• Podium for blog about Joe Biden by DC widow writer Marjorie Brimley

    The President We Need

    I have never met Joe Biden, but since I live in DC, I know a lot of people who have. And they all say the same thing: he may not be a perfect man, but he is genuine in his warmth towards others. It’s not an act. He reaches out in many ways, but he’s most likely to do that when he sees someone suffering. Especially if that person is grieving. Biden knows grief. As we all know, his first wife and infant daughter were killed when he had just been elected to the Senate, in 1972. Yes, he went on to have an incredible political career. He remarried. But…

  • Stone pillars for blog by DC widow writer Marjorie Brimley

    Must Read This Week: Jamie Raskin

    I’ve had a number of people write me over the past week and ask how my family is doing. (We are fine.) It’s been a long week for everyone living in DC. It’s been a long year for everyone in DC. Hell, it’s been a long year for everyone, everywhere – and it’s been longer still for those who’ve suffered illness and job loss and racism and grief. I think I can say one thing: 2021 already feels pretty exhausting. For our family, it’s also exhausting because we started this year as we start every year: by remembering when Shawn left this earth. Just a few days after the horror…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley hugs son Austin in front of Supreme Court

    Tell Me How To Do It (Tribute to Ruth Bader Ginsburg)

    I met Ruth Bader Ginsburg once, right after watching her sit for a case at the Supreme Court. I’d been assigned to teach Constitutional Law for a semester and although I wasn’t fully prepared to teach it, I took it on with zeal. I spent much of the previous semester reading court cases and planning out lessons. Sure, I wasn’t a lawyer, but I could still teach this course, right? As I was laying out my final syllabus for approval that fall, Shawn went into the hospital. I kept working on it, taking notes as he slept next to me and drafting lesson plans in between his bouts of nausea…

  • Husband of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley lifts massive pumpkin

    Tell Me About Him

    About a month after Shawn died, I was on the phone with his former boss. She was asking about the kids, but then we started talking about Shawn. She shared stories with me, and I smiled, but mostly I cried. She worried that she was upsetting me, and I reassured her that I wanted to keep talking about Shawn. In fact, it’s all I wanted to do in those early days. I wanted to talk about Shawn all the time. I knew it was inappropriate to tell strangers on the metro and at the grocery store about my dead husband, but I did it anyway. It was a compulsion of…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley on bench with children and flowers

    Marjorie’s Favorite Blog Posts (there are 300 now!)

    300!!! Okay, I still haven’t written a book. I haven’t even really managed to outline one. But I have 300 blog posts under my belt (and some other articles as well) so I think I can finally say that I’m a writer. Or something like that. Anyway, today’s post is a highlight of those 300 blog posts – you can click on each link to send you to that specific story. These posts below are some of my favorites, though there are others that I love. I tried to pick a range of posts, so that each one tells a little bit of a different story. Maybe you come to…

  • Image of book with sunshine like that read by husband of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley

    September 11, 2001

    I was falling asleep at night when I got a call from a friend. “Turn on the TV,” he said. I couldn’t understand what I was seeing. I couldn’t understand what I was hearing, either, as the broadcast was in a language I didn’t yet know. But as the minutes turned into hours, as our friends gathered together to pull an all-nighter watching the one TV in our building with international news, as we sat in shock as the sun came up, all we knew was this: September 11, 2001 was going to change our lives forever. I had been in Japan for a month. About two weeks earlier, I’d…