When

When? Now that is a huge question, isn’t it? When will things change? When will the rain stop? When will this or that stop? When will my life be better?

When is a big word and it’s only 4 letters. People might not think of “When” as being a big word, but I believe it is.

Personally it’s a word I’ve used far to often. Eight years ago next month Robb was KIA in Iraq. No he wasn’t a baby killer either. Anyway, since that day I used “when” all the bloody time. When will this ache in my heart cease? When will I smile again? When will someone love me again? When will I feel like I’m not a widow? WHEN, it’s a big word.

The last when in the previous paragraph hits home hard lately. I wonder if I ever will think of myself as simply single instead of a widow. Does that even happen? I’m not sure. It’s hard to say. I’m really not sure how people react when you tell them you’re a widow. Sometimes they ask how did your spouse die, and then the explanation is often hard to tell. So it’s easier just to say single. BUT I hate saying “single” because I’m not just single.

I was single when I was 19. At 20 I was a married woman (the whole woman thing needs to be looked at but not now) For the next 27 years I was married to Robb. It wasn’t easy, but marriage usually isn’t easy. Being married to Robb and being his wife was a part of my being in itself. Now, that I’m single (widow) that connection is not there that people see. Right now I know I’m single, but it sure doesn’t feel like I am. Then if you answer people “Married” they ask where is your husband. Telling them he’s dead just doesn’t work for a sound conversation, you know what I mean. So I usually answer widow, so they know that I was married but now I’m not. After that most people walk away.

When will answering ‘single’ not feel so awkward? Here I am 55 years old and single. A lot of people would think, ah to bad she’s single never married kind of thing, which is so flippin’ far from the truth. When you say you’re a widow, people automatically know you were married! AH that’s settled then. You did have someone in your life. And they walk away.

When will this feeling of being totally alone cease? When will being single be OK? When will I discover that being exactly who I am right now at any given point in time feel completely and totally right? When?

YEA, When is a BIG word

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A Military Widow

The other day a kid came to the door selling oil changes at a local auto shop. I even know of the shop. Anyway, he’s giving the speal about how great it is etc….and I’m listening as best as I can because Brodie is making a lot of noise. Brodie didn’t like the kid.

So after the entire presentation is given I tell the kid, I am on a limited income and I can’t afford what they are offering. That didn’t stop him, so he continued on and on…

Finally I told him I’m a military widow and my husband was KIA in Iraq. He replied simply by saying

“Awesome”

Now I’m not quite sure what to think of his response, however I have to think he’s either an idiot or he doesn’t listen. So I’m going to go with he doesn’t listen. He is selling door to door after all.

This Lonely Life of Mine

Being a widow is a lonely life. I’m sure some are wondering why I’m writing this, but I’ll tell you the truth and only the truth as I see it. Ever since Robb died in Iraq my life has become very lonely. I’m home most nights by myself. I rarely go out and when I do go out I’m by myself. On Tuesday afternoon I went to Barnes and Noble by myself to pick up a book that just came out. I hung out there as long as I could, but eventually I had to come home. Today I took the laptop to the Geek Squad to get it fixed, then I went and picked up lunch at a Philly steak place. Now the last two days I forced myself out the door, which it seems to have become the norm for me lately. Before Robb died I was always doing something with someone. What happened?

I think being a widow causes people to not want to talk to you for fear that they will say something that will remind me of Robb. Well, hell I do that all on my own anyway, so it’s not a biggie with me. I think people just don’t know how to talk to me anymore. They don’t know what to say for fear they might offend me or I them. They don’t want to take a look into my life as it is now knowing what my life was like before. I think it’s hard for them to do that. When Robb was alive we did stuff with other couples all the time. Now, my phone only rings when my daughter calls, my brother calls, or a telemarketing company calls. I think that a lot of women see me as who they don’t want to be, meaning the widow. There’s a connotation with the word “widow” and it’s not a good one either. When I really think about the word “widow” I think of something dark and kinda creepy. I don’t see happiness, joy, hope, or anything pleasant and that tells me most others see the same as I do. Now I must admit when I look at it that way, I wouldn’t want to spend time with me either, just because the word isn’t something we assign a good meaning to it. That’s sad I think. It would be so nice to have friends that would actually call me and say, “hey lets go to a movie, or go for a cup of coffee.” and yet that doesn’t happen.

I have discovered that this happens to other widows as well. But it still boggles my mind. Why do we do this? Why is being a widow so terrible that we don’t reach out and bring them into our group. At church I wanted to be in a small group, and after I signed up I never received a call. I’m not sure what happened, and I like to think there was a mistake along the way, but no one ever called and said you’re in our group. So after a while (like 2 years or so) I asked a couple of group leaders if I could be in their group, and I was told they needed to check with the group to be fair. I said OK and now I’m in a small group. I’m still not sure why widows are treated like the plague, but that’s how I’ve been treated. This whole death thing is weird anyway, and yet being a widow makes the death thing seem like a much better situation to be in. (not that I’m going to do anything like off myself, I’m way to chicken to do that.)

As American’s I think we view the whole death thing really oddly. Death isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and yet so many of us put such a dark gloomy cloud around it no one wants to even discuss it. Death shouldn’t be feared, well I don’t think it should. I know Robb didn’t fear it. He said so time after time again, “when it’s your time it’s time, there’s nothing you can do about it.” He is right too.

I don’t have any answers yet to my many questions, but rest assured I’m looking for the answers and when I have them I’ll pass them along.