Earlier this week my ex-husband died…
Over the past twenty-three years, the memories (good, bad or indifferent) had faded… I had moved on… rarely looked back and left the pain and sadness of the loss of my first marriage behind… or so I thought…
I re-married over twenty years ago to my soul mate… my child’s non-biological father… the man who came into our lives and helped us pick up the pieces when we most needed support, strength and unconditional love. We blended our families and my dream of having three children came alive. I always say I have three awesome children and only had to go through the pain of childbirth once but in reality, as a parent, we go through the pain of childbirth over and over when we watch our children suffer physical or emotional pain as they move through the various stages of their lives.
Today I am going through that pain of childbirth once again… watching my twenty-seven year old son grieve the death of his first dad… the dad he had lost twenty-three years ago and only recently found again this past year. Watching him grieve the relationship (or lack thereof) of yesterday… the new relationship he had today… and wondering how he will deal with this loss tomorrow.
Today, I am also going through the pain of childbirth in another way… grieving for my husband, the man who has been my child’s father for 21 of my child’s 27 years. It is hard to explain to my husband why I am grieving over the death of my ex-husband… hard to explain because I am surprised by the depth of my sadness.
Sadness for my husband of yesterday… sadness that his earthly life was so hard… full of physical and emotional anguish that had left him with only a shell of the person(spirit) he really was within.
I have sadness for my husband of twenty plus years… sadness that he cannot understand the emotions his child and wife are going through right now… sadness that he wants to comfort but is not sure how… sadness that all of his years of fathering this child has been put on the sidelines for a few days as we are going through the initial stages of grief… as we are moving Bill to his final resting place…
I have sadness for my child… sadness that I cannot protect him from this pain… also knowing that processing through grief is another one of the transitions through our physical life.
As the pain of childbirth gives way to celebration as we hold our newborn… I know our tomorrow(s) will allow us to move through this current pain to a time of celebration…
Celebration of the kind, loving and laughter-filled spirit of my ex-husband that always resided deep within his soul.
Celebration of watching my child move through this transition… surrounded by the love of two fathers. Celebration of having my child unite with an extended family for the first time in 23 years.
Yesterday, I was blessed with a first marriage that produced a beautiful child… and a second union that blended three beautiful children… a union that has withstood the storms and has embraced the rainbows.
Today, I am blessed with memories… memories of smiles and joy… memories that will always stay within my heart.
Tomorrow, I will also be blessed… blessed with the making of new memories… memories that will burn brightly into eternity.
On a closing note, I ask that you read a WordPress blog post (http://loveandlifeproject.com/2014/01/02/if-i-should-not-wake-up-one-morning-guest-post/) by Leila Arts…the love & life project. On January 2nd, she posted a guest post by Dusti Rodes (http://dustirodes.tumblr.com/) titled If I should not wake up one morning. As with most things that come into my life, this one came to me at precisely the right time for me to share with my son. The first line starts:
If I should not wake up one morning
Remember that I love you.
Thank you to both Leila and Dusti for sharing these beautiful words…
Have you ever been surprised by your emotional reaction to something you thought you had dealt with and left in the past?