Friday, November 1, 2013

It Is Time ......

...... for me to write this post.
A post that I think will be my last post here.
Which, of course, is most likely no surprise to anyone.

At first I decided to delete this blog.  It was easier to not write if there was nothing upon which to write.
(Ha!  Get it?  Write/Right?  It's not funny if I have to explain it.)

And so that's what I did.
And it stayed deleted for about 2 weeks.

But then I had a change of heart, I guess.  I decided to put it back on line, in case there are other widowed people out there who might feel a little less crazy or abnormal by reading what I experienced. Maybe one of you will one day need these words.  I hope not.  Really.
But I don't have to tell you what the odds are.
So I won't.

I felt that I needed to say "Goodbye", but just didn't want to do that.
So I've written nothing for a while.
But now ...... it's time.

I have written as honestly as I could over the past almost-6 years.
It wasn't always pretty.  In fact it was rarely pretty.  Or hopeful.
Or easy to read.
So thank you to those of you who've stuck with me.
Thank you, especially to those of you I've met through this blog.
And to those I've never met in person, but who have been here for me none the less.

This was the one place where I was able to unleash every emotion, every feeling, every thought that grief brought.  I never censored myself when it came to those ...... for good or for bad.
I gained friends because of this blog.
I lost friends because of this blog.
It was what it was.
I grieved the way I grieved.
If I had to do it over again, I would grieve the same way.
Not because I wanted to, but because I had no choice.
That's the thing that some people couldn't understand, couldn't deal with.
I never had a choice.

This is one of the many, many "clubs" out there that no one wants to join.
One minute you're barely aware of its existence ...... the next minute you're a full-fledged member.
No matter how much kicking and screaming you do.
No matter how much you can't believe it, or accept it.

No one asks your permission to change your life.
No one warns you.
No one prepares you for the ripping apart of your world ...... of your heart.
It is what it is.
And it does what it does.

Do I wish I could've done some things differently?
Hell yes.
Who wouldn't?
But then ...... who in the world, widowed or not, can say that they've never thought that at least once in their life?
If they do, they're lying.

But wishing doesn't make things happen.
And it doesn't change things.
It just kills time.

I loved Jim hard.
As hard as I could.
And I have grieved him hard.

My grief isn't gone.  Like that could ever happen.
But it's not so hard.
Once in a while it's difficult, but I've been through difficult.
And it's better than hard.

There are two main reasons that I think I'm done here.
First, and foremost ...... I don't feel as if I have anything left to say.
The emotions have come forth.
And have been laid out.
In all of their ugliness and gut-wrenching pain.

Thankfully, getting them out of me and placing them here ...... slowly made room for other feelings to take root.
Like hope.
And contentment.
And joy.
Happiness has worked its way back, too ...... albeit a different-feeling happiness.
It is what it is.
I'm just glad that it is.

The second reason that I feel done is this:
I'm tired of it.
I'm tired of putting it all out there.
I'm tired of people reading this blog, and then feeling like they're all "caught up" with me and my life, so they unconsciously assume that I'm all "caught up" with them.
Which means I don't hear from them.
I rarely hear from most of the people who were in my life "before".
I can't blame that all on this blog.
But it's definitely been a factor.
It is ...... what it is.
I'm just grateful for how much they were there in the beginning.
More grateful than words can articulate.
And I will be forever grateful.

My life is different now.
Different than "before".
Different than I ever expected, hoped, imagined.
Different than I feared.
Different in a few negative ways ...... but different in many good ways.

You all know that I'd trade everything, and everyone, to have him back.
But that's not a choice.
Yet acceptance is.
So is moving forward.
And choosing joy.

God has been good.
His plan is different than mine.
I haven't always agreed with Him.
And I will never understand Him.
Well, never here anyway.
And I will never, ever think that this path was a good idea.
But it is what it is.
And it was what it was.
I'm just thankful that He has used me to touch others ...... to make some feel less alone.

Maybe I'll come back here one day.
Maybe I'll decide to start another blog.
A different blog.
Who knows?
I certainly don't.
That much I've learned.

But for now ...... no matter how bittersweet this feels, no matter how much I loathe saying "Goodbye" ...... it is time.

I will miss you.
Very, very much.

Goodbye, Peeps.
And happy ...... everything.
: )


Anonymous said...

You did good on many levels through your blog. Thanks for the gift. Love and blessings, Cindy T.

Anonymous said...


Thank you for your honesty throughout the past 6 years. Your story has touched so many people in so many ways. God's blessings on your new endeavors.


Wendie Tobin said...

I understand, but sad, nonetheless

Diana said...

You have no idea how you have helped me over the last 5 years. You have been a blessing in my life at a time when a blessing was needed. It's time for a new season in my life, and I am looking forward to those changes. Thank you for helping me get there.
God Bless you always,

DianeTaylor said...

