I am Naked.

Get your mind out of the gutter.

At least long enough to read this… LOL ¬†then go back to the gutter – I’ll meet you there ūüėČ ūüėõ

Lately, I haven’t been wearing any rings or necklaces.

The only jewelry I’ve been wearing is my UP! band, my Hope Matters bracelet from Camp Widow and the watch my mom gave me.

I frequently touch my fingers, my chest, looking for the jewelry that normally adorns me.

But I am naked.

Part of this is deliberate.

The rings I was wearing were my wedding ring and my family ring.

The necklace was either my ash pendant I had bought after my husband died, or the heart pendant my ex gave me for my birthday last year.

I have removed them… because I want to find me.

So I am naked.

Taking them off for me is a symbol of finding myself.  Getting naked to my soul.   Breaking out of the labels of who I was and forging who I am and who I will be.

My daughter made an observation to me this morning… about how I will make a decision:

It’s true! You’ve got the first to steps down, you just tend to loose the confidence after you’ve decided to do it.
Then you feel like your not doing te right thing. It’s kinda funny actually.
And it got me thinking…
And when I thought about it… she’s right.
I make a decision.  I head in that direction.  And then I doubt myself.  I doubt my abilities, my decision making, my choices.
I can feel it happening with school.  With my job.  With my life.
And I want it to stop. ¬†So… I will.
My resolution for 2015 is to trust myself.  Trust my choices.  Trust my decisions.   Believe in me.
I am a widow. ¬†I have learned so much about myself and who I am and what I want. ¬† Now I get to believe in it. ¬† I get to be my OWN Chapter 2. ¬† I get to write my OWN story. ¬† With me as the star. ¬† There’s a blog post in that. ¬† I’ll write it later.

Just Like That New Beginnings PhoenixRising

I’m Lonely

I don’t know how to live alone. ¬†I don’t know how to be alone in the evenings without another adult to keep me company. ¬†I don’t know how to live alone without a small child or two or three to snuggle and read stories to and do puzzles with and do bedtime routines for.

I don’t know what to do when it’s just me.

Watch TV? ¬†It’s boring. ¬†We’re in midseason hiatus.

Watch movies? ¬†I’ve seen most of the movies I want to in the free ones and the VOD costs.

Craft? ¬† It’s lost a bit of it’s lustre… I don’t know who or what to craft for.

School work? ¬†Yeah… that’s coming. ¬†I can start on math… it’s self-paced. ¬† Or I could read the books that I have and get a jump on what I’m supposed to be learning.

Coffee with friends? ¬† Well… they’re all busy. ¬†With lives. *sigh*

Cleaning? ¬†I live in a tiny 3 bedroom basement suite. ¬† Guess what? ¬†It’s clean. ¬†And fairly organized. ¬†And the clutter is getting less and less because I just keep decluttering.

Work out? ¬† Can’t do that all night.

I miss my husband. He was good company.   We would talk.  We would craft together.  We would play cards.  Play games.  DO stuff together.

I don’t know what to do with myself.

I’m bored. ¬†I’m lonely. ¬†And it leaves me restless, irritable and discontent.

Being a widow sucks.

There is so much I miss about him. ¬† But his presence… that… I miss most of all.

January 2010 036

The Things That Are Missing

Boys need a dad.

I heard it said before that boys need a dad, but until tonight… I didn’t really think about what was missing in my boys’ life.

A male role model.

A Dad-type figure.

Their Dad.

I’m watching my brother-in-law interact with my son… the connection of an adult male imparting wisdom, knowledge and TIME with my 14 year old boy… I wish so much for my boys that their Dad was here… but in the interim… they get to spend time with Uncles…

And tonight… the things that are missing… those things are so much more apparent…

January 2010 039

Tis the Season

For engagements.

My neice.

A friend of mine.

A widowed friend of mine.

The engagement rings abound.   Facebook is full of them.

