People say when life gives you lemons you make lemonade. Lemons suggest sourness or difficulty in life; making lemonade is turning them into something positive or desirable. It’s meaning also reflects a need for a “can do” attitude of positivity.
I lost the love of my life, the one whose very presence could calm me, the one who could complete my sentences, the man I vowed ‘Till death do us part.” We shared a life well lived but far too short; I cannot think of any proverbial sayings to help me understand the sudden, unexpected loss of my best friend, the other half of the whole we represented.
I went to sleep one night a very happily married woman. The next day brought unbelievable, irrevocable loss; when I went to bed that night I was a widow. There were long conversations about nothing and everything. We planned a long life together, we anticipated our lives as an old married couple, we were best friends. These are precious memories which I will hold in my heart forever with eternal gratitude. My life is forever changed; we spent years planning for life and a financial future but never planning the loss of a confidant, friend, provider, caretaker, much less the loss of income.
He would leave his things all over the bedroom and while I certainly did not like picking up after him, I would gladly pick up after him for the rest of my life. I wish he were here with me, with us. “I admire you; you are so strong!”; I hear this so frequently that I begin to want to avoid people. What they should know is that I am exhausted, lost, and numb! I go through my days as a fake, as though I am acting out my life instead of living my life. I lost my best friend, my confidant, the father of my children; we were truly two joined together as one. He was the one who laughed at my jokes, my weatherman, the one I told goodnight; now his side of the bed is empty.
Grief comes in waves, sometimes when least expected but for me, mostly on the weekends because that was OUR time. I am not angry with God; I AM angry at the situation. Unfair, cheated, incomplete, are words which describe the gamete of my emotions when I allow myself to think of the situation. Grieve, but move with clarity, purpose, resoluteness, courage, trust, and remembrance.
As I work through my grief, I find myself less tolerant, particularly when others, in good faith, overprotect my sons, perhaps by trying to make sure all their needs and wants are met. That was OUR job; now it is mine. I snap at people; I cannot even explain why sometimes, I just do. I have read a lot about grief and the range of emotions you are supposed to feel; this does help me to cope. However, I feel like I can “never let my hair down’ and that I am expected to act in a certain way. I do not know what is normal in this situation, does anyone? My normal is gone; I am attempting to replace it with a new normal and I just have to find my way.
We led a marriage ministry; I am part of a grief ministry. My perception is that I don’t fit in with OUR friends; people either do not say anything or they repeat the same phrases. People mean well but they treat me differently; I am working or redefining who that is without my husband, but I AM ME!
I tell you my story in order to bring clarity and understanding to how painfully heart wrenching and devastating losing your soulmate, your better half, the love of your life, and the other half of your two joined together as one is.
When facing impossible emotional pain one should not have to face financial difficulties. Finances can help one find incredible power and ease the burden as they learn to function as one. Widows can face incredible challenges beyond their grief; such as the loss of their homes, relocation, an inability to provide for their family, facing the emotional toll of loss; and financial insecurity to list a few such hardships. Widows need support, they may need counseling, they need space, they need to be able to navigate this difficult new life without having to constantly worry about how they will pay for counseling for them and their children, will they be able to stay in their homes, or how will they pay to put their loved one to rest.
Widows and their children need our help. Black Women Widows Empowered needs your help. Complete financial responsibility for the family now rests with the widow. Financial planning, planning for a family, planning for life now becomes the responsibility of one. We anticipate a bright future for the organization and for the widows we service.
We ask that you support our mission to reach the black widowed woman by offering empowerment events, transition and financial planning, career-growth coaching and wellness events to provide resources for widows in their time of need and grief. Please consider giving to this cause; we can make a difference for these families. Every donation, no matter the amount, is an act of love, compassion, and empathy. These ladies, in their darkest hours, need us to surround them with kindness, to shelter them, to lift them up, and nurture them, and to facilitate their ability to identify their new normal.
Thank you for your support, whether through your donations (tax deductible) or by way of your prayers.
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