Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Giving Thanks ....

.... is not something easily done on this path of widowhood, is it?

I have plenty of reasons to not be thankful ... and we all know what the biggest one is, as I continue my march toward the second year of his death. This Season is difficult enough for each of us, but for those who's spouse died during this time of the year it can be excrutiating.

But, as I have said before, there are so very many negative and crippling things on this path, that it's nice to sometimes stop and notice what's good.

So today I will focus on what I am thankful for. It's a bit difficult because I am spending this holiday in the home where Jim grew up. I know that the memories and the grief will slam into me several times over the next few days.

But I will try to focus on what is good .... even though this week will be mostly "matter over mind".

I am thankful that I had Jim for as long as I did. Even if I were able to go back and live this life again, knowing how it would end, I'd choose it all over again. If he is the only love I will ever have in my life, his love will have been enough.

I'm thankful that I have 6 healthy and relatively happy children (how happy are teenage boys anyway?). I'm thankful for the father that they have and the example he set for them, especially for my sons.

I'm thankful for my family. I love each one of them, even though I don't always express it or call often enough .... and hope they know how very much they are loved.

I'm thankful for my friends. I would not be here today if it were not for the love, support and time that they've all given to me over the past 23 months. I love each one for the special things she or he did and/or said. Even the friends who are far away, and those who aren't in my life as much anymore. Each one has left a fingerprint on my heart.

I am thankful for the other men and women on this path. Each one I've met, whether in person or on line, as been such a source of support and strength and comfort to me. I know that I am not alone, nor am I crazy for feeling the way I feel. I know that I am understood .... sometimes without even having to speak.

And most importantly, I am thankful for my God. He was with me before I knew Jim and He's with me still .... even though I don't always feel Him. My head knowledge has been able to pull my heart along on this path some days (months).

I could go on and on .... which, now that I think of it .... is a very good thing.

Isn't it?

I will refrain from saying "Happy Thanksgiving" and will instead wish that your Thursday is as good as it possibly can be.


  1. Thank you so much for this.
    I wish you a Thursday as good as it can be as well.

  2. I have been crying all week -- thinking I was "past this" -- it's been 2 years after all. I just eat eat eat and when I'm not eating, I'm crying -- or feeling like crying. Mike's oldest son is in jail (he's been drinking heavily since his dad died) and the youngest is coming today with his wife and new baby, whom they named, fittingly, "Michael". I didn't give birth to them, but I raised them from little boys. Anyway, just reading this made me realize I am not the only one kind of dragging along and trying to be upbeat for everyone else's sake..I'm glad I found this site. God bless you all on this holiday..

  3. It sounds like everyone has family to be thankful for. I'm very happy for all of you, but I'd like to read something from someone who is facing the holidays with no family, and whose friends are busy with their own families. I will be alone for the holidays for my 3rd year without my beloved. I think that this year I will drink myself under my own table and stay there for the duration...

  4. Dear Anonymous,

    I am so sorry that you are alone. Not having family has to make this season even more difficult. I'd like to make two suggestions to keep you from under the is to ask around for others who are alone this holiday as many people don't tell their friends that they will be alone. I have a friend who calls her holiday dinner the eclectic orphan party...everyone whose family is far away or who has no family for various reasons comes together for a potluck. Maybe you could host something like this in the future? Second, I volunteered for several years at a holiday kitchen for people who couldn't afford a holiday meal. Many came between jobs, or after work. Some brought families, some took plates home to go, and other came alone and stayed chatting with people they didn't know for over an hour. It has always been such a great way to be a part of a community that grows up around the idea of giving thanks.

    I know that none of my suggestions can take away the pain of being alone. Just wanted you to know I care.


  5. Dear Anonymous,
    I wish I could be there for you. It has been 2 years for me also. I know how difficult it is to reach out to others, when you do not have the energy to do it. I looked on the internet at "meet-up" Although it might not help you with this holiday this year, it has helped me get a single social life, which I did not have a year ago. I have not met a best friend or lover, but at least I have something to do that helps me feel like I am moving foward. Recently, someone even started a "meet-up" group for widow/ers, so I got to meet people like me! There are so many different kinds of groups you could probably find one that would be of interest to you! Good luck and do not give up hope, it can get better!