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Stacy

Turning 51

People always ask each other,  “How does it feel to turn 50? Or 40? Or 30?” No one really asks about turning 51, or any age that is not a “milestone”.

I was perfectly happy turning 30 – life was good – newly married and looking forward to the future.

Turning 40 wasn’t bad either – happily married with two beautiful daughters.

I cried when I turned 45. Oddly, I had no idea why I was crying. I now think that I may have had some kind of premonition of what was coming.

Two months after my 45th birthday, my husband died unexpectedly. The next 4 – 5 years were the most difficult of my life. It is beyond challenging to become a single mom and keep everything together while both you and your children are grieving. I was very unhappy for a long time.

Last week was my 51st. Five days after my birthday, I received a “Happy Anniversary” message from Word Press. I had started my blog one year ago. Both of these days are huge milestones for me.

A few months before my 50th birthday, I felt like I was finally beginning to recover. I began to feel like a “person” again and not just a “widow”. I also felt that there was somewhat of a “new me” emerging and that I was going to be slightly different moving forward.

My now teenage daughters were both in a good place which is always the most important thing to me.

Around this time I found myself in a new relationship – a good one, and that made me happy.

My 50th birthday was a pleasant one. No huge party, I was just happy being with the people closest to me. I wasn’t obsessing about getting older. I was looking forward to a better time in my life, possibly some kind of new chapter. At that point, I had no idea exactly what a new chapter meant for me. I just felt that a change was happening, and that I was no longer stuck.

Five days after my 50th, I suddenly decided to start a blog. I did not know much about blogging, so I did what anyone would do – I googled it. Then I closed my eyes, hit “publish”, and hoped for the best.

This was what changed my life. People actually read my blog and the feedback was incredible. I could write.

I had pretty much gone through 50 years without ever finding a “thing” that I excelled at. I was always terrible at sports, my grades in school were good but never spectacular, I couldn’t dance or sing, I was not an artist, I can barely swim to save my life, no amazing sense of fashion. I was always just me, happy with myself, but nothing “stood out”.

At 50 years old I finally found it – my “thing” was writing. I began to write non-stop. Not just for my blog, but all kinds of websites began to publish my work. This was so exciting for me. Every time my work was accepted somewhere, I felt this huge sense of accomplishment.

In a roundabout way through my writing, I began taking yoga classes. It was something brand new for me, but after a small amount of time, I fell in love with it. My intenion in starting yoga was to do something good for my body. Not only did yoga help accomplish this, it has become an unbelievable tool for my mind. Yoga has taught me how to let go of some of the anger I had towards my situation. It has truly helped me to become a better peron. With this, my new relationship has also been able to develop in a wonderful way.

A year has quickly passed and I am now 51. I was sad to see 50 go, not because I am getting older, but because my 50th year was an incredible journey. While I am still the same person, I have become a much better version of myself. I am much stronger and more self confident, while I also believe that I have become a kinder person who truly wants to help others.

The one thing that I wish is that my husband was here to see the “new me”. Sometimes I’m not sure he would even recognize this new version of me. I do like to believe that he can see the girls and I somehow. That he smiles when we are doing well, and that he is happy that I was able to finally move forward.

With a little luck, I hope that my positive journey continues in my 51st year.

 

 

 

 

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How Yoga Found Me

“Hot yoga has really helped me through this.  I will take a class with you if you want to give it a try.”

Although there was laughter in my head, I did not let it out. I didn’t want to insult the woman I was on the phone with. I had never even met her.

I had started my blog, “The Widow Wears Pink”, only two months earlier. I loved that I was starting to reach women from all over who were also widowed. The woman I was speaking with happened to live in my town, yet we had never met before. We were chatting about our situations and how we have gotten through the hard times. That was when she mentioned hot yoga.

Yoga? HOT yoga? I didn’t think so. When I thought of yoga, I imagined the graceful people you see in pictures or on TV who hold themselves in beautiful poses without breaking a sweat. That was NOT me. I am not the least bit graceful. I walk into furniture in my own house and have fallen down while walking in high heels. I would completely embarrass myself in a yoga class.

I said all of this to my new friend on the phone but she kept encouraging me. She explained how she had the same fears but she gave it a chance and fell in love with it.

She somehow convinced me. One Friday morning I met her at the 9:30 AM class at Powerflow Yoga. She brought me an extra mat and showed me where to get blocks (blocks? what did I need blocks for??).  She then introduced me to the instructor and explained to her that it was my very first class.

