February 22, 2019

Dear New Widow: A Love Letter to My 40 Year Old Self

Dear Sandra,

He died. 

Your world has been turned upside down. Chaos will dominate your heart and mind for months, actually years and I am so sorry.

Grieve him. 
Grieve you. 
Grieve your boys father. 
Grieve the life you thought was yours. 
Grieve the life you hoped would be theirs. 

It’s going to be brutal. Yes. Brutal.

Listen to me. Even though you may think it will never get better. Even though you believe the excruciating pain will never leave your body or mind. I promise it will. I promise. It takes time. Time to get your balance again. Time to learn how to raise them by yourself. 

Trust your gut. 
Believe in your choices. 

You are their mom. Don’t let anyone tell you how to parent. Don’t let anyone tell you how to live. 

They are not walking in your shoes. 
Sleeping in your empty bed. 
Living in your head. 
Learning how to let an old life go and creating a new one for you and those two. 

They are standing on the outside looking in. 
Their vote doesn’t count. 
Your life. 
Your boys. 
Your way. 
Your vote. 
Only yours.

Simplify your life. Accept you can’t do it all. Ask for help. It’s different now. 

From now on it is only about you and the boys. 
Nobody else matters. 
This is not selfish. 
This is survival. 

Dig deep. 
Find your strength. 
I know you have it.

Wants and needs of others are no longer your problem. Set boundaries. With family and friends. Boundaries will save you. You need your energy to heal you. To heal them. 

I know you are scared. 
Don’t be afraid Sandra. 
Fear will hold you back from healing. 
Be bold. 
Be brave. 

One day you will wake up and feel the sun on your face again. 
You will laugh without feeling guilty. 
You will let go of the rage and anger. 
I will be so damn proud of how far you 3 have come.

Those boys will be ok. They will smile again. I promise. 

Love them. 
Guide them. 
Be honest with them. 
Listen to them. 
Let them feel. 

I know you can do this. I believe in you Sandra. It will be so hard. For a very long time. You will struggle. They will struggle. Do the work. 

You will all heal. 
Life will be beautiful and so full again. 
But so very beautiful. 
I promise. 
You’ve got this. 

Love, Sandra

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