I recently attended a meeting where the speaker is well-known on the topic of widows and grief. To all the men who read what I write, this group is beginning a section for widowers too. Grief is universal and non-sexual in it’s nature and I know men grieve too.
As she spoke she drew upon the stress test here: https://www.dartmouth.edu/eap/library/lifechangestresstest.pdf
Death of a spouse is 100. A new baby is 39. The stress test clearly states if anything on the list happened in the last year, you could be at risk of a serious illness depending on what your total is.
I looked at the list over and over. I wrote about it in my daily Facebook writing and someone asked me if the level of 100 goes away. I thought about that before answering. I answered that it can until something sets us off again and we go right back to the moment our lives came crashing down and our hearts splintered into over 1000 pieces.
Within days of learning this I had to deal with extremely upsetting situations and that was when I truly knew I was back to being a perfect 10×10. I found myself standing in front of my favorite photo of my husband, I was yelling at his photo and telling him how angry I am that he left me to deal with the shit that he always took care of for me. After I yelled things began to get better as they always do as time passes.
It has been 2 1/2 years and while good days greatly outnumber the bad days, I still miss him with all my heart. I miss how he took care of asshat people, how he protected me, how he always had my back, how he held me in his arms, and how he made love to me.
These feelings do not go away, they do stay in the recesses of my heart more often as I move forward, but whenever I feel my stress level hit 100 again, I curl up on my favorite chair and allow the tears to flow.
This is my life now.