• couple in boat like DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley writes about
    Ask A Widow

    Ask a Widow: How Do I Start to Date Again?

    At least once a week, I get a message that goes something like this: I read your article on Vox about dating as a young widow and then I found your blog. I appreciated that you’ve written about sex and heartbreak, but I’m honestly not there yet. What I need to know is this: how do I even begin the process of dating again after a decade (or two or three) of marriage? I know that this question isn’t about the logistics of dating. I mean, I’d never done an online dating profile until I became a widow, but these sorts of things are not rocket science (and if you…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley types fills out form
    Things That Suck

    Emergency Contact

    So I’m in the middle of filling out camp forms for my kids.  Yes, I know that in the rest of the country, you all sign up for summer camp in April or May.  But this is DC, so our camps are all filled with the children of Type-A+ personalities, which means that camp registration for August begins in January. My kids are going to one camp at a place that they’ve frequented for many years.  For that camp, my information is saved in their computer system.  As I got to the contact sheets, I noticed that Shawn’s name was still filled in under “Emergency contact sheet: Parent 2.” I…

  • Family of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley in black and white

    Musings on Heaven at Dinner

    Every night at dinner, we discuss the good things that happened in our day. Austin usually tells us about something that happened at with his friends at recess. Claire often shares about the musical (it is a very big deal in fifth grade.) Tommy sometimes can’t think of what to say, so we all try and ask him about the things we imagine are happening in kindergarten. The other night we were all sharing, and everyone had talked besides Tommy. He sat there, clearly thinking about what to say. Then, out of the blue, he said, “I wonder who will die next in our family? Probably Grandpa Tom!” “Tommy!” Claire…

  • Notes and typewriter like those of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    Things That Suck

    What About the Privilege?

    The thing about being a writer is that – shockingly! – not everyone is going to like everything that you write. Sometimes people write me privately and sometimes they comment on my blog. Almost always, I let negative comments on my blog stay, because it’s important that I hear other people’s opinions, especially other widows. (I do delete vitriolic comments, because no one needs that.) Anyway, I wrote this post a few days ago about tough love, thinking that I was being thought-provoking about how to treat people who are in the early days of grieving. I talked about all of the support I had received, which I’ve documented on…

  • Daughter of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley poses by river
    Things That Suck

    Dear Insurance Company

    Dear Insurance Company, I read the letter that came last night. I saw the six single-spaced pages of documentation that was clearly written by a lawyer with my daughter’s name automatically inserted into the form. I can see the word “denied” at least four times in the first few paragraphs. I understand what you are saying. I spoke to the people on your end. I know that the woman who answered the phone is just doing her job. I appreciated that when I told her I was a single mom who couldn’t pay (many) tens of thousands of dollars out-of-pocket, she put me on hold to try and find an…

  • Arms in washing machine like that of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    What Not to Say

    Tough Love

    I read a lot of things about grief, much of it online. There are some really great websites that deal with grief (like Modern Loss) and also a ton of Facebook/Reddit/Instagram/Twitter resources and forums. In a lot of these places, people come together to say something like, “I lost a person I love and cry every day. How did other people cope?” I almost never post in these forums. I love that there are places on the internet where people can go for support, but I would rather rely on the support I get from my blog readers and my in-person friends and family. Sometimes I do post an encouraging…