Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Coming Home ......

...... from a trip out of town, or a fun vacation or something as wonderful as, say ...... Camp Widow, can be very, very deflating.
And lonely.
And sad.
Not to mention a bit depressing.

I absolutely hate to come home after having so much fun and connecting with so many wonderful people ...... to an empty house.
It's so difficult to leave the "safe" cocoon that is Camp Widow and return to reality.
It sometimes involves a few tears.
Or chocolate.
Or maybe even wine.

But last night, after I dumped my bags in my room and decided to completely ignore them for the rest of the evening, I sat down and uploaded a few pictures from the weekend.
And though I did feel sad, and almost depressed, I managed to avoid the tears.
As well as the chocolate.
And I had a margarita instead of wine, which just seemed to be a "happier" beverage.
Don't ask me why.

I smiled as I looked through CW pictures ...... especially the photos that other campers put on Facebook.  It was like reliving the weekend ...... and feeling the love that was there.

If there's one thing I've learned in the past 5+ years, it's this:
The love you receive from others can be carried with you.
No, it's not the same as having the physical presence of that person, or those friends.
But it's still love.
And it will do.

I still carry Jim's love within me and I know I always will, as will each of my children.
And now I carry the love of more widowed people than I can name ...... just as they carry my love with them.

Yes, I'd rather have the love of my life greet me at the door when I'm coming home ...... but that's not happening.
Yes, I'd rather live in a safe, cozy neighborhood bubble with all of my widowed friends, their company and their love ...... but that's not my reality.

So instead I find myself coming home ...... to an empty house ...... but not with an empty heart.
I can't keep all of my amazing friends with me at all times ...... but I can keep their love.
And it will do.


  1. I finding waking up at 5am every morning and coming home to an empty house (just how I left it) is the two most difficult things that I face. We can have a lot of fun with outings and during the day things, but reality does hit coming back home.
    My survival is keep moving forward and hoping that in time will be easier. I try to plan things to do ahead, then I have something to look forward to. I wish there is an easier way, but time..
    Peace be with you..

    1. Anon,
      It does get easier to come home as more time passes. The ache of loneliness doesn't seem to go away, but it does become less painful. I've shed buckets of tears upon returning to my empty house ...... many times. But the buckets slowly turned into bowls, then cups, and now and then they might be a tablespoon. Monday night I managed to get through the night tear-free. The ache was there, but I somehow managed to not sink into it and let it overwhelm me.
      Your survival plan is very wise. Keep moving, keep planning and above all, keep Hoping.

  2. the love and sense of community at Camp is different than anything else I ever experienced. So sad I missed it this time around - but so grateful for the connections I've made the times I have gone. And thankful to all who posted pictures and shared the love with those of us who couldn't be there!

  3. My dear Beth,
    You were oh-so-missed. But I could feel you there in spirit ... truly. And I'm glad that so many could post pictures ...... or very unprofessional, shaky videos (!)...... so that you could feel connected.
    You'll be at the next one ...... and we'll have seen each other many, many times before then!!!

  4. "So instead I find myself coming home ...... to an empty house ...... but not with an empty heart."

    Just returned from a painting workshop last night, to an empty house (ok the two dogs and cats just went "huh?"), and although the sense of isolation has diminished, still there, but also is there is the sense of quiet solitude, and the sense I am finally learning to bring back the goodness of the time spent with others.

    So reading this today was very sweet.

    1. Thank you, Linda. I'm glad that reading this was "sweet" for you. Time does have a way of easing things up a bit, and making this house feel less lonesome than it used to.
      I'm glad that you're finding a glance between time spend with friends and the quiet solitude at home.
      It's a delicate balance but a very good one. :)

  5. Replies
    1. Thank you, my friend. I really, really love you, too. :)