• 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…

  • Beach where DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley danced
    New Perspectives

    Year of Yes Revisited

    2019 was the “Year of Yes“. Or at least that’s what I wanted it to be. 2018 had been the year of cancer and death and survival. It was terrible, and all I wanted to do was fast-forward through the year. When 2019 arrived, I thought, “okay, it’s time to actually live this life I’ve been given.” And the way I was going to do that was to try everything. Could I run further than the three miles I usually ran? Maybe just an extra mile, or maybe three or four more? I could. Could I let go a little, take a risk and try out a new man? And…

  • Black and white image of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    New Perspectives


    “Wait, let me get this straight,” the man running next to me said with wide-eyes, “you’ve lived in DC for fifteen years and you don’t know anything about our running group and you’ve never heard of Kelly’s Bar or any other bar around here?” I smiled. It was my first time with this new running group, and I wasn’t divulging much about my life, though he was trying to figure me out. “Yes, I guess that’s all true,” I said. “Who are you?” he said, laughing at me a bit, but also genuinely curious. “I’m just a runner,” I said, “though I’ve got a somewhat interesting backstory I’ll tell you…

  • Bar like that visited by friends of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley
    Family & Friends

    All Shawn Ever Wanted for Me

    It was Saturday night and I was putting my kids to bed when I got a text from my friend Christine. “Are you awake? Justin and I just picked up someone for you. I showed him your picture!” I was laying down in Tommy’s bed, aimlessly scrolling through the New York Times. I sat up. Did Christine really just write that she and her husband had hit on someone for me? “OMG. Are you out?” I texted back. “We are at a bar. Want his number? Should I give him yours?” she asked. Then she sent a string of ideas about how I should start texting him, but I demurred…

  • Daughter of DC widow blog writer Marjorie Brimley crosses arms and frowns while Grandfather smiles at her

    Old and Young, At the Same Time

    I came home from work the other day and Claire was in a bad mood. “I’m so tired,” she said, when I asked what was wrong. I offered up a number of ideas. She could read a book, listen to music, or just chill out on the couch. No, she could not watch TV. That was for after dinner and showers. She did not like this, and let me know. “Well, Claire,” I said, “I’m going out on a bike ride with Tommy and Austin. You can join us if you want.” She rolled her eyes at me and audibly sighed. Her hair was high on her head in a…