WIDOW…….What kind of feeling or image does that conjure when you think of this word? Today is International Widows Day, just a little PA, if you hadn’t heard!
Black, grief, death, loneliness, these are all things that often are associated with widows by the world and what we grow up seeing as an image portraying widows. But, as I was forced into this description by the death of my husband, I slowly learned to shake off those stereotypes and join women that have emerged from the depths of loss and grief to become more than they ever thought they could be.
These women have become leaders within the community of widows(ers) and our world. Instead of being enveloped in darkness until their last day, they have become the light in this world, focused on helping others and living life FULLY. Small things are no longer taken for granted, just the feeling of peace or contentment for a brief moment….was such amazing blessing after losing Tyler. Also, receiving support and love from friends, and strangers alike, in my darkest time of need, has opened my scope of vision. I now see how connected we really all are, and can be.
I hope that I am helping to shape the image of widow into something far from our long held stereotypes of women adorned in black left to live quietly alone with their grief for the rest of their life….and into an image of strength and resiliency that shines brightly in spite of the darkness, leading the way towards a better world for everyone.
Photo borrowed from one of the widows, Christina, who has inspired me to share my story out loud. A big thank you to her.