Detangling Emotions

Last week, I had several nights of dreams about Jim. As dreams often are, they were jumbled, confusing, and somewhat nonsensical. In part of the dream, Jim was alive, but later not. We were conversing, yet he said he couldn’t hear me when I asked if he could. Waking from those types of dreams leaves […]

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The Healing Power of Nature

Spring came early this year, and I am glad. I needed the return of color to brighten the solemnness of loss. Following are observations on the healing power of nature: Light One of the joys of spring is the change in light and the return of warmth. Although there are days when winter’s chill lingers, […]

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Flying Solo

Sometimes, I wish a manual existed with instructions on how to fly solo after 43 years of togetherness. But then, I realize this solo journey is unique to each who takes flight, thus, each manual different. This week is a solo flight for me—a retreat alone. I need this time to think, reflect, and process […]

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With Thankfulness for the Song

Since Jim’s death, music has brought me great comfort. I listened to CeCe Winans sing “Goodness of God” over and over, distilling the truth of God’s faithfulness. I watched Jim’s celebration of life service repeatedly, listening to my son and daughter-in-law sing “How Great Thou Art,” my son play “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” on the […]

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The Gift of Laughter in Grief

If you are staid, formal, and have rigid ideas about what is acceptable behavior for the grieving, you should stop reading now, because this post is about the blessing, value, and power of humor in grief. Since Jim’s death, our family has shed tears, but we have also laughed—a lot. Jim’s celebration of life included […]

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The Heavy Lifting of Grief

It’s been a while since I lifted weights at the gym, but I know I need to get back to it. I much prefer cardio, because I can zone out, to some extent, once I get my heartrate where it needs to be. In many ways, grief is like weightlifting. We don’t want to experience […]

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Words Left Unsaid

Sudden death is, by its very nature, unexpected. We all think we’ll have the next moment, hour, day, month, year to express feelings and speak the love we hold for those dear to us. January 3, 2024, ended my chance to say, to my husband, words left unsaid. I was rushing that day, in a […]

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All the Little Hard Things

Several weeks ago, I opened the app for our local hospital system to check information about an upcoming appointment. I was surprised to see the “Widowed” box checked on my profile. Although I hadn’t changed my marital status, apparently the system defaulted to it after I canceled all Jim’s appointments and various offices marked him […]

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Enduring Love

Valentine’s Day 2024 is my first Valentine’s Day in 44 years without my husband. Please do not feel sorry for me. I’ve received unexpected cards, chocolates, and other expressions of love. And I have a dinner date with the cutest, sweetest 6-year-old little man, who looks a lot like his Bop. Jim and I had […]

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Springs in the Desert

Years ago, I traveled to New Mexico each year to teach at a writing conference. One year, as the plane banked for landing, the woman next to me sighed and said, “Isn’t it beautiful!” I managed a nod, but what I saw was bleak, barren, dusty, reddish-brown desert. Conversely, she saw the beauty of a […]

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