Giving & Receiving while Grieving

This title may seem somewhat unusual for a new widow or anyone who is grieving.  However, life does seem to be about us at the time and it probably should!  While we often reflect on others and why they are not helping us at the time, we tend to forget how little we may have done for others when they have lost their spouse.  Often, it is because we had never walked down that path before and didn’t know what to do.  Scripture reads:  Acts 20:35 (NIV) In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

As you go through this journey, I would encourage you to take notes or write a journal of what you are going through.  A couple things will come across down the road as you read what you have gone through:  First it will help you see how you are healing through this journey.  Second, it will help you understand what may be helpful to someone going down the road.  As you reflect, you will sense what helped you as you received from others, it will also help you to give to others down the road.  

This is quite a process that does not have a time frame tied to it.  You will need to be patient with yourself!   Be patient with those who mean well and with others going through the journey of widowhood.  I Timothy 5:5 (NIV):  Now a true widow, a woman who is truly alone in this world, has placed her hope in God. She prays night and day, asking God for his help.  I remember reading this scripture and thinking it was so superficial…  My thought was God really doesn’t understand.   As time went by, I really did realize God did understand!  By resting in him, I learned a valuable lesson.  The more faith and trust I put in God, the more he carried me though the journey. 

The lessons I learned then, I am able to apply in today’s journey.  This doesn’t mean each day is easy or perfect.  What it does mean is, God is there for you and in turn you can be there for others going.  Remember each of us is unique and walk the path a bit differently.   With that being said, the pain of losing a spouse is similar. 

Just talking with someone going through this, helps so much!   As you are holding their hand and helping them through this, it doesn’t seem long before that person is holding a new widow’s hand.  Luke 6:38 (NIV) reads:  Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

I hope this helps you understand that by receiving help when you are hurting, turns into giving help to another widow going down the same path.  God is with us each step of the way.  We are here on earth to help each other.   Many times it is someone who has gone through what we have gone through, that truly helps each of us.

May you feel the blessings which God had given you to bless others.   Hugs and prayers to each of you.  May your use the healing from your pain (no matter what it is) to help others along the way! 

Blessings, hugs and prayers to each of you!

Uncertainity – Hope- Grace

Where are you at in your journey of widowhood?   If you are a fairly new widow, you are probable oblivious to what is going on outside around you.  You are just trying to get through the day.  There are so many uncertain things that come up on a regular basis!

For me, making lists was a big help.  However, some days the list seemed way to long.  And some days, I was able to cross things off easily.   One thing I did discover, was I needed to categized my lists by importance.  That seemed the best for me to make sure the important things DID get done.  There are times I still do this.  Once I was making my lists while listening to a sermon years ago (apparently the sermon was boring and I had to many things on my mind. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has ever done this).   My friend sitting next to me whispered wanting to know what I was doing.  I explained I didn’t want to forget the important things that need to be done.  She totally understood. 

One of the scriptures that gives me hope when I’m feeling uncertain is Romans 15:13 (NIV) which readsMay the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.  I have had to claim this verse time and time again!  It is so easy to get discouraged when we are feeling uncertain on what seems to be everchanging in our lives!

This seems to be such a cliché when we say God is always with us.  But even when we do not sense he is near, he is!  However, scripture tells us in James 4:8A (NIV): “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.”  Often times we just need to believe this to help us get through the uncertain times.   I wish I could wave a magic wand that would help you believe this.  But our God does not work with ‘magic wands’.  However, the promises we have are amazing.  You will be ok!!!!

When we make mistakes, and we all do, God’s grace is sufficient.  In Acts 20:32 (NIV), it reads:  Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those are sanctified.  What an amazing promise!  Be quick to forgive yourself when you have made mistakes!  Take note of the times you have seen God work in your life.  Neither the good or the bad, need to be big things, but just for you to become aware of what you are going through.   It’s a way for you to  reflect that you indeed are healing.

May I encourage you to take this verse to heart and memorize:  Romans 12:12 (NIV) which reads:  Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.   So, in the uncertainty in our journey, there is hope and grace.

