Today at counseling, the counselor tells me the loss of a spouse- “especially at your age” is the worst kind of grief – according to the books- worse than the loss of a child even- because the relationship has so much shaped who you are- you lose so much of yourself as well.
I tell her how often you told me I was pretty- how you encouraged me- how consistent, steadfast, and unconditional your love even when things were tough- which they often were. I tell her I didn’t know I could love this much until now.
“Would you say you loved him more than you’ve ever loved anyone?” she asks.
On the way home, I think about all of the practical and “responsible” things I was always nagging you about. A lot of widows complain about the responsibilities they must take on for the first time- taking care of banking for the first time- fixing things around the house. These things I have been taking care of for a long time, so this is not my experience.
You told me I looked pretty in the morning, told me it would all work out and we’d be OK, made me smile at just the thought of you, let me tickle you, made me laugh at myself and my high-strung ways, played me music I hadn’t heard, and urged me- just write- start writing…you’re a great writer.
So it turns out what you brought to me and our relationship- to our home and family- though not necessarily the most practical in worldly terms-
was absolutely beautiful and