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marriage is such an interesting facet of our lives.  the intertwining, the compromise, the sometimes very real struggle, and the love.  i was sitting in the social security office today staring at a document that said "the marriage ended with death on April 28, 2016." and i realized... i'm not married anymore.

i had thought about it, obviously at different points throughout these couple weeks.  the brain can be extremely pragmatic even under the most trying of circumstances.  the day Jim died, i remember bringing up life insurance, canceling his cell phone, etc.  it's a survival tool... your brain will lose itself in grief if there is no logic to the unraveling.  

but to see it, legally defined, was so very very striking.  it will be one of those moments that will always be with me in the after haze of these weeks.

the hospital i delivered elly at required a blood work up and "light" physical pre-testing before my c-section.  my delivery was scheduled for monday so that friday i went in at 7 am for testing.  i remember being so scared to drive myself to the hospital.  isn't that silly? the traffic there is busy and i always get nervous driving new places.  i wanted jim to wake the kids up and drive up there with me and wait in the car.... with the two kids.  i was so worked up about this that when i made it there on time and safely, i was so oddly proud of myself.

in a lot of ways, my marriage allowed me to hide.  when there is someone to pick up the slack, there can be a lot we say "no" to because we let the other person do it.  i was especially good at this given just the number of fears i faced in my life.  essentially at the core, not being enough.  now i am suddenly thrust in as the ringleader.  there isn't much i can say "no" to if i want to provide the best for my children and myself.

i have survived some of the cruelest of circumstances and have seen more loss at 28 than some see at 80.  i deserve to dig in deep to the goodness of life, the joys to be had, if for no other reason than i have seen the other side.  there is nothing good to be had by diminishing our own joy, peace, or personal presence.  there is nothing good for my children if i hide and waste away my own being.  

and so one moment at a time, i am rocking it out as a single mom.  

this experience has led me to no longer being able to hide behind fear.  when you've lived your worst nightmare most of your other fears in life seem to pale in comparison.  if i can survive this i can do anything and so the phrase, what would you do if you knew you could not fail comes to mind.

i cannot fail, i have already survived.


  1. Wow- I am amazed at how insightful your thoughts are- you have such a grip on this you certainly cannot fail! You are very right about the hiding aspect and inter dependency holding you back or allowing you to be complacent. I grew so much after I was divorced! Unlike you, where death took your partner, divorce was a choice I made; nonetheless it is a type of death. Over time, I found courage and slowly gained a confidence I never dreamed of. At times you will be angry, cry inexplicably, or be profoundly lonely Inside even though you may be physically surrounded by others. You will not come through it unscathed, but come through you will---and grow immensely in the end.
    These children your love created will be your ultimate motivation and stronghold; your joy in them will continue to give you strength. You also have an astounding support network as I did; don't be afraid to utilize that! Constantly challenge yourself and ask "what if?" And when you feel overwhelmed or want someone else to be the strong one, take a breath and reach out to your support network. Be patient - it takes alot of time, but you are strong and determined, which will allow you to go places you never dreamed. It does not mean you will ever forget that love, but over time you will learn to move beyond it to achieve a new and different level of happiness for you and your children. Bravo to you Bria��


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