My prayer for you is to find hope and grace.   May I also suggest you check out The Widow Might Website at:  They have a lot of great material on their website.  If you have a prayer request, please send it my way! God’s blessings to each of you!

Making Choices or Decisions!

Making decisions isn’t always easy to do!   Especially now that we are making decisions or choices on our own.  The one we bounced things off of is no longer here to help make those choices.  Many times, the decisions were easy and often times we had quite the discussion on what we should do!  Now that things have changed, the big decisions need to focus on God for direction.

Over time, I did realize I needed to figure this out, but knew I could not do it on my own.  I needed to rely on someone who truly had the answers.   Believing in God was always instilled in me from an early childhood.  So, I knew I would go this route first.  One of the great scriptures for me was Deuteronomy 31:6 which reads (NIV):  Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

My thought was – how do I be strong and courageous when I am hurting emotionally!  However, if I truly believed in God, I was going to have to learn to lean on him to allow him to be there for me.  Of course, that may take time and patience isn’t a virtue of mine.  But I did have enough faith to believe he would be with me each step of the way.

Things I needed help with, I wanted trusted people to contact.  In reading Miriam Neff’s book ‘Where Do I Go From Here?’: she has offered some great advice…  She calls these people her Board of Directors.   Miriam’s thoughts:

  • Choose a godly person who has experience a similar loss. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
  • Choose a person who has financial wisdom who you trust.   Psalm 24:1
  • Choose a practical friend.   Proverbs 15:22
  • Chose a friend who is an encourager.  Philippians 4:8-9
  • Choose a friend with spiritual discernment and courage.  Proverbs 27:17
  • Choose a friend or relative whose priority is your wellbeing.  Proverbs 18:2

These people will change over time and that is good, I know mine have. There are times you think you really know someone, but they are not necessarily looking out for you in the best way. 

I would suggest to get connected with a Grief Share Group, The Widow Might Organization ( or your church or synagogue to give you some direction. 

The changes in your life take time so please be patient with yourself!  When getting direction from others, you will be able to look back and know that you will begin to make better choices.  In Romans 15:13 (NIV) reads:  May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.  In time it will.  And he will.

For me, reflecting on what I have gone through in my live, it has taught me to look at the whole picture.   Some things were more difficult to go through than others that’s for sure!  Not all of our choices are good ones.  But with time, we will learn to rely on God and the advice from others.   Keeping that in mind, our decisions will become easier and we will make better choices….    Assurance of that is found in Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV):  Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Blessings to each of you as you walk through this journey.  Many of you have come a long way and others are still struggling. 

Old Friends – New Friends

Life is ever changing, isn’t it?   Sometimes change is easy and sometimes it is very difficult.  Things change with family and friends we had prior to the loss of our spouse.  If you are new to widowhood, please take this part slowly.  More often than not, people who have never gone down this path, are not sure what to say or often just back away.

There seems to be so many changes with the loss of a spouse.   Not only are we no longer a couple, but there are so many emotional changes.  And who understands more than others who have walked this path!!!!!  God promises in Psalms 34:18 – The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.  Some of the emotions are:

  • Moodiness
  • Painful thinking – negative thoughts
  • Sleeplessness and loss of appetite
  • Anxiety and irritability
  • Delusional thinking
  • These are all normal issues and you/we are not going crazy

However, many of our former friends often stop calling or call less often when we go through any of these emotions.  They often are ready to give us a phone number of a counselor to call, when we are only looking for an ear that will listen!   With that being said, there have been a few times when I have suggested a counselor to a couple of widows.  One of God’s greatest blessings or promises is found in John 14:27 (NIV), which reads:  I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.

If we are going to have a healthy recovery, we need to change!  We need to change to accommodate the reality of our new life alone. How do we go about this?

  • Accept what we cannot change.
  • When depression seems its right there, pay attention.
  • We need to make adjustments to things that have changed, such as income lost or loss of friendships.

