How Do You Deal When You Lose the Love of Your Life?
By Manuela Domingos
On March 27th 2015, Ms. Dolores lost her husband. We weren’t present at church to hear the news. I woke up that Sunday morning to a text from a youth group friend informing me of the recent death. “I’m sorry about Ms. Dolores husband,” it read. Truth is, I was confused and didn’t realize who Ms. Dolores was. At the moment, I didn’t realize that Ms. Dolores was the woman who sat a few seats down from us at church. I didn’t realize that she was the woman who gave hugs and talked to my family every Sunday. It was simply a misunderstanding. I knew the face, but I didn’t know the name.
Afraid of coming off as rude, I withdrew from texting back, “Who is she?” and put my phone away. A month later, my family and I found out the harsh truth.
They were a sweet old couple. Her husband had long gray hair that reached his back and his eyes twinkled and glowed when he spoke to others. He was animated at times, pulling his face abruptly into ecstatic facial expressions as if he wanted the world to know exactly what he meant. Every Sunday, they were there.
Now, Ms. Dolores sits alone at church. Some days, a friend will come by and sit next to her. Other days, she’ll sit next to my family. But ever since the death of her husband, she’s always been there. Same seat, uninterrupted.
You can see the regret in her eyes about the loss in her life, yet her buoyant personality remains the same. She still smiles, utters praises of “Amen” at church, and hugs everyone else like they were her own children.
I personally do not have a relationship with Ms. Dolores, nor do I know what her heart truly feels, but I do know this: She knows she’ll be happy, and because of this, her love story continues.
I marvel at her fervent faith and capability of moving past odds. I marvel at the fact that she smiles, keeping the memory of her husband alive through her worship and conversations.
I marvel at her dedication to continue a routine with a missing piece of herself. I marvel at how she leans on her faith for support.
For this, I believe that Mrs. Dolores’ love story continues.
I know there are days that are tough for her, and there might be days that she will consider giving up.
But because she chooses to keep her spirits high when she walks into a room, I can’t help but believe that he still lives in her, and she still lives in him.
Keep up with Manuela on Instagram, @_manuelad!