get up in the mornings. I’m tying up loose ends from the past and I’m moving forward into the future. But make no mistake about it, Don may not be here physically but he is woven to the fabric of my life. For better or worse, that will never change and that is something that all widows understand. ©

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Comment by smp1122 on January 22, 2015 at 10:37am

Love this.

Comment by Blue Snow on January 20, 2015 at 4:33pm

Thank you all for the comments! We're all just finding our way the best we can.

Comment by mixelated on January 19, 2015 at 11:09pm

I'm glad you quoted Jean about the nature of friendships vs. marriage. I worry about having these expectations, since I'm in that desperate, alone in the world state. I don't want to set myself up for trying to put that on my friends. Very wise words!

Comment by only1sue on January 18, 2015 at 6:30pm

Eight months behind you I still feel I'm in the settling into some sort of new life feeling. I know some of what I want to do but when I do it it still doesn't feel right.  I like the mission statement idea but have chosen the word for the year instead so this year's is "laugh" and I'm going to get  lot of fun out of it. I want to do quite a  few things to change my life but haven't quite worked out how to do that.  You are like a beacon to me, pointing out the way ahead. 

Comment by lonelyinaz on January 17, 2015 at 6:44pm

Thx for the post, well written, I get it!  Coming into end of two onto three - no real goals yet, but moving towards a "strategic plan" maybe shift this grief into thinking like I need a business plan.  Ok right!!!  Just grateful to be moving towards something!!

Comment by Blue Snow on January 17, 2015 at 6:03pm

I agree that age does make a difference when grieving. The older you are the more often you've been through the process. Thanks for the comment.

Comment by laurajay on January 17, 2015 at 9:45am

After reading your post  I am even more aware of the difference in dealing with our grief based on the age we a re when we are widowed.  How different our attitude at thirty rather than sixty. Needs, abilities  etc vary so much.  But I see that is true whether we are married, widowed or single.  I do not seek any mission other than to continue to seek God's will for the rest of my life and to serve him with a surrendered heart.  Something very different than where I would have been when I was thirty years younger and in the beginning stages of family life.  I have come to understand the role of silence and introspection in ways that surprise me still.   it really does become a matter of whatever floats your boat to reach the right and safe harbor and navigate through this sea of grief.

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