I was nervous but there was no turning back. We walked into the full room and set up our mats in the corner which seemed like a good idea, but we were also in the front row which seemed like a bad idea. People were going to stare at me!

I need to reiterate how I truly knew NOTHING about yoga. The class began and everyone in that room seemed to know exactly what they were doing. I was clueless and it felt terrible. This was way out of my comfort zone.  Just when I was considering an escape through the back door, the instructor came over to me and explained how to do the poses. She was so patient and understanding that it was my first class ever. She truly made me feel comfortable. What amazed me was that while she was giving me individual attention, she was also still teaching an incredible class for everyone else.

I was doing yoga (well sort of). I was also sweating (a lot). Hot Yoga is hot! When the class was over I was soaking wet and exhausted. The instructor came over to me and told me to drink a lot of water. She also said I did pretty well for my first class (still not sure I believe that).

The thought in my head was – although I was sweaty and exhausted, I didn’t hate it. Coming from me, that is a rave review. I have never been big on working out at the gym because that is something I do hate.

I was proud of myself for making it through, and I saw a tiny glimmer of hope that this was something I might grow to like. Before I left that day, I signed up for a trial month at Powerflow Yoga. That is how my yoga journey began…

 

*** If anyone is interested in trying Powerflow Yoga in Livingston, they are now offering a free week for new clients who would like to try it out. Just mention my name or The Widow Wears Pink! I believe in paying it forward – if you would like to have a friend for your first class, please lmk and I will join you – just like my new friend did for me 🙂 

 

 

My Twentysomething 90’s Blog in NYC  

It was a great weekend!

After work on Friday I walked over to the 6 Train which runs uptown to my apartment building. I put a token in the turnstile and stood on the hot and smelly platform while I waited for the subway. I was lucky enough to get a seat so I opened my Danielle Steele novel and read a few pages until we pulled into the 96th Street station. Then I walked to my building on 94th and 3rd.

I love that my building is full of mostly twentysomethings. We are surrounded by people our own age which is great. This is probably because the rent is so cheap. Also, the building allows us to create an extra bedroom in the apartment by adding a wall, which turns a two bedroom into a three. Our living room is tiny, but my roommates and I each have our own bedroom.

I thought that everyone lived like this in the city, but Rachel and Monica from my new favorite TV show “Friends” have such a huge apartment. I don’t understand how they could afford it.

I walked into our apartment. My roommates, Wendy and Debbie, weren’t home yet. I took off my Barami suit, listened to the messages on our answering machine, and plopped down on the couch. I turned on MTV’s “House of Style” with Cindy Crawford and watched for a while.

Once Debbie and Wendy were home, we had an important matter to discuss. Where were we going to go that night? There were so many places to choose from. Should we hang out at a bar on the Upper East Side – maybe Mingles or Spanky’s or American Trash? Or go down to 19th and Park and try either Canastel’s or Café Iguana? Or maybe Wilson’s on the Upper West Side? It was hard to know which place would be the best, so we called a few friends to see where people were hanging out. After hearing where everyone would be, including some guys we were interested in, we decided on Wilson’s.

We hung around the apartment until 10 PM and then showered to be ready to leave by 11 PM. I put on one of my many black scoop neck body suits, high wasted Big John jeans, and my Justin cowboy boots. I used the diffuser on my blow dryer to blow my hair so that it was curly and fell to the side.

We jumped in a taxi and headed over to the west side. As always, there was a small crowd standing outside Wilsons waiting for the bouncer to let them in. We pushed our way closer to the front and stood there smiling until he finally decided to open the rope for us.

Once inside, there was some commotion going on. I couldn’t believe it but Luke Perry from 90210 was there! Beverly Hills, 90210 was our favorite TV show. We watched it every Wednesday night, followed by Melrose Place. The debate was always – who is cuter Brandon or Dylan? I am always a Dylan. I also root for Brenda and Dylan as a couple over Kelly and Dylan.

Sadly, we didn’t even get to talk to him. I wish I had my camera on me, it would have been great to get a picture. The night was a lot of fun anyway.

On the way home, we stopped at a bodega and bought a bag of chips and some Oreos. When we got home at 3 AM we ate it all while we rehashed the night. Then we retreated to our bedrooms and went to sleep.

We all slept until past noon Saturday morning. I missed “Saved by The Bell”! When we finally woke up, we threw on sweats and walked over to Googie’s Diner for breakfast. It seemed like half the city had the same idea so we waited outside for a table while chatting with some friends who were also waiting. They were in their bike shorts and had their rollerblades with them. They asked us to join them after breakfast but we declined. I have tried rollerblading a few times but I can’t get the hang of it. When we finally sat down for breakfast I ordered chocolate chip pancakes – totally worth the wait.

