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"I have lived thirty years in these thirty days," Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg wrote Wednesday in a moving post about her late husband Dave Goldberg.
Sandberg wrote the Facebook post to mark the end of her sheloshim: the thirty days of religious mourning for a spouse in the Jewish religion. Goldberg, who was the CEO of SurveyMonkey, died May 2 of head trauma and blood loss after falling on a treadmill at a Mexican resort.
"I think when tragedy occurs, it presents a choice. You can give in to the void, the emptiness that fills your heart, your lungs, constricts your ability to think or even breathe. Or you can try to find meaning ... when I can, I want to choose life and meaning," Sandberg wrote in the moving essay.
She reflected on the impermanence of life, her gratitude for friends and strangers who offered her comfort and how to talk to someone who is grieving.
Sandberg also wrote several lines on what her ordeal has taught her about parenting:
"I have gained a more profound understanding of what it is to be a mother, both through the depth of the agony I feel when my children scream and cry and from the connection my mother has to my pain. She has tried to fill the empty space in my bed, holding me each night until I cry myself to sleep. She has fought to hold back her own tears to make room for mine. She has explained to me that the anguish I am feeling is both my own and my children’s, and I understood that she was right as I saw the pain in her own eyes."
Tens of thousands of people "liked" and shared the post, and many Facebook commenters thanked Sandberg for her honesty and bravery.
That group included Sandberg's boss, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who wrote: "Your ability to find meaning and clarity is deeply inspiring."