There have been a lot of articles written about how widows get upset when people call themselves “football widows”, “racing widows”, “hunting widows” or complain about how hard it is when their spouse is gone for the weekend and they are on their own. Widows, like me, get upset by this because these people have no idea what it truly means to be an actual widow.
Yes, they think they can understand because they take care of things all on their own for a few days, or a few weeks even, but everyone knows it is not the same. I think they even know it is not the same when they say it….they just say it.
What I have found to be even worse than this is the fact that people in my life, even after almost three years, think that my life has just continued on the way it was and the only difference is that Pat is no longer here. Like he is out-of-town on business or something. According to them I have always taken care of everything anyway, so therefore it really isn’t all that different now. He just isn’t here. Life should be continuing on just minus one.
Let me tell you, everything is different….EVERYTHING.
From the outside, I may have been the one who ran the house and took care of the children, but I couldn’t have done any of that without my backbone for support. Pat always had my back. He was my partner, my best friend, my support system. He was the one who picked up the pieces when I fell apart. He was the one who helped me get through the tough days, make tough decisions, and be the tough guy with the kids. I didn’t do it all on my own. Every step of the way he was there.
I chose Pat to spend my life with. From the age of 21, I built my life with him and around him. Everything was done together and in hopes for a long life together. The plans, the dreams, the day to day…everything we did together…just because others didn’t or couldn’t see our relationship from behind the scenes, doesn’t mean they know how and what our relationship was.
I am not angry with people… I’m really not. Maybe they say these things because they don’t think things through before saying them, or maybe they say them because they honestly think that is the way it is. They don’t understand the lives of widows. They don’t want to understand. I don’t want them to understand. I think it scares people, or reminds them of what could possibly happen to them too. So instead of just letting us live our lives or help us, they pass judgment or make assumptions based on nothing other than what they “think” they would do, say or feel. As I have said before…they have no idea.
I do get upset when people complain about their husbands, or the fact that their husband is out-of-town and they can’t wait for them to come home because they are tired of going it alone. Of course I do. I don’t show it, but I do. I don’t have that luxury and I am envious of the fact that you have it all and don’t even realize it. I wish he would be coming home again to help me out. But I have to go it alone, everyday. I have to do it alone with no break, with no help, with no chance of a day when he will come walking through that day door again to help me out. My support system is gone. I am alone in this and that is the end of the story. I am left to pick up the pieces, figure it all out and find a new path for me and my boys….no Sunday night homecoming when the trip is over. That just isn’t a widow’s reality.
I have come to terms with this reality and I have basically learned how to go it alone. I am not angry, though I know this post may sound a bit angry. I am simply sorting through the multitude of emotions I have experienced these past three years and some I am more passionate about than others. This happens to be one of them. It is a tough road that I wish on no one, but I do it everyday. I am sure there are widows and widowers out there who understand what I am talking about. It just gets to me sometimes. That’s all I am trying to say.
What I honestly want is for anyone who has someone to love, to actually love them. Be thankful for all the little moments and all the little things you have with them. All of that…everything can be taken from you in a blink of an eye. And then you are left like me, wishing he was on a trip, and not dead.