This is the first time I have been on any type of site like this.
I am approaching the 2nd year anniversary of my late husband's death, 7-28-13. I took the first year to mourn, grieve the loss of my spouse, healing from all the pain, hurt of a 34 year marriage to an alcoholic and all that entails. My healing was miraculous. Prior to my husband's death, complete, utter, unconditional forgiveness was the gift the Divine gave to me. Jay and I had no unresolved issues between us. Sad that it took cancer to get there. I began having issues within, sought the advice and help of my therapist. I discovered that although I had dealt with the death of my spouse, it was the "best friend" side of our relationship that I had not. I realized that it was OK to grieve this loss and process through mourning this loss.
I would go to my mom and share my struggles about the "losing my best friend". She was such a help to me. Then, my mom's cancer returned for the 3rd time, treatment not successful, she died right before Mother's Day this year. I stood as a rock to my 3 kids, my mom's loss rocked my universe as well as theirs. She was there for each of them after their dad died. She was the one I talked to about everything. I find that I am overcome with sorrow and miss my mom so very much. I must gift myself time to cry, to process. My heart still aches for my children and the two enormous losses they have had these last two years. I know that I must put myself first, as they are all adults, yet, I still hurt for them.
I did attend a widows group that had just begun at a Catholic Church here, I was by far the youngest in the group. It was of great help to me, at the time, (just after my husband's death), what was difficult was I did not have decades of a wonderful marriage to share about, my marriage was tumultuous at times and great at times. There was no one there who had journeyed the path of addiction. I did not have a place to share my heart.
To heal, I made a commitment to myself that, for one year, on the 28th of each month, I would write my late husband a letter. In that letter, I shared what was going on in the lives of each of our children, the good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful. I shared the emotions I was experiencing. I literally would sit at my computer and weep, purge, then leave my task feeling such freedom. On the one year anniversary of Jay's death, I and 2 of our 3 children (both of whom live out of town), each sent up a paper lantern at about the same time. I went to "our" park, talked, laughed, cried, danced (I'm sure looking like a crazy person if anyone could see me), telling Jay that I had to now let all that was, go. I left that park feeling liberation unlike anything I had ever felt before. I felt like I was gaining the strength I needed to venture forth as a single person.
Since my husband's death, I have become a grandmother to 3 beautiful granddaughters (twins plus one). How blessed I am. At times, when I find that pity is knocking at my door, I fall into the pit of "this was not how it was supposed to be". I think that I need to "cut myself some slack" here and realize that now my "firsts" will be joy filled "firsts" as a single person. Although life does not always fit our script, it does fit the script written for uniquely for me. I can then focus on the positives that surround me each and every day. So it is with joy and trepidation that I am taking my "first" steps forward as a not by choice single person to embrace this beautiful world that awaits.