In the book of Genesis, chapter 2, we read the story of the creation of the first woman. God took a rib from the man He had made and from it, He made woman and brought her to her mate, her husband. In verse 23, the man said, "this is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called 'woman,' for she was taken out of man. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." We've all heard these verses quoted at weddings. I spent a lot of my married life trying to understand what it meant to be "one flesh" (beyond the obvious, of course). I even wondered if we had actually become "one flesh". God says in another place, that He will take our hearts of stone and give us hearts of "flesh". Could it be that God, who looks at the heart rather than the outward "flesh", meant that He would make the man and the woman "one heart"?
So, now that my husband is gone, I've been asking the Lord this question: "Does that mean that I am now 'one-half flesh'? One-half of a living heart/spirit? Have you heard it said that a surviving spouse has died of "a broken heart"? I can understand how this could be true now. My head tells me that the question itself reflects the loss I feel, the emptiness, the sense of lost identity and direction. Today I read this:
"You are not exactly who you were. The person you lost was part of your identity. You were someone's mother or aunt or spouse or brother. You continue to be that person in your heart and memory, but there's a vacant place where your loved one stood. And the loss of this person has subtracted from you part of who you were. Eventually you will take steps to move from the old to the new identity." (Footnote: from Beyond Grief by Carol Staudacher) The author goes on to say, "This may be hard to grasp at this time, but someday...." - Experiencing Grief by H. Norman Wright.
Someday.... but not today.