Widowhood makes me feel untethered in so many ways. Sometimes, it’s the small things that make me feel so unattached.
For me, adult communication is at the top of my list.
As a young adult, I bloomed from a quiet shy girl into an extroverted woman. I have no problems telling stories, getting up in front of a crowd, or dressing up for a theme party. Any occasion to act a fool is a good excuse to me.
When Tony died, I lost my go to audience. I told him everything. We shared all our stories and secrets, even the ones we weren’t supposed to share.
Now I find myself sharing information with whoever is close at hand at the time. It could be my mom, my friends who send videos on an app, any one of my neighborhood crew members, my widow friends via text, the possibilities are endless.
As a result, I’m never sure who knows what in my life. I don’t know if I’m repeating myself to someone. Or if they are lost because they didn’t know the first half of the story already. When you combine this spread-out life sharing with widow brain, it’s no wonder I sometimes feel untethered. I have no sole anchor that I am moored to.
I also don’t always know who wants to know what bits of my life. Who wants to hear about the silly things the kid did, how I’m missing Tony this week, what my workday was like, or what’s going on in my social life? Is there someone that wants to sit with me as I debate what sport to put the kids in, what medication is best, and if we are processing appropriately?
Without that singular source of a confidant, it’s hard to keep track. Sometimes, I don’t always open up because I worry I’m too much. My story is too sad, my musings over kids too tedious, my dating life too revolving. I don’t know who wants to listen to all the ins and outs of my life. Sometimes I don’t open up because I’m not sure who I’ve told what to and I just simply forgot.
I haven’t even mentioned my ability to remember details from other people’s lives. I had to write sticky notes to remember when my friend’s mom was undergoing procedures so I would remember to follow up. If I don’t write it down these days, it will not stay in my brain. It is not because I don’t care though, I promise I care.
No matter how you shake it, I am just not the same person I was before. My untethered widow brain doesn’t look like the tethered anchored brain I had before. I don’t think it will ever be quite the same again.