Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Note on Being "Brave"

Throughout these last few weeks, so many people have commented on how "brave" or "strong" I am. Although they mean well, the last thing I feel is brave or strong. All I feel is sad and alone. I am doing what I have to do. I had to plan the funeral. I had to write thank you notes to all the very kind and generous people in Rod's life. I have to go back to work and pay my bills. I'm not doing these things because I'm strong or brave; I'm doing these things because I'm the only one who can do these things. No one else is going to pay my bills. No one else is going to take my dogs for daily walks, take them to the groomer and vet, or buy the dog food. No one else is going to buy my groceries for me or make me dinner. No one else is going to deal with changing the bills to my name and selling Rod's car. I am all alone. 

I know my friends and family are there for me. I understand that. But, without Rod here, I really am all alone. There isn't anyone in my home to comfort me. There isn't anyone to wrap me in a big hug when I lose it over my cereal in the morning. There isn't anyone here with me right now to wipe the tears from my eyes as I try to write this post.

Yesterday during our staff meeting, my boss brought up having get togethers this summer with the staff and our families. Fun family outings. My first thought was "but I don't have a family." I almost lost it right there in the middle of our meeting. And yes, I know I have my parents, my brother, my nephew, my in-laws, but I don't have MY family anymore - I don't have Rod.

Losing my husband is a heart break unlike any other. It's not the same as losing a friend, or an uncle or a grandparent. Many people try to compare my grief to how they felt when they lost someone, but, I promise, it's not the same. Rod and I were joined as one in marriage, and we did everything together. I lost my husband, my partner, my best friend, my family in one unexpected night. If you haven't lost a spouse, be grateful that you don't understand this grief.

I definitely don't feel like I'm brave or strong. I feel just the opposite. I feel like my strength is gone because Rod provided most of that for me. Now all I want to do is cuddle up on the couch with the puppies and cry. 

"Never thought we'd have a last kiss; Never imagined we'd end like this; Your name, forever the name on my lips" ~Taylor Swift, "Last Kiss"


  1. I lost two husbands so I do know your pain but being able to go on is a sign of strength,,,even if you do not believe that God has more in store for you He really does...It will not be up to anyone other than you to find that plan..Ask and He shall provide like He is providing the strength to carry on all the things you have done together...now you do alone...but with Rod in your heart and the love that Rod taught you how to do..It takes being strong to do what you do..alone...It will help make you into Kristine..I know that sounds awful without Rod but remember you are Kristine and God knows you have been through alot and your heart is breaking but you can be dependant on your life with Rod or you can go on and be the life of Kristine..I am sorry if this sounds cruel but you are Strong and you are brave because you are facing life without Rod and that can be scarey as hell but you can do it!

  2. Kris - My heart is broken for you. I have spent many evenings thinking of you and wishing I could be there to hug you and make you food so you didn't have to. Thanks for posting, so I know how you are doing. I hope we can get together near easter. Love and hugs from Seattle.

  3. I agree you are strong and brave, you have chosen this path when you went back to your house alone, when you changed your oil because it had to be done. You were brave when you went back to work or out on the town because you know people would ask about Rod maybe not knowing what happened. You are brave because instead of sitting around letting the world pass you by you are remembering and loving Rod still to this day and letting him give you the strength he has been giving you all those years together. I have not lost my husband and do not know that pain but I know that you are loved by many and one day you will be able to not feel as alone as you do now. These are all parts of grieving and living without your partner and I hope that you can find strength in GOD's love for you and Rod to help you through this time. I will continue to pray for healing in your heart and continue to send long distance hugs. Keep talking about Rod and sharing your memories and we will all share our memories with you so that Rod will always be with us in our lives.

  4. Kris,
    I know that your heart breaks anew each day and that it will for a long time, and that this will help to shape who you become in the future. But in sharing your grief, you are helping to shape my life for the better right now. Now, I make sure to tell Geoff every day how thankful I am that he is my husband. I am sorry that Rod is no longer there to hug you and make it all okay.