Note: This is a huge departure from my usual content. It is the first, and undoubtedly the last, post in which I will discuss relationships. I feel that my experience and the insight gained from it might be useful to others.
Very few of us are lucky enough to marry our childhood sweetheart and live happily ever after. It takes the rest of us a lot longer to find our partner. As divorce statistics show, it may take more than one marriage to find your soulmate. Moving on after a breakup can be quite difficult. Moving on after the death of a partner is even harder.
Everyone involved in the new relationship faces special challenges. The survivor often deals with guilt. There are many adjustments from the old way of living. The new partner may feel jealous or unsure of their partner’s true feelings. Children are resentful of the new person in their lives. This just scratches the surface.
I believe that a misperception of the nature of the prior relationship causes many of the problems. When there is a breakup, we seek a replacement. After a death, the process is much different. The deceased person is still loved and cherished as is the new person. It’s as if a separate section of the heart opens up to accept new love.
Back in 2013 I met an incredible woman, the love of my life. She had been widowed twice before. It took me awhile to figure out the process described above. There was no doubt that she loved me and no need to be jealous of anyone. Her marriages to them have nothing to do with me. I am far happier knowing they were there to love her than if she had spent all those years in loneliness.
Now I am seeing this issue from a different perspective. Six months ago today I lost this wonderful woman. I am definitely not ready to date and am not sure what the future holds. One thing I do know for sure is that I will love her until the day I die.