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A Pilgrimage of Love, Loss & Grieving Well
“Perhaps for now it can be enough to simply marvel at the mystery of how a heart so broken can go on beating…”
-Jan Richardson, Blessing for the Brokenhearted
Allow Me to Share with You the Story of my Loss
The problem with Death is Absence...
It was just another ordinary Monday morning in August, when my husband collapsed in the hallway of our home from a Pulmonary Embolism. The last words I heard him say were, “I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.”
Complete devastation is the only way to describe what I immediately experienced and continued to experience for longer than I thought I could bear. I was traumatized. I was lost. He had been my strong and loving soul mate for 32 years. Now, fifteen minutes after he woke me out of a deep sleep, he was gone; absent from this earth.
Eventually, as I began to wake out of numbness, the only thing I wanted to do was seek out others who felt the same tsunami of sorrow and chaos that kept pummeling my heart. An estate attorney, with whom I was working, Invited me to a widow’s group she led and had for some thirty years after her first husband’s death. So, two months after Craig died, I pulled into the parking lot of an old, stone church and walked slowly toward the big wooden doors. It was a chilly November morning and everything inside me was screaming,
“I don’t want this! I want Craig back! I want our life back!”
All I could think of was something my best friend had said one particularly bad evening, as she looked into my tear-filled eyes: “You want what you can’t have, and what you have, you don’t want” This truth resounded in my heart at that very moment. It took a great mustering of courage to walk beyond those doors.
© Cindy K Steffen 2023
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