Connecting with those who have gone down this journey is so important.  Watching new widows come into our group not knowing how they are going to get through this journey, is sometimes difficult to watch.  However, watching them learn from other widows and how they have moved forward to help others is so helpful.  I have watched ladies come into our group in tears, and within about a year, they are the ones holding the hand of a new widow letting her know she will be ok. 

There are so many promises that God is our protector.  It reads in Psalm 91:4: (NIV) He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. For those of you going through the early stages of the journey, it may be difficult to understand this.  Let me assure you, God has His arms wrapped around you and often is carrying you each step of the way.

Many times, our true friends are with us along the way.  Other times, we meet new ones to be with us who understand what we are going through.  There is a saying written by Selina Man Karlsson which is: “People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. When you figure out which one it is, you will know what to do for each person.” 

Cherish those who are there for you to help you along this journey.  Early on we are so unaware of what is going on, we struggle with ‘new’ people in our lives but remember unless they have walked our path, we need to give them grace.  You may be thinking this statement is a little strange being you are the one going through this journey!  However, if we can keep this in mind while we are going through this, it does help us heal.

Blessings to each of you.  You continue to be in my prayers…….

Strength During Loneliness

Whether or not you are widowed, feeling alone or lonely is a natural emotion.  It’s hard to separate our needs with what God has for us.  Do we allow God to provide for us?  Is He truly going to take care of all of our needs?!

In 2 Kings 4, the story is of the widow who goes to the temple to bring her money, but she has none and the creditors are coming to take her sons.  All she has is a small jar of olive oil which she was instructed to sell.   She collects all she has and can find, and had enough to pay off her debts and keep her sons.   This widow was down and out and had no idea what to do!  Normally her late husband would take care if this.  She had felt so alone – now what was she going to do?  

Throughout scripture there are many promises of God being with us each step of the way.  In Isaiah 40:31 (NIV) it reads:  But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.  I do believe this widow believed God would be with her each step of the way after this experience.

Oh, how our lives change when we become widows or perhaps you have found that with other big changes in your life as well!  We certainly find out who our true friends are don’t we?!  Unless someone has actually walked down the journey you are walking, they do not understand.    Many have good intentions but often do not think first before they speak.  Scripture even talks about this.  In Proverbs 18:24 (NIV):  There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.  Each loss is different whether it is a spouse, parent, sibling, child, grandchild or dear friend.  A word of advice, even though it may be difficult, perhaps just nod your head and excuse yourself. 

Do you remember when you were first married?  It seems like your single friends often took the back seat.  Once you were married, you began doing things with your married friends as you had more in common with them.  As a ‘couple’ you now bounced thing off of one another to agree on what you were going to do.  We often were referred to as ‘Dan’s wife or Naomi’s husband’.  As scripture says, two become one.  If you were married long enough, you thought alike.  Perhaps many of you had friends, family or even your own children (if you had children together), would comment how much you have changed now that you are alone. 

Yes, you have changed as you have had to change.  Prior, you were a team and now you are single.  Things do change and we need to change along with that, or we will sink. This also becomes a coping mechanism to help you get through this journey. 

Many of our friends will stay, but others will not for many reasons.  They feel like they do not belong, they feel uncomfortable being you are now widowed and things have changed being you are no longer a team.  Miriam Neff explains how scripture lists the word friend three different ways in scripture.  They are: 

  • One who loves – Proverbs 17:9 (NKJV) He who covers a transgression seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates friends.  They will love us unselfishly and just keep showing up.
  • One who is a companion or partner – Proverbs 18:24 (NIV) which reads: There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.  Be careful with these friends as they may tend to take advantage of you.
  • One who persuades or influences – Proverbs 14:20 (NIV) The poor are shunned even by their neighbors, but the rich have many friends.  They tend to gain personal information that will harm you in the long run. 

God will heal us during our time of sorrow!  So much of the book of Psalms is so reassuring. In Psalms 147:3 (NIV) it reads:  He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  Aren’t you glad for these promises?  Each of our journeys is a little different, but His promise is the same for each of us.  He will heal our wounds in his timing…

This journey may be difficult but with God’s help, he will help you with each day!   Be patient with yourself!   There will be those who think you should be over your loss within six months but for many it can take a couple of years.  God’s timing is perfect!  In 1 Peter 5:10 (NLT) it reads:   In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus.  So, after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.

