I recently was talking with a golf buddy of my late husband who commented on how I’m not reaching out for help, like when the hurricane came through, or to the women of our social group to get together, including his wife. He wanted to be helpful and said ,”You know, you’ve gotta meet us half way. We can’t know what you need.” I explained that because I’ve had such a hard time holding back the tears if a sad thought overwhelms me, that I hadn’t called many people to go out and do things. I admitted that it’s getting better over time, with less time crying and more time holding it together. In fact, today marks 11 months since he passed. But until now, the last thing I wanted to do was to go to lunch with a friend and then start crying in the middle of it!
After giving his words more thought, I realized I did need to at least reach out to connect with these friends, and give credit to them for being able to understand if my eyes filled up. Afterall, they may have wanted to see how I was doing, but they couldn’t just keep calling. It really was up to me to make those calls.
So yesterday, after reaching out to his wife, she and I had a delightful lunch together. And, yes, there was one moment when I was talking about missing my husband that it touched that highly sensitive grieving nerve and the sadness came over me. I had my moment as my eyes filled, my throat burned, and my voice was broken. I just quickly apologized and said, “Just give me a minute and it will pass – it’s just a wave,” And it wasn’t the end of the world. She couldn’t have been more gracious, saying “Oh, don’t even think about it. Take your time… I totally understand.” She was so compassionate, and I was sorry I had waited this long to reach out.
As I head into the one-year anniversary of his transition, 12-12, I realize how challenging this time is, and how grief definitely takes time, especially after our 54 years together. But I do know I’m not consumed by it anymore on a regular basis, and that making efforts to get back into socializing is so helpful and uplifting. It requires only a little effort on my part – just half way.
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