Widowhood Is More Than…

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Widowhood is more than missing your spouse’s presence. It is adjusting to an alternate life. It is growing around a permanent amputation.

Widowhood is going to bed for the thousandth time, and still, the loneliness doesn’t feel normal. The empty bed a constant reminder. The night no longer brings intimacy and comfort, but the loudness of silence and the void of connection.

Widowhood is walking around the same house you have lived in for years and it no longer feeling like home. Because “home” incorporated a person. And they’re not there. Homesickness fills your heart and the knowledge that it will never return haunts you.

Widowhood is seeing all your dreams and plans you shared as a couple crumble around you. The painful process of searching for new dreams that include only you amount to climbing Mount Everest. And every small victory of creating new dreams for yourself includes a new shade of grief that their death propelled you to this path.

Widowhood is second guessing everything you thought you knew about yourself. Your life had molded together with another’s and without them you have to relearn all your likes, hobbies, fears, goals. The renaissance of a new person makes you proud and heartbroken simultaneously.

Widowhood is being a stranger in your own life. The unnerving feeling of watching yourself from outside your body, going through the motions of what was your life, but being detached from all of it. You don’t recognize yourself. Your previous life feels but a vapor long gone, like a mist of a dream you begin to wonder if it happened at all.

Widowhood is the irony of knowing if that one person was here to be your support, you would have the strength to grieve that one person. The thought twists and confuses you. If only they were here to hold you and talk to you, you’d have the tenacity to tackle this unwanted life. To tackle the arduous task of moving on without them.

Widowhood is missing the one person who could truly understand what is in your heart to share. The funny joke, the embarrassing incident, the fear compelling you or the frustration tempting you. To anyone else, you would have to explain, and that is too much effort, so you keep it to yourself. And the loneliness grows inside you.

Widowhood is struggling with identity. Who are you if not their spouse? What do you want to do if not the things you planned together? What brand do you want to buy if not the one you two shared for 20 years? What is your purpose if the job of investing into your marriage is taken away? Who is my closest companion when my other half isn’t here?

Widowhood is feeling restless because you lost your home, identity, partner, lover, friend, playmate, travel companion, co-parent, security, and life. And you are drifting with an unknown destination.

Widowhood is living in a constant state of missing the most intimate relationship. No hand to hold. No body next to you. No partner to share your burden.

Widowhood is being alone in a crowd of people. Feeling sad even while you’re happy. Feeling guilty while you live. It is looking back while moving forward. It is being hungry but nothing sounding good. It is every special event turning bittersweet.

Yes. It is much more than simply missing their presence. It is becoming a new person, whether you want to or not. It is fighting every emotion mankind can feel at the very same moment and trying to function in life at the same time.

Widowhood is frailty. Widowhood is strength. Widowhood is darkness. Widowhood is rebirth.

Widowhood…..is life changing.

24 thoughts on “Widowhood Is More Than…

  1. Thank you for sharing this! Everything you wrote is spot on. I’m living this situation since my husband died from prostate cancer on Sept. 24,2018. I plan to share this with the ladies on my cancer widows page. Again thank you so much!

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    1. Wow this is so heart transparent . Exactly put into words when words usually fail. Find something you love and pour your soul into it .for me it’s creating and writing original music . It takes your grief , sets it in a box and puts it outside confines . Hard to escape grief during covid , but only through God can you reach beyond and be productive sharing your gifts with others . Put a smile on someone else’s face and you will warm your heart

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    2. I lost my husband at 56 1/2 years plus the year that we dated before we got married. Your words spoke to my heart because they explained exactly what I’m feeling. It’s hard to explain to others the emptiness the feeling of being in a fog. You have a gift for writing and expressing your feelings. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful heartfelt writing

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  2. Billie Richardson December 23, 2020 — 1:33 pm

    Oh my goodness everything you wrote I am living the tears I shed come out of know where when I least expect them since I lost my husband in late 2019 after a wonderful 52 years together a loss I will never get over.

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  3. Wow, I’m in tears reading this, it totally explains how I am feeling xx

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  4. This is profound! I would like to share this (with proper credit given to you, of course) with my grief counselor. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. I too lost my husband in 2017. He had a heart attack while we were visiting our daughter in Hawaii for Thanksgiving. Your writing is encouraging and much needed for widows travelling this sad journey.

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  5. Very meaningful and helpful.

