Many widows say “I am never going to find anyone like my spouse.” They are correct. There is only one of every person in the world. Every person is unique. Jamie, my husband, was unique. I am unique. Your spouse was unique. And you are unique. But, what you can have is qualities of your deceased spouse. I will settle for nothing but Jamie’s quality and class. He was a loving husband and father. He was a hard worker. He cherished his family. He was kind to people that he would meet. These are qualities my next spouse must have.
Some traits are specific just to Jamie. He did the laundry, cleaned, cooked, and took the kids to school. He would spend the whole evening playing legos and wrestling with the kids. Jamie loved to go fishing and wear a hat that I hated. He loved to buy a bottle of Merlot so that we could have a glass together and unwind while we had dinner. Having friends over to the house for dinner was something we did almost every week. You can bet that we won’t be eating until 8 pm because he would get so involved in swapping stories he would forget to cook dinner. If we weren’t hosting people, we would be at one of his sibling’s houses, watching some kind of sporting event, preparing food and drinking a few beers.
Do I expect that the next man I date does all of the cooking and cleaning? NO. I want this to be a shared responsibility with him, the boys, and myself. Do I expect the next man to spend all of his free time with my kids? NO. I want him to spend quality time with my kids. What that looks like would be specific to the interests of the new person and my boys. Do I expect him to be a sports fan? YES. Not because Jamie was. But, because my boys and I like sports. We enjoy watching and attending athletic events. Do I expect him to cherish my boys and me as Jamie did? YES. Not because Jamie did but because that is what the boys and I deserve.