It is Tuesday morning and I am anxiously awaiting one of the last episodes of This Is Us tonight. From the moment I was introduced to the “Big Three”, I was hooked.
I love the storyline of all of these characters. The Kate and Toby breakup was gut-wrenching, I am hoping Kevin gets his life together, and I love Randall’s whole family.
But the journey of their mom, Rebecca, is the one I most identify with.
First, because she is a mom, like me, and we have seen her with her children from the moment they were born until adulthood.
But the real reason I identify with Rebecca Pearson is because she is a widowed mom. From the moment her husband, Jack, died suddenly, I have seen myself in Rebecca. My husband also died without warning,10 years ago.
I watched This Is Us as Rebecca guided her devastated children through the funeral and the early days of shock and grief. Tears came when this new widow dealt with each of her children’s struggles. I saw her worry about each of them and how the loss of their father took its toll. When Kate truly struggled and her mom didn’t know how she would make it through, I especially related.
It was wonderful when Rebecca began to come out of her “grief fog” and grew stronger. I laughed when she attempted dating. And I cheered for her relationship with Miguel. Most importantly, I smile at how her children adore her. They see how difficult her road has been, and they appreciate her more for it.
I went through all the same phases.
The writers on This Is Us do a fantastic job showing the real world of widowed motherhood. And Mandy Moore does a fabulous job portraying the difficult journey after losing a husband and father. The way that the family moves forward while always keeping Jack’s memory alive is something I strive for.
The Pearson’s story is wrapping up. As it ends, we will see the decline of Rebecca due to her Alzheimer’s. I will break out the tissues.
The previews for tonight’s This Is Us show us Kate’s second wedding. It looks as if Rebecca’s Alzheimer’s has advanced. She thinks that they are waiting for Jack to begin the wedding. My heart will break once again for this family, and for my own.
When my own daughters get married, their father will not be there. I think a little part of every widow and every child who has lost a parent will hope that they will magically show up. We know it is impossible, but a little piece of your heart still wishes for it. It will be sad that Rebecca Pearson will truly believe it.
In a few weeks, This Is Us will be no more. The Pearson’s story will be over, but I will always appreciate how real this show is. Rebecca has made me feel like I am not alone. There are very many “Rebeccas” out there. None of our journeys are exactly alike but, for me, this one was so very relatable and I am so appreciative of this wonderful story.
Thank you for the ride This Is Us.
***Have you heard about Hope for Widows Foundation’s annual Restoring Hope & Peace Grant program? It was established by the organization in 2019 to help widowed women offset financial challenges as they navigate their healing journey. You can find out details, timeline and the history of this grant here: https://hopeforwidows.org/