Sunday, September 2, 2012

Meet Melinda McDonald

First, I would like to thank Wendy for filling in for me last week.  I was at my girl’s annual Girl Scout camping trip in WI (you know, the one where men are not allowed in the cabins and have to sleep in far away tents or in their cars.  I choose the car.).  I thought I would have access to Wi-Fi and found out when I arrived, that was not the case.  So thanks Wendy.
I am finding as the girls get older, free time becomes more of a premium.  I’ve always assumed that once they learned to walk, dress themselves, and pour a bowl of cereal, that my life would become easier.  Not the case.
There are now more time demands at looking at homework, more time when I come home from work, and more time on the weekends.  I recently watched a Ted Talk (go to if you are ever looking for inspirational messages and amazing speeches) where the topic focused on the idea of gaming and how studies show that the more parents play games with their kids (yes, video games totally count), the better groundwork you are laying down for them.  So yes, now more Donkey Kong Jr. and Mario Brothers have to be added to the list – if I must.
I am happy to be able to find more time with the girls.  I am making progress with them. If this was last year and Kelly said to me in Target – as she did a few weeks ago - after seeing that I bought a new backpack for Haley, if she could have a new one.  Not only would I have bought her a new backpack, but probably would have stopped at the local pet store on the way home and bought her a puppy. 
This is why the following simple conversation was a huge progress point for me.
“Dad, Haley is getting a new backpack.  Can I get one?”
“No. You still have your Hello Kitty backpack that is in good condition.”
“But how come Haley gets a new one?”
“Because Haley’s is three years old and it’s broken.”
“Please.  I really want a new one.”
“Daaaddd.  Pleeease.”
That’s huge for me!  Not only that, but when I put them to bed, I didn’t go to my room and beat myself up on how I should have gotten her a backpack and a puppy.
I am getting better at this.  My relationship with Cheryl has helped a great deal and has given me more confidence as a father/person.  She has been an inspiration to me that life can have challenges and yet there is still life to be had, still room to grow.  With all the sadness, this has always kept me going the most, that there is time and room for growth. 
All this being said, I am giving up my blog spot; it’s time to let others speak. I am honored Michele has given me a voice (forever grateful), so honored to have followed Dan in Real Time, and honored have our newest blogger take over Sundays.  Melinda will bring a powerful voice to this blog – I will let her share her life with you on her own time.   However, here is a quick introduction from her:
My name is Melinda McDonald.
I am 31 years old, and a suicide widow. I was widowed at 29 years old. My husband was 31 years old when he took his life.
Seth suffered immensely emotionally for 3 years, before ending his life. Watching what he went through is worse than anything I have ever seen.
From the day I met Seth, I knew we would be together forever. We were rarely apart, and were together for 10 years. He died shortly before our 5 year wedding anniversary.
We had a great relationship. He was my best friend, lover and soul mate. He taught me what a true relationship is like, what true happiness is, and what true love is. He even taught me how to make homemade beer.
As for me, life is getting back on track. I spent my whole “adult” life with Seth, so I am learning who I am, what I want out of life, and what my next journey will be. Because of Seth’s death, I am more true to myself, am a better friend, and eventually, will be a better wife.
I am accepting that I can have two soul mates, and hope one day I will find soul mate #2.
I enjoy photography, blogging, cooking, dancing (Zumba!!), my family (I wouldn’t have lived through this without them). I find great enjoyment in helping other suicide widows, especially letting them have a safe place to talk, and knowing they are not alone.
Thanks Melinda, best of luck, you’re in good hands. 
Thank You WV community, it’s been an honor.


  1. Thank you for your posts and good luck to you!

  2. Good luck Matthew, and thank you for all that you have shared.
    .....and Hello Melinda! Another shutterbug :)

  3. Oh no, Matt, you were the best part of my Sunday! I enjoyed your writing so much.
    Best wishes to you and your girls. I will re-read you in the archives and pray for you as you continue your journey. Thanks for your wise and wonderful and most importantly truthful accounts of living life as a grieving Dad.
    You will be missed!

  4. Thank you Matt, best wishes to you!

  5. Thanks Matt, really enjoyed your posts and will miss you, but there are certain things only you can do - and raising your girls is definitely high on the list. Wishing you peace and joy on your journey.

  6. Thanks, Matt, for sharing your life with us. Always nice to read about your girls. They have a great Dad, and will help to carry you forward. Best wishes from me too.

    Hello Melinda, sorry for the reason you are here. Welcome to this community of caring people.

  7. Hi Melinda, you and I are very similar, I would like to connect with you. What would be the best way to connect privately? Jessica