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Stepping Out of the Shadow

Rena Michaels

To you, I am the new wife. More, I am the usurper, the woman who has come to take your best friend’s place, and even to wipe away her memory. Oh, that is too harsh, I hear you protest. Perhaps. But before you judge, please, understand my position.

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

I am the new wife. I was widowed many years ago, and although I wanted to remarry, I wasn’t sure that opportunity would ever present itself. After a few years of dating, I was blessed to meet Shaya. No dating situation ever goes completely smoothly, but things just felt right between us. Major hurdles seemed to work themselves out easily. We dated for half a year before we decided to take the plunge and get married. When I told my rav that I was engaged, he did the biggest jig of all! Our wedding was a small, intimate affair attended by our closest family members and friends. We sent you an invitation, but you chose not to come. I heard through the grapevine that you found it too hard to attend. I understood. Shaya and I were buoyant and joyful, but it had been a long, hard walk to the wedding canopy — we had both supported beloved spouses through illness and disease, we had both eased their journey into the Next World, we had both survived grief and loss. Inevitably, the memories were there, so vivid that we could almost reach out and touch them. Which made it all the more meaningful when our dear guests encircled us with gladness. I was especially touched by the outpouring of love from the family members of our first spouses.

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