Tag Archives: Widow

Life doesn’t always suck

This was originally written in early July 2017.

TL;DR: My friends are amazing. I am lucky to have them.

I’m home with MS issues today, but I have been feeling strong emotions lately and wanted to get this out there. While on my trip to AZ, I read an article by a fellow widow. It was based on the fact that Patton Oswalt, a widower, was getting a lot of negativity surrounding his recent engagement announcement. She was letting him and everyone else know that there is no time limit for grief/dating after losing a spouse. The article led me to a wonderful Facebook group (closed group) entitled Young, Widowed & Dating. I asked to join, answered some questions and not more than a day later, I was accepted into the group.

I have never felt more at home than when reading some of the posts these women and men share. I no longer felt as if I were alone. Because I did feel that way. The other widows I know are not dating and feel they never will again. To each their own, but I needed someone to talk to, someone who would understand. The people in the group understand and have written things I never felt I could say to my friends.

Here’s the other part of that: in reading their posts, I see that there are a lot of assholes out there, trying to date widows/widowers who just don’t fucking understand our pain. Who try to tell them how to act, how to feel. There are even some family members who refuse to allow the widow/widower to be happy in their new relationship, questioning how the grieving spouse could possibly still be grieving and missing their late spouse if they are now dating. Those posts were hard to read, but in reading them, I realized something again: my friends have never once questioned my desire to move forward.

You folks have always been there for me, and I cannot thank you enough. My life is filled with amazing people and I want to thank each and every one of you for being the wonderful, caring people that you are. Without you, I see that this world can be a very cold, hard place.

Thank you for being there. Thank you for being my friends.

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Widowhood is confusing

Hi. My name is Cat Stark and I’m a widow. But if you know me, or have read my blog, you know this already. What you may not know is that I love another man now, and it hurts to say that. It hurts because it feels like a betrayal. I know it isn’t. Jason is gone and though I loved him so very much, loving Paul does not make me love Jason any less. It does not invalidate what I feel for Jason, but it does confuse things very much in my heart and in my head.

There are times I think I shouldn’t be with anyone, but that would be foolish. As I have written (at least to myself) before, I have too much love to give and I am not going to live out the rest of my life alone just because I loved another who has passed on.

It is ok to love someone else. It is ok to love two people. It hurts and it is confusing, but god damn it, isn’t most of life that way?

If you are a widow or widower, please don’t be afraid to love another. It does happen. We are not meant to share our lives with only one person. If that were true, we wouldn’t have friends or family, we would live in a vacuum. Reach out. Love and be loved. It may hurt like hell, and your emotions my make you think you are going through hell, but if you have found another after your loved one dies, that is not hell, that is living, and that is love.

I love two men. Jason ssg, my late husband, who I was with for 19 years 2 months. And Paul, who I have been dating almost a year. And that is ok.

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Life at the moment

The most difficult part about being a widow who is dating someone new, is that all the experiences I have with my new man seems to be something I did with Jason, something Jason and I would not have done, or something I learned because of Jason. And no, I don’t mean the dirty fun stuff, just everyday life things.

It messes with my head. And my heart, too.

The new man in my life is patient and understanding. He is willing to help me through whatever I’m feeling and is wonderful enough not to be bothered when I mention Jason’s name or tell him about the memories I have. They knew each other; I think that helps a lot.

I have a hard time understanding why I’ve been lucky enough to find not one good man, but two good men, who are willing to help me along my path in life.

It’s not easy being a widow – heck, it’s not easy being alive – but with the right people around me, I feel like anything is possible.

 

Addendum 11/3/2014

You live with someone long enough, and you become used to their face. That’s probably obvious. What might not be obvious is that when I started dating my new guy, I sometimes felt like I was looking at the wrong face…

I thought I would have to let Jason go in order to feel right with my new guy. Last night, I realized that it’s not about letting Jason go, it’s about letting my heart grow. Which I prefer.

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Advice for the living

When my husband Jason died, there were many things I did not have to worry about. All our bills, our two vehicles, the apartment, were in my name. There were only a couple minor things I had to get changed into my name. This caused a very difficult situation to be not as difficult.

