Archive of ‘Hope for Widows News & Information’ category

A special note to our Hope Widow Sisters on National Widows Day

By Chasity Williams

 

We want to send a special shout out to honor all our Hope widow sisters today, on National Widows Day. We appreciate you and are very proud of your resilience in the face of extreme tragic circumstances. We always want to validate your emotions, feelings and thoughts as they matter. You matter.

Nothing prepares you for widowhood!! It’s a committee that no one wants to be a part of. No instructions, no reference guide, no rules. We are left to pick up the pieces and find out how to get through and survive. Most days, weeks, months, even down to the second that’s all you can do. To us, the word ‘widow’ means: Hope, Strength, Warrior, Resilient, Faith, Overcomer, Determination, and growing your soul and self to new and greater heights than you ever imagined.

As widows ourselves, we know something stunning and magnificent can happen after time; emerging from a devastating loss or tragedy, then transforming and changing, like a caterpillar into a butterfly. It’s not right away, not even soon, but we promise you will see the light in the darkness eventually. There is no time limit, but you will go from surviving to thriving. One of the hardest parts is the acceptance, acknowledgement of the loss and the future that was to be, and then surrendering to it. Knowing you will never get ‘over it’, but learn a better way to ‘get through it’. Remember, you have to feel to heal.

So, as beautiful, flawed, and broken you feel, battle scars, wounds and all, to hell and back … the beautiful, messy, chaotic life that is now yours, just breathe — take ownership of all of it- It is ENOUGH. YOU are ENOUGH. You can DO IT! Our Hope sisters are here for each other. A sisterhood of us who relate, understand, listen and care. Grief and heartbreak of losing a loved one is an unspoken language, until it happens to you no one on the outside will truly understand. Our Hope Sisters are some of the strongest and most beautiful people we have ever met.

Our Hope Sisters continue to inspire and encourage us daily. We want to tell you how much we care for you, how strong you are and that you can do the tough things! Hang on to your anchor, because Healing Happens.

You are enough. You are strong. You are brave. You are beautiful. You are amazing….. We believe in YOU.

“Pain is real, but so is Hope.”

In Hope,
Chasity Williams, Khadija Ali and Maureen Bobo
Hope for Widows Foundation Directors

We’re Partnering With The Mighty!

By khadija ali

themightyhopeforwidows-2016-facebookimage

We’re thrilled to announce a new partnership that will bring our resources in front of The Mighty http://themighty.com/ wide-reaching readership. We will now have a growing home page https://themighty.com/partner/hopeforwidowsfoundation/ on The Mighty and appear on many stories on the site.

The Mighty is a story-based health community focused on improving the livesof people facing disease, disorder, mental illness and disability. More than half of Americans are facing serious health conditions or medical issues. They want more than information. They want to be inspired. The Mighty publishes real stories about real people facing real challenges.

Here’s an example of the kind of stories on The Mighty: What Nobody Tells You About Self-Care: https://themighty.com/…/self-care-how-to-take-care-of-your…

We’re dedicated to helping people with mental illness https://themighty.com/category/mental-illness and grief https://themighty.com/?s=grief in their lives. With this partnership, we’ll be able to help even more people.

We encourage you to submit a story http://themighty.com/submit-a-story/ to The Mighty and make your voice heard.

Sincerely,
Hope For Widows Directors

We relate. We understand. We care. We listen.

 

 

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My Widow Wall

By Cathy Nelson

imageI recently learned that most animals in the wild run from a storm; however, not the buffalo. The buffalo will walk right into a storm and walk right through it. Let me explain how this can be applied to our journey through grief.

My late husband, Ray, and I had been married less than 10 years. We had 4 young children and lived in a small home that was located close to our town’s little hospital. One night, we got word that some friends of ours were at that little hospital awaiting news about their 2 year old who had been found face down in the family pool. Without hesitation, Ray jumped in the car and headed out to be with this couple. There he waited and prayed with them until their family members arrived.

After the tragic loss of their son, this little family fell apart. We lost contact with them over the years after the father moved out of state. Fast forward 25 years. Ray’s obituary was posted in our local newspaper, along with a memorial site which allowed people to post their condolences. I was deeply touched when one was written by the father of this young boy. In it, he said how he would never forget how much courage Ray showed by having the guts to come to the hospital and sit with him on the worst day of his life.

Ray taught me many things over our 36 years of marriage. However, for me, the example of his courage has been the most important lesson.

We widows talk about widow fog, which is very real, but I have found there is also something I call the Widow Wall. I feel this invisible wall go up around me, when I start to feel deep emotional grief at his loss. I feel this wall sometimes when I meet someone new and I start to share my story. I feel this wall when I’m told by others how I “should ” feel or what I “should” do. This Widow Wall is what I put up to protect me from my fear.

My Ray was like a buffalo. He could walk right into a storm and face it head on. I seldom saw him try to go around a storm in life. My hope is to follow Ray’s example by learning to step through my fears and be courageous under all circumstances. My Widow Wall is self constructed, so I know I am able to tear it down.

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Meet Our Authors!

By Roslyn Geertsen

This week, we have something special for you! Each day you will have a chance to get better acquainted with our Hope for Widows website authors, as we’ve asked each one, for their daily post, to share something about themselves with you.

We currently have:

Karen McCandless writing Mondays and Thursdays,

Cathy Leaf on Tuesdays,

Lisa Bargewell on Wednesdays, and

Cathy Nelson on Fridays.

(Occasionally you’ll see a post from Ellen Gerst from the Advisory Board, Roslyn Geertsen from the Board of Directors, and Gwen Peterson, Founder, President, and Chairperson.)

We are so grateful for these women who give of their time – and their heart – with no thought of compensation of any sort – to bless us all with their insight, their compassion, and their encouragement.

We hope this week as you get to know each one better, you’ll be able to get a glimpse into their lives and feel their individual concern for you! These are incredible women!

 

 

 

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