I don’t know why, but for the last year or so… I’ve been angry at the rest of the world moving on and being happy. ¬†Not angry at the people, not angry at their happiness… but angry that *I* wasn’t there. ¬† Angry that there’s no one asking me to have forever. ¬†Nothing I can announce to the world. ¬†No ring, no promise of tomorrow…

And this year… I get to be single. ¬†Seriously. ¬†WTF?

Tis the season for engagements. ¬†And they remind me of what I’ve lost. ¬† What I don’t have. ¬† What is not coming this year. ¬†Or next. ¬†But I’m happy for my friends… just angry that I am fricken single. ¬† Widowed.

Seriously. ¬†I’m a widow. ¬†An only parent. ¬†Not just a single parent, an ONLY parent. And Christmas? ¬†I had to point out to my daughter the things I wanted for Christmas so that my boys could get me something I wanted.

Someone posted about taking a widow’s kids shopping so that the kids could buy something for their parent.

I had to tell my daughter to do that.

I miss having my partner do that for me.   I miss taking the boys shopping for their dad.

I miss being part of a couple.

I’m happy for all my newly engaged/married friends, whether they be widowed or not, but I’m sad that I am not.


Tis the season.


Grief X 2


This sucks.

First set of tears this season was yesterday when my daughter gave me an early Christmas present:

Katie Pregnancy Test

I had posted about it… then lost the post. ¬†SO if the post magically shows up…well… yanno how heartbreaking it is for me to be a Nana without Grandpa here with me.

So tonight is Christmas Eve.   Christmas Eve has traditionally been for me a fun night of wine, wrapping and staying up too late and being exhausted.

I procrastinate.

A lot.

Last year was much the same – lots of wrapping. ¬†Mike & I were fighting, so it wasn’t full of love and laughter so much as just get’er done.

But the next morning… oh my gawd… the next morning, I was awakened by a song that just filled me with love.. filled me with joy. ¬† One More Sleep

Even now… that song makes me think of him, makes me think of our Christmas together. ¬†I was so looking forward to a good Christmas this year…

Then our life fell apart.

Everything ended.

So this Christmas?

I get to grieve not only my husband not being here to celebrate the little man who’s going to turn 1 on his Auntie’s birthday (how cool is that!!) and sesame growing inside my daughter.. but I also get to grieve the loss of the man I was hoping to spend my life with. ¬†And I get to listen to him doing his Christmas stuff with his kids. ¬† And I get to grieve the loss of another love.

Grief sucks.

Loss sucks.

Death sucks.

Christmas? ¬†Christmas doesn’t suck. ¬†It’s just lonely this year. ¬†*sigh*

Tree Decorating night  2013 Pictures 025

Would You Change?

For my widda peeps. If you could… would you change the outcome? Looking at your life now, would you change what happened, alter your life as it is to have your late spouse back? Or would you leave your life as it is? I know we all miss our spouse… and for many, it’s the first year, first couple years… but especially for those who are further out… would you change it? Would you give up what you have now to have what you lost?

(These are the questions I’m pondering lately)

This is the question I posed to all my widow friends yesterday in a facebook status, and in a private group. 

The answers ranged from HELL YES!  to NO!

Most ranged somewhere in the middle.

What I found interesting was… the widows/widowers who are in a new relationship, the ones who have found their 2nd Chapter… they all said no, they wouldn’t. ¬† But most of the singles? ¬†Most of the ones who were still fairly connected to their deceased spouse? ¬†They would in a heartbeat.

One gentleman, I don’t know what his situation is. ¬† But he was one of the hell yes! people. ¬† I assume he’s not re-coupled.

For myself? ¬†When I was with my man who was my 2nd Chapter, the answer was no. ¬† Before? ¬†It was a hell yes! ¬† Now? ¬†I’m on the fence.

But what about you dear reader?  Would you change your life as it is NOW to get back what you HAD if you had the choice?

Tucked In MY Heart

Why Am I Grieving So Hard?

I had someone ask that the other day.  Why are you grieving so hard still?

