being happily remarried after being widowed

As we were getting ready for bed last night, Rob remarked, “You know, I think you have a pretty wonderful husband.” And I agreed. And I should have been the one to say so in fact. So I will do it today.

All week Rob has been the rock in this lice business. He took over the laundry duty. He was there for both rounds of delousing shampoo. He nit-picked non-stop and with the patience of Job. In between he went to work, got our personal directive stuff written, took care of the car insurance issues for Jordan, and made time for us to have tea in the city before the lawyer’s appointment. He also generously went solo one evening so I could go to my writer’s group. He is more than wonderful. In my whole life I haven’t been able to lean on someone the way he lets me lean on him. It’s a sometimes frightening thing for someone like me who was so used to having to do everything for myself and not really having anyone I could count on in all manner of situations or crises.

Last year around this time, Rob was sitting up late into the night with me as I battled some pretty awful insomnia leading up to the first anniversary of Will’s death. We talked on the phone a bit but the bulk of our conversations were carried on IM. Hours at a time. He astounded me with his selfless concern for me and what I was feeling even when I knew that he was dealing with his own grief. He would send me funnies by email everyday to take me mind off things and make sure I smiled a bit in each 24-hr period. He is still the one who cares most if the corners of my mouth inch upward every day.

Although I am sure it seems as though I do nothing but talk about Rob, there are volumes more things that I kept to myself about him and our relationship. Things that are too TMI – even for me – and things that belong to us alone or memories that are just mine to have and hold. In the absence of these details, I hope I am still able to convey the depth of my love for him and the love that we share.

I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else or with anyone else other than here and with Rob. I can’t picture a future, near or far, without him in it. My favorite place to be is wherever he is and my chief project is our life together.

Wedding Dress For Happy Couple in Love

Image by via Flickr

On the morning of June 27th at just about this time in the morning, I will have been married for just a bit more than half a day. Rob and I remind ourselves often that time is too precious to wish away, but as I gear up for another week of separation I wish I owned a Toynbee Convector.


There is an old Ray Bradbury short story that I used to teach to my seventh graders back in the day. It is about a man who fakes a trip to the future in order to give the world hope of a better world to come. The faked proof he presents inspires people to go out and actually create the world he only imagined for them. I remind myself when I am feeling impatient and missing my love’s physical reassurance that what we are doing in our time apart is giving substance to our dreams.


You can’t build a future if you aren’t able to envision it in your mind’s eye.



Gravestones, Koyoto, Japan

Image via Wikipedia

Everything happens for a reason.


Without a doubt that is one of the more irritating platitudes you will hear during the first year or so of widowhood. Because even if it is true, it’s the last thing you want to try and force your shattered heart to accept. That the love you had, the life you lived, was in some ways never meant to be. At least not in the Hallmark card version of marriage most of us view as the rule rather than the exception. Two white-haired octogenarians sitting on a porch in the twilight, holding hands and rocking slowly in a swing.


My husband got sick just about five years ago when I was pregnant with our only child. He died a long slow degrading death. It was a genetic disease, and he passed the marker for it along to our daughter who will someday run the risk of passing it on to a son, who will die the same way his grandfather did. Meant to be?


We live in a cause/effect world, so yes, probably there is a reason for everything that happens. That doesn’t mean that the reason was something profound or wonderful or even good for all parties involved. And it doesn’t have anything to do with people being good or bad. People will come into and exit our lives for our whole life. That is just the way life is. Does knowing this make it easier to accept? Hurt less?


Was I meant to be a widow? Raise a child on my own? Maybe. For a short time this has been my destiny. Even if there is a “plan” mapped out for us all, what difference does that make? Would knowing make Will’s death, the way he died even, hurt less? Make being a widowed mother easier? Meeting Rob the way I did and coming to love and trust and depend on him as I do. Destiny? Sometimes there are no answers. We just do the best we can. Get up every day and put one foot in front of the other. Be grateful for the wonderful things that once were and in awe of that which is.


A family came through the house last evening with yet another realtor. Very nice. Very polite. The husband was more interested than the wife which makes me think they will not be the eventual buyers. When it comes to buying a home, it is usually about what mom wants. Three very well-behaved children. I want the house to go to a family. It would make me feel better to know that someone will live out those dreams here that Will and I were never meant to.