When “Widow Brain” Strikes Again!

Widow brain is no joke. It clouds every aspect of your head, which makes it nearly impossible to be a normal, self-sufficient and productive human being. This last week I have been struggling trying to think of something to write about. Even though I have an endless list of topics written down that I could discuss, I can’t seem to focus on any one thing.

I have attempted to write about four different things this week and all of them I have stopped halfway through because I just wasn’t feeling it. I believe in order for me write about something that people will want to read and will be able to connect to, I have to actually being feeling whatever it is in that moment for it to feel successful and worth publishing. So, after all those attempts, and with a little help from my friend who encouraged me to embrace the fog, here I am, talking about what I am feeling and battling right now.   

I am going through some new heavy life circumstances with my family that I am sure I will discuss at a later time, when I feel it is more appropriate but it has made the grief in my mind even more present. I need Justin to help right now but he cannot and that is making this more difficult on top of an already horrible situation. His absence through this awfulness has created a fog to slowly creep in and take up the majority of myself. 

Widow brain, grief brain or just good old brain fog from stress is absolutely real. It prevents us from being a normal functioning adult. When the fog sets in and inevitably occupies every part of my body, I feel like I start to lose it a little.  I can be driving in my neighborhood and by some miracle get lost (yes, this has happened) or forget where I was supposed to be headed  in the first place after driving for a solid ten minutes…”Oh right, I have to go to work right now!”. I can have a long list of to do’s but be crippled, sometimes literally, with anxiety because of all the “to do’s”, when they are simple things like getting the car washed and picking up dog food. And then when I do try, I get lost going to PetSmart…which is down the street by the way. Even as I am trying to write this I am losing my train of thought, getting easily distracted by the dishes in the sink and then my eyes catch the basket of laundry full of clean clothes that has been sitting there for 3 days and I just start staring at it, unable to move, I can’t seem to walk over there, pick up the basket and start folding. GET UP CRAZY LADY AND FOLD!!!! So now, I start to feel like there is no point of even sharing any of this because I feel like it has no direction. However, this is real and this is part of grief and life, so here it is folks. Foggy, widow brain word jumbles in all its glory by yours truly.

I am trying to manage everyday life, grief and death all that the same time. No wonder I feel like a crazy person who can’t focus and probably isn’t making any sense. It’s OK to feel foggy. Is it fun? Not in any way, but I know there is no way around it. It just is. I know deep down it’s temporary. Hopefully soon, I will regain control of my brain and be able to feel like a somewhat regular person who can contribute to society again. However, when you’re in it, it’s horribly frustrating because you can’t see an end in sight. You just have to wait it out until the fog clears.



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For whatever reason you find yourself here, I welcome you and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for stopping by to gander into this life of widowhood I have unexpectedly found myself in. This is for anyone who finds themselves in a similar situation or just wants to get an idea of what this is really like. I know the lot of you will be fellow members of this shitty club, but I hope that the many others will never have to know what this is like. Losing a spouse is not for the weak and wearied, even though at times that’s all that I feel. The thing is about widowhood, you’re not given a choice. You HAVE to get up and keep going. Even when it feels impossible, and those impossible days are way more frequent than not. Learning to live every day without my beloved Justin has been like trying to live with without all of my limbs. You’re trapped and have nowhere to go other than to just sit in the painful and horrid mess that is your life. I cannot do justice for what this is like because it is the type of hurt that you cannot truly explain. You have to feel it yourself to really understand. But hopefully, I can help my fellow widowed tribe or anyone who just wants to try to gain an understanding of the daily life of a widow. It’s now part of my new identity, and always will be. The girl I was before Justin died is long gone and I now am piecing together what this new me looks like. I am not sure what that will look like entirely but hopefully here is where I can put myself back together again. Thank you for taking an interest in my journey. It is because of all of you that I have kept me going.

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