God’s blessings to each of you as you walk this journey.  May He direct you to find the friends to help you along the way. 

Grace and Mercy

You may be wondering what grace and mercy has to do with widowhood! This is probably one of the areas at the time of my loss, I never even thought about. At that time, I was only concerned about myself along with my kids.

As a mother, knowing my kids were going through so much with the loss of their dad was heartbreaking. It surprised me of how some people had expectations of them and they had never gone through the loss of a parent. I remember how unfair I thought this was! I may have said things I shouldn’t have, but I felt I was being protective of them.

When life is tough, it is so easy to get wrapped up in the moment or the season of our grief or whatever we are going through. As we go through this journey and begin to heal, we soon realize how important it is to heal one step at a time.

The definition of grace is: A virtue coming from God, a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance. The bible states in 1 Timothy 1:14 (ESV): The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Some of these virtue’s which come from God are hard to accept aren’t they? I hadn’t thought of grace as a virtue before, had you? It is easy to give grace to those that treat you well, but not necessarily when someone does not….

When looking up the definition of mercy, it is: A blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion. Psalm 145:9 (ESV) reads: The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. How reassuring is that! Just knowing God’s mercy is over us is amazing!

Oh, how we need grace with mercy! Once I accepted that, it was easier to move forward. There will always be times in life when things are difficult. There will always be those people who do not think before they speak which that is often hurtful.

Billy Graham says it so well: Grace is when God gives us what we don’t deserve. Mercy is when God doesn’t give us what we do deserve.

Be gentle with yourself as you go through a difficult time. We all go through difficult times in our lives and wonder where God is. Remember, God promises to never leave you! This promise can be found in Deuteronomy 31:8 (ESV): It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

God’s grace and mercy is sufficient for each of us. There may be times when we need to ask for forgiveness or approach someone who has hurt us. Regardless if forgiveness is accepted or not, God is with us!!!

My prayer is you feel God’s presence around you. Blessings to each of you!

Where am I and where is my hope?

Do you ever find yourself in a place where you know God promises to see you thru but you do not sense Him being nearby?  You feel so alone that you wonder if God is even close by?  How am I suppose to believe God is there each step of the way? 

There are so many scriptures both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament which give us assurance that God is with us each step of the way.  Deuteronomy 31:6 reads:  Be strong and courageous.  Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you.  He will not leave you or forsake you.  If we go to John 14:27 it reads:  Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.   Not as the world gives do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, neither let them be afraid. 

When we are living alone as widows, where is God during these times?  He promises over and over that he will never leave us!  But do you believe it?  We often need to look back before we are able to look forward. 

With this season of Easter, I often wonder how Jesus felt!   How often was he persecuted, rejected or betrayed?!  I’m not saying we are in the same boat as Jesus.  However, when our life has changed to the extent we feel alone, we are able to rely on how he leaned on God to help Him with what he was going through.   Isaiah 49:23 reads:  She who trusts in the Lord will never be disappointed.

There is so much hope knowing He is with us each step of the way.  The book of Psalms has so many promises regarding this.  Psalms 147:3 reads:  He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  He promises to be there for us along the way.  To me that is amazing!  Does that mean I do not struggle along the way?  Absolutely not!  But the promises are there in the Bible!

This has certainly been a tough year with what we have gone through but to add a loss or several losses, it may have made your year even seem longer.  What have you found to help you through this year?  Is there anything you can share that can be shared with others to help along the way?  Everyone’s journey is a little different and we all handle our journey somewhat differently.  

Some of us extroverts, others are introverts and yet others all in between and just do not know where to turn when going along this journey.  Many times, it is the first time we have lost someone close or we do not have someone close to us to talk with.  If this is you, I urge you to reach out to someone.  If you have gone down this path, and know someone who could use an ear, please reach out to them. 

Remember God cares for each of us – ALWAYS!  1 Peter 5:7 tells us to:  Cast all your anxieties on him, because He cares for you!  Christ truly does care for each of us no matter what we are going through. 