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  6. Oh my gosh , this was the most amazing thing I have ever read on widowhood! Perfect and I mean perfect translation! I lost my sweet Randy 6/19/2019 we were married 43 fantastic years, he passed in his sleep next to me unexpectedly after being diagnosed with a spot on his lungs 3 days prior, 3 days , never ever expecting him to die! A few days later I found out he was totally consumed with cancer. Never ever sick , never complained, was a workaholic! My life shattered and I will never be the same.
    Reading this was like someone tore the words right out of my heart and wrote them down on paper! I have read so many poems, short letters and nothing has ever described it as well as this! A friend who recently lost her husband sent his to me because she knew I needed to read it to feel the love and sorrow that it was written with! God Bless You and Thank you!

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  7. Expresses everything I’m going through. My sweetheart passed away three and half months ago after six years fighting cancer. We were married sixty four plus years. My one and only and I miss him so much!

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  8. Thanks from a Facebook friend who sent me this blog. It’s like reading my own story as I had just lost my 43 years husband from cancer one and a half years ago. Lonely and grieving still which I don’t know how to be happy again.

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  9. This says exactly what I am feeling after losing my husband almost three months ago. I feel like I’m wounded in the middle of a war.

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    1. 2.5 years now for me in that big empty bed. . . . Empty heart . . . Just empty. . . .

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  10. This says exactly what I am feeling after losing my husband of 53 years three months ago. I feel like I’m wounded in the middle of a war.

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  11. Someone shared your words in a widow’s groups I am a part of… unwillingly a part of, as you know. Thank you for being honest and vulnerable. I write as well…. and I try to tell it like it is…. or why write? Right? October 2020… my new identity began.

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  12. All so true, some days still are so hard still waiting for him to walk through the door

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  13. Absolutely amazing. The tears flow as the truth is finally revealed and voiced PERFECTLY. GOD BLESS YOU Alisha! Lost mine Dec 2020. Not as long as others, Married 10yrs, together 18yrs. Absolutely grateful to read and be seen through your words.

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  14. I am beyond grateful I found your blog. My husband will have been gone four years March 7 and I feel like I have been free falling ever since.

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  15. I can not tell you what it means to see what I have been feeling, since my husband tragically passed on 8/11/20, written down for all to see. Unless you live this, you don’t understand. It’s been 18 months now and I feel like the shock, the survival mode, has dissipated and I’m left with “this”; having no idea what “this” is, but knowing John would want me to figure it out and move forward in his memory. I shared this with some friends and family, giving you credit of course, because I needed them to know what I am really feeling. What this is really like. Why, at 43 years old, I feel like my brain is in a fog and I feel like I have early onset Alzheimer’s. Thank you so much for the gift of your words, you’ve allowed me to express myself to my loved ones when I couldn’t find the words to speak. God bless and prayers for all.

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  16. SILVANN BROUSSARD February 25, 2022 — 12:57 am

    WOW! One of my Facebook friends shared your
    “More than a Widow” blog just a few days before the 13th anniversary of my spouse transitioning
    (actually today). This is one of the most accurate
    descriptions of widowhood I have read, believe me I have searched diligently to find the words that accurately describe widowhood. After 13yrs it still seems like only yesterday and the absence is just as real. I’m grateful for God’s faithfulness of His promise to me in Isaiah 54:4-5. Thank you for your transparency to share your journey.
    I will pray for continued open doors for your writing and future books.

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  17. Teresa G. Edwards April 18, 2022 — 1:15 pm

    You have the words for everything I have been going thru for the last 3 years since my husband’s death after 20+ years together. My heart is still broken and thank for putting words together for me. This is an awesome piece I will share. God bless you.

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  18. Sharon Merchant May 17, 2022 — 2:50 am

    We lost my Dad, January 31, 2022. His illness was sudden and really didn’t give a chance for us to adjust. He went into the hospital two weeks pryor to his passing. I’ve implemented family dinners every other Sunday since he passed. I felt as a family we were getting to busy, myself included, for each other. With my Dad gone so quickly, I felt we missed so much time with him. Anyway, I said that to say this. I’ve been keeping a close eye on my Mom and once I read Alisha’s blog, it was spot on! My Mom and I talk often about finding a new normal. I really don’t know if that is out there. Thank you Alisha for sharing your grief with us to help us understand our own. I prayed for you and the girls many times for healing, strength and God’s comfort.

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  19. Spot on! The tears flowed. I am only 5 weeks out from my beloved’s death after 43 years being together, 40 of those married. I haven’t comprehended fully what has happened to him and to me but I relate to virtually everything you said. And, this is only the beginning!

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  20. I’m so grateful for being introduced to your blog Alisha. I lost the love of my life, April 1st, after 53+ happy, blessed and loving years together. We were like two peas in a pod. He went upstairs to get his shower and he never walked back down the stairs. My Pastor and a widow, Diane Coar,at church passed your blog on to me. It says everything I’m experiencing now. I will continue to follow and appreciate your writings.
    Thank you sooo much!!!

    Like

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