I have always been an independent person. As an only child, I grew up being self-sufficient in my play and overall worldview. As I grew older, I found that I worked better in independent projects than group efforts. While I have always held a deep value in friendship and human connection, I have always been comfortable navigating on my own. Taking the lead. Motivating and driving myself.
In my partnership with Tim, it was my independence and strong will that could sometimes come into conflict with his own needs. He thrived from abundant external motivation and collaboration. I thrived internally. We were different, but we generally made it work with love and communication.
My independence has served me well as a widow. I have come to a point in my journey where I can look back on the months that have passed since Tim’s death and see just how much work I have done to bring my life to where it is. I bought a house on my own. Unpacked, decorated, assembled furniture and hung drapery rods. I negotiated the purchase of my car and am nearly finished finalizing Tim’s estate. I manage my money. I embrace my career. I raise my children. I pursue my goals. I make life happen.
We recently returned from a family vacation in Florida. Over February break, we flew down, the children and I, to visit Tim’s family in Sarasota. The travel days were brutal, with delays, cancellations, last minute flight exchanges, a dead car battery, and two very tired little beings in my charge. Yet, we made it happen. I managed the car rental, airports, vacation home and itinerary on my own. We spent a wonderful five days with Tim’s family, and enjoyed quality time with the reunited cousins. We scattered a portion of Tim’s ashes amongst the buttress roots of one of our favorite trees. We splashed in the ocean. And while I had the love, support, and help of family, I did it on my own.
I am entering a point in my healing process where I am recognizing my own power. The authority I have established over my own life. The potential for growth, renewal, transformation. A year ago, I was not able to recognize that. But today, as we near the two year mark through this new landscape of life, I can see myself as the woman I have become. An independent, powerful, loving being, capable of living the life she deserves.
I like her. She can stay.