Friday, May 22, 2009


I have been on my back for the last 3 weeks or so, nursing an inflamed sacroiliac joint. What a pain! Literally. Every turn and twist, every journey to the bathroom (all of 25 painful feet) and every trek to the kitchen elicits mild and not-so-mild expletives. Thankfully, my daughter is in school and the the walls are my only witness.

Of course, lots of time on one's back allows for insights, welcome or unwelcome. I do wish these marvelous insights would happen when I was licking, say, a large, double chocolate ice cream cone instead of lying supine on an ice pack.

But no, my insights seem to come to me when I have finally over-done something or other (stacking wood, mowing the lawn... talking...) and have no choice but to cry "uncle" and finally settle down to listen to my body's teachings.

So I have been listening from my bed, and what I am hearing, I must say, I don't like one little bit.
  • Meditation is not simply a misspelling of medication.
  • Pfish food is not a physician recommended treatment for stress.
  • I should stop treating Meditation like a four letter word. It may be my ticket to feeling better.
  • The five minutes I spend each morning saying a quick hello to God is NOT meditation and five minutes of 'thanks' at night are also not enough quiet time to relax someone like me with a mind that races faster than a speeding bullet.
  • 15 minutes on the treadmill once a month is not exercise. (Its not???)
  • I have been ignoring my bodies warning sign for a long time now, and I have been running from...
OK - here it is...
  • missing my husband.
  • Yes, even after 8 years, I miss him. Not all of the time, not every day, not even every month. But right now, I miss him.
I don't want to miss him. I am in love with a good man, a man who I know is good for me, a man who agreed to come to San Diego with me if I want him to, (and I do!), a man who thinks I am wonderful, and a man who even my mother would love and that is saying a whole lot.

But the funny thing is, the more I let myself love my new man, the more I remember Mike.

As I lie in bed, I see that I have been sprinting a good 500 miles an hour, trying to run from this truth, the fact that I still have a little bit of grieving to do.

But wait. Maybe it is not grieving. Maybe it is just remembering?

I used to think, when I met new love, that one 'era' would end and another would begin. I can see now that although I am given the opportunity to love again, I still have my old life/love in my heart. It is not 'one or the other'. Both loves can live in synchrony.

This morning I imagined them sharing 'man hugs', you know, when men briefly slam into each other and then quickly jump apart? And then I cried a bit, either about my back pain or about my heart pain. I don't know which it was, but I do know when I was done, my back seemed to feel better.

So yes, it is time to get serious about medication - oops - I mean meditation, to slow down, to stop running, and to appreciate the gifts I have been given. The grass is green, the lilacs are in full bloom and filling the neighborhood with lush aromas, Anneke is headed to final exams feeling competent, and I get to explore my old and new love. Other than the (lessening) pain in my back, I feel luckier than I have any right to be, I am sure.

This morning I will make that oft procrastinated telephone call to our local meditation center and further the process of slowing down my body and learning mindfulness. The new frontier!

Warmly, Mie Elmhirst, still, a Widow-in-Training. Widows Breathe Coaching


  1. Thank you for putting into words the feelings I am feeling now.
    I,too have found love again, and it is wonderful, but at the same time my heart and mind have the emotional ups and downs of being on this widow journey...yes,I still love my late husband of 45 years, with a love that will always be....but my heart has enough room for the love I have found today.
    It is like I am "happy-sad" some days, but am thankful for the gift of this kind and genteel man that God sent to me.
    Yes, there are days I still like to "spend" with my late husband...I tell him all the "news", grandchildren, how the orchard is doing, that I am doing well, and thankful that he provided so well for me, AND that I am so happy that he proposed to me many years ago....and that I will always love him and remember him....
    I am so glad I found this site...all of you wonderful widows, are terrific writers,...again, Thank You!!

  2. Mie, I only hope that one day I will be where you are, both of you here. I hope to find new love and yet saying that makes me feel like I am betraying my husband. I want him back, and yet I know he will never be back. I don't want to live this miserable life alone. John and I should have had at least 30 more years together. I feel like I will live forever and I don't want to, and I surely don't want to live it alone. I wonder what life is about. What is the point in life. I dread the "dating" thing again. I so want to just be with my husband. He was perfect for me and once you've had the best, what else is there? I haven't been where you are, but I sure can understand the mixed feelings. Knowing that you were blessed to find new love, yet longing for the old. Wow, what a life, what a journey. I wish you both the very best. Hugs to you, Lorry

  3. Lorry - I have no doubt, that with some time and some work, you will be either where I am, or maybe even further along!
    In the beginning, I thought that my life was over. You are not alone. Mie