Throughout that long fall season and once again through the winter, the widow suffered withdrawal of her dead husband. She suffered even though she'd taken up with someone new (as an afterthought, she wondered if he might be too young, but in the end thought him to be mentally ill and couldn't deal with another psychotic) and so let him go. Not that that was easy, since he seemed to be hanging on with all his might; he may not have wanted her for anything more than security and a free ride to work but that was quite a lot in his eyes!
After the dust settled, the widow set about doing two things in tandem; finding out who she really was, as she'd been adopted, and finding another partner (a better partner) so that she'd feel complete(even though everyone told her that was silly, she could be complete on her own.)
Discovering herself was easy, as every day that passed taught her that she was much stronger than originally surmised. She found that each day as she got up and got dressed and went about her business, she was learning. First, that the world in general viewed her as someone different than she was before. Somehow less than before. Also, she learned that a huge percentage of her socio-economic group did not know how to deal with the illness or death, and for that she was somewhat ostrasized.
This gave the widow an opportunity to look a little closer in the mirror, and during the next few months she discovered that her anscestors were from Haida Gwaii, and she was born from a very long, very old branch of the aboriginal peoples of Northern British Columbia, the Tshimshian. More research seemed to say she was from the Raven Clan, and she was not surprised to learn that the women were often shamans and soul doctors.
During this time, the widow continued to suffer the seperation from her (now) long dead husband. She had received a few visits from him during the first year, once at ten months and then again two months later (to proclaim his lasting love and to gift her with the northern lights, Aurora Borealis) but nothing since. Yet she continued to feel a strong connection, a presence, a yearning, and one day when she could stand it no more she cried out. "Please!" she begged of him, tears dampening her cheeks. "Please, let me go; I don't have the strength... Please, if you love me, let me go." She cried until she was dry, and continued on home.
Weeks passed and turned into months and the widow felt a subtle shifting in her day to day life and her ability to sleep at night. She still felt her dead husband from time to time but it was almost peripheral and nothing solid. She noticed that the love she carried for him was changing into something softer, more maternal.
Spring came and with the melting of the snow came renewed hope. The widow, who had never considered herself different, began to embrace the idea that different might be good.
And the following month, she met the man whose grandmother considered herself a healer in life and a crow in death. A medicine man in his own right, he had eyes that changed from gray to green and a way with touch that healed animals and calmed the emotions of the people he loved.
Each had followed a parallel path that led to the other, and to this day they travel along together; the raven and the crow on a journey with no destination in mind.