As most of you know, I am/was a young widow. My first husband passed away after a short fight with cancer. He was months short of his thirtieth birthday and I was thirty-two at the time. I didn't expect to get remarried. I actually figured that that aspect of my life was over and I was fine with that. I thought I would be a widow for the rest of my life. Then I met my to-be husband and it was a whirlwind romance that happened quite suddenly and we both just knew it was God's hand and it was meant to be. I never expected to be married.
In the new relationship there is a weird line that I still walk daily, six years later. When you love your first husband completely and you love your new husband completely, it's a very strange line that I find myself walking every day. I don't really know how to explain it but I thought I would try to give some insight in case someone else is going through this. Or someone knows someone who is going through it and it will give them some understanding.
There are memories constantly from my first marriage and happy stories that I share. I constantly tell the kids that "this was Daddy's favorite" or "Do you remember when Daddy did this?" I want to keep his memory alive for them and for myself as well. I'm sure it's difficult for my husband to hear. It's not like I fell out of love with my first husband and we got divorced and now we live different lives and we're happy that we're apart. There was no end of the relationship, no growing apart, no dislike that comes with divorce.
Instead there was the end of our relationship on earth. And it's difficult on all accounts. It's difficult to be thoughtful of my husband and not make him feel jealous of a relationship that never had a true end and never will. It's important to not make him feel any less and to make sure he doesn't feel like he's just the fill in because he will never be that.
It's so weird to describe because I feel like both of my husbands were given to me by God at the time that was intended. My life with my first husband was important for the time that it was meant to be and my life with my second husband is important for the time it was intended. I instantly knew when I met them both that these men were to be my husbands. It's an awkward balance but it's important and thankfully my husband understands.
So, to those who have friends or family going through this, just be understanding. It's not that they didn't love the lost spouse and they just "moved on." They will always carry the lost spouse in their hearts. It doesn't mean that they loved them any less. There is room in their heart for a new love as well as the memory of their lost love (much like when you have another child, the love for your first child doesn't diminish at all.) Sometimes it's just the path that was intended from the beginning. For those who are going through this, I understand. You don't walk the line alone.