A Young Widow On Loss And New Love

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widow staring pensively out the window
A young widow leaves the porch light on for her dead husband, even after finding love a second time.

They say nights are the hardest to get through, so instead of sleeping in the bed we had shared, I decided to sleep on the couch. With fresh sheets in hand, I flipped over the end cushion and heard the crinkle of a candy bar wrapper. If he had been in the living room with me, I would have reprimanded him (as I had so many times!) and led him into the kitchen to show him where the garbage can was.

Now, as I picked up the wrapper, the last thing I wanted to do was throw it away. I held it in my hand while I tucked in the corners. I held it while I fluffed my pillow and straightened my blanket. I held it until I fell asleep, and I was still holding it when I woke up (about an hour later). Turns out, "they" were right; nights were the hardest to get through. Actress Blythe Danner on Love and Loss

I had also heard people say that you should not suppress your tears, that you should let them come and go at will. So I did, relentlessly. I cried in the shower, I cried in the car. I cried while walking and talking; I even cried in my sleep. I had never felt an actual lump in my throat until then. People didn't really know how to deal with my emotions. I can't say I blame them. I didn't either; I just couldn't do anything else. That I was widowed at 27 is unimportant. I could have been 87, and the pain would have been the same.

Soon my tears were replaced with solemnity. Unbeknownst to me, over a month had passed and for the first time, I opened the front door. My mailbox was crammed with overdue statements and pre-approved credit card offers. According to my mail, he wasn't dead. I stood there with the envelopes in my hands. If he had been on the porch with me, I would have handed him the bills. Now, I just held them (like I'd held the candy wrapper). Poll: Do You Split The Bills In Your Relationship?

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