Walking with a Limp — grateful, yet grieving

Pam Luschei

Anniversaries are usually celebrated. This past week I remembered the day my husband died two years ago. The second anniversary of my husband’s death is a remembrance. There’s a mix of gratitude, filled with thoughts and memories, mixed with tears. While the first year of grieving is about surviving, and getting through all the firsts, the second year is recognizing the reality of “this is my life now”. Grieving takes on another element; less intense, yet with a sense of distance away from the event. What appears is a door that holds all your memories, while there is a another door that is unopened with a sign that says, “Your Life Now.”. I’m beginning to open that door, little by little, to peak around the corner as I create a different life. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think of my husband and miss him. He will always be the love of my life. This past week I found some of the cards he gave me for Valentine’s Day, my birthday, our anniversary and the last Christmas card he gave me. I smiled and cried as I read his words that he loved me. Those cards are gifts to me now; reminders of his love and the years we had together. C. S. Lewis said, at the death of his wife, “The death of a beloved is an amputation.” The loss of a loved one is like having a missing limb. There’s an adjustment to doing everything differently. I had an aunt who had an amputation of her leg and wore an prosthetic leg. I was about 13 or 14, when I asked if I could see how she put her leg on. She said, “sure”, and showed me how she manipulated her own leg and attached the prosthetic leg so she could walk. My aunt walked with a limp, but she was walking. As I think back on that memory, I’m recalling how she did what she had to do in order to walk, to move about and live her life. Similarly, I am learning to walk again, with my own limp into a different landscape that what I had planned.

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Used with permission from Pam Luschei.

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