Chapter 2 was never a term I had heard, outside of a book, until I became a widow. So much new terminology to learn. So from what I’ve gathered chapter 2 means the second person that’s meant for you. Is it possibly to have a second partner after a loss? Is it possible to form a connection as strong, to feel as connected, to laugh as hard? Is there any way another man could make me smile like the first one did, make me feel like I am the only one, and maybe just maybe provide feelings I had possibly missed before. When is the right time, is there a right time, is this the right thing? Is it possible to have space for both? Could another man accept the impossible situation my heart is in? Could I allow myself to grieve properly and be with another man. My goodness the questions never stop, and questions about chapter 2 are endless.
About 5 months out I had decided I could go on some dates. Now this didn’t mean I was looking to meet someone, or that I was ready to “move on.” What this did mean is that I wanted to go out maybe grab a dinner and drinks, and see a show with a man. It would be fun. Nothing serious.
Well as the cliche as old as time goes, you’ll find someone as soon as you aren’t looking. Five months after my husband passed I was out with a guy at a concert. We were having a decent time. He bought me a drink and pinched my butt. I smiled and batted my eyelashes, but there was no love connection. After the show we moved to the bar for the after party. Well this guy decided to go to the restroom, and while he was gone another totally handsome man approached me. He was laying it on thick compliment after compliment, and I just became putty in his hands. The first man emerged from the restroom saw what was happening and graciously bowed out. He told me it was time for him to head home, and I did not object. I stayed and spent more time with the new man getting to know him a little better. Within moments we were talking music, and he invited me to New York City for a widespread panic concert. Now if you know me at all you know this is an offer I can’t refuse. He would get our plane ticket, our air B and B, our concert tickets. This concert was set to run for 5 nights. I simply told this man there is no way I could commit to 5 nights in New York City to a man I had just met, but I could possibly swing 2.
We ended up spending the rest of the evening together, and to be honest into the next day. He was so sweet, and said just the right things. It was as if Jason had hand picked this man for me. As the night turned to morning I learned very quickly just how incredible this man was. He focused on me, we had so many similarities, he communicated like a man out of the movies, he almost seemed to good to be true. (For the record 11 months later I feel exactly the same about him).
He has been patient, kind, understanding, willing to take things slow, allows me the space I need to grieve, comforts me in times of need, and makes me smile and laugh every single day. He accepts me exactly for who I am. After losing my husband I never dreamed it would be possible to find someone new. To find someone who, not only understands me, but allows me to be me has been the greatest gift I’ve received in the past 14 months.
We have taken things at a snails pace which has been exactly what I need, and allows me plenty of time to continue the to work on myself, grieve, and grow. He’s helped me discover what kind of person I want to be and what kind of person I can be. We have been together almost 11 months and we are still on the same page. We both take self care very seriously and make it a priority in our lives.
I don’t think my time line is the right timeline for anyone else but me. Some may find someone sooner some later some may choose to never find someone. All of those options are perfectly fine and perfectly normal. I think one thing we can all agree on is is giving ourselves grace. Do what makes you feel good, and is healthy. Be kind to yourself and take time for yourself. Don’t be afraid to move slow or fast. Don’t let others tell you what is good for you or what isn’t good for you. If the person is right for you they will move at the pace that is right for you.
One final thought on chapter 2. Do not worry about what others will think or say because of you finding someone. No one else is living your life day in and day out, and no one else knows how you feel or what you need like you do. I am a firm believer that if it’s right then I won’t worry what others will think or say. This isn’t to say telling all of my family and friends was super easy and comfortable, but I did it confidently because I know I’m in a healthy happy place. I don’t know if I’ll be with this man until the end, but I do know he is in my life for a reason. I will hold on to this relationship as long as I can, and enjoy every moment I can.