It was indeed a sad time at the funeral home visitation; everyone was in the same shock as when DH died. Walking around in a daze, zombie-like, and looking like they hadn't slept since the news arrived.
I, however, was much more emotional. I don't know why it hit me so hard, but I just started crying and really had a difficult time getting control of myself. I suppose it was partly just knowing what my sister-in-law will have to go through; there's no words really to explain that to anyone, even if you wish you could. Even nearly two years later, I think I'm just starting to truly come out of that "daze" and realize I'm going to be alone the rest of my life. NO ONE can replace my husband, and after 35 years of marriage, I could never even try.
Now it seems the loneliness is the worst ordeal. At first there's the shock, the business that has to be taken care of; the feeling of "I must be strong." But eventually all that pales compared to the yawning abyss of loneliness that is a single person's life. I never thought I'd feel that, because I'd always considered myself a solitary person, a loner. And I still am to some extent, and cannot abide constant socializing. On the other hand, if you want to find out if you are really a loner -- just live alone 24/7 and see what it really means.
I don't regret leaving my position at the newspaper, because it was the flipside of being too lonely and aloneness. TOO much interaction, pressure, expectation, social events, etc. On the other hand, I do want to find some kind of social network -- perhaps a less stressful part-time job, and some volunteering. Just enough to get me out sometimes, and yet have plenty of alone-time and time with my pets.
At any rate, it's all over now for my brother-in-law. Only one sibling, a sister age 52, sill living. And of course, DH's mother -- who I always told him would outlive us both. Looks like I might have been right!
I'm in a transition phase -- don't know exactly what I want to do or will enjoy in the coming New Year. But I suppose it's another adventure. That is, as long as I stay healthy.
Till next time...