Our Widowed Young Befriender, Paula Reid-Smart, expresses through her poem a feeling of identity loss after being widowed young.

When I look in the mirror I see …

Someone I don’t recognise,

They look vaguely familiar but who are they?

It can’t be me for I look different now.

Before I looked like …

Me … you know me … . A wife, a carer, part of a parenting package, a lover, a best friend, a confidant, a significant other, a partner, a sounding board, a giver of affection, a half of a whole.

But the person in the mirror is… A widow, a lone parent, alone, without a special friend, anxious, a half without another to make a whole.

As I look in the mirror now I see that the reflection is like me but changed. But a person with whom I am becoming more familiar with each time I look and with whom I can see is becoming the new me.

So it can’t be me … can it?

But as I look closer I see … the mother with love to give, the woman with affection in her heart, a woman with the benefit of having loved and been loved.

A woman with inner strength to go on, to find the hope that can be found, and the potential to love again.

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