Hi Janine - I am so sad to see your blog go - it brought me much needed peace after my son died. Peace in knowing that grieving is hard, even though I'm grieving very differently that you are. It has PREPARED me in a way for what I should be doing with my husband - things I need to get in place - just in case. I've never met you but I feel like I know you :) How wierd is that? I wish you so much joy as you navigate thru life. Know this: you have made a HUGE difference is MANY people's lives. So many. And I will be forever grateful.

With love and respect:

Diane Taylor
(mother of Jonathan Paul Daily, lost on 3/1/12)

Beth said...

I understand why you made this decision, but I do hope you keep the blog here for others to find. Your raw, honest, put it all out there writing has been so helpful, I am sure someone new to this "club" could still benefit from reading through your posts. I have said this many times before. I am forever grateful that I found your blog, and that you have become a part of my "after". I love you.

Janine said...

Cindy T -- Thank you. And thank you for being here from the start.

Cheryl - Thank you, too, for always offering kind, supportive words ...... exactly when I needed them.

Wendie - I'm glad you understand. I'm sad about it, too. Moving forward often does that. I don't feel "done" when it comes to writing, so perhaps I'll start another blog ...... one day. Thank you for always reading and for giving me support when I needed it. I love this blog for bringing you into my world.

Diane - Thank you so much for telling me that. You just blessed me. : )
And I hope that you find many. many more blessings as you move forward into this new season. Somehow ...... I think you will. : )

Diane T - T.A.N.W. Other than thank you for that.
You made me cry. A good cry. : )
I wish you peace as you continue with your "after" and I'm so thankful that you can use my words to be "prepared" for something that I hope never happens to you.
And maybe we will meet one day. I tend to visit a lot of places! :)

Beth - My friend. Thank you. And I will keep the blog here, as dull and dusty as it might become. : )
I join you in being grateful and thankful that you found me and that we found each other. I think our "after", together, is going to continue to be filled with laughter and love. Can't ask for more than that! : ) I love you.

Patience said...

I'm so glad that you did write this blog, I don't think you would have been part of my "after" if you hadn't. I admire you for so many reason, but most of all because you really didn't censor yourself... and we all have learned from you... I think of you as a big sister, even though you are much younger than me. :) I guess that means you are an old soul.. and a very wise one indeed! Peace and Love,

Jeni Halliday said...

I am so glad we have reunited and in New York City !i just found your blog on your last post. Here is to a bright and fun future together here iin NYC. One day you may just have to take me back to Stillwater with you. But until then we have the Stillwater bar. Jeni.

Tamara said...

Thank you for leaving the blog up for others to find. I have always felt that I was following your path most closely for some reason, feeling similar feelings at the same time. Some other young widow will find the blog some morning at 2 a.m. when they can't sleep to save their life and it will help them, as it did me. Thanks for your candor. Grief is messy and people need to know messy is normal.

Phyllis said...

I will miss your blog, but everything has its "time", and if it has served your purpose, that is a good thing.

Will miss you, have often been a lurker, but have enjoyed getting to "know" you and your family.

Janine said...

Patience/Diane - Thank you. I'm glad that this blog brought you into my life ...... my real life. I love you and am grateful for your friendship. Even if it's as a younger, "big sister". :)

Jeni - I am so thankful to have re-connected with you and I look forward to my life in NY, and with you. So very much. : )

Tamara - Thank you so much. For reading, for commenting, for supporting me. The one thing that meant the most to me about this blog was that it would somehow connect with others on this path. That's all I wanted. That's all I could hope for.
So thank you for letting me know that you connected with my words. It means more than anything. <3

Phyllis -- Thank you. Very much. I have loved every commenter ...... and every lurker. I'm glad that you were here. Thank you for un-lurking for this post. I appreciate your words ...... so much.

Shadefarm said...

Janine, Thank you so much for putting your heart and soul out there for all of us. I cannot begin to tell you how much I've learned from you these past few difficult years. I even carry in my wallet, one of the things you wrote in your blog a while back that says that you will not settle! You most certainly have made an impact on my life. I wish you well! Thank you again!


Tammie Lewis said...

Hi Janine,

Though I am not part of the club, I have enjoyed reading your blog for several years now and have gotten some great information out of it; as well as entertainment when you are sharing any of your stories; and I have held my breath when reading about some of the not so fun stuff (hope the cat is doing well!). I will miss your blog, but I understand. I wish I lived close enough to meet up with you for lunch every now and again. Good luck to you in all that you do, and wherever you land (NY, TX, OK?). Only the very best wishes and blessings to you and all your kids in all that you do!!!

Anonymous said...


