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Jamie Greenebaum Headshot

How Many People Does it Take to Fill the Hole in My Heart After My Husband Dies?

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Tim Robberts via Getty Images
Tim Robberts via Getty Images

I have taken the warnings about the holidays being a difficult time after the death of my husband. There are too many notable events that are firsts. Too many thoughts that start, Last year at this time we were... As a consequence, I make plans and accept invitations. Anyone who calls with a "Would you like to...." is greeted with an emphatic Yes!

In the last two weeks, I have gone out to dinner and seen a play, met with the Rabbi and attended an awards presentation for a very special person I met at the hospital. I was supposed to go out to dinner with another, but started having chills and thought it better to cancel. Darn!

Christmas week started with dinner with two friends on Monday night, then Christmas Brunch with another friend's family that included a 3-year-old. After 2-1/2 hours with the 3-year-old, I was ready to go home for some peace and quiet and a nap. Rounding out the week was dinner in town with yet another friend and her family.

Sunday I went to visit someone I haven't seen for a while. And that brings me up to New Year's. I was invited to lunch! Thankfully, as I don't want to think about New Year's. Because if I do, it will lead me down the rabbit hole of thinking about beginning a "new" year. And that "new" year is the first one of many to come without Robert by my side. Tears. Heartache. Overwhelming grief.

See it is much better, much easier right now to stay busy. To keep running around. Be constantly on the move. It is the sitting and thinking that leads to feeling. And the grief can be so all-encompassing so quickly. I logically can tell myself it has not been all that long, only 14 weeks. But it still hurts so much.

Looking back over what I have done and with whom, I am staggered to realize it has taken 18 people to keep me on an even keel for two weeks. And that does not include the friends I talked with on the phone. Or the ones I saw at the barn. Or the ones who emailed me. Boy, when they say it takes a village, they (whomever they are) are not kidding.

And all this is to try and fill the empty space in my life -- left by one person. Robert.