These are just a few of the statements I hear from the widows I work with and I said these words myself 21 years ago! We didn’t make the choice to be widowed and now we don’t have the choice whether or not to take on the pain and everything else that the world and society present to us. It is overwhelming and pulling the covers over our heads may at times seem a better choice for survival. For the short term!
I remember so vividly turning to my counselor at the time (who was not a widow), and telling her that I could feel, actually FEEL and visualize my heart breaking in half. That was the first time in my life that I actually knew what it was to have a broken heart.
If I could see and feel this broken heart, what else could I see? Could I see my life happy again? Could I see myself strong once again? It was time to “SEE” for myself.
In my early morning meditation, before the children woke, I would sit down, breathing deeply, releasing (or trying to) any tension. Now came the real work in this process: how to get beyond the hurt and actually see myself happy with a whole heart? The saying, “I’ll believe it when I see it could take years to actualize but if we turn it around and say instead “I’ll see it when I believe it,” the results are something we can actually produce. Here we do have control, a choice. So I sit, using my skills of Imagery and ask myself what does living without the pain and loss look like? What do I see? I see the strong woman that I am, have been and choose to be. I’m physically strong, headstrong at times and determined. Yes, underlying is the widow, still with loss and sadness, but the image of strength feels so much better. I spend time with this image, embracing it, noticing the more I focus on it the more it grows so that over time the image becomes who I actually am.