What does it mean to be a widow in the Twenty-First Century?
I’m a middle-aged widow with a couple of kids and a lot of pets. I’ve been reclaiming my life since my husband of over two decades passed away, but there are many outdated, ridiculous, and stupefying opinions about how a widow is supposed to grieve and live.
We are over a century beyond the Victorian Era and their very-specific customs of widowhood. Over a hundred years. Think about that.
To the outside world, we’d had a perfect marriage. When there wasn’t an audience, we fought about all the things he perceived were wrong with me and prevented him from having the perfect life he claimed he wanted. I was never enough for him.
Until it was too late. In the months preceding his passing, he had time to realize that he’d been an ass and abusive for most of our marriage. He had many regrets–he told me in our many painful, heartfelt conversations. I was grateful he passed peacefully almost three years ago, but my grief bubbled up in many different and devastating ways since then.
I’m working through those echoes and hope my journey might help others find their ways out of bad situations or grief—widow or not.
This blog is about all the ways society limits widows (sometimes even widowers, but not as often) on moving forward with their lives.
It’s also about my personal journey through the many layers of my own grief and toward building my new life as a strong, healthy, happy single mother. I am enough and more.
Why “Widow Shmidow”?
Other than my legal marital designation, I don’t feel like a widow. I don’t look like a widow. So, widow shmidow.
Why did I make this blog anonymous?
I decided it would be better to keep a layer of privacy for now. Some topics may shock or offend the memories of my late husband’s family or friends. However, that isn’t my intention. My journey to joy and happiness includes unpacking and forgiving some events that were (and still are) holding me back. Rather than risk hurting feelings with truth they would never believe or have justified somehow to themselves, I’ll go by Dee and not use his name.