Seduction of Silence:
Journal of a Reluctant Widow

Helen Lewison


There are some things in life that leave an indelible mark. How you felt on your wedding day, dressed in white and lace with all eyes on you and your eyes firmly directed toward the future. The rituals that are attached to that one special day, connecting two people seem so familiar. ' In sickness and in health' . . . Who really thinks about the sickness part? 'Till deaths do us part' . . . Can we really imagine our life before, or after?

Often when I am sitting in a parked car, I watch as an older lady exits her car and walks to a building. My mind always wanders to the same thought. This woman in her 60's was my age when I was born. Not too profound a thought? Give it a minute. When she was 34, as a young wife and mother, could she imagine her life at 68, graying with a coiffed hairstyle, having trouble getting out of the car because her joints are not what they used to be. Thirty-four years ago, did she think that she'd be alone, without a husband because he died before she did?

It is from this perspective that Seduction of Silence: Journal of a Reluctant Widow by Helen Lewison takes the reader through her journey from a lifelong partner of her husband, finding herself suddenly alone, longing for the familiar rhythms of her life. She allows the reader to explore the personal side of loss and the process of coming out on the other side of it. Her message of hope and inspiration is built upon a slow realization that although it seemed impossible at the time of her husband's death, life does go on. People can always grow and build upon all the experiences that made them "the other half", becoming a strong, whole person. The process is very much like that of a butterfly. There is the cocoon that surrounds you when you are completely emotionally and physically connected to someone. It is a comfortable place. Eventually, by virtue of nature or circumstance, the newly formed butterfly must emerge and fly. Helen Lewison's journal lets us imagine that we are watching while the cocoon slowly opens as the butterfly makes its way out.

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