Mike and Sarah share Sunday posts, as they are two widows who are in a new relationship together. Today’s post is from Sarah:
There is so much happening – both in the world right now and in our personal lives.
Both good and bad… and nearly all of it containing some kind of pretty huge unknown.
I feel like this year has challenged me to think on my feet… to hone my skills at pivoting quickly whatever life throws. It’s something I’m not always good at, so in a way, I have welcomed this challenge. I think it has helped to remind me just how capable I really am of coping with whatever comes. After being widowed, you might think I wouldn’t need any reminders of this. For several years I did nothing but pivot quickly with every decision, every trigger, every emotion. But I feel like after loss, and a certain amount of grief, you begin to return to the world… to some semblance of “normal life”. Whenever I did, I feel like a lot of things returned with it… the worries about ridiculously pointless things, and doubts about yourself, and insecurities and what if’s about every iota of unknown.
Here we are nearing the end of a very insane year. Mike and I planned and replanned our wedding more times than I can count, before finally just going to the courthouse to keep everyone and ourselves safe. I found out that I have a genetic mutation that puts me at high risk for breast cancer. That one is currently leading me on a whole new and terrifying journey of exploring preventative options. Just this week in fact, I met with a PLASTIC SURGEON. Never in my life would I have ever thought I’d be doing that.
By no means have I decided to have a mastectomy as a preventative measure just yet, but I needed to know more about the options for reconstruction if I do. It feels surreal to even be writing about the fact that, in a year or two possibly, I may have said goodbye to a whole body part. It’s very new and very upsetting right now to think about… in between cracking jokes and expertly deflecting my emotions with humor and positivity, I will admit, I have cried. Where I stand, right now, I have absolutely no idea how any of that will unfold or even what I will decide to do. It’s this huge, wide open, unsureness.
Mike gave notice to his job this week as well, and for the first time in either of our lives really, it was done without lining up a new job. That probably sounds insane, especially during these times, but I’ve watched his present job situation take more and more out of him over the past year, and it is unmanageable at this point. He needs a leap, and sometimes we have to leap even before there is a net and just trust. So that’s another great big, wide open unknown for us. We have money to make it some months fortunately, and while I have faith something far better is coming, still there is the feeling of unknown.
And of course there are all the unknowns of everyone’s lives right now, both in the US with the election and globally with the virus. I’m not even going into how the turmoil of the election has made me feel because I feel so many already relate, no matter what end they’re on. And as things get worse with the virus, and we are facing staying home completely for Thanksgiving and seeing no one, it’s definitely feeling heavy. It is hopeful we could have a vaccine, but also getting very scary, by the numbers. I am hoping my hardest through the unknown… and trying to remember all the lessons of widowhood about hope.
Hope can be so so small, infinitely small. It can be as small as a seed on the ground. It can be as small as the research being done under microscopes right now towards the vaccine. It doesn’t have to be big to be powerful. So on days when all this unknown feels scary… I look for hope in the smallest places and I let it grow in my heart. Because I find that hope very quickly grows into faith and trust that even the unknowns will work out somehow. And if we remain hopeful, we also remain curious and looking out for the lessons in the hard stuff. So that’s where I’m at with all these unknowns right now… trying to remember the lessons, find the hope, and grow it into faith, and strength, and calmness, and love. Keep planting the hope and letting it grow.