• Family of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley on bikes
    Family & Friends

    That’s a Special Feeling

    The post below was written by my daughter, Claire, for her 6th grade language arts class. The assignment was to write about a “defining moment” from the last 6 months. I loved it so much that I asked her to put it on my blog, and she gracefully said “yes.” It is the original assignment, unedited by me. ——– When my dad died I felt confused like my family and I would never feel happy again. I look back to that day 2 ½ years ago and realize that I have moved on with my life, which is a good thing. For a long time it was just my mom…

  • Hands in air for blog by DC widow writer Marjorie Brimley
    Family & Friends

    Want Less Judgmental Friends? Find Some Widows!

    I was talking to a widow friend via text the other day, and I was catching her up on my life. She knows about my partner Chris but didn’t know all the details of our relationship, so I was filling her in. “So he’s never been married,” she said, “why is that?” Quickly, before I could answer, she texted a follow-up, “there is zero judgement from me, obviously.” Here’s the thing – she didn’t have to type that last line. I already knew it. I knew it because she’s my friend and I know she wants the best for me. But I also knew it because she’s a widow. My…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley walks with family
    Family & Friends

    Austin’s Hero

    Two years ago at the start of 4th grade, Claire had to identify her “hero” and write a short blurb about that person. She chose to write about me, and I wrote a blog post about how touching it was to have her do that. So when Austin finished his first day of school last Monday, I already knew what his first assignment was going to be. He needed my help, because everything is digital now. I asked him who he was going to pick as his hero. “Grandpa Tom,” he said, as though it was the most obvious thing in the world. I asked him why he picked Grandpa…

  • Queen Anne's Lace
    Family & Friends

    Queen Anne’s Lace

    My mother was beautiful as a young woman, or at least that’s what my dad always says. Actually, he always says that she was beautiful at every age, and I know he means it. I remember her much more as an older woman of the 1980s and 1990s, wearing culotte shorts and sporting the hair of the time period. She looked like any other mom, I guess, and I never thought of her as particularly beautiful. But to my dad, she was. My dad loves to talk about my mom. I knew her better than my kids ever knew Shawn, because I had more time with her. But of course…

  • Children of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley with her boyfriend at the sea
    Family & Friends

    What is Family?

    I’ve always had a pretty expansive understanding of family. As a young child, I lived with my extended family in Texas for a number of months while my mother recovered from her first terrible bout with depression. I was young – just three – so I don’t remember all of the details, but I do know that I was loved deeply by everyone there. We spent many more summers down in Texas throughout my childhood, and I always thought of my family there as more than “extended.” Maybe it was because my mom wasn’t always well, but I learned to think about family with a broad lens as I grew…

  • Father of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley cooks egg in kitchen
    Family & Friends

    I Miss My Dad

    I miss my dad. I mean, I guess we always miss our parents if they aren’t right in front of us. I certainly missed my dad as a young adult, and I know my kids miss me when I’m away from them now. But I think in times of stress, we miss our parents even more. Right now, I really miss my dad. We still talk almost every day. Sometimes it’s just for a minute or two and sometimes we have long sprawling conversations that last for over an hour. Sometimes we talk about the food we are cooking and sometimes we talk about world events. Sometimes the kids steal…