Tag Archives: widowhood

Has It All Been In Vain? Questions After 9 Years of Widowhood

Was Joe’s passing all in vain?

Did people learn lesson’s from his passing?

Here today and gone tomorrow

What lessons if any have I learned?

I know marriages and family relationships are not perfect. Relationships are made up of humans, flawed imperfect humans. There will be bickering. but why do we resist spending time together?

Here today and gone tomorrow.

It was 9 years ago today Joe had a stroke at the base of the brain, it will be 9 years tomorrow that he was pronounced brain dead.

He was alive mentally and physically on the 27th. He was vibrant, full of life, love, laughter, joy. He frustrated me because I had to go get the other TV cart in the TV lounge in the rehab department. One TV cart is the same as the other –  right? No, not to Joe.

So full of life one evening and gone 11 hours later.

Knowing my heart aches for slow dances, hugs, cuddling while watching TV, or just aches in general. Is that not enough to get other couples of any age to appreciate one another?

Is my achy breaky heart not enough to get people in general to appreciate and love one another?

To take or make the time to spend together?

Here today and gone tomorrow.

When a spouse passes, your heart and soul ache in nooks and crannies you do  not know you have. The ache from grief can and will invade the same nooks and crannies when other family members move to heaven as well.

Questioning whether or not people learned lessons from Joe’s passing hurts and grieves me immensely. Fearing that there are people who did not learn lessons tears me up inside.

For your sake, love one another.

For your loved one’s sake, love one another.

Remember, here today and gone tomorrow.

Not them – you might be here today and gone tomorrow.

Leave no love unspoken or acted upon.

Don’t let yours or your loved one’s passing be in vain. Love one another – now.

 

 

Is Valentine’s Day Cheesy?

 

arrangement5

A lot of people either don’t or reluctantly celebrate Valentine’s Day because to them it is a cheesy made up Hallmark day. It’s just another excuse for companies to get their grubby hands on your hard earned money.

Do I think Valentine’s Day is cheesy? No.

 

Life get’s busy and while we should celebrate Valentine’s Day every day, we don’t. So once a year we get a reminder to express love to our family and friends. Cherish Valentine’s Day because next year, some of the people you love may not be here.

You will wish they were here even on a day you consider cheesy.

Happy Valentine’s Day. 

Love Always, 

thinbutterfly

 

 

 

{ Day 29 } 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster – Laugh!

The finish line is in sight!  Only a few more days.

Today’s word is

LAUGH!

You will laugh again at some point during your grief journey. Joe’s nieces and nephew laughed at the funeral home when I confirmed their uncle loved Yanni and would air guitar, drum and any other instrument while listening to Yanni. Their dad told them but they did not believe him. Laughter made a painful situation a little easier to bear – even if only for a moment.

Laughter puts the grief monster in his place. It shows him that you will not go down without a fight. Laughter is just as healing as tears. Sharing funny stories brings back fond memories and gives you something to which to cling. It helps you focus solely on the good the deceased did and not remember the bad memories.

Remember to bring laughter back into your life after your spouse’s passing.

Watch this clip from the movie Mary Poppins if you need a good laugh today.

Quote Meditation 

I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.

Robert Fulghum

{ Day 28 } 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster – STRUGGLE

Welcome everyone, (except the remnants of Patricia) to Day 28. Patricia gave Northeast Ohio a good soaking last night and today. I thought she was done but it looks like she is gearing up for round two.

Today’s word is

STRUGGLE

Scripture Quote

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Ephesians 6:12

Now you might think struggle is a weird trick for getting through grief. Struggling implies movement, lots of movement and lots of energy being used up. You are lifting up your feet, one at a time attempting to make forward progress through the muck. Unlike the Cleveland Browns, you will make forward progress through the muck and mire the grief monster brought to your life. (I can pick on the Browns because I am a die hard fan.)

The best thing to do when struggling is to be honest about it with God and close family or friends, because honesty is the best policy – even in grief.

muck_mire

My Struggles

I’m struggling today, struggling to get through this 31 day writing challenge. Oh, it seemed like an excellent idea back in June. Now I do not want to finish it but I will because the grief monster will not prevent me from helping others. That is what I feel is going on and probably has been going on during this challenge.

My job search is another struggle. Now I did have a great interview yesterday (at least I thought it was great) but I should be posting on LinkedIn, sharing other people’s content and reaching out to connect with people. But (there’s always a but) for this job search, I really do not care about doing those actions.

I want away from the computer and out and around people. Where do I go? People my age are married or are in dating relationships and have their own group of friends.

So you see I am struggling, just in a different way from when Joe moved to heaven.

I leave you with the following quote meditation from Napoleon Hill…and it was not a struggle to find this appropriate quote. I Googled quotes about struggle and there it was on BrainyQuote.com.

Enjoy!

Quote Meditation 

Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.

Napoleon Hill

10-10-2011_3by5Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She encourages widows and educates society about grief and life as a widow by sharing her widowhood adventures. A graduate of Kent State University with a degree in communications, she has used her skills in the banking, collections, outdoor products and social media industries. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer. You can see more of photography at OgleOhio.com, where she is running the series 31 Days of Autumn in Ohio – because running a 31 Day series on one blog is not enough insanity.

{ Day 27 } 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster – CRAFT!

Welcome to Terrific Tuesday!