It was a hot late spring day so we walked back to our apartment, put on our bikinis, grabbed towels and the lounge chairs we bought at Duane Reade, and went up to our roof to lay out. They say the sun is bad for you so we put on sunscreen. Debbie and I both use a 6 but Wendy is fair so she needs an 8. We listened to our Wilson Phillips CD and hung out for a while.

Saturday night is date night and all three of us had dates. Mine was a first date with a guy I had met at Hi-Life a few weeks ago.

I dressed in my new baby doll dress from The Gap with my Justin shoe boots. They look great in the summer with dresses and shorts. I pulled my hair back with a clip and pulled some tendrils around my face. My date picked me up and we walked to Coconut Grill on 2nd Avenue. It is my favorite date place – the food is great and I always see people I know. I ordered penne a la vodka and he had chicken with sun dried tomatoes. The guy was nice. I’d go out with him again.

On Sunday morning, we ordered in some bagels from the place downstairs and talked about our dates while we ate at the coffee table in our tiny living room. When we finished, we got dressed. I wore my cut off Levi shorts that I bought at Antique Boutique, a t-shirt, and leather Keds. We took a taxi to Central Park and met some friends at Sheep Meadow.  We found a good spot and hung out for a while. It’s always fun there – tons of people playing frisbee, hacky sack or just sitting in the sun.

We had to leave early and head over to the apartment of some girls who are running our Fire Island share house this summer. We all wanted to meet before we spend every other weekend together from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

We stopped at Blockbuster on our way home and rented “About Last Night”, even though we have seen it 100 times already. Our friends from the third floor, Betsy and Risa, came up to our apartment to watch with us. Best movie – I so see my own relationships in Demi Moore and Rob Lowe.

Back to work tomorrow – but Fire Island is just a few weeks away!

Why We Do Not Celebrate Father’s Day in Our House

I finally finished the dishes. The kitchen was clean. My extended family had left my house and my kids had retreated to their rooms. I was exhausted from cooking, serving and cleaning up, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I host Mother’s Day every year and I love doing it. It is a lot of work but it is always such a nice day. I am happy to celebrate being a mom to my two fantastic teenage daughters.

Now that Mother’s Day is over, I dread what comes next: Father’s Day is in just a few weeks. My husband passed away five years ago, and since then it has become the most hated day of the year for my children and me.

All three of us are doing well now, but there are many very difficult days each year – his birthday, the anniversary of his death, my wedding anniversary – these are days that we think about him a little bit more, wishing that he was here with us. Father’s Day is the worst one of all.

We know the significance of those other difficult days, but the rest of the world does not. My girls and I, sometimes along with friends and family, recognize those days as we wish: a special dinner, visiting the cemetery, or even just taking the day for ourselves to remember him. It is never easy, but we have learned how to best get through it.

Father’s Day is a very different day. It is everywhere and we cannot get away from it no matter what we do. I put on the television and there it is – never ending ads for Father’s Day gifts. Every talk show constantly gives advice on how to make Dad’s day special – from the best presents, to barbecue and baking ideas – they talk about it all.

The hardest thing, especially for my daughters, is social media. Whether it be Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat, our newsfeeds are inundated with Father’s Day messages and pictures. While it is so nice to celebrate the dad in your life, it can be hard for those who are not as fortunate. This also goes for those who find Mother’s Day difficult.

Over the years we have tried many ways to spend this day. We have spent it with family, with friends, or just the three of us at a restaurant. None of these things have been enjoyable. All that we feel is the huge void in our family.

As this dreaded day approaches this year, someone very close to me said that my girls “should be used to it by now”. My response was, “it is something you never get used to”.

I have a friend who lost her father when she was 12. This friend is now a married mother of two and she still finds Father’s Day difficult. I am sure my girls will always feel the same way.

You cannot possibly get used to losing your father at a young age. This is a devastating loss that my daughters will carry with them through their whole lives. After a lot of trial and error, we have learned that we need to do what feels right and what works for us on Father’s Day. It does not matter what we “should” do or what anyone wants us to do.

Everyone handles loss in their own way. We all have good days and bad days. Some may choose to spend a day such as Father’s Day amongst family and friends. My girls and I have found doing that too difficult.

