When I Tell You

When I tell you my husband has died, please don’t …

… Tell me you’ve recently lost a pet.
Rob was a faithful companion, but he was no Golden Retriever.
This makes my loss feel trivial.

… Launch into a detailed discussion of your distant relative’s terminal illness.
I’ve endured more graphic content about dying than I can bea
r for now.
This makes my loss feel visceral.

… Tell me you can’t imagine how it feels.
Unless you’re a widow, I didn’t expect you would.
This makes my loss feel isolating.

… Warn me of how challenging it is going to be for my kids to grow up without a dad.
I didn’t worry about that. No, wait. I do. Every day.
This makes my loss feel insurmountable.

… Console me with “At least he didn’t suffer.”
Sudden loss is no less painful than a long goodbye in the midst of suffering.
This makes my loss feel insignificant.

Instead, simply say …
… I am so sorry for your loss.
… I loved Rob.
… I love you.
… I love your kids.
… I will not forget you.

And on days that feel especially dark …
… You’re going to make it.

This makes my loss feel bearable.
This makes me feel loved.

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