• Black and white photo of parents of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    Family & Friends

    The Boy on the Bike

    I want to tell you a love story. A boy meets a girl. They are out on a double-date, but not with each other. Still, the attraction is there, so they ditch their original dates and decide to go out a few times with one another after that. But the girl has an on-again, off-again boyfriend who shows back up in town. And so their very brief romance ends. Nine months later, the boy is riding his bike, and he sees the girl walking down the street. They chat, he asks her out, and she says yes. They start dating. The girl’s on-again, off-again boyfriend (the same one from before)…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley walks away from the camera with son Tommy

    Being Alone is Scary

    One night in early February, as the wind whipped the trees so hard that they seemed to bend sideways, I laid in bed and tried to warm up my freezing toes. Life finally had a rhythm to it, and I was getting used to year three of widowhood. I thought about Valentine’s Day, and how it was around the corner, and I was still without a partner. This year, however, I was feeling a sense of peace about my singledom. I was still dating, but the urgency of finding someone new had abated. As I sat there writing and thinking, Tommy came to my door and then climbed into my…

  • Two people hold hands like DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley

    How (Not) to Date a Widow

    A few months ago, I was texting with a friend of mine, who is widowed. He has had a couple of relationships since his wife died, and the two of us sometimes talk about the crazy world of dating. It’s been a mystery to both of us, really, but it’s been nice for me to have a man to bounce things off of every once in a while. I think he feels the same about me. Anyway, he’d recently broken up with a woman he’d been dating. She had become distant with him over the course of a couple of weeks and he decided she must not like him that…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley with form
    Things That Suck

    Which Box Do I Check?

    Because this is a blog about my life and because I have very little shame, I’m going to let you in on a secret: I recently had laser hair removal.  I won’t go into too many details, because it’s not relevant to this blog post, but suffice to say, it’s something I did this past winter, before we were all locked down in our houses. I’m not sharing this information because I am a chronic over-sharer (although I am, and Shawn certainly was too) or because I think all widows should get laser hair removal (do what you want with your body!)  No, I’m sharing this information because of what…

  • DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley with son Tommy looks away from camera
    Family & Friends

    I’ll Be Paying People Back for Carpool When I’m 80

    I was at a party a few months ago, and someone asked me how I was doing. I told her that I was okay, managing life day-by-day, and learning how to ask for a lot of help. “The thing about asking for help,” I said, “is that I have to ask people to do things for me knowing that I’ll never pay them back.” “Of course you do,” the woman said back. “It’s different, of course, but when I was working in government, I needed a lot of help with my kids. It’s been years, but I always say that I’ll be paying people back for carpool when I’m 80.”…

  • Missing Shawn

    The Bookshelf

    I stood there staring at the bookshelf for a long time before I started. I’m not quite sure why. The bookshelf stood in an infrequently used part of the basement, next to the printer and the filing cabinet and bins of old magna-tiles. I could delay organizing it because I didn’t need access to it on a daily basis, and so that is what I had done. It stood there, crammed with books and memorabilia and all sort of other things that Shawn had once owned. And I let it collect dust over the months – and then years – since his death. I’m not totally sure why I waited…