Father’s Day in our house will be celebrated much differently that Mother’s Day was. There will no big celebration with family. If anyone is looking for me or my girls on Sunday, June 18, you will not find us on social media, or at a barbecue, or in a restaurant. You will probably find the three of us cuddling on the couch while watching Netflix. The only person who might see us is the pizza delivery guy. We will keep breathing until the day is over and we can start the new week on Monday.

My Yoga

My yoga journey is one I never thought I would take. As I have learned, life sometimes takes an unexpected turn. While I have had some really bad turns, this is a good one. Nobody is more surprised than I am.

I have decided to share this experience because of the positivity it has brought to my life. Maybe it can do the same for someone else.

My writing about yoga may not be what some experienced yogis would expect from a yoga blog. I am not an expert, and will never claim to be one. The terms I use may not be correct, and I am not super spiritual. Sometimes I’m even silly. This is my story of what brought me to my mat and how I feel both when I am in class and when I am not.

I plan to be brutally honest about what challenges me, and believe me there are plenty of challenges. I am still a beginner.

I am jumping into this the way I jumped into yoga, and jumped into starting The Widow Wears Pink. With both feet, my eyes closed, and not over thinking.

I hope you enjoy reading – my first story will be up sometime this week…

 

If I Had Written a Blog as a Teen In The 80’s

 

I don’t want to go to school tomorrow.  I hate Mondays and I had such a fun weekend. At least it’s almost summer.

On Friday, Marla passed me a folded up note in Spanish class. It said that she would drive me home from school in her new white Trans Am. It is so cool with red interior and the bird on the hood.

“We Got the Beat” by the Go-Go’s came on the radio as we drove home. The t-tops were down, we blasted the music, and sang every word at the top of our lungs.

When she dropped me off, I ran into the house so that I could catch General Hospital. My favorite soap is not as good as it was before they found the Ice Princess, but I still love it. The new Frisco and Felicia storyline is great. They could become the next Luke and Laura.

On Friday night, a bunch of us went to the movies. Marla wanted to drive her new car, so all eight of us piled in. We all squeezed on each other’s laps in the back seat. We saw “The Outsiders”. It was the best movie I had ever seen. It stars Matt Dillon from “Little Darlings”. I am so in love with him. The guy who played Soda Pop was cute also. I think his name is Rob Lowe.

After the movie, we stopped at the diner. I ordered my favorite – French fries with melted mozzarella cheese and gravy. After we ate, I really wanted a cigarette but I was out of my Virginia Slims Lights. Luckily, Marla had a pack of Marlboro Lights on her and she gave me one. Everyone from school was there, so we smoked our cigarettes and hung out for a while.

I only slept until 11:00 Saturday morning. I was so annoyed that I had woken up so early. My friends weren’t up yet so I hung out at home. My mom toasted me a pop tart while I walked over to the TV to turn it on. I put on MTV and watched for a while. I love that MTV plays videos all day long. Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” just came out and it is amazing. The girl who stars in it, Ola Ray, is so pretty. She is going to be a big star.

Finally, my princess phone rang. Ones of my friends had woken up. I tripped on the cord when I ran to answer it, but thankfully I got it before they hung up. I hate to have to call someone back, it is so annoying when I get a busy signal.

My parents were going out for the day so I invited my friends over to lay out. It was finally warm enough and I really needed color. I put on my bikini, pulled my hair up into a scrunchy, and grabbed my Laura Biagiotti sunglasses. We sat on our plastic lounge chairs and put on lots of baby oil. I did not have enough reflectors for everyone so we made a few with album covers and aluminum foil. They work just as well as the real ones. Someone brought Sun-In and we sprayed it on our hair.

We made frozen French bread pizza for lunch and ate Doritos, Funyuns and Barbecue Chips all day. My parents weren’t around so we smoked cigarettes and drank some Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers.

We made plans to go to a club Saturday night. We each told our parents we were going to a different house for the night so they would never know where we really were. I put on my favorite outfit – stone washed Guess jeans, a white blouse with big shoulder pads and the collar up, a big red belt, and red pumps.

I love my Guess jeans but I hate putting them on. They are so tight and I need to lay on my bed and pull the zipper up with a hanger.

My makeup came out great. I love the way my Nat Robbins teal eyeliner goes with my blue mascara. I also love my new frosted pink lipstick – Zinc Pink by Revlon.  My hair looked good too – the perfect amount of Aussie Scrunch Spray and Aqua Net to keep it big and curly. I grabbed my Gear bag and I was ready to go.

