Saturday, September 29, 2012



Last night I lost the world, and gained the universe.” 
― C. JoyBell C.

Letting go.

I always hated when people pronounced that I needed to do so...

And still kind of do :)

But as I sit here in a sea of cardboard boxes...2 months after the flood. 2 months away from all material things I've accumulated over the last 26 years.

It hit me.

As sifting through the million shirts of Michael and myself..the million little things that have no direct connection to him or I, but I held on was than that I realized that I had to let go....

Not of him...not of our eternal love and how in love with him I still am....not of that damn smile that still gives me the warm fuzzies...

Letting go is letting go of the life I expected us to have...the one I unconsciously didn't realize I was holding onto through some material things that don't embody who and what we are....

Letting go is embracing the life we live now, on different plains, but still together.

Embracing the fact that moving his clothes out of my closet into one of his own (minus those warm sweaters i love to wear in the winter and that hell of a sexy uniform he filled out so well) isn't letting go of him....that donating some items ( shirt) that he wouldn't give a fuck about will never take away from all that we always will be.

I've let go of the rock in my hands that consisted of all that was supposed to be...I let it go in order to embrace the life here in front of me...the life carrying so many gifts from him and from myself once I allowed myself to free up my hands to grab them...

So let isn't this horrible phrase consisting of forgetting those you love more than allows you to love them even more and grasp the immense amount of love still out there.

Thank you, flood. Thank you, baby. It feels good to let go of all of the what could have been's...and hug onto the what will be' heart fills fuller and my eyes feel mind feels free in knowing that the now is all I need.


  1. thank you Taryn. I needed this.

  2. One of the best quotes I have read lately was "You have to let go of the life you have in order to grab for the life that awaits you." The funny thing about this quote is that it was not specific to grief, but it applied perfectly to it. I can not say that I have successfully done this, but I know it is good advice.

  3. I am entering year four and have just recently been able to let go of my dreams for us. I am begining to embrace life again and it is wonderful. Thank you for putting it all into words. I too am looking forward to a wonderful life of embracing each experience as a chance to live.

  4. I not only grieve for him, but for the life we had, and the life we were planning. My head knows it will no longer be, but my heart has not figured it out yet. Letting go of the material stuff is easy compared to letting go of the what should have beens, and plans we had made for the future. I know...the future is not a given... live in the now. It's just so f***ing hard. I'm not quite where you are Tayrn, but I'll keep trying. Thanks for leading the way.

  5. letting go of all "i was supposed to be"
    ugh! such truth.

    so - we become - what we will be now.
    thank you Taryn!

  6. It's just so frightening for me- even at 3 years- to realize that I have to make this "life we were planning" go away and somehow get to this "life that awaits" me. Taryn, I love this post, the advice, the reality that you are nudging us towards. As one of the above post-ers said, "I'll keep trying. Thanks for leading the way". Yes, thanks for sharing your struggle and now, you're climb out of that deep, dark hole. We all have to press on and this gave me a gentle push!

  7. I am at the same point. I am 30 months and I think the scariest thing is letting go of the future that I had pictured for us. I am not doing very well at letting go. Instead, I feel as if I am taking 100 steps backward and I don't know what to do. I don't know who I am or what I want. I want my old life back and even though I know it isn't possible, it doesn't stop me from wanting it. All I know is that I am scared of everything-and I mean everything. This so isn't me. Keith used to call me his rock. It was easy to be the rock with him by my side. This whole experience has beat me down to the point I am half scared to go on. This just isn't me but I don't know what to do or how to move forward.

    1. Yes, nllauer, as anon says below, be gentle with yourself. There is no timeline to follow, you are at where you're at, don't compare yourself to anyone else. I'm at 32 mo, and also think like you do, how can I go on when the future we planned isn't going to happen as we planned? Maybe bits and pieces will be the same, but the hole left by his absence is just too big to fill.

      I try to take it day by day, and not look too far ahead, that just brings me down. Do what you can today, and tomorrow will come. I don't know who I am either, we were a couple for so long that I feel I have no identity as a single person.

      I have found comfort in other widows, sharing with them, either here or in a group setting, helps to show me that I am not alone, that others before me have experienced widowhood and survived, and maybe I can help someone else in the future. Right now I'm still helping myself figure it all out. Take care of you.

  8. dear nllauer - be gentle with yourself.
    That is how to go on.
    Reach out to friends and family, ask for help, tell them when you are lonely.
    Write it down - every fear, every detail, stare at the page - tell yourself "this is grief talking to me" most if not all of this is never going to happen.
    Do something easy. If it is easy then do another easy thing and when you are done that, try something a wee bit harder.
    In the beginning, getting out of bed was enough. Then showering and getting dressed before eleven a.m. Eventually, going out -
    It is almost two years for me. I am no longer as frightened as I was.
    Some days I feel almost fearless, then a setback, or a bad day, or the way the rain comes down makes me feel like I wish I could just stay inside, forever.
    So, I send someone a card, or email. I clean out a drawer, I put on music and cry, I read and fall asleep. I walk the dog and try to just breath.
    I don't die - another day.
    When I fall asleep I think " I made it one more day".
    Hold onto yourself tight.
    Come back here - it is safe, it will reduce your fear, you will be comforted.
    Wishing you peace.

  9. Taryn, I think it's amazing how you have found some positive meaning as you have dealt with the flood and the damage to Michael's things. In my fourth year, I am still struggling with some big items, such as my husband's first Harley. I don't want to let go of the stuff, or him. I love your posts because you seem to have figured out how to continue to live life and experience so many things, but you never let go of him while you do. And that it's okay to not let him go.

  10. Taryn,

    I received the video from AWP three weeks after Carl was KIA on July 14th. I watched it as I cried and cried in despair looking at others, among them you, who had lost like I did. I felt less alone, I felt understood, I often think of you reading that speech at the funeral and the journey you began.
    Now you are writing of letting go of the life you planned together, and I'm so just entering that realization. I'm only 22, he was 24 and we were about to conquer the world when he came home. This past week has been hell because the homecoming was last weekend and it hit me again that he's not coming back, though everyone else is. And so, I'm grateful that I came across your voice on this website tonight.