It's a strange feeling to go to bed at night realising you haven't spoken a single word all day. It happens to me often. I've had a few text messages from friends and family checking in but there's been no human contact, no physical energy in the room to stir with mine and remind me that I'm not alone.
The quiet generally doesn't bother me. I'm an introvert and a homebody, comfortable in my own company. I usually not only relish time on my own, I need it to recharge. But today, the quietness felt heavy. And I've sat down at my laptop tonight to write this entry for Widow's Voice thinking, as I do often, what on earth do I have to say today that anyone will find interesting. Let alone helpful. It's an incredible honour to write for this website and not a responsibility that I take lightly, however sometimes that sense of duty can feel almost intimidating.
Am I being honest and raw enough? On the days that I'm feeling positive and upbeat, will I alienate the readers who find my outlook irritating or unrealistic? If I tell a personal anecdote am I comfortable sharing a part of my life that is very private, or will I feel ok if someone in my real life stumbles upon it and possibly reads something that upsets them? Incase you haven't worked it out by now, I can be an over-thinker and quite hard on myself!
However this week I received an email from someone I met at Camp Widow in Tampa who also lost her husband to depression, only a few months ago. Her kind words meant more than she could know.
She wrote, among other things, that she had spent a lot of time over the weekend reading my blog posts and Facebook fee, soaking up some of my stories about Dan and everything I had experienced since he died. She told me that it had been helpful for her to hear from other widows and said, "I appreciate your example and your grace and your honesty."