I met a remarkable women recently who has been widowed for the last three years from an equally remarkable man.
Her husband was diagnosed with ALS, in his late 40's, when their twin daughters were still in high school.
His disease progressed and he bravely elected to die naturally at home.
I had heard about her and her family (and all the things they had been doing to increase ALS awareness/research and funding) and she, through the same friend, had heard about the death of my wife.
We chatted briefly. I also saw her spending time talking with both of my children.
When we were getting ready to leave the gathering, she was gracious enough to pull me aside and let me know I was doing a great job with my children.
This simple statement filled my heart.
Besides having continued guilt over losing Tori, I've also often questioned, over the last year, how I'm doing as a single parent for my children-who are now both young adults.
I know I was a good husband, father, dish washer, garbage taker-outer, weed-puller, and youth sport coach but Tori was pretty much our everything.
I was always the co-pilot, her right-hand man.
Having this woman, who has been through so much, take the time to give me such encouragement, was more appreciated than I can adequately express in words.
I hope to do the same for others as well.
"Most everyone you meet is going through a battle of which you know nothing about."
...until you get to know them on a deeper level. Be encouraging.