When we fall in love and get married, we don’t think that we may some day lose our spouse. Love always feels as if it’s forever, so the end is a devastating loss regardless of the conditions leading up to it.
Regardless of how they died, we must take special care to complete the grieving process. To move forward in our lives and to find love again (if that is what we want), we must fully feel and grieve our loss.
Unless we let ourselves feel the pain, we cannot heal it. Gradually, instead of feeling an agonizing knot in our hearts, remembering them will get easier. After our grieving, when we think back and feel our love without pain, then the healing process is complete.
We mistakenly believe that if we truly loved someone, then we will always feel the pain of losing them. To be happy again implies that we have forgotten our loved one, we may even feel it would be a betrayal if we were to love again. This kind of thinking can obstruct our healing process, preventing us from ever letting go of our grieving.
To fully heal our hearts, we must give ourselves permission to let go and feel happy again. Eventually, as our heart heals, we may still feel sadness and miss them, but the dominant feeling becomes the warmth of our memories.
Some may believe unending grief to be the symptom of a deep and real love, it is not. The love is real, but the despair is the result of not completing the grieving process. Unending sorrow is not a testament to our undying love. More tragic than any death, is to live out the rest of your life with a broken heart.
To love again does not mean that we have stopped loving those we have lost. Whether we date or not, with this insight we can get unstuck and start to live a full and healthy life again.
One of the best ways to heal is to practice the “3 letter exercise”. When you are feeling a deep hurt, take 30 minutes to write out your feelings:
1. Write out your wants, needs and wishes – imagine that he is able to hear your feelings and fears.
2. Write a letter to yourself as if it was from your late husband. Put into words the support and understanding that he would say to you if he was with you.
3. In this last letter write out what you are thankful for, what you know and understand, what you forgive and what is going on in your life at this time.
With these insights you are better equipped to get in touch with your feelings and start healing. It only takes 30 minutes so please give it a try.