I never thought I would experience jealousy while grieving for my husband. But, I am…..and doing very poorly at it. The last thing I want to do is be jealous!
This part of grief is challenging to explain to others. I have to remember that I cannot explain the impact of this loss to someone who has not experienced first hand, and even then, my grief is different from another. I do not even understand the “traps” until I have stepped in it. I cannot explain the questioning, disorientation, the helplessness that comes from facing the world without that piece of myself that died with my husband. (I wasn’t ready to say Goodbye. 2000)
This time in the world is scary…..and lonely. It has brought up a strong jealous feeling when I get on social media, go to the store, working on a hobby, or watching my kids play. The jealous monster makes its appearance, and it is not pretty.
Some may wonder, “what am I jealous of.”
- Couples walking hand in hand
- Date night
- Couples shopping together
- Seeing daddy’s play with his kids
- Seeing a daddy and daughter bond, pushing her in a swing at the local park, or working in the yard panting sunflowers
- Seeing a daddy teaching his son to play catch, how to mow the lawn, how to fix something.
- Family pictures
- Partnership parents have when dealing with kids
- Partnership couples have when doing housework
- Seeing families have dinner together
- Seeing photos of father-daughter dances
Jealousy revolves around everything my kids or I no longer get to experience or never will experience. I am already grieving the day my daughter gets married – who will walk her down the aisle? The day my son hits his first home run or makes his first touchdown or has his first broken heart.
Oh my gosh! I just thought of this! Who is going to talk to my son about the birds and bees? Dang! (Mental note: search for a book, Explaining the Birds and the Bees to boys for Dummies).
Jealousy is real, and it comes when least expected. I miss the bantering my husband and I did with each other. We filled the room with laughter, even with our silly arguments talking about conspiracy theories.
I remember the time our daughter was taking a nap, and we were watching TV. Eric started asking me questions about what was going on and what was happening, and I answered. A few beats later, I looked at him and said, “you know you are asking me questions about PJ Mask, right?” We did crazy stuff like that all the time.
I am jealous of celebrations, whether it be a birthday, anniversaries, or family reunions. I find myself making excuses not to accept invitations. I would rather be home with my kids than go to a party and see all the “family happiness” taking place when I am still so broken.
Jealousy is not a place I want to stay in and live, but it is something I have to go through. You have to walk through the yuck and the pain to get past it.
What gets me through is knowing that God is with those who are hurting and grieving. He meets us where we are – not where we act like we need to be.
We have to be true to ourselves as to where we truly are.
I have to trust I am not walking on this road alone, and neither will my children.
Jealousy will be a; I pray, a small part of this journey. It is part of this journey I know I can conquer – in time.
Coming up on I’m That Mom; I will be posting a series of blogs listing what helped me or what I wished I had known when my husband passed. I will talk about the hard conversations that must be had between spouses, especially when children are involved.
The series will include;
- How to plan while in a brain fog
- What has to be done now; what can wait till a later time
- “Checklist of what to do when planning the funeral of your loved one