after death did us part

Taggrief

International Widows’ Day

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The UN has June 23 designated as International Widows’ Day. (You can click here to go to their website with more information and resources.) My first reaction when I heard that there was a day for widows was “meh.” But after reading the UN’s website, I realized that this day isn’t for widows like me. While I may often feel the stigma people still attach to widowhood...

Anniversaries After He’s Gone

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Some widowed people commemorate their wedding anniversaries with fond remembrances or celebrations. Not me. Surprisingly, he didn’t want me to memorialize him at all—not on holidays, his birthday, his deathday, anything. “That just roots you in the past. Move on,” he said. I thank him for that one moment of clarity on his deathbed. Still, the societal norm of posting old...

A Widowed Mother’s Day

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Before I was widowed, my late husband would help the kids make breakfast for me on Mother’s Dad. He would help them shop or clean or whatever. Recently, their grandparents asked them what they were going to do for me. Get me a card? Do something nice? Their grandfather said, “You should clean the kitchen.” When I got this report, I thought it was a little strange that they...

Grief, Peace, and Relief

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Recently, I got to visit my oldest, dearest friend. We’ve been friends since elementary school. We’ve been through a lot together, but I never told her how difficult my husband had been to live with until our visit. It’s taken me three years to unpack things and feel able to talk about what I went through. Some people who knew him used to call him a hard ass or say he was demanding. His friends...

When to Break Promises

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When we’re in the middle of grief, sometimes we make promises to ourselves or about ourselves that don’t serve us well later. For example, a few weeks after I returned to work, I had a conversation with a coworker friend. He and his wife were a couple who we had considered friends. I told him that I’d never date, that we’d always be a little family of three. At the time, I believed it. But as my...

Now I’m Just the Mother of the Grandchildren

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There have been so many feelings to sort through after my husband passed away. I was always close to his parents. We live in the same city. They picked up the kids from school before I was self-employed. We had lunches and dinners with them at least once a week for over twenty years. They treated me like a daughter from the beginning. Until the end. I didn’t really notice much of a difference in...

Being Widowed Doesn’t Mean Being Helpless

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I’ve seen lots of pictures of elegant, gray-haired women who are the images of widows for different support websites and products. I am not one of those women. I’m in my mid-forties. My gray hair started growing in as glitter strands when I was in my twenties. I know many little, old ladies who were widowed in their seventies and eighties. Most of them knew nothing about their finances or even...

That moment your child says it’s good that he’s gone

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After my husband passed away, our older child gave me some time to deal with all the things that have to be dealt with. Several months later, she began confiding in me. She was glad he was gone. Even though her father tried to tell her that he’d been wrong about many things, the damage had been done. My heart broke again. She was old enough for us to have candid and honest conversations about the...

Shell Shock Does Dissipate

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Even with time to prepare for my husband’s death, I was not prepared for the shell shock after. We’d been married for more than half my life–almost my entire adulthood at the time. I knew he was ready to go, and I sat with him until he was gone. Nothing prepared me for that experience, even though I thought I was. I was grateful he found his peace, and that peace enveloped me...

About the tagline: After Death Did Us Part

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In most weddings, the vow “’Til death do us part” is included in the ceremony. At the very moment one spouse passes away, the marriage is over. It’s quite literally the simplest end to a marriage. Grief follows, but every person’s grief is different. It will be different for the widow(er) who lost their spouse unexpectedly than it is for the person who had time (days, weeks, months) before an ill...

after death did us part

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