The club was so much fun. They didn’t proof so we got right in. When they played Madonna’s “Holiday”, the cutest boy asked me to dance. He looked so cool in his parachute pants. I was so happy when he asked me for my number. We waited forever for the bartender to give us a pen so that I could write it down on a matchbook for him. I hope he doesn’t lose it.

When I woke up on Sunday morning, I stayed in bed for a while and read a couple of chapters of “Flowers in the Attic”.

Later in the day, I went shopping with my mom. We went to the mall. I bought some new sweaters at Benetton and a pair of pink jelly shoes. We ate at the food court. I had Sbarro’s pizza and an Orange Julius.

On the way home, we drove through the Fotomat to pick up our vacation pictures from last month. They came out great. I had an awesome tan when we were in Florida. The Bain De Soleil Orange Gelee really gives you the best color.

When I came home, I made a mix tape, which took so long. I had to listen very carefully to the stereo so that I could press play and record together as soon as I heard a song I liked. It was important to do it as soon as the song came on, and not to get the DJ speaking in the background. That could ruin the whole tape.

It is getting late and I must get my homework done before Dynasty comes on. Alexis and Krystal are supposed to have a big fight tonight. I can’t miss it.

It is back to school tomorrow. I’m looking forward to next weekend – we have tickets to the Duran Duran concert!

 

 

Somewhere Between a Donut and a Juice Cleanse

There they were – staring at me, screaming at me to take just one more. Pink frosted, vanilla frosted, chocolate frosted, jelly, glazed, powdered, and my favorite – chocolate glazed. I had already eaten one. Dare I eat another?

I had never worried about things like this before. I have a fast metabolism.  Since I was a kid, I have been able to pretty much eat whatever I want without gaining much weight.

Dessert was always my favorite. Brownies, cakes, cookies, ice cream, any kind of candy.

My house was the junk food house. The kids whose refrigerators were filled with only fruits and vegetables would knock on my door whenever they craved something sweet.

Donuts are my biggest weakness. There is something about that fried, fluffy dough with that ooey gooey glaze that I just can’t resist.

Recently, I have come to realize that the diet I have always lived on may not be the best one. While weight gain may not have been my problem, there obviously can be other issues when your diet is not as healthy as it should be.

I needed to make a change. It was time for a healthier lifestyle.

I began a yoga practice, and fell in love with it. It helped to make my body stronger and my mind more relaxed.

Yoga was the easy part. The next change would be more difficult: my diet.

I switched to whole grain breads and pasta, started eating lots of fruits and vegetables, and have made other positive changes.

The most challenging thing for me was resisting anything sweet. I replaced the candy and cookies with fruit, which satisfies my craving most of the time. But when I am faced with my favorite desserts, I sometimes cannot help myself.

No one is perfect every day. Old habits are hard to break. When that box of donuts is sitting in front of me, I can’t resist. I will take one, sometimes two.

That’s okay. Tomorrow is a new day. Who knows what it will hold?  Healthier eating, maybe even starting a juice cleanse.

We all try. Try to live a healthy lifestyle, try to work out, try to eat well. Some days are easier than others.

I embrace my inner struggle with sweets. I am not perfect, and more than happy to admit it.

So, one day I stumbled upon this top which read “Somewhere Between a Donut and a Juice Cleanse” by Om & Ah London.  Naturally, I had to have it.

I proudly wear my new favorite tank to yoga class, and then to my stop at Dunkin on the way home 😊.

If you happen to think this top is as adorable as I do, or love any of the great stuff at Om & Ah London, please feel free to use my code PINK10 to get 10% off.

 

 

 

 

Howie’s Birthday

Today is March 27th. It would have been Howie’s 54th birthday.

This is the first March 27th since I began writing.

I often wonder what Howie would think of all this. I, of course, hope he would be proud that I am achieving some level of success with it.

But, let’s face it, I knew my husband. What he probably would have said is “Peanut, are you kidding me? If you’re going to start a new career, can you start one where you at least make some money??”.

I am sure that anyone who knew him is laughing right now because they can hear him saying this 🙂

There are many times when I need to make a decision on my own, and I think to myself, “What would Howie have done?”.

Sometimes these questions concern me personally, but most of the time they are decisions about our girls.

What would he have told Amanda about choosing a college?

How would he have helped Lily when she gets so stressed about her schoolwork?

What would he have done every morning when they fight about what time to leave for school?

Oops I forgot – he never would have heard those fights in the morning – he would have been fast asleep!

One thing I know he would be proud of – how far each of our daughters have come, and what great people they are becoming in spite of what happened to them. I know I am.

