I have been in a nightmare. When you have been with someone as long as I had been with my husband and then suddenly an average day turns into a final day for one of you, it's a nightmare.
Over the last months I have learned a lot about life and death.
Fortunately, through my studies of losing a loved one through death that I have written about in my blog over the years, I was better prepared than most people are.
However, when it actually happens, you will experience, as I did, feelings that are common to all who have lost a loved one.
The feeling of surrealism... did this really happen? The feeling of I want them back ... the realization that they are never coming back. The feeling of being lost with no future ... what do I do now? What is going to happen to me? And the most common feeling "How am I going to live without this person in my life?" .... I can't, I don't want to, this isn't fair.
I know of several people (mostly women) who lost their spouses anywhere from a couple of years ago to many years ago, who are stuck in one level of grief. They can't seem to get on with living.
The longer we spend in the early grief process, the harder it is to get on with living because we are comfortable and have become used to those feelings. The thought of going on with their lives while their loved ones are gone, seems like a betrayal of the spirit of their deceased spouse.
We need time to process the event of our loved ones death. We also need time to come to the reality of what our lives are now. But to stay in that time for several years is neither healthy nor is it what our loved ones would want for us.
Over the next few months, I am going to share with you some of the feelings I have felt, experiences I have had, and other aspects of losing a spouse.
But before I close this week's blog I want to leave you with something that helped me tremendously, once I was able to really grasp it's meaning and believe it:
If things were reversed and I was the one who died and my husband was the one left alone,
what would I want for him?
What would I tell him if I had just a minute more with him now?
I would tell him,
I love you still but... I want you to...
LIVE YOUR LIFE!
ENJOY THE TIME YOU HAVE LEFT!
LOOK FOR THE DAY WE WILL SEE EACH OTHER AGAIN
AND YOU CAN SHARE ALL THOSE WONDERFUL STORIES WITH ME
OF WHAT YOU DID AFTER I LEFT YOU!
DO NOT WASTE YOUR LIFE - MAKE ME PROUD TO SAY YOU ARE MY HUSBAND!
AND ABOVE ALL, TRUST AND LOVE GOD!
That's what I would want for him, so I know he would want the same for me. That is what I am going to do. I am going to make him proud to say, "that's my wife, the one who is doing all those wonderful things and who loves God. I can't wait to see her again and hear all about it."
I would not want him sitting around doing nothing or crying all day and night.
I would not want him to waste the time he has left.
I would not him to give up. That is not what God would want either.
It is hard, but we can do it with the help of our creator and with the love we have for the one we have lost.
Stay tuned for more to come about my experience in a living nightmare... and of life on the other side of it.
I pray that my words help someone who is going through something similar.