I sat for a long time wondering what to say to Anthony. Words are so inadequate in the face of such loss. All I could do was write from my heart. I debated even showing this letter, but perhaps someone else will come across it and my inadequate words may be the ones they need to read.
I cannot say I know how you feel. I have not lost a spouse, but I do understand losing someone you love dearly.
I lost my father this year. Each day he comes to my mind. In the backyard is a wind chime he made. The slightest breeze will have it playing music. After I first hung it every time I heard it I would cry. Now when it plays fond memories come to mind. There are instances when I am working in the yard I will hear it tinkling in what seems to be only still air. It brings a smile because I can hear my dad critiquing what I am doing, “No, do it this way. It will be more efficient.” I can’t say I never cry now, but the times are fewer.
Your lovely wife fought a 10-year battle with cancer. She knew pain and she knew how to be strong. Even now at your weakest moments she is in your heart telling you, “Not only do you have your own strength you have mine to see you through each day.”
Grief has no formula. It is a personal journey. There will be tough days, but there will be those days that bring a smile. Out of the blue you will recall something that just won’t stop at a smile. It will have you holding your sides and laughing. Anthony, it is alright to smile. It is a gift and expression of healing.
You don’t know me. All you know of me are these words written in ink. Please know I will remember you. I have written your name in my journal. I will speak encouragement each time I think of you. Love has no barriers. It can start in one tiny speck on a map and travel as far as it is needed.
Take care Anthony, open your heart to those who love and care about you. With all the memories you have of your wife new ones will come to be planted in that already fertile soil.
There are still 3 days in the 12 Days of Love Letter Writing which means there are four people who could us love and encouragement. This link will tell you how to get involved.
Participate in sharing love letters all year long. The World Needs More Love Letters is an ongoing project.