• DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley's husband Shawn walks with daughter with wife and boys in distance
    Things That Suck

    Who Has a Better Life Than Us?

    A few months ago, I remember thinking something like, “I think I’m in such a different place, because I’m not walking around the neighborhood crying anymore.” Well, strike that. Because that’s exactly what I did last weekend. There wasn’t a specific reason why I started walking about the neighborhood. I was overwhelmed by my kids and one of my friends kindly volunteered to take all three of them and I thought, “I gotta get out of my house.” The sun was shining and I decided to take a walk. As I started walking, I thought about my life. I thought about all of the walks I’d taken in my neighborhood…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley is kissed by her husband and hugged by her children in a field


    The first party Shawn threw for me was for my 24th birthday. We’d been dating since the previous fall and it had only taken him a few months to understand the importance I placed on my birthday. As a kid, my mom had always gone all out on our birthdays and I continued to want lots of fun and attention on my birthday. For my birthdays in college I had danced until the wee hours of the morning and really, turning 24 felt like another college birthday. I hadn’t quite yet grown up, even if I did know that I was likely to spend the rest of my life with…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley's son, Tommy, held by his father, Shawn just after his home birth

    Tommy’s Birthday

    Five years ago, I had a baby in my living room. Oh yes I did. Before you hear the story, I have to tell you this: it was not on purpose. I grew up in Oregon and I enjoy lots of all-natural products but I definitely didn’t want a home birth. But Tommy had other plans. The day started out like any other weekend day with Shawn and I getting two kids fed, dressed and eventually off to the playground. I was so pregnant that I couldn’t tie my own shoes very easily anymore, and we laughed about that. The day continued, and by the early evening when we had…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley's son Austin in a waterfall

    Our Trip to the Waterpark

    For some reason, my kids’ school decided that this year there would be a mid-winter break in addition to all of the other breaks. Of course, I did basically no planning for it because I am barely managing to keep our regular life going, much less organize some big trip. A little over a week ago, I realized that I had no plans for the kids – not even a day trip. So I went online and looked for something fun for us to do. I found an indoor waterpark with an attached hotel. Lots of my kids’ friends were going somewhere much more exciting – to grandma’s house or…

  • Claire Brimley daughter of DC widow blog writer Marjorie performs in musical

    The Ensemble

    Over the past month, my family life has been a bit consumed by the elementary school play, James and the Giant Peach.  Claire tried out in the late fall and was cast as part of the ensemble.  Since then, she’s had frequent practices after school. This has required a lot of coordination.  The boys finish school at 3:15 and my dad gets them, but then I need to make sure I wrap up everything at work in order to get Claire whenever her rehearsal finishes.  Or – more likely – I ask someone to get her.  In the weeks leading to the performance, the play seemed to take over our…

  • A Valentine's Day note and flowers for DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley

    Valentines Day

    Valentine’s day is a stupid, made-up holiday. It is!  But I guess so are a lot of quasi-holidays and other silly things we celebrate.  I’m pretty sure Facebook made up National Sibling Day but I love posting pictures of my sister on that day.  So I was never against Valentine’s Day, exactly.  I just didn’t make a big deal out of it. But Shawn knew better.  He knew that if he forgot to recognize his love for me on this day, even though I thought the holiday was stupid, it might hurt my feelings.  So every year, he made sure to get me something nice.  The first year, when we…