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 people other than my children.

Goodbye fear over traveling alone with my kids to a far-away land. We are a team now, wherever we are.

Goodbye loneliness. Not forever, of course. You’ll sneak back up on me, that I know. But goodbye to thinking you’ll haunt me constantly for the rest of my life.

Goodbye one-way friendships. I can ask about your day now, too.

Goodbye to turning down party invitations because I’d be the only one there without a partner. This is my life now, and I’m done with staying home.

Goodbye old men who hit on me. I may be single, but I’m not that desperate.

Goodbye morons who tell me all about how herbs/God/meditation could have saved Shawn. If 5FU didn’t work, I’m pretty sure asparagus wouldn’t either.

Goodbye junk mail that still arrives for Shawn.

Goodbye guilt over my imperfect lesson plans and frozen taquitos for dinner and missed plans with friends. I’m facing the world alone, and that means I can’t do everything.

Goodbye exhaustion. Or at least to some of it.

Goodbye crying in inappropriate places. Turns out, I wasn’t done with this in 2018, but I’m leaving it behind in 2019. At least mostly. I hope.

Goodbye panic and anxiety.

Goodbye to trying to please everyone. I couldn’t manage it when Shawn was alive and I can’t do it now.

Goodbye new insurance company who won’t cover Claire’s medicine. Well, not really. I still need insurance. But I’m going to call you every week in 2020 to try and change your mind about covering what she needs.

Goodbye worrying about my role as a single mom to two boys. I think they might be even better husbands someday because they saw me struggle.

Goodbye Match.com. All you got me was a dozen bad dates and a lot of wasted time. I’ll stick to the free apps, if I decide to go back at all.

Goodbye nightmares. I know I said this last year too, but for real, no more nightmares, please.

Goodbye lawyers. I’ve finished all the paperwork for now.

Goodbye angst over turning 40. I’m not 25 and I’m not without my wounds. But I can run faster than you, 25. And I can face pain much better than you, 25.

Goodbye to constantly worrying about my kids, and how they are making it in this world. My kids aren’t perfect. But they will be okay with this single mom.

Goodbye 2019.

Image Credit: Stefanie Harrington Photography.


  • Mary Anne Krol

    I like your list. I cried far too long after my divorce, and my friend had lost her husband. We were on the phone crying and I told her we had to quit because it was ruining our eyes. It worked! Now we cry from laughing too much. Best wishes on your grief navigation! 😘❤️

  • Michelle

    I love this! Divorce and death are very different, of course, but I also said good-bye to a lot of fears and “could-have-beens.” It hasn’t always been easy, but I’ve found that the really awful stuff took me to a place where I am now happy with myself and my life. From your writing it sounds like you’re getting there too. : ) Best wishes for a happy and healthy 2020!

    • Marjorie

      That’s awesome. It’s from Atlas (you can order online) – I saw someone with it on in a fast food joint one time, and tried it on. It was my big purchase last year and I haven’t regretted it since I walk to work.