Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The "Married Widow" Dreams

This will be a post diffferent from the rest, as I will be baring some of my more private thoughts and emotions.
I can't remember when or where I first heard the term "married widow" in referring to the wife of an Alzheimer's patient, but it hit me like a ton of bricks and has never been far from my mind. The term is perfect. While I am still very much married to Mike, he is not really "here".
I had a dream the other night which made me realize just how much I miss Mike's company and how much I crave the love that only a partner can give. We can all get hugs, love and support from friends and family, but we also know that there is simply NOTHING like the familiarity and intimacy of being with the one person who knows everything about you and still loves you. My dream was a bit choppy and freakish, so I will try to tell only the parts that make sense with regard to what I am trying to convey....... In this dream, I was with another man (it was obviously after Mike had passed) and we had been dating for some time. One night, I said "I love you" to him, but was embarrassed because I wasn't sure that my love would be reciprocated, so I ran away. (Besides Mike, there was only one other person I was ever in love with, so saying that to someone is a big issue for me) Anyway, after I ran away, I found myself in a mall-type setting just walking around by myself, trying to make sense of things. I noticed that some employees were paying extra attention to me. I sat down and had something to drink, when these singers came in and started singing a love song to someone. Lo and behold, the song was for me, and this mystery man whom I professed my love to, came in from behind the singers to surprise me. He gave me a big hug and said "I love you too". He was some kind of big shot in this place and he had his workers watching out for me to make sure that I was OK. In that moment, in my dream, I felt safe, protected and loved once again - and it felt good.
It's been ten years, and for ten years I have been the protector, guardian and head of the house. I never realized before this dream, just how much I missed having a healthy spouse. I would love to have a husband to share the responsibilities with, to count on when I feel like I can no longer do it all myself and especially to have a man to protect me, love me and make me feel safe. That dream the other night stirred up feelings that have been buried for many years. I get up each and every day and proceed with my day like a robot. I move from chore to chore without even thinking. I am constantly in the "on" mode. I work, raise my children and care for Mike. I am the "go to" person for EVERYONE, but I miss having my "go to" person.
Married widow.. that's what I am. I've been losing Mike every day, little by little for ten years. It's lonely and I wonder if I will ever have the opportunity to feel loved again. I wish I had someone to lay next to me at night - to hold me - and tell me everything will be all right.
Goodnight, sweet dreams.......


Kathy Knowles said...

Even though we have not lived in your shoes for as long as you, and I know I have much more grief to experience, I understand what you are saying. Next month Billy and I will share our 30th anniversary, and I wonder if it will be an ON day or a completely OFF day. Will he call me "Mother" and ask where Kathy is, or will he remember that I'm actually his wife and have shared most of my life with him? You are loved by many, but the one person you want to reach out and touch you lovingly cannot do it. My heart hurts for you and so many of us who watch our loved ones leave us a little or a lot at a time until they are just not there.

karen said...

You have said everything that I have felt. I am a caregiver for my mom not my husband but I am a single mom who has no time for dating . Thinking of you and praying always.