Being newly widowed is not something you can prepare for. Each day I do things I am familiar with in a new frame of mind. Sometimes I pause to think about something being different. I ask myself a lot if what I am doing is normal. Is this what other widows do?
I think that feeling comes from the desire humans have to be accepted, to be one of the group, to fit in. I certainly don't mean to tell you I want to "fit in" with being a widow. I can't imagine anyone wants to be part of this group. What I mean is, "Is what I am feeling/doing/experiencing normal?"
The first thing I remember asking myself if my feeling was normal was the idea of being called a widow. I was one so why not? For me it is such a sad word. I was so much more than Don's wife, so why would my new title only reflect that he was gone? Also, I didn't want people to look at me with pity in their eyes. I know that people are sorry for my loss. I get it. I am sorry for other women who have lost their husbands. After a few weeks I found that I spoke of myself as a widow. Perhaps to remove some of the sting since I was the one who tagged myself as such. Now, at just two months since I lost my best guy, I still can't say I like the title but I don't bristle at the idea.
I changed small things about how I live. All the advise books will tell you not to make any big changes for 6 months or a year. There was nothing huge, but I am trying my best to do what feels right. After about a week of sleeping in our big king sized bed alone I moved to another bedroom. We have two unoccupied bedrooms so I tried one and then the other looking for some solace and some desperately needed sleep. I could go to sleep easily enough, but I would wake in the small hours of the morning and would not be able to "turn my brain off." While I was still in our bed I found myself thinking he was still there with me only to find cold sheets where once there was my fuzzy bear of a man. Again I wondered if this was normal. If I was normal.
There were other things that prompted me to wonder how normal I was. As I began talking with friends who had been widowed I found that they had done much of what I was doing now. So I was normal. As normal as I could be.
I don't wonder about normalcy much now. I know the time of being without Don is still new, but I feel as if I have my feet under me just a bit more today than two months ago. This does not mean that I do not grieve for this man that filled my life. I do and I think I always will. One more thing that I think is normal.
The Hopeful Romantic