Strangely, I have felt his presence a little more in the past few weeks, possibly because his birthday was coming up. I hope this means he is happy about how we are all doing.

He is missed every day by all three of us. I wonder all the time what life would be like if he was still here. I hope he somehow knows that we try to honor him as best we can as often as we can.

 

 

Keeping The Memories Alive

My in-laws came over for brunch the other day. As happens often when we are with them, the conversation turned to Howie. His parents talk about when he was a child, my girls talk about him as a dad, and I usually end up telling stories from when we were dating or newly married.

This does not make any of us sad. I know for my girls, it makes them happy. They both laugh when we talk about the silly things he used to do, and it is so nice for them to remember what a great father he was.

I remember talking with a woman in the first few months after Howie died. She had lost her father at a young age, and sadly, years later also lost her husband. She told me that she was only seven years old when her dad died, and that her mother remarried a few years later. She then said that her stepfather would not allow pictures of her father in the house. Granted, when she was a child it was a different time, she is probably 20 years older than I am. Even so, I remember looking at her in disbelief.

She believed that because of not seeing those pictures, plus not speaking of her dad that often, she had a hard time remembering him. I am sure that she was correct.

My girls were young when Howie died, especially Lily who was only 10. I want their memories of him to be as vivid as possible. I still have many family pictures up in our house. I also have boxes and boxes of pictures put away, which they do look at often.

His name and stories about him come up in conversation all the time, not just with my in-laws. I am always telling them which traits of theirs came from him. Lily looks exactly like him, and Amanda has more of his personality.

They are smart girls and they know how to use this against me. I get mad when they are messy, or complain too much, among other things. They always come back with “I got that from Daddy”. They think it will soften me. I have to admit, sometimes it does.

I believe it is so important for all of us to keep his memory alive. The more we talk, the more we seem to remember. My father in law mentioned the name of a candy store by his office the other day. Howie used to bring me the best chocolate from there for any special occasion. I hadn’t thought about it in years. The minute he said it, tons of memories came back, along with wanting the candy! It was nice for thoughts to come up that hadn’t been on my mind for so long.

Memories can keep someone a part of you after they are gone. As time goes on and they are no longer in every thought, it is nice to keep a place in your mind for them. I hope that my girls can always hold on to special memories of their father. He will always be a part of all of us.

 

 

Why I Can Never Find My Phone (Among Other Things)

I walked through the glass doors of my office. I went straight into the kitchen to put my yogurt in the refrigerator. I looked down at my hand and it wasn’t there. I carry a red Lululemon bag with my yogurt, granola bar, and and a few other things that I bring to eat at work every day. It was not hanging off my arm like it usually was.

I thought I had it with me but I must have left it in my car. I ran down the three flights of stairs and out into the freezing cold and looked inside my car. It wasn’t there either. I jumped into the driver’s seat and drove the five minute commute back to my house. I need food during the day or I don’t function well.

I ran into my house and there it was on my kitchen counter – my red bag. I totally thought I had taken it.

I know what you’re thinking  – we all do that. We misplace our keys, look for our phones while they are in our hands, and sunglasses that are on our heads. I’m not unusual.

For me it is not just those typical things.

My boyfriend tells me that we have spoken about something that I just cannot remember. My boss asks if I had taken care of something 24 hours earlier, and I have to think for a minute whether I did or not (thankfully I write everything down). Friends call me and I don’t remember to call back. I have a very hard time multi-tasking.

No, I don’t think I have some dreaded disease (I will not allow my mind to wander like that).

What I do think I have is memory loss due to grief. I have read articles on it and they all say the same thing. It is very common. Going through a tragedy and grieving can affect your short term memory. They say it can last up to a few years.

In the beginning, I did not know that this was typical.  My brain  did not seem to be working the way it used to, and that was scary. I didn’t understand it. But I knew that I had so much on my mind that it was difficult to keep it all straight.

I am past the five year mark, and no longer in the grieving stage. My memory has come back to some extent over the last few years, but I am still quite forgetful. Those who know me best will say that I have always been a little scattered (don’t think I don’t know that you say it behind my back :)-) .  I admit that they are partially correct. But during those first few years I couldn’t keep anything straight. Right now I still think my memory is worse than it was before Howie died.

It is comforting to know that I am not alone. That others have felt this, and still feel it. I wanted to share my experience in the hopes of bringing comfort to someone else who may be feeling this. You are not going crazy. It happens to many of us.

If the worst thing is having to drive back home for my yogurt – I’ll take it.