My friend is a widow.
The word is so timeless.
Widow. Widowed. Widow's Walk.
Her husband loved her unconditionally, as she loved him without reservation or limit. She misses him without reservation or limit. More than without limits. She misses him like the astronaut misses earth, no, no, more than that. . . . She misses him like Sunday morning coming down.
Another friend walks toward widowhood. She awakens each morning to the anticipation of not knowing. Her husband has been fighting to live for so long, and he has lived. They have made trips, had company, had arguments, had quiet moments that curled into sleep. She fears for him, fears for herself. Will I be okay? she asks because she is not okay now.
I know that both my friends will be okay, are okay, even through their uncertainty. I know their core. I know they are practical beyond philosophy and loss. They understand the sunrise, sunset, sunrise, sunset, the need to make breakfast, the need to change the oil in the car. They will emerge from the Valley of the Shadow, and they will be changed, forever changed.
In a twinkling, all is changed.
From the widow's walk, you cannot see forever, but you can see the horizon, and there is always something beyond.
Painting, "Widow's Walk," by Rob Gonsalves