My husband’s death caused many of my married friends to talk about things they would not normally think about. Some have approached me for further advice. I willingly gave it. Another friend encouraged me to write things down so that maybe I can help others. Maybe even reach people I don’t know. So here it is. Advice on things you should talk to your spouse/significant other about in case something should happen to them.

1) Make sure your spouse knows all your passwords to your various social media, emails and other such things. I don’t and I am now afraid of what will happen to Jason’s Facebook page if I can’t get his password. I don’t want it deactivated due to inactivity. Such a small thing often feels huge during times like this.

2) If you pay all the bills, make sure your spouse knows how to access them and how/when to pay them. Are they emailed to you? Make sure your spouse sees them too. Also wouldn’t be a bad idea to talk to the companies that own your bills to see how difficult it would be to get everything switched into their name should the unthinkable happen.
That includes: car, loans, mortgage, utilities, EVERYTHING that has to be paid, or is in your name, make your spouse and you know the ins and outs of all the bills.

3) If something does happen, and you have to get the bills switched over, call the company at a time you’re feeling less terrible. Try not to cry. Have a friend there with you if that is needed. Do not tell them they have to help you. Say: My spouse died. The bill (mortgage, whatever) was in their name. What do I need to do to have it changed into my name?
I had to contact two places and they helped me over the phone. I assumed I would have to send something (death certificate) in. I did not. As I have worked customer care for years, I feel that my calm attitude, and the fact that I was asking for help, not demanding it, had a lot to do with the fact that we could take care of things over the phone.

4) Have extra death certificates. Hated having extra, still have a few too many, but you never know which companies will ask for one.

5) Jason and I did not have kids, so I can’t give any advice on that, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there was advice out there from a widow or widower that is also a parent.

6) Lastly. If you are a homosexual couple, I would imagine that there are far more things you have to worry about when your spouse dies, as the laws do not protect you yet. I have read a few heartbreaking articles on homosexual couples losing everything due to the fact that our laws in the States still suck for you guys. Find out how to protect yourselves legally to ensure that your things remain your things should your partner die. It is already a difficult thing when a spouse dies. Having the security of power of attorney may make things less horrid.

That’s all I have for the moment. If I have more, or if you have questions, I’ll add more. Peace and good health to all.

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I’m radioactive

Disclaimer: This is a rant. I’m venting. Take it as you will.

I’m radioactive.

Well, not really, but I feel as if I am. Why? I’m 38, a widow and I have MS.

I had a husband for 19 years that helped me in a lot of ways, and not just with the MS. I was diagnosed while we were together, and he was already sick, so that may be why he was able to take it all in stride. Or maybe he was just a great guy that would love me no matter what.

And he did.

So now, I’m a widow at 38. Why is that a problem? Well, like the song says, I’ve got too much life to live, too much love to give. I don’t doubt that I’ll end up in a relationship again, but tonight, I realized how difficult it would be for someone to love me. Or someone to decide I’m worth it.

I have a crush on this guy. It’s a guy that I met after my husband died, so it’s new and it’s hurting me a lot. I look at this guy and I think, “How the hell could he, or anyone else, decide I’m worth it?”

I know I have a lot to offer. I had one great man, I have a ton of friends. I’m not trying to be down on myself or be too conceited. I do like myself. I just recognize the fact that I have a lot of baggage.

Being 38 may not be an issue. It may be with the new crush, or any future crush, as he is younger. Much younger. We’ll leave that alone for the moment, as I don’t even know if that’s going anywhere other than a lesson for my heart.

I have MS. If you don’t know what that entails, look it up. On the MS Society page here: http://www.nationalmssociety.org/index.aspx Very informative.

So if/when I end up in a relationship, they’ll have that to deal with. If that wasn’t enough, there’s the fact that I’m a widow.

Any future relationship, friend or otherwise, will have to contend with the ghost of one of the most intriguing human beings I have ever met. I would never ask anyone to compete with a ghost, but it’s going to happen anyway. That’s just what happens. He was cool. I want people to know that. It would not be a comparison, not intentionally, but what if the future someone took it that way?

It’s just going to take a hell of a guy to decide I’m worth it. Someone like my late husband Jason. And I really don’t know if there is another one like him out there.

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