There are many things that make widowhood difficult. Too many to count. Widowhood is reveals who we are as people. It makes your weaknesses all too clear and it can show strengths you never knew you had.
Randy’s death revealed a lot about me, as a person. It seemed like every day I was learning more about myself. There were things I saw that I wasn’t very happy with. Usually though, it was just interesting to see how life changes a person.
When you are a widow, you spend a lot of time by yourself. The grocery shopping, the bank, the laundry, the car maintenance, etc. You usually do it all alone. When you are a widow with children, you do all those things when you can manage to squeeze it in. I found myself going to Wal-Mart and the grocery store at night. It might be 10pm before I walked into the store. I noticed I felt strange.
At first, I wasn’t sure what I was feeling. I was use to feeling sad when I did errands and took care of appointments by myself. Even anxious sometimes. This was different. And then it dawned on me, I was scared. Why would I be scared? Now that I was alone, suddenly I was afraid of the dark?
When I was young, 17 or 18 years old, I used to run errands the same way. Randy would stay at home with the baby and I would make quick runs to the store. Over time, the baby got older and we made a lot of trips together. If we couldn’t do it together, we just didn’t do it. We rarely went out without the other one. In fact, we rarely went out without the kids. It created a dependency that I had no idea existed. I always considered myself independent.
Randy worked nights. I use to taking out the trash, cleaning everything, and dropping the kids off at school. Standing on my own two feet after his death was one thing I didn’t think I had to worry about.
It seems time passes us by faster than we can realize. We were young when we found each other. We were young when he died. Even though we were so young, we still had spent 10 years of our lives together, almost 7 of that was as a married couple. After years with my spouse, I had because reliant on his company. He was my boundary and my security blanket. Now, he was gone and so was my comfort.
I had to learn to live again…without him. I had to regain my independence. Day by day it happened.
If you find yourself feeling anxious or scared, look at what is going on when it happens. Are you afraid of the dark? Before you can work on each piece to become whole, you have to be able to see all the pieces. The worst has already happened, right? Staring down the fear is the first step in the right direction. Whatever happens, it can’t possibly hurt more than losing your spouse. Don’t be afraid to step out of your box and become whole on your own.
I know not all of you listen to country music, maybe none of you. I listen to it all. As discussed in my last post, there are words that just jump at me and stick with me. The style of music doesn’t matter. What matters is whatever I am reading, whatever I am feeling, makes sense to me. This chorus makes sense to me:
Straight ahead, never turn round
Don’t back up, don’t back down
Full throttle, wide open
You get tired and you don’t show it
Dig a little deeper when you think you can’t dig no more
That’s the only way I know
I post this because it describes, in a very general way, how I face each new challenge. I post it so that maybe it can help you face your fears. You don’t have to be afraid of the dark.