I have just finished reading of a health study due out in September that finds that divorced and widowed individuals have far more medical problems than those in relatively stable/happy marriages. Surprise, surprise! I could have come up with this result just based on my own experience. The day-to-day stress I have endured over the past seven years as a widow, care- giver to sick and aging parents, only parent and most recently as a divorcee has been overwhelming.
I have always known and believed that there is a huge benefit to being happily married - physically, financially, emotionally, and socially.
The study emphasizes that people who are widowed and divorced need to take extra care of themselves because we don't do so, especially during the first year of loss. We sleep and eat poorly, may not exercise and can be extremely anxious and depressed. I am guilty of eating poorly, having trouble sleeping and not exercising enough. I also do not take the time to nurture my interests or laugh enough. I seldom have any fun personal downtime. And I've had my share of depression and anxiety.
I have decided to take this study to heart (I've had some high blood pressure concerns). I need to start focusing on myself more (personally and physically). And I need to have some faith in love again - that it will visit my door one more time. I'm thinking of the stress and strain that occurs when dating - as if widows need anymore in their life! But if the ultimate reward results in a more happy and healthful future life, it will be worth it!