Inside the mind of a widower. How he found love again
By Tom P Blake - Finding Love after 50
Widowers who seek new mates often get a bad rap. Women who've dated them say many cling to the memory of their wives, or they are too controlling, or too this or that.
But, widowers are also human beings who have a warm and courageous personal side. Today, Bill shares his views on loving again after a spouse passes—in Bill’s case, the passing of his wife of 40 years.
Bill writes, "I will never fully get over the loss of my wife. Yet, early on, I knew full well that I needed to transition to a more healthy place than continuing with the despair I faced with her passing.
"While I can glorify the history of our life together, it was the last three years of her life that formed my current productive view of life. Attending to her every medical need, becoming an expert in wound care, facilitated loving her in ways I had never before imagined. I changed for the better.
"The 'new me' is a reflection of my personal growth in those last three years. I am now capable of loving unconditionally and relinquishing control, while supporting the strength and independence of a new woman. I'm not sure I could have done that effectively earlier in life. This is a huge legacy my deceased wife provided with her passing.
“At the Fourth of July fireworks display the year following my wife's passing, imagine for a moment, two people both who have suffered losses, sitting on hard plastic lawn chairs sipping wine, eagerly anticipating the beginning of the celebratory night time display.
“I don't know what possessed me to lean over and utter the most difficult phrase imaginable since I last spoke those words to my dying life-mate. I turned to the lovely woman (Barbara) seated beside me and whispered, 'I love you.' Concurrent with that repressed confession, the skies opened with the booming cascade of rocket fire, explosions, and sparkling light.
“I was finally able to fully utter the "L" word in its entirety. I have repeated it at least twenty times a day from that day, for the second time in my life. Those difficult words-I love you-set the tempo for my new life.
Bill and Barbara married. He continues with his story.
"I have reassured my bride that only the heavens could have provided that unrehearsed moment of drama. Maybe my departed spouse had a small part to play, signaling approval of my actions, and maybe it was simply the scheduled time for the fireworks show to begin. It really doesn't matter in the overall scheme of things.
"What really matters in the conduct of a new relationship is the acceptance by a new spouse of the nature and profundity of the widower's prior relationships; and a widower who can provide a stable emotional environment for building confidence in the relationship.
“Confidence is best matured, when the widower provides an atmosphere that enhances the strength, convictions and independence of his new love. Removing doubt and fostering self confidence, minimizes any propensity for rivalry with departed spirits.
“Together, on equal emotional grounds, new life partners will find that life may again be truly lived to its fullest. This widower has the ability to change, and that is all it takes.