Sunday will be 4 years since my husband died.
If you had asked me 4 years ago where I would be today, I would not have been able to give you an answer. I couldn’t imagine surviving one day. Let alone four years. But I have survived. In fact, I’ve thrived.
When my husband first died, a part of me died too. The life that I had known for the past 16 years, died. In the blink of an eye I went from married to widowed. Widow, a word I could not even say out loud. A word I could not believe described me. A box I hated checking on any paperwork.
Overnight I went from having a partner to being solo. I went from being part of a couple to being alone. All of a sudden, to society I was “single”. I went from having someone to help me raise my child to being a solo parent. All of a sudden I was lonely in a room full of people.
I wasn’t sure how I would survive that first night. Let alone that first week, month, year. There are days in that first year that I don’t remember. Days I’m not sure how I made it thru. But somehow, by the grace of God I did survive.
The first year after he died, was all about Jared. Remembering him. Honoring him. The second year I decided would be about me. Discovering who I was and who I wanted to be. The third year, was all about adventure. And I found unexpected love. Year four, I didn’t have a plan. I just jumped into life with both feet. I said yes to love and became a remarried widow. I sold the house I shared with Jared to create a fresh start for our son. Year 5 will start with me honoring my late husband on his angelversary wearing someone else’s ring on my finger.
I’m not yet sure how I will handle all of my emotions on that day. So many emotions. But time has taught me that I will survive the day. And the next year.
Sunday will be 4 years since my world changed in the blink of an eye. Four years since life as I knew it ceased to exist. Four years since my life was marked as before and after. Four years.
Yes, my life is good again. Yes, I am happy. Yes, I love my life now. But that doesn’t change the fact that four years ago my heart broke. Four years ago my world came crashing down. Four years ago I didn’t think I would ever feel “normal” again.
Four years ago I could never have imagined that I would survive Jared’s death. And even though a part of me died that day, I worked hard to put the remaining pieces back together. I not only survived, I’m thriving. And I know Jared would be proud that I chose to honor him by living life to the fullest. Four years ago, I couldn’t imagine a future. Now I know year 5 will be full of love, adventures, and laughter. And Jared will be smiling down on me as I live my best life. It’s the best way I know to honor him.