More than 240 widows and widowers and their families headed to CenterParcs in Sherwood Forest last weekend to enjoy a fun-packed weekend of cycling, swimming, bowling, dancing and trick or treating in the run up to Halloween.
“My dad jokingly calls us the ‘doom and gloom club’ but you can’t get any further from the truth,” said WAY member Macaila, who shared adjacent chalets with four WAY friends and their six children.
Macaila and her friends – the self-proclaimed “Wicked Wids” – dressed up as devils for a Halloween ball on Saturday evening and didn’t stop laughing all weekend.
“We talk about anything and everything,” said Macaila, who told us the friendships she’s formed through WAY have helped her to get through the last 18 months since her husband died.
“It’s just having the opportunity to sit and chat in the evening about your experiences,” she said. “As time goes on, you lose that opportunity because people around you stop asking you. They think you’re OK. So just being able to sit there in a safe environment and have a bit of a meltdown if you want – it’s nice to have that release.”
She added: “I don’t know what I’d have done without WAY. They were my lifesaver last year – and still are.”
Here are some photos of Macaila and friends (Macaila is in the middle picture - second from right).
Isabel (pictured in WAY hoodie) said: "The weekend meant the world to me and reminded me of the importance of such deep and understanding relationships. I felt truly blessed."