At the hospital the staff let me stay alone with my husband for 20 minutes after he passed. I hadn’t left his side for more than two hours in the last three weeks. A wonderful angle of a neighbor stepped in to help care for my kids: 11 and 14. Our minister was there and my father and family came two days before he died. But when I was alone with him after he passed I had no idea what I should do. I took his wedding ring off his finger and took mine off and placed them both on a gold chain hanging around my neck. I then just collapsed onto his body and cried telling him how much I and his children loved him.
Three years later at what would have been our 21st wedding anniversary it’s still there our rings around my neck. I know I should have moved on and taken off this pathetic plea for attention. Yet somehow the rings had become a token of comfort, something tangible that I can grasp at various points during the day when I wanted him at my side.
Our daughter and son brought me a beautiful bouquet of flowers and wrote a touching card in honor of the day.
My daughter told me she picked out each flower for the bouquet, certainly her perfectionist father would have done the same. They are so much alike. The flowers are beautiful just like my children.
I remember two weeks after my husband died I went to a widowers grievance support group at Greenwich Hospital. A widow in his 70’s said the pain of his wife’s death four years ago hadn’t eased. In fact, he wanted to join her. I didn’t return to the support group.
I have my husband’s personality, charm, temper and eyes in both my children for which I am blessed. Sometimes it’s hard to ‘get over’ and ‘move on’ after your soul mate dies. Those who seem to grieve long after the acceptable time are still in pain and may not want to ‘move on’. There is no acceptable time limit for sorrow.