Life is not perfect and never promises to be perfect!   And it will not be until we reach heaven!     In talking with many of you, the one thing I have noticed is, watching you go through the first year or two of healing.   You often are wondering if you will ever feel ‘normal’ again!  Within that first year, I have noticed you are holding the hand of a new widow and helping her through this journey!

Please let us know if we can talk to you, pray with you or for you.  Blessings to each of you!   God has his arms wrapped around you!

What’s for today?

Do you ever wonder what today will bring, when you have gone through something so great in your life that you could not even imagine?  Things would be so different if we wouldn’t have lost our spouse!   We wish for yesterday which is gone….  We hope tomorrow will be a better day, but we have no guarantees.

Max Lucado has said:  Here’s what you need to keep in mind.   You no longer have yesterday.  You do not yet have tomorrow.  You only have today.   This is the day the Lord has made.  Live in it!

How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow?  None of us do!   James 4:14 (NLT) reads:  How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.  Isn’t that the truth!  How many times do I wish I knew what tomorrow will bring!  Many times, I think about that and decide what I would do differently.   Seriously – what makes me think I have that power?  

We can hope and dream that tomorrow will be a better day.   We can reflect on what we had yesterday providing we do not dwell on it.  What have we learned from the past?   Can we bring it back?  Absolutely not!

It is so easy to remember what we had!  However, all we have is today.   What are we going to do with today being we no longer have yesterday and we are not guaranteed tomorrow!   I found this scripture/quote and found it so true.

What are your dreams for today?  When you woke up this morning, you may have felt like you could not make it through the day.  Perhaps you thought ‘I can do this so how do I want to start today.’  Are you one that has decided to start a project of cleaning out a closet, go through files or maybe start cleaning out files?  These are all big projects for sure, but they do not have to be completed in a day or week.   Take one step at a time!  We are all on our own time schedule.  There is no need to compare yourself to anyone but you.  Besides that, it is ok to ask for help!  Some things or projects are just too big to do by yourself.

There are a couple of scriptures of the Lord’s assurance in our lives.  One is from Isaiah 41:10 (ESV) reads:  Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  The other is from Mathew 6:34 (NIV) which reads: Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

God’s promise is to be there for us no matter what we go through!  I totally understand that is hard to accept when we are going through tough times. Please rest in God’s promises that he is there for each of us every step of the way! 

We only have today to live for!!   Yesterday is gone and tomorrow isn’t here yet!  With that being said, what is your plan for today?   I am not suggesting you have something huge planned, just take those small steps.  Perhaps you have a project that you want to work on that is going to take a while to do, take a step at a time.  Eventually your project will be done!  Do not feel bad if you need to ask for help or for suggestions.  

However, Joshua 24:15 reads:   But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”  With God’s help, He will lead the way that pleases him and us…… 

With every step we take with every new day, God will lead the way for us.   We need to trust in him that it will happen – and it will!  We all have days where we wonder if this will truly happen.  Even if it’s been years since we lost our spouse and we seem to be following a new path in our lives.   I have often thought when this happens to me if I am following what God would have for me.   The truth is, I do need to rely on God to lead me in the path that He has for me.   When I let go of what I think should happen and rely on God, it truly does happen!  We just need to believe!

Blessings to each of you!   God has a plan for you!  It may not be what we thought it would be. God often has another plan and He will lead us down the new path!


For me, with spring around the corner, there is always the anticipation of warmer weather coming soon.  There are many other things we tend to anticipate the first of each year.   But, how do we do this in a positive manner when we have lost someone close to us. 

According to Webster Dictionary, there are several meanings for anticipation.  

  • A prior action that takes into account or forestalls a later action
  • The act of looking forward
  • visualization of a future event or state
  • An object or form that anticipates a later type
  • The early sounding of one or more tones of a succeeding chord to form a temporary dissonance.

How may times have we anticipated where we will be in each stage of grief??!!  I remember thinking:

  • In three months, I will have all my paperwork done.
  • In six months, the holidays for me will be done.  Oh, how I dreaded those days.
  • In a year, I will be done with all the ‘firsts’.

