I don’t need to tell you that life doesn’t always work the way we’d like it to. The fact is life is hard and not always fair. I learned that the hard way when Donnie died suddenly at the age of fifty-three.
If I had my way, life would be easier and there would be no grief. Unfortunately, the reality is that I won’t get my way. But reality is a great teacher as it has helped me to learn, although often slowly and painfully, that the world will not devote itself to making me happy. That there is no sense in complaining and whining about the way things should be, but never will be.
Life isn’t easy, but the effort, the mistakes and even the frustration of grief all make me the person I am. One of the great truths of life is that life is full of trials/struggles/change. It always has been, and it always will be. Once we understand and accept it, we can look for ways to solve the problems and difficulties that we face as a widow. This is where we begin to accept the challenges of life. Instead of letting our hardships defeat us, we dig down deep and discover what we are made of.
The healing of our broken hearts comes at a price. It comes as the result of time, effort, sacrifice and pain. Because life is hard we need the resolve to fight back and not let it destroy us.
We live in an imperfect world with other imperfect people. No one can promise us lives free from pain or disappointment. Nor can anyone promise us that we will never lose someone we love.
But we are not alone because every living person shares the same predicament of unfairness and suffers the hurt and loss which comes with it. It’s not a question of whether they experience loss, but how they experience them.
No one escapes life’s unfairness. Those who heal just learn to accept it and manage it more constructively. Maybe that’s why so many widows relate to Reinhold Niebuhr’s famous Serenity Prayer. I had this prayer put on the back of Donnie’s grave stone:
God grant me the serenity to accept the
things I cannot change, the courage,
to change the things I can, and the
wisdom to know the difference.
When we are faced with miserable conditions, we are also faced with a decision: whether to give in to them or stand up to them. Standing up to some of the harsh realities of life requires courage. No one is born with it. More than anything else, courage is a decision to love life even when it’s hard and unfair. Seek out others that understand grieving and healing, because we are not alone in this journey.
If you want to join a group of widows from around the world you can request to join “The Sisterhood of Widows – Private Group for Widows” in Facebook. This private group is only for the ladies and the rules are strictly enforced, and so this group is not for everyone.