And it occurred to me to stop and think about that.

Am I grieving hard?

Am I putting too much focus on my “widowhood” and my husband’s death?

It’s not the first time it’s come up. ¬† It was one of the pivotal things that ended my relationship with my Chapter 2. ¬†(who, btw, I still freaking love and I don’t know how to grieve THAT relationship). ¬† It was asked of me when I asked someone why… why for the love of God did my husband have to die?

And I was thinking today…. would I change my life if I could?

I watched a movie last night РPredestination.  Good movie.  Interesting twists and plots.  Thought provoking.  Someone had a chance to change the outcome.   Would he?

So if I could go back in time. ¬†To the summer of 2009… would I make my husband go to a doctor and have his heart checked out? ¬† I believe the heart attacks were the beginning of the end. Between the meds he was on for his Ankylosing Spondylitis and his heart issues, I believe that’s what caused the pancreatitis that ultimately killed him.

So would I go back?

Would I change things, knowing it would change the outcome?

Would I alter the course my life is on… knowing I’d never get to know Liz or Dorine or Jennifer or Roxanne or have the opportunity to work at BC Wildfire or get to know my sister better or move to a completely new place or have Mike in my life or skate with the Gold Pain Girls or go to Camp Widow or meet all my widda peeps or go back to school to become an LPN?

Would I change that?

Who I am has CHANGED.

I like who I’m becoming.

I like the person I am, the woman who can fly across Canada on a wing and a prayer.  The woman who supported someone in fighting the Ministry, who helped 3 boys get into a stable loving home.

I like that I am finally getting my adult dogwood and going back to school and becoming a nurse.

I like that I’m going to get to help people.

I like that I’m figuring out who JANE is, not who MarkandJane is.

I don’t want to be MarkandJane. ¬†I want to be Jane. ¬† I don’t want to be MIkeandJane or AlandJane or DaveandJane or JulieandJane or AmandaandJane.

I want to be Jane.

I want my husband back.. the way he was before the heart attacks changed our life. ¬†I want him back even after that. ¬†He wasn’t sick. ¬†He was strong and independant and determined.

But I want the life I have now, too.

I know it’s a futile exercise to think and pretend that he could just *walk back in* to my life… but I wonder… if I had a choice… would I change my life back?

The truth is…. I don’t know.

I miss him so much it hurts. ¬†If I let the box open, the pain of his death overwhelms me. ¬† But the joy of our life together… that’s been more prevalent lately. ¬† Remembering all that was good and amazing. ¬† ¬†There was some not good, and not amazing. ¬†But what I miss most… (aside from him) is how COMFORTABLE we were together. ¬†I miss knowing the dance steps. ¬†I miss knowing the routine. ¬†I miss the life we had together.

There was a lot of our life that was restricted.  There was a lot of our life that was limited by his limitations.

But there was a lot amazing. And I miss it.

But the reality is that I’m becoming someone I didn’t know I could be. ¬† I found strength and joy in places I didn’t know they could exist. ¬† ¬†I found a life. ¬†I found a person I didn’t know I could be. ¬† And I wouldn’t want to lose that.

There’s a lot of “I wish” still… but there’s a lot of “I’m happy with…” as well.

So would I change things if I could? ¬† I’m kinda still on the fence. ¬†I still wish he were here… but I like my life.

So yeah.

For some reason this was a hard post to write. ¬†I miss him. I wish he’d never died. ¬†But I’m happy with the life I’m building.

It feels a bit like a betrayal.


I Miss My Friend

I miss being able to talk to him.

I miss being able to share anything with him.

I miss being able to have any hairbrained idea and he had enthusiasm for it.   For as long as mine lasted.

I miss having a champion.

I miss having someone who got all my stupid jokes.

I miss having someone who I’ve heard all his jokes a million times, but they were still funny.

I miss the easy companionship that came with 14 years of getting to know each other.

I miss his memory of people and places.

I miss the way he would look at me.

I miss his ability to be remarkably goofy and laugh at himself.

