“Sorry for your loss” is a very common phrase that we hear upon the death of a loved one. Those who say it are sincere and often do not know what else to say. They have probably experienced the pain and grief of losing someone close and have an idea of what you are going through. In some ways, it’s not a loss at all.
When a spouse passes, they are commonly referred to in the past tense. “He was my husband” or “She was my wife.” By the phrase “until death us do part” the past tense would be correct and most are okay with that.
Let’s try some thoughts from a different perspective. Instead of looking at the situation in the past tense, think about it in the present tense. For instance, when a parent loses a child and there are other children in the family, they will say, “I have three children; two living and one deceased.” The parent speaks of the deceased child in the present tense.
This can and does work for a spouse, also. It may be more awkward at first, but to speak of the deceased spouse in the present tense is no different from a parent referring to his or her deceased child. There is a reality to it all, of course, but also a healing process that the surviving spouse needs to accomplish.
“He is my husband, deceased.” “My wife passed away one year ago.” “I love my wife and I miss her.” Even though the wife or husband has passed, you still love them. That love is expressed through your grief and will be as long as you live. You may find a place and time in your life when you will re-marry, but it will not change the love you have for your deceased spouse.
Just some thoughts that may help you during the early part of the grieving process and beyond. Remember, your grief is yours and yours alone. The choices are yours.