Saturday was my nephews wedding. A big crowd helped celebrate the young couple. It was great to be part of the fun and I am finally OK with seeing other couples be happy.
After your spouse dies, it is really hard to see other couples. Especially older couples. There is a pang of envy and anger when you realize that will never be you.
For some widows that feeling stays longer but for my nephew’s wedding I was happy. I even brought a date!
All of my husband’s family was there, including both his parents. We always acknowledge Mike but this was a happy event and we kept it that way. We danced and had some laughs. Maybe ate and drank too much but a shuttle to our hotel was provided so we all made it back safely.
I slept in as long as I could and then devoured the hotel’s complimentary chocolate croissant (update on my healthy new lifestyle and diet soon).
We were happy to be driving home on a sunny afternoon after spending much of the drive Saturday in torrential rain. The GPS redirected us off the New Jersey Turnpike to avoid extra minutes in traffic and that’s when our Sunday adventure in Chinatown NYC started to take form.
My boyfriend suggested a restaurant called Wo Hop which is highly rated for authentic, tasty Chinese food. Since he grew up in Queens and has spent his whole life working in Manhattan, he turned off the GPS led the way.
He chose the Holland tunnel as an entry point and after waiting a good 15 minutes in merging traffic, we arrived in downtown Manhattan. When a parking spot on the road didn’t appear we went into a parking garage which cost $25 for just under 2 hours.
Sundays in New York are often filled with spontaneous street closures and festive activities. Mott Street where the Wo Hop restaurant is located, was also closed to cars making it fun to walk down the middle of the street and take pictures.
We sat in the booth and ordered sweet and sour soup, chicken chow fun and fried soft shell crab.
After lunch we strolled up the street and came across some street performers, shops and a Chinese bakery.
The temperature was unexpectedly warm so after soaking in some sun we headed back to the parking garage. With so many ways to leave the city, I was thrilled when my boyfriend decided to drive us over the Brooklyn Bridge. It was filled with people walking across the East River in the middle of the bridge, but I felt quite spoiled to be enjoying the view from the air conditioned car.
The best therapy to grief is just to get out there. Fake it until you make it. There are still days that I want to roll over, curl up and stay in bed. Having a job makes it easier to get up. Having a puppy and a morning routine also gives me a reason to start the day on solid footing. Embrace the day without expectations but keep yourself open to new people, new adventures and joy. It is out there even in the little things, like that warm chocolate croissant, looking up at the historic Brooklyn Bridge or watching street dancers. And of course joy is there holding the hand of a new love.