I love visiting with my dad. His wife, aka Mom, died unexpectedly about six months after my husband died. We visit via Facebook where we talk about the goings on and life’s ups and downs. Memories are shared, stories told and tears are shed. I love being able to see as well as hear him. It is therapeutic to visit with him. Dad, I bet you never thought you would hear me call you therapeutic? Ha!

Tonight while talking to my dad, I was throwing around an idea for today’s post (which I chose not to use today). We talked about how as a lay clergy member, he had officiated at about two dozen funerals. He said it wasn’t until my mom died that he really understood what the surviving partner was feeling. Experiencing death first hand was a revelation. We discussed the spiritual changes we have experienced after losing our beloved companions, the growth of compassion, sympathy and view of our eternal nature. As part of the conversation, my dad shared something my mother had written down from a funeral she attended in 1992. A friend of theirs said, “The only way to not feel pain at the time of death…Is to not feel love in life.”

As hard as this experience has been, if I knew on my wedding day I would be widowed 27 years later, I would not have hesitated to marry. The pain I felt when he died was engulfing and at times, unbearable. But what a small price to pay for having loved so deeply.