I was fortunate at the time that Dan passed away, my two oldest brothers really walked beside me.  Gary at one point had lost his wife from a car accident so he had gone down that path.  My brother Bob always had good solid advise, but allowed me to make my own decisions without me feeling bad or guilty.  By the time the first year was done, I was ready to make major decisions and for that I am thankful.  Does that mean all my decisions were good ones?  No, but I was able to figure it out and knowing I had a lot of people praying for me certainly did help. 

One thing that says a lot to me is found in Jude 1:21. It reads – Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.  But when one is going through something, it is difficult to wait for the mercy of Christ.  But persistency and prayer sure will help us along the way. 

I think this quote by Anna Grace Taylor says so much:  

It seems many times we need to look back to move forward, doesn’t it?  With God’s help you can do this!  However, if you need someone to talk with, don’t be afraid to ask.   These verses are such a great promise to us.  They are found in Romans 8:37-39 which reads:  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor principalities, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

When we are down emotionally and things just don’t seem to be going our way, remember God is always with us!  He has promised us this in Deuteronomy 31:8 which says:   The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

So, with the new year upon us, may we look forward to God’s help with what we are going through.   I have faith in you that you can do this!  Just remember, there are many people to help you each step of the way.  Don’t hesitate to send me a note on my blog site:

One of the best anticipations is seeing our loved ones once again in heaven.  Blessing, hugs and prayers to each of you!!!!

A Year of What If’s!


Christmas 2020 – A Year of What If’s!

Oh, what a year it has been!  It seems like I have brought that up several times this year.  However, if you are someone who lost a spouse it has been even more difficult.  Many of you were only able to have small groups at the burial.   Many of you are waiting for this pandemic to pass and have a memorial service down the road.

There are others that have made it past the first and second year and are beginning to feel as though they are coming to terms with their new normal without their spouse.  Do we ever forget?   Absolutely not!  Do we stumble along the way – absolutely!   As we grow and learn how to handle this – we are there to help others along the way. 

Perhaps we learn how to come up with new traditions.  One promise I have relied on is from Psalms 147:3 which reads:   He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Keeping some of the old traditions are almost a must.  However, we can add new ones along the way

For me, I needed to make new ones the first year as it was difficult to keep all the old ones.  Some options may be:

  • If you have been the host to holiday’s in the past, suggest to one of you children or other family member host these first few holidays.
  • Invite another person to your holiday who is also alone.
  • Perhaps this year is just too difficult to be with others, give yourself permission to spend it alone.

There are options to share memories with others or just keep for yourself.   Many of these ideas I received from other widows.  Here are some options to keep your husband’s memory alive:

  • Put together a memory book of your spouse.  You may also invite others to add memories to this book.  This doesn’t need to be just for the holidays but can be for all year long.
  • Make or purchase decorations in honor of you loved one.
  • Continue to hang the stocking of your loved one.  Let your guests know ahead of time to bring a written note of your loved one and put it in their stocking.  Take turns pulling the memories out of the stocking and read them.  Hopefully, you will have some happy memories that will make you laugh and sometimes cry.
  • Donate to a charity of your choice in honor of your loved one.

Please remember to take care of yourself!  As many of us are mom’s or just being women, we often feel like we need to do it all.  But we do not!   Take care of you!   You may have to sort through your feelings about the holidays.   Take time for a massage,  pedicure or manicure or even read a book.

It took me a long time to understand this verse Jeremiah 29:11 which reads For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  I often thought if another person quotes me this scripture I was going to scream!   But as time went on, and I reflected on what has/had happened in my life, I realized that God does have plans for me!  He is going to be there for me during tough times and also the good times.

I often get sentimental over the holidays.  I found a picture of my family at Christmas time in 1992.  My kids always made a big deal of how I always wanted a family picture taken.   Amazing as time goes by, they love the old pictures.

Blessings to each of you.  I so look forward to the time we can meet together as a group to laugh and cry together.  And to enjoy each other’s company!