On the weekends, I like to try and organize myself.Sometimes I succeed in my de-clutter efforts and sometimes I don’t. During the work week, I have a very bad habit of throwing clothes and papers into piles. By the time the weekend rolls around, I know I have to deal with the piles and hang stuff up and throw things away.
This past weekend marked a milestone for me because I just had my bedroom painted and most of the stuff that was under my bed, hanging on wall and door hooks and on top of my furniture was in another room.
Just typing that sentence is a big deal. It’s my bedroom; not our bedroom. I am taking a big leap by changing the room and making it look different than it did when my husband was alive. Not that the room looked all that great when my husband was alive but it was ours and it was comfortable.
This was my opportunity to practice what I am always writing about: to embrace your life and move forward.I was going to paint the room myself last summer but something always seemed to happen and I never got around to it. Other rooms in the house have changed since my husband’s death but this one has remained essentially the same. I enter the room but I never really look at it or spend any time in it. I usually go to my bedroom when it’s time to sleep or change my clothes but I don’t go there to hang out and say, read a book, or talk on the phone because there are too many memories there.
Now, nine years later, after all this time, I finally realized I had to make it a different room. Otherwise, it would always be “our” room and that would be rather silly since my husband died. I didn’t even put any of my clothes in the drawers on the other side of the bureau because those once belonged to him. It didn’t feel right putting my things in his drawers. But last year, I slowly started taking over all the drawers (it felt weird at first) and I must admit I am thankful for the extra space.It was a gradual decision to change the room.
Over the past year, I found it was getting be a real downer to be in the room because here I was trying hard to rebuild my life and move forward yet when I came into my bedroom it was stuck in time. I had flashbacks to our time together and I loved the memories, yet I knew that I would still have the memories even if I painted the room, bought a new bedspread and pillows and moved the furniture around.Of course, this didn’t come to me all at once. It took awhile for me to push myself to do this.Even though it was hard to do, I am now glad, and actually sort of relieved, that I am changing my bedroom because now it feels fresh and renewed. It’s okay to give yourself as much time as you need to feel comfortable with whatever changes you make in your life after you lose a loved one. You know how it feels and you know when you are ready to think about your life in a different way.
It’s not sad to change. It just means that I am taking what has happened to me and learning how to blend it into my present life in a positive way. I’m not leaving my husband behind because that’s not possible.
But I’ve come to the point where I realize it’s okay to make new memories for myself.