Learning to love again
Learning to love.
I have been told "you do not learn to love, you either love or you don't".
At least for a widow/widower.
When the love of your heart & life has been stripped out of your arms, your world is shaken to the core.
You question everything from that moment forward.
Your worth. Your value.
You even question your shortcomings, faults and failures.
So many "should have's", "could have's", "wanted to's".
Second guessing literally everything - to the point of madness at times.
There is a rebuilding from the brokenness, from the ashes.
So, yes, there is a learning to love again.
It takes time.
No one can tell you how long it takes.
No one can say what you should, or should not, be or do or go or say.
Even in learning to love your children & grandchildren again.
Where before death you loved them as part of 2.
Now after death, you love them for both - for your own heart, and for the one who died.
You realize something - those children & grandchildren do not deserve to be loved LESS, just because of the loss.
In order to love them for both - YES, there is a learning of HOW-TO.
You learn to love your friends, as one.
For me, that has been a challenge, and it continues.
Rick & I had our "own friends", yes. But not as many as we had "our friends".
Now that I am not an "our" - well, it certainly changes the dynamics.
I am trying to understand that my contact, my presence, is a vivid reminder of his absence.
Therefore, being around me, even just texting or talking, has become uncomfortable.
Whether it is the absence of my husband, or the presence of my grief - perhaps it is a combination of both. Either way, there is a deeper alone-ness than just being without Rick.
I am learning, sadly, that more often than I care to admit, it is better to just love someone from afar.
I tell myself that people are like the ebbs and flows of the tide - some people come, some people go ...
and some just take the trash out to sea.
You even learn how to love your family.
You wouldn't think this would be so hard.
Yet, it is.
When you became an "our", or a "we", your attention became divided.
Even if you stayed in contact with your family & friends, it was a divided contact.
Now? You aren't the same person as you were before you became a "we".
Yet, no longer are you a "we".
The death of your spouse and life partner changes everything.
Every single thing.
I no longer eat the same way.
I certainly do not watch TV the same way.
Oh how I miss the morning after a show conversations over coffee!
My finances have changed, drastically.
I do not even breathe the same as I used to, not sure if I was breathing for the two of us then - - or now.
My body has gone thru changes these months since he died. I just thought going thru menopause was rough!
Hobbies & interests? Where do I even begin to describe the changes there?
Virtually non-existent for months ... just now finding my way thru the fog and looking for something to occupy my hands, my time, my mind.
My sense of security is gone. No longer do I know without question that someone has my back - - and my heart.
The realization of being alone hits hard, time after time.
As I lay down at night ... and as I rise up in the mornings.
This has given me a, shall we say "unique", sense of humor.
I wonder if I am even still a woman at times.
Then when the woman in me began to wake up, thoughts & desires finding their way thru the darkness of grief - I wish she had just stayed asleep, quiet, and left me the Hell alone.
This is a life that I never asked for ... I don't want it either.
I was a good wife - a damn good wife.
For 35 years.
I don't do this hard, gut wrenching, life changing widow walk very well ... at all.
So, YES - we LEARN to love, to laugh & to live again.
It doesn't come easy.
3/7/2018 05:06:49 pm
Thank you for posting. Will be 2 years on May for me.
1/24/2021 03:53:16 pm
I am so sorry for your loss. I don't know why I was not notified of this comment before now. I apologize! ((( hope you are doing ok ))) thinking of you today!
3/8/2018 03:21:20 am
I lost my second husband in 2012 we had been together for almost 8yrs. He was killed in an accident while I was at work one night. I thought I would never love again or even be able to breathe but two yrs later another man walked into my life and swept me off my feet and showed me that I could love again, made me able to listen to my music again and just made me feel so much better. I could remember Rick and still miss him and still love bc I knew that Rick would want me to go on. Then in January of last yr Sadly that man too left me, he was only 39. This time I was at home with him. We had had an argument and I went to bed and he stayed up, I am a registered nurse and the guilt I felt was unimaginable bc he had died on my watch. The depression I fell into was so deep that I didn't feel like getting out of bed, eating seeing my children. I didn't even wat to live anymore. My work family rallied around me, a few friends and family called daily to check on me and some days nothing. Their lives all went on and I was stuck, left to muddle through all of this and try to make sense of why it all happened. I was a true zombie, I went to work and came home. This time my kids were old enough that I didn't have them to care for and keep my mind off of everything. So I worked and became close to patients at work and had one friend that became my sister through it all. A few months later someone very special to her passed away and I was there to help her deal with it. Together we have muddled through the last yr together. I used to hate when people would tell me they were so sorry, or I just needed to move on, these statements they thought were endearing and helpful but they only made me scream on the inside. There is no moving on until your heart is ready there is no just get over it. Even when and if you do find love again that piece of your heart will always be broken and no one can fill that void. Insomia, weight loss, depression they are your brains way of dealing with the pain that your heart cannot bear. I'm doing better these days but my heart hurts everyday and my mind wanders to them both daily. I read your post on Facebook tonight and it touched my soul bc I can say that I've been there and I'm surviving. With a little help from friends and a few family members and my children. I'm still breathing today bc friends cared enough to drag me out and care for my broken heart to help me see that my husbands wouldn't have wanted me to waste away in bed. To love them and to celebrate the things I loved about them. Thank you for posting.
3/10/2018 08:42:04 am
Hello Coffee Love,
3/10/2018 02:03:55 pm
Need your thoughts
3/11/2018 08:32:08 am
Thank you so much for expressing in your words so much of the pain in my heart & soul....Mike & I became best friends when I was a freshman in college at age 17 and we knew from the moment on that we were soul mates-life partner-the best part of me...I feel that someone has cut me in half with a chainsaw....not precise like a surgery but, jagged, torn and always pain....the 1st anniversary of his passing this week..it hasn't been any easier....so lost & lonely...God & Mike have sent me 3 more Gand children for us to love... a future without the love of my life & most days I really don't want to go on without him, but, for our 4 children & 5 beautiful grand children I have to give them unconditional love for both of us...
3/11/2018 01:56:18 pm
I know this feeling well because I live it.. it's all true . Was married 38 years, he passed away 18 years ago in July . I miss him every moment of my life 😢❤️❤️❤️ Joe
3/13/2018 07:16:57 am
I lost my husband five years ago to ALS. I've read many books on grief and none come close to capturing all the feelings and phases as your piece does. Thank you.
1/24/2021 04:02:44 pm
I am humbled and honored at all your comments. I have tried to respond, but sadly something is going on with this website. Must get it fixed!!!
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So why "Scattered Feathers" ? ? ?
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