A Year of Firsts

 Last year I interviewed Lu Ann Cahn, Author of “I Dare Me” for the Simple Steps Real Change Radio Show.  Lu Ann was going through some major upheavals in her life and challenged herself to try something new every day.  I was inspired by her fearlessness and excited to try a few “firsts” of my own.

What I didn’t realize at the time is that I’d be forced to live “A Year of Firsts.”  That’s what the first year is considered after a loved one dies. It’s the first birthday, the first anniversary, and the first time being sick without my husband to take care of me.  Still to come is the first Thanksgiving, first Christmas, first New Year, first anniversary of Jack’s death and more firsts that I don’t even know I’m heading for.

There is no excitement in these firsts.  They are a time of sadness, loneliness and overwhelming pain.  No matter what I do to distract myself during the day, in the silence of the night the tears flow and the grief overwhelms me. And I let it.  In my heart I know I am suppose to have this experience… so I let it be all that it needs to be.

There is no answer to the “why” of it all.  There is no reprieve from Jack’s death.  There are only my beliefs.  I believe that everything happens for a reason.  I believe that we die when it is our time to die.  I believe that Jack wouldn’t have died if he didn’t think I would be OK.  I believe that he is still here even if I can’t touch him or hear his voice.  I believe that our love didn’t die with him.  I believe we’ll be together again. And it is those beliefs that help me get through this year of firsts.

In this year of firsts I’ll find strength I didn’t know I had.  I’ll discover who I am, alone.  I’ll keep taking the simple steps because that is what works for me.  And at the end of this year of firsts I’ll be in a better place than where I was when I started.  And therein lies hope.

5 thoughts on “A Year of Firsts

  1. Dear Cheryl Maloney, you are one of the strongest angels I have come to know. I am motivated by your strength, courage and wisdom to continue to navigate through a world in which, many times, we do not understand. The journey has been long. But the universe has now granted you with a new journey. An enlightened journey. And though you may not know where this new journey will take you, just look for the light. A new year of light. Love, Rochelle

  2. I am moved again by your openness and courage to share your journey heart-to-heart. May angels give you comfort now and always.

    1. Thank you dear friend… I am surrounded by angels here on earth too. Thank you for being in my life…

  3. Dear Cheryl:
    Your words resonate so true to me. Unfortunately, like you, I too, have had many years of firsts than I care to remember. Everything you have written here, has been so very true for me. Like you, I believe, everything happens for a reason, and although we wish we knew why, sometimes we never do.

    Finally, only through my love for the Lord, and knowing there are wonderful people like you writing from your heart and soul, have I been able to come to acceptance.

    Thank you so much for sharing, as your words help so much. I wish you peace in your heart and spirit, as you travel on your journey.

    1. Mirian, Thank you. I am so glad that what I write touches your life with support and kindness. We each seek out that which gives us the most comfort and I’m glad you have in your life what you need. Much love & gratitude, Cheryl

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