Weight of the Date — grateful, yet grieving

This week will mark the three-year anniversary since my husband suddenly died.  I started feeling the weight of the date the first day of the month.  There’s a heaviness of angst in the anticipation of the day as I recall the experience of his abrupt departure. 

 Time takes on another dimension after the loss of a loved one.  Grief marks the first year like the aftermath of a hurricane.  You walk around in a daze trying to gather remnants of your life.  I found the first year was about survival.  Getting through the day was the goal.  Making it through the first-year firsts; birthdays, anniversaries and the holidays was like moving a load of bricks up a mountain.   

 The second year I found myself struggling to gain my footing in a different space in an unknown landscape without my spouse.  The grief remained, while I navigated the waters of being single.  It was like learning to function again after getting out of a full body cast.  It took time to recalibrate my routine and role without my husband.

 In this third year, I have moved into a space of settling where I am learning to live with my loss.  I miss my husband every day, and will continue to do so. I don’t cry every day, like I did the first year.  There’s an obvious ache that makes me aware of others who have suffered loss.  My life looks completely different.  Amidst the loss, I am experiencing satisfaction and joy once again. 

 There’s been a deepening of my faith and relationship with God, below the surface where I take the Word as my daily bread, digesting and absorbing each word.  I have a radical dependency on God as I move forward that strengthens and sustains me. 

 There’s been a widening of my life to include others who have suffered loss.  Nothing has been wasted.  God is unfailingly faithful to meet me in a different place as I continue to hold tightly to the Hope that binds up the wounds of the past, helps me in the present, and provides a look to the future.  

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Used with permission from Pam Luschei.

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