• DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley walks with children and father to school

    Goodbye, 2019… (Part 1 of 2)

    Goodbye 2019. Goodbye breakouts, worry lines and gray hairs from grief. I may not be able to hide you all, but I’m going to try. Goodbye waking up at 2 am. Goodbye fear that I can’t grill hamburgers or do my finances. Yes, Shawn did them before. But I can do them now. Goodbye first heartbreak after Shawn, the one that made me feel like I couldn’t go on. Really, I could. Goodbye black mold in the garage. Yes, you came because I didn’t go out to that garage for a year after Shawn died. But I got rid of you in the end, didn’t I? Goodbye to worrying about…

  • Kitchen sink like that of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley

    Washing Dishes

    I wash a lot of dishes at my family reunions. It’s only fair. My aunt Nancy makes (or organizes) almost all the food. My Aunt Terry spends the after-dinner hour watching all the kids as they play in the yard. And my dad needs a break after four months of being the main dishwasher in my house. So, along with a few of my cousins, I wash dishes. Or I dry dishes. Or I put away dishes. I don’t mind it at all because the kids can’t bug me if I’m washing dishes and because I get to hang out with my cousins. My cousins are all so different from…

  • Christmas tree like that of tree in home of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley

    Christmas Magic

    “Mom, I have to tell you something important,” Claire said to me in late November.  “I know Gingee isn’t real.” I froze, a bit.  Gingee is our elf.  She’s actually just a stuffed doll that Shawn and I got when Claire was 4 or 5 during the elf-on-the-shelf craze (Claire named our elf Gingee at the time.)  For years, we pretended that Gingee would show up during the month of December to watch over the kids and “report back to Santa at night.”  Because Gingee had to fly to the North Pole when everyone was sleeping, she often ended up in a new spot each morning. I found the elf…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley in the kitchen with her father washing dishes
    Family & Friends

    Hallmark Christmas Movies

    If you’re an avid reader of my blog, you may feel like you know my dad from his straightforward statements about life and his obvious character choices, such as deciding to help raise my kids, “because it’s the right thing to do.” But you may not know this about him: he loves Hallmark movies. And what are the best movies of all, in his opinion? Hallmark Christmas movies! My sister and I mercilessly make fun of him for this. I’ve pointed out that the only other person I know who loves Hallmark movies like he does is my 10-year-old daughter, and even she understands that they are all basically the…

  • Girl with backpack in city scene like DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    Ask A Widow

    Ask a Widow: Navigating Friendships

    “My friend stopped calling me.” “I feel left out.” “It’s not the same with that group anymore.” One thing that I hear often from my readers is how often other relationships change after the death of a spouse. Yes, you’ve lost your partner, but when the fog clears and you can manage to have a conversation with some of your old friends, it’s sometimes surprising when things just don’t seem the same. It can be hard to put your finger on what’s actually changed in your other relationships, but it is something many widows experience. (I remember thinking, “am I imagining this?”) When Shawn died, I initially didn’t care much…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley laughing in black and white
    New Perspectives

    You Are Alone. Accept That. Carry On. (Part 2)

    December has been hard, in a lot of ways. It’s the month when I re-live every painful moment in the hospital with Shawn, it’s the month when I’m supposed to be happy but sometimes just can’t be, and it’s the month when I remember that yes, it all really happened. This life I’m living is really true, not just some terrible nightmare. I was running the other day with my friend Purva, because we are not deterred by freezing temperatures and darkness, and she asked me how I was feeling about my life. I’d just finished telling her about a guy I liked who had recently told me he didn’t…