Today’s trick is

CRAFT

You dreamed and prayed about those dreams yesterday. Now it is time to craft your new life. This may or may not involve actual crafts ( scrapbooking, crocheting, sewing etc…) Craft your new life one day at a time. Don’t wait till you are through grief to start your new life.

It takes bravery to craft a new life and start working on it. But you are brave, you are brave because you tackled the grief monster head on. You work day in and day out to keep moving through the muck on your grief journey. You do this to honor the memory of your husband.

brave2

It is for the brave and for the crafty. It is for those women who realize they were given an opportunity to find a new purpose in life, to use the purpose to make the world a little bit better than they found it. An opportunity that would not have existed if you were still married.

Your timeline did not end.

Now bravely go craft a new life, but before you do watch this video from Annie F. Downs. I watched it early Sunday morning and boy did it speak to me.

I look forward to hearing what you are doing with your new opportunity.

Resources: 

Let’s All Be Brave: Living Life With Everything You Have  Annie F. Downs

The Good Life  Kaitlyn Bouchillon (Where I found Annie’s speech on Sunday morning).

10-10-2011_3by5Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She encourages widows and educates society about grief and life as a widow by sharing her widowhood adventures. A graduate of Kent State University with a degree in communications, she has used her skills in the banking, collections, outdoor products and social media industries. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer. You can see more of photography at OgleOhio.com, where she is running the series 31 Days of Autumn in Ohio – because running a 31 Day series on one blog is not enough insanity.

{ Day 26 } 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster – DREAM!

Welcome and Happy Monday! We are in the homestretch of 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster. T -5 days and counting.

Scripture Meditation

But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Matthew 19:26

Today’s word is

DREAM

There will come a time in your grief when you need to figure out what your life is now going to be about. When the time comes go ahead and dream.

But don’t just dream – DREAM BIG!

I am currently attending a women’s Bible study and we are viewing The Circle Maker video’s. Oh my dear widowed friend, get this book, video and study guide by Mark Batterson. In the videos he discusses dreaming big and boldly. God is the God of big dreams, of bold dreams. No dream is too big or too bold for God.

Once you figure out what you want your life to look like, make a list and draw a circle around the entire list or one particular item. Then set aside time every day and pray about your dream. Do this for 21 days and see what happens. At best it comes true, at worst you have a greater sense of peace because you have established a prayer commitment.

My Dream

My dream is:

  • keep this house
  • remodel this house
  • have a job where I make what Joe was making or better
  • become Mom to another golden retriever daughter (or son)
  • have the resources (hardware, software, design etc…) to take this blog to the next level
  • keep my good health
  • have the strength to keep pursuing my dreams
  • have friends who will help lift me up to the next level and to gather around the table with

All these small dreams and more make up the big, bold dream I call “My Life.”

My dream has not come true in the 12 days I’ve been doing this, but I feel a greater sense of peace in my life and that is an answer to a prayer. A prayer revolving around Psalm 27:3

Though a mighty army surrounds me, my heart will not be afraid. 

So do not fear praying to God for your big, bold dream. He loves you and wants to hear not only what your needs are but He also wants to know what dreams are on your heart.

boldly dream

Quote Meditation

Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. He is offended by anything less. If your prayers aren’t impossible to you, they are insulting to God.

Mark Batterson

The Circle Maker

Resources: 

Links: – MarkBatterson.com

 The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Greatest Dreams and Biggest Fears

10-10-2011_3by5Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She encourages widows and educates society about grief and life as a widow by sharing her widowhood adventures. A graduate of Kent State University with a degree in communications, she has used her skills in the banking, collections, outdoor products and social media industries. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer. You can see more of photography at OgleOhio.com, where she is running the series 31 Days of Autumn in Ohio – because running a 31 Day series on one blog is not enough insanity.

{ Day 25 } 31 Tricks to Scare Away the Grief Monster – SHINE

tall candle in glass with Jesus on the front.

Welcome to the beginning of the last week of 31 Tricks to Scare the Grief Monster – Whew! It’s been an interesting ride. One I did not expect. Hopefully you enjoyed a week’s worth of Rommie tricks for working through grief.

Today’s word is

Shine

tall candle in glass with Jesus on the front.

Scripture Meditation 

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

Matthew 5:14 – 16 (ESV)

Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary defines shine as:

  • To emit rays of light
  • To be bright by reflection of light
  • To have a bright glowing appearance

How to emit rays of light?

Well you could douse yourself with glow-in-the-dark paint (NOT recommended).

Or you could be kind.

Let your light shine through random or not so random acts of kindness.

Being a widow means living on the outer edge of society so acts of kindness do not happen very often. I know from first-hand experience and have read about other widow’s experiences.

While they will not come your way very often, that should not stop you from shining your light to others. Be the example of kindness for others to emulate. Will it be tough? Yes, everything is tougher when grieving. But the more you do it, the easier it is to do.

Let you little light shine through acts of kindness not only to your fellow widows, but to anyone in need. Once you do, you will find that your little light, is not so little after all but shines big, bold and bright – perhaps as bright as the Star of Bethlehem.

10-10-2011_3by5Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She encourages widows and educates society about grief and life as a widow by sharing her widowhood adventures. A graduate of Kent State University with a degree in communications, she has used her skills in the banking, collections, outdoor products and social media industries. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer. You can see more of photography at OgleOhio.com, where she is running the series 31 Days of Autumn in Ohio – because running a 31 Day series on one blog is not enough insanity.

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