I found myself Suddenly Single twice. In 2011 my husband passed from leukemia. It was expected but still, it was pretty devastating. Then, after 2-years of not wanting to date, I met someone and he died unexpectedly and I found him. I dealt with both very differently. What my reaction was and what I did to make myself whole again.
I’ve always had an incredible support group.
When he [my husband] died, I needed to move out of my house. I wouldn’t sleep in the bedroom. It took a while, even after I moved out and bought a new place to feel comfortable sleeping in the bedroom.
All of a sudden I was on my own. We were together for 32-years. I had to learn to navigate alone. I did really well during the week. But then Saturday night would come and that was always the hardest for me because it was the one day of the week we always made sure was our date night no matter what was going on. That was our time together.
I feel like I have a strong faith and I feel like he was always watching over me. I knew no matter what I was going to be okay. He had my back still.
I had joined a networking friend of women and they basically took over my life that first week. I never felt alone even though I felt alone. I knew there were people in my life I could call on but it still didn’t take away that feeling of being alone.
I was gearing up for that 1-year anniversary and I did okay. I woke up the next morning and said oh my goodness, it’s now the second year and nothing had changed. Now, what do I do? That was really difficult. I had a really bad day that day. I’m still alone, now what do I do? I decided to take better care of myself.
Just don’t forget the person. Even though they are in their new norm, it’s still not the norm they’re used to.
I cried through everything I did. I spent a lot of time crying on the phone to people.
The second was a very sudden loss. I met him 2-years after I lost my husband.
We really had a nice time. We didn’t live together but we spent every weekend together, we talked every day. We took vacations together and spent the holidays. We had a really good relationship.
He had a very stressful job and I could see it wearing on him physically. I took in that stress and gained a lot of weight.
When he passed, I knew something had happened because we had been on the phone. I got in the car and went up and found him. I attempted CPR and called 911. I know stress can take somebody’s life. That really floored me. That was so unexpected for me, plus we weren’t married so there was nothing for me to do. It was a lot of sitting around and waiting to see what was going to happen.
Luckily I have a group of friends who stepped up and took care of me.
I had purpose after my husband died. I kind of felt like we didn’t have that legacy yet and what do I do with myself? I saw my doctor and she said you need to lose weight.
Everyone has their own special place and mine is water. So, I traveled every single month. I basically went visiting friends. I continued to lose weight and continued to get healthier and healthier. I needed me to find my purpose.
I’ve never had a problem being alone. Lonely is another thing and there is a difference. I can be by myself very comfortably but I love being with other people.
I’ve had my ups and downs. I have people that I talk to all the time. It’s going to be what it’s going to be.
Try to remember the person you were before you were with that person. Try to remember the light you had or the gifts you had because you weren’t with that person from the time you were born. I think trying to remember that makes a huge difference. Remember you’ve had love before. You’ve had people in your life before. This is not the end-all.