Twenty-Five Things About Being a New Widow
Blog Post by Ericka Lutz - Jan.24.2009 - 3:08 pm
(A.K.A. the World's Saddest Meme.) The ever-awesome Gina Hyams not only tagged me for this "random things" meme, but suggested this variation specifically for me.
- It's been over three weeks since my husband died. I watched him die. I kissed him goodbye. I buried him. And I still don't believe it.
- I really did not know that there was this much love in the world. It's like bouncing on a trampoline of love - every time I land, springy loving arms catch me and propel me up again.
- Grief is fucking exhausting.
- And yet it is really hard to sleep. Hellooooo Sominex!
- After Bill died, I couldn't eat and I could only drink Coke. Then the next week I lived on ham, caffeine, and sugar. I've branched out, but I still crave high fat, high salt, high sugar.
- I now understand the tradition of bringing people food when there's been a death in the family. It's because the bereaved can no longer feed themselves.
- I can thaw, I can put fork to mouth, but I cannot cook. Loading the dishwasher is dubious.
- Food tastes really, really good but I'm still losing weight -- go figure.
- The word "widow" is an ancient, ancient word that hasn't changed much since its proto-Indo-European origins.
- The word "widow" was scary at first, but now I kind of like it because it's so precise. But Facebook doesn't have "widow" as one of the relationship status options, and that's bothering me.
- The house refi application had three choices for marital status: Married, Separated, or Unmarried. First I swore. Then I checked Unmarried. Then I checked out for the rest of the day.
- I'm considering taking up booze as a hobby.
- Some days I can't answer emails, I can't make phone calls, but Twitter is always da bomb.
- Did I mention how amazing my friends are?
- There must be something appealing about being this sad and vulnerable. I say this because of the quality of male attention I'm getting, despite the black circles under my eyes and the tendency to break into tears.
- Then there's libido. Grief is supposed to affect your libido.
- I lost my husband, but I did not have an Ericka-ectomy in the process. There's no need to be so hushed and solumn with me; I still have my sense of humor.
- I have the best friends in the entire world.
- I had no idea how many people would be rooting for me and Annie and the rest of the family. Yowza, Universe, you are AMAZING.
- Sometimes I'm really annoyed at my husband for leaving me with all this bureaucracy and paperwork...
- ...Not to mention all his clothing and other stuff that I have to figure out what to do with, and when the right time to do something about it is. (Was that a grammatical sentence? I don't think so.) And what to keep.
- Getting in my body (i.e. through dance) is the best way to pure grief.
- Pure grief is as painful as physical torture. But if I make myself stay there, even for a little while, I feel so much better. Lighter. Able to breathe.
- New Widowhood changes every day.
- But this part doesn't change: It's like ripping off a Band-Aid, again and again and again.
Ericka Lutz writes fiction (short and long), non-fiction (creative and commercial), and performance pieces. She's the author of the novel, The Edge of Maybe (March 2012), many short stories, columns, personal essays, and advice books. With a B.A. in...