I am truly sad that you are leaving this blog. I have only been part of this club for 9 months and read your blog from start to end. It feels as if I know you personally. I wish I could meet you, so much I want to ask and talk about. But sadly South Africa is a long distance NY.


Janine said...

Paula - Thank you for reading and supporting me with your presence and comments. I appreciate you and them. More than words can say. : )

Tammie - Thank you so much. I'm glad that you've enjoyed my posts and have kept coming back. :)
Jack is doing very well - he acts quite normally now (which is still a bit odd!) and gets the wires out of his jaw this week. You'd never know that anything had happened to him ...... thankfully.

Estelle - I'm so very sorry that you are also in this "club", and I'm sorry that it's time for me to stop. For now anyway.
But here is my email ..... I'd love to correspond with you and answer any questions/talk about anything you'd like:
I promise to write back. :)

Toni said...

Sorry to see you go, but totally understand. Thankfully I am not a member of the "club", but you helped me to help my widowed best friend. Enjoy NY!

Janine said...

Thank you, Toni. I'm grateful that I could be of help to you. That means a lot and helps make the blog worth it. :)

Mama Mia said...

Your candid words will be missed but you must do what you need to do next. Happy wishes sent with love xx

~Shelly~ said...

Sad to see you go, you have helped my grieving friend get over some big humps! I hope you find all new happiness in NY! God Bless..

The Nichelsons said...

I've been mostly a lurker, but have been reading along for a few years now. I'm not in that particular club (in another I wish I wasn't, though, there are too many out there).

Thank you for sharing your life with us. Thank you for your honesty. I admire your strength, and your courage to say when you didn't feel strong at all.
I wish you all the best to you and your family!

Thank you.

Marcia said...

I too am a lurker but have been faithfully reading for years. Thank you for sharing your life. I feel as if I really know you even though that sounds silly. I will really miss your writing as you have been such an inspiration to not only me but many others. Sad to see you go but understand. Good luck going forward.

Anonymous said...


I'm so glad you put this up, I've been very concerned since your blog just vanished. I've been worried about you and the cat and the kids and.....Well, perhaps I invest too much in what I read? :) I've been a long time lurker, who has commented only a few times, but I will miss you.

Chris (chrisnhb) for some reason it won't let me sign in today. Such is life. Take care.

Janine said...

Mama Mia - Thank you. Very much. :)

Shelly - Thank you. Thank you for telling me that I've helped someone. That makes me feel humbled and thankful. I hope that your friend finds happiness, too. You're a good friend. :)

The Nichelsons - Thank you for reading ...... and I'm glad that you're not in this club, though yes, there certainly are plenty of horrible ones out there. Thank you for your kind words. I wish the best for you and yours, too. : )

Marcia - Thank you for coming out of lurkdom to comment. :) And thank you for reading. I don't think you sound silly at all. It makes sense and I'm glad that you feel that way. Best wishes to you. : )

Chris - I'm so sorry that you've been worried, but I also think that is so very nice of you. : ) Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment, and to let me know that you were there.
It matters. : )

Kim Wilson said...

I have enjoyed your blog, I have been with you from the start. I was one year ahead of you on your grief journey. You did what you needed to do, much appreciated! I understand your statement, about the friends you had before, everyone else seems to go on with life, after all they weren't the one who lost part of their life. I wish you joy, and happiness. You have been a blessing to so many people. I would love to know if you start another blog. You have simply told it how it is, people that have not experienced grief will never understand, but I'm sure one day they will be hit hard with grief, and I hope they remember this blog.

Janine said...

Kim - Thank you. Thank you for commenting and for understanding. And for your very kind words. I hope they remember it, too.

To you and to those who are on this path with me, I do have a private blog that I'd be happy to share with you. If you email me I'll add you to that blog.
: )

Cathy said...

Thanks, Janine. Been following you for a few years. Like you, I understand there is a time to move on, to embrace this new life we have been handed. Thank you for telling it like it is, it's been very helpful as I find my way.

Bella said...

Thank you for sharing these past years with us. Although I'm 15 years out I still have learned from your journey. I will miss you. I feel a little lost.

Janine said...

Cathy - Thanks so much for being here. I appreciate that so very much. All of you who've been here with me have encouraged me and been the reason I've been here so long.

Bella - Thank you. Are you on my private blog? If not, please email me ( and I'll put you on. Hopefully that will help you feel a little less lost. xoxoxo

Rebecca from MX said...

Hello Janine, I have been reading you sice the beginning, I rarely made a comment but you were always in my prayers, and will continue to be.... I am not a widow but I have taken so many good things from it, from you
Thanks again and goodbye!
Rebecca from Mexico

Janine said...

Thank you, Rebecca. Thanks for being here and for sticking with me. Peace to you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for saying good-bye.