Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Tuesday December 19th

6 years ago it was a Tuesday. My life changed so much. The loss was scary numbing and unbelievable. How could he be gone forever? Maybe he was just on a trip or went for a ride or needed a break? How do I do this alone? How can I be a single mom? How will I make decisions? How do I take care of grieving kids while grieving myself? How do we tell everyone? Did we eat? Who slept? Can we plan and hold a funeral before Christmas? Who's coming from out of town? Where will they stay? Who's going to do the snow removal? What bills need to be paid? What packages need to be mailed out? What will we do with all this food? Who's going to school and it's okay to want to go. Let's experience all the emotions at one time. How can you be sad one minute that angry than next but then laugh about something that then makes you cry? I don't know how to do this! I'm not ready to have him gone! We had so many plans! This isn't fair! How does God think that this is okay? My bed is lonely! No more hugs! No more smartass comments! Projects aren't done.

6 years later it's Tuesday again. I still love and miss you. I'm doing okay most of the time. I still wish you had been able to stay with us. I'm glad you watch over us and leave us quarters. I know God had a plan and hopefully it's going well. I met someone new, he loves me too. The boys are growing up and I think I'm doing okay raising them. I'm so thankful for family and friends love and support especially since they're grieving too. Thankful we can share both tears and joy. I make more decisions now. I choose me more often. I still drive your truck and live in the house. I'm helping other widows and finding some peace. FernGully is coming out soon. A couple people have shared the news with me. It's certainly not the same without you but I wouldn't change the 25 years we had together. I'm glad you asked me out. I'm glad I said yes. I'm glad we were married and raised three amazing kids together. I'm glad we made plans for the future. I'm glad I'm moving forward but not forgetting. You were the love of a lifetime. We just didn't know that the lifetime would only be 42 years. I know you're right there waiting and watching over us.

I love you.
I miss you.
You are not forgotten. 

Thursday, November 2, 2023

lessons learned

I am working on a workbook and a workshop for widows with writing/journaling activities. These are things that I wrote about when Steve died and some of them even more than once since then. Part of the last one is looking at the future. 

In the last almost 6 years I learned so much about myself and grief. I learned to accept that there would always be moments that were hard and connected to his death. 

I found someone who allows me to have those moments and to talk about them, to share how hard it is, and to know that it is forever. 

I know that time heals but it doesn’t make the love go away. It doesn't make the memories go away. It doesn't mean I won’t ever be triggered again. 

But time lessens the strength of the grief. It means I can be in joy more than sadness. 

It means I can move forward and live in the present. 

I can let grieving go without letting him go. 

I can move on because time moves on. 

I can move forward because I can’t go back and change it.

I can be in the present. I can remember the past. And I can have hope for the future. 

Monday, October 23, 2023

Letting Go

Recently the idea of letting go has been coming up a lot. And I think there needs to be some defining of what it means to let go. I think a lot of this connects with moving forward and not moving on which I've talked about before. 

Letting go means leaving the past in the past. Letting go of the hopes and the dreams and the plans that we had for the future. 

We built onto our house so that we could fit our current family better but also with the idea that we would live there forever. We made our doorways handicap accessible and our bathrooms able to be used maybe with a support person like a nurse and a guest room that overnight care could stay in. And now that's not going to happen if we are not going to be there in our 90s. 

Letting go of the idea of that we would celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary or our 50th. Steve's parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary this year and it was hard to know that I'm not going to get there with anyone. 

Letting go of my kids. My youngest is 17. They are growing up and moving forward and becoming people that they were meant to be and the best version of themselves and that might not include me as much as it has in the past. 

Letting go of my teaching as a career and as something I did all the time.

I think the letting go is shifting. Shifting to retirement. Shifting to being a widow. Shifting to being a single parent. Shifting to being in a new relationship. Shifting to having my own business. Shifting to different expectations around meals and time together. Shifting on who's living in the house.

Lots of things involved with letting go and as most things with grief, there are no rules. Some days are going to be harder than others. Some things are going to be a trigger. 

I need to let go of the past and move forward. I need to look to the future and see where I'm headed. I need to have hopes and dreams and goals and know that not all of them are going to come true or be met and that that's part of life. And it's okay.

And none of letting go means that I've forgotten. Letting go means not grieving, but allowing moments of grief here and there. 

Sunday, April 2, 2023

wherever you will go

Cried in the shower this morning listening to a song. I could feel that Steve was talking to me and sharing a message that he is always with me and always supporting me because I keep him in my mind and heart. 

I am so blessed that he's okay with me being with Chris. 

"So lately, been wondering
Who will be there to take my place
When I'm gone, you'll need love
To light the shadows on your face" 

"know now, just quite howMy life and love might still go onIn your heart, in your mindI'll stay with you for all of time"

"Wherever You Will Go"
By The Calling 

Sunday, February 12, 2023

movie vows

I watched a movie tonight where one of the spouses died of cancer. After they knew the prognosis was not good, they spur of the moment decided to get married and went to a courthouse. The judge asked if he would love "as long as you both shall live". Of course he answered 'I do'.

It made me think about how we do love for the length of their life and then also for the rest of our life even if that person is no longer alive. My marriage vow to Steve was until "death do us part" and no matter what path I choose to take, I will always love him. I will love him as my first love, as my husband, as the father of my children and my best friend.

I am always amazed at how love works. How you can be in love with two totally different humans and want to be with them for the rest of your life, as long as you both shall live, and even after they're gone. 

knitted blanket

Last night I was working with Steve's mom on the potential of her knitting a temperature blanket. You sew a row everyday based on the temperature, whether you pick the high, the low or the average of the day. We were watching different videos and I was reading people's plans that they followed when they made their blanket.  In one of them the person explained that she went back and looked at the average temperatures for the year they got married. She was making it for her husband as a present to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. 

Funny how that was the same year that Steve and I got married. I had really thought we would go to Hawaii for our 25th. It also reminded me of how hot our wedding day was even though our average temperatures do not usually reach above 100. It's great to be able to look back on the memories and remember all the love that we shared. 

Monday, January 30, 2023


13 years ago one of my very good friends passed away. We were a month apart in age and had been friends since middle school. Her second child and my oldest child were only a month apart. Her husband and my husband were great friends too. We often got together for dinner and for birthdays. 

I know exactly where I was when I got the call from her dad saying that she did not wake up from a nap. It made death such a reality and led to so many conversations between me and Steve about what we would do if it was one of us that died suddenly. I think her death really prepared me to grieve and accept and move forward with Steve's death.  It also let us to have some conversations about expectations revolving around grief.

Her husband was able to move forward and has now been married for many years. I think he was criticized by many people for moving forward in a time frame that they thought was too quick. But as I've learned and experienced, there are absolutely no rules or timelines in both grieving and moving forward. 

You can still love someone and be in love with someone else. You can grieve the loss of their part of your life and also make new memories with someone new.