I miss how he would put everyone before himself… until he ran out of “spoons.”

I miss how he would listen to me as if I were the most important person in the world.

I miss how much he loved his boys.

I miss how he would do anything for his family.

I miss playing cards with him.

I miss the easy familiarity.

I miss him.

January 2010 039


I’ve been screaming lately.

In my car.

With the music cranked.

Gutteral, visceral screaming.

My throat kinda hurts… blarg.

I’m not sure if I’m screaming over my husbands death or the recent ending of what I thought would be my 2nd chapter.

I’m grieving over both.

The difference? ¬†If I *really* wanted to, I could go upstairs, and yell at my ex for hurting me, for leaving me with a broken heart… ¬†I can’t yell at my husband because he’s not here.

So I scream.

In my car.


Because I haven’t been able to cry the way I need to.

I haven’t been able to let it out.

He thinks I’m *over* him. ¬†That I’m easily moving on. ¬† I’m not. ¬† I’m just extraordinarily skilled at disassociation and putting feelings into a tiny little box.

Only problem is that the box for my love for him and my grief over our relationship ending keeps getting clawed open by the sound of his voice, the look in his eyes, the sadness and love emanating from him when I see him.

I’d forgotten what it was like to have a relationship end.

I miss him.  Both of them.

Imma go out to my car and scream again.

Being a widow sucks.   Being a widow and going through a seperation sucks.

Screaming sounds good right now.

Tear Composition

Some  People  Letting Go

5 Years

The best advice I’ve been given to date about being a widow and being in a relationship AS a widow, came from another widow who’s now 14.5 years out.

Wait at least 4 – 5 years before getting into another relationship.

That seems like a long time to me. ¬†I’m gonna be 42 by then. 42 and a half, even.

But…. It kinda makes sense.

Year 1… I was numb. ¬†Couldn’t think. ¬†Couldn’t feel.

Year 2… I was not numb. ¬† Couldn’t stop hurting, let it override everything.

Year 3… I am in. ¬†And I’m becoming more clear as to who I am and what I want and where I want to go.

Her advice kinda works for me. ¬†My plans for the next 2 1/2 years has changed, somewhat. ¬† I’ll be busy with school, getting my kids through high school, buying a house (I will own a freaking house before I’m 45, dammit!), and generally just learning who I am and what I want.

The other part of her advice?

Find a FWB.   Just keep the emotions out of it.

I’m pretty sure I’d be ok with that – but I’ve used FWB as a way of escaping the pain and loss and emotions before and now… I want… no I NEED to feel them. I NEED to go through them. ¬†I can’t let go of any of it without FEELING it.

And until now – the feeling part has been missing.

My relationship with my 2nd Chapter came to a complete close yesterday. ¬† As in, we’re both done done. ¬†No going back. ¬† And I won’t go back. ¬†He doesn’t want to be my 2nd chapter – he wants to be Chapte 1 of OUR story… which is fair… except he’s got a chapter 1 already… he just doesn’t see it.

I hurt. ¬†All the emotions of being a widow, of losing my husband, of being alone… all came back. ¬† Only multiplied because now I hurt because I’ve lost my relationship, too.

I want to NOT hurt for a while.  Pretty please?   Just for a while, feel joy and freedom.

It’ll come. ¬†I caught glimpses of it when my son and his lady and my grandbaby were visiting in August. ¬†The joy of the new generation. ¬†The freedom of a life unmarked by pain and suffering and sadness. ¬† A blank slate upon which a new story will be written…

And I get to do that for myself now.  I get to write the story of the rest of my life, make plans for my children and me and focus on OUR happiness.

For the past year, the focus has been on someone else’s happiness… but now… it’s my turn.

Now… I get to change paths. ¬†I am still a widow, and I don’t know that that will every stop being central to my life, but my future looks different. ¬† My future looks bright and open and full of possibiliities. ¬†For the first time in 3 years.

Peace PhoenixRising Dance in the Rain