Women on Their Own

A couple of weeks ago–sometime around Valentine’s Day– attended a Sunday afternoon jazz concert that L and I used to attend regularly. It was one of his favorite activities when we were here in Florida. The concerts are held once a month ‘in season’ and feature a trio plus a guest. The event has grown so popular that it has been moved from a small chapel in the downtown church that hosts the concerts to the main sanctuary. What has this to do with the title of this post? Well, actually a lot…

As I took a seat at the end of an empty pew to wait for the concert to begin I observed others arriving. There were couples and couples with other couples; there were a few men–sometimes alone and sometimes with another man; and then there were the women. And it was the women who interested me the most. I watched their expressions and body language as they arrived, chose a seat (or had it chosen for them by the strongest in their pack if they arrived with other women), and settled in. Some chattered to their neighbors or perhaps recognized someone across the way and waved or carried on a part-vocal-part-sign-language exchange. Others sat quietly–alone even if they had arrived with others. Some looked a little sad, others a little lost, many a lot lonely. I had the sense that some had come because…well, what else was there to do? I know that feeling–that sense of not really want to take part in something and yet feeling that it is somehow necessary if I am to continue moving forward as L so wanted me to do. I tell myself that I am doing it for him–because this is what he would want–because this is what I promised. And as I looked at those other women I wondered how many of them were there–not really for the concert or because they loved good jazz but because it was another Sunday afternoon and this at least was something that would fill an hour or so.

In the movie FUNNY GIRL there’s a song titled “Who are you now?” Mostly it’s a song about being in love and begins with the lines..

Who are you now,
Now that you’re mine?

It was on my mind that Sunday as I walked home after the concert except I realize now that I had changed the words to:

Who am I now? Now that you’re gone…

My promise to L was that I would move forward, be strong, embrace life, be open to friends and their caring and new adventures…and I am trying, but sometimes….



12 thoughts on “Women on Their Own

  1. I’m so happy to have found your blog! My husband died in Feb of 2013…It’s been a long, hard year+ but I am just starting to feel empowered, to go out and find joy as I KNOW he would have wanted me to, but it’s not easy and lots of things still stump me – – Funny Girl was his favorite movie of all time (yes he was a kooky sort!) and I’ve been unable to watch it since he died but now, I think I will…now that he’s gone.

    1. Thank you for writing. What I have learned from doing this blog is that I get far more back than I give but the shared community is very comforting and healing. All best to you as you navigate this second year. Take care and know that your husband is right there beside you. Anna

    1. Ann, My heart and prayers are with you. I hope that as you travel this road you know that your husband travels it with you–the comfort of that cannot be measured. Take care of you and know that he would want you to find peace and happiness. All best, Anna

  2. I lost my husband of 35 years 3 years ago in December. I miss his as much today as I did the day he died. When I am at my very lowest I see something amazing, an eagle flying, a moose crossing my path, a bush flower for the first time in years…..he is watching and waiting until my time comes. I know this in my heart.

    1. Thank you for sharing that, Robin. Funny that you mentioned the eagle flying because just two days ago I went to a place where eagles nest and saw one of the little ones take its first flight. Fabulous!!!

  3. Writers and artists… ah, such are the professions of a solitary life. Who would we be if we were socialites, doctors, politicians, or plumbers? We wouldn’t be writers or artists, that’s for sure. Sometimes for me, when there is nothing to deafen the quiet, quell the isolation or to spur my giddy-up, there’s that dang grocery store down the street, where in order to survive I have to go buy some food. Such a nuisance, yet a knob turner, that quickly satisfies the aforementioned issues besides hunger, because … egads… there are people! Sometimes, I can’t make it back home fast enough.

  4. Your blog is a tremendous help to me. I took my husband’s ashes to Bryher, in the Isles of Scilly off the Cornish Coast. My daughter and I thought it was the most profound experience, with the waves, the rocks, the sea birds. I am often finding feathers in my path, and take them as a sign of his continuing care for us. Thank you.

  5. I would like to think that YOU are YOURS now. You were always yours, but you shared a lot of you with L for all those years.

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