Even in the most supportive of families, widows are alone in their grief.
There were two people in the marriage, and now there is only one. No one else in the world can understand their particular loss. Especially as the months and years go on, widows often feel that their families are ready to “move on”, even as they continue to face the darkness of their grief.
This is Jacquelyn’s story.
Ralph and I had our first date and from the minute we met, we did not stop talking. He had the most wonderful personality. When he would come home from work, he would come in the door and say, ‘Your prince is home.’ Our family blended together beautifully. We had a wonderful life.
We had been married 11 years, a very short time really, when he was diagnosed with lung cancer. Ralph lived nine months longer. All of the sudden, I was sitting at my dining room table… and it just hit me – I’m a widow. I hate that word. But that’s what we are called in the bible too. It’s a good word. But I don’t want to be a widow.
I felt so lonely. I didn’t know other widows in my church. And I didn’t have anybody to really talk to.
PLAY THE VIDEO ABOVE TO HEAR FROM JACQUELYN
I have a very large family. They were very sympathetic and loved Ralph. My children loved Ralph as their own father. They finally get to a point where they are ready to get on with their life. And they don’t want to listen to the same story that I just want to tell again. I just want to talk about Ralph.
They were patient. They would listen. But it wasn’t the same.
And so when we got together as women, they didn’t care that my husband had been in heaven for seven or eight years… whatever I wanted to talk about and share about him, they were willing to listen. And then four months later, if I wanted to bring up some of the same things again, that was just fine. We were just a group of ladies that could talk about and share about things that other people forgot about… or wanted to.
[Other people] wanted us to get on with living. And we were. We were getting on with living, but finding our new normal and finding how to navigate this widow journey.