Sunday, November 4, 2012

My Birthday + Halloween = Life Insurance

Halloween 2004, two months after we got engaged

Today is my 32nd birthday.

Its official, my birthday is the hardest event or holiday I go through without Seth.

Seth’s birthday is on the 24th, so we always did a big, combined party.

It’s my 3rd birthday without my husband.

My friends and family threw me an amazing party at my favorite bar.

The bar Seth and I always celebrated both of our parties at.

And even with it being my 3rd birthday without Seth, I still expected to walk into the bar, and see his smiling face.

I walked into the bar, and was smacked with the reality, all over again, that my husband is dead.
He’s not here to celebrate with me.

I can’t throw him a huge party and spoil him with his favorite candy and beer.

Seth was always 2 years and 20 days older than me.
I am now 1 year older than him.
It’s so weird when I think about Seth’s age. He will always be 31 years old.

And I will always get older with each passing year.

We got our first snow fall in Utah. I walked outside at 6am, saw the snow, breathed in the cold air and let out a huge sigh of relief.

I have never been so happy to see snow and winter.

Summer was always my favorite time of year. Seth and I were always off doing something. Camping, backpacking, boating, playing at the lake for days.
Now summer is the hardest, most depressing time for me. Everything about summer reminds me of Seth. Reminds me of the times lost.

Winter has now become my favorite time of year. I guess it’s because I don’t have to deal with the death date, going camping without Seth, going to summer parties without him.
Winter doesn't remind me a whole lot of Seth. Sure, Christmas and Thanksgiving does, but nothing like summer time.

Halloween got me thinking about all the people that have passed. It got me thinking about what’s left in the wake of someone’s death.

It got me thinking about life insurance, and how badly I struggle financially.

I know what you are thinking. “Oh, I have $20k” in life insurance, we are fine!”
“We are too young to worry about life insurance”.

You are wrong. Dead wrong.

If you are married or have children, you need life insurance. And far more than $20k.

Please check your policies. Most of them have a suicide, drug or alcohol rider on them. Seth’s did.

Even if you think you or your loved one won’t die from suicide, drugs or alcohol, I would have your policy reviewed and possibly get a new one.

When I took out the policy on Seth, I didn't expect his death to be suicide. I also didn't think I would be widowed at 29 years old.

I never thought I would find myself in a position where when people ask me what I want for my birthday, I say “food”.

It was embarrassing and heart breaking. Despite my best efforts, financially, it’s a juggling act.

I wasn't prepared for a pipe to break and flood my neighbor’s basement. Leaving me scrapping together any cash I can find.

Looking back, I wish I knew. I wish I knew I would REALLY need that life insurance policy. I wish I wasn't naive enough to think that $20k was enough and that I wouldn't need that money any time soon.

Boy could I use that money now!

Please don’t leave your spouse or children in a position of where they have to ask for food as their birthday present.


Facing my birthday without my husband, scraping together money I don’t have to fix my neighbors basement, and having to ask for food for my birthday, add it all on top of each other, and it was a lot more then I could handle.

I have been in tears all week. Waiting for my party to arrive. The anticipation of knowing Seth wouldn't be there was extreme.

Knowing I would be walking into a party with friends and family, showing me pure love, but knowing the one person I wanted to see most, wouldn't be there.

Another birthday passed without my love.

Another night of fully enjoying myself, only to come home to an empty house and bed.

I have learned the difference between feeling alone and being alone.


  1. I wish you so many good things in the coming new year.
    Yes what a difference between feeling alone and being alone.
    It also speaks to the importance that women live longer (on average) then men and also live longer with chronic illness. So the odds of being in poverty actually increase with age. So your message is hugely important.
    The fact of being a woman means it is more likely you will live longer than your spouse.
    Advise everywoman you know that life insurance isn't an option.
    Your message also had important information for families. To not assume a widow is financially well off. Many widowed people struggle on now an only income but with the financial obligations of two. Gift cards for groceries, an offer of meals out or dropped off, babysitter relief, all can help.
    Happy Birthday Melinda - you have survived so much. I hope that these past three years dim in painful memories and increase in happier times for you.

  2. I am often asked if I am lonely. I am not most of the time. I have lots of friends, my dogs, things to do and as they say places to go. But I am so often aware that I am alone as defined by his absence.

    I live in NJ and was days without power. I didn't miss him preparing for the storm because he'd taught me everything I needed to do. I missed him during the scariest part of the storm because he's the guy everyone counted on the handle whatever happened and because it was really scary and I didn't have anyone to hold my hand.

    But mostly, I missed him afterward when I turned on the camp lanterns and remembered all the fun we had together. I missed having him to complain to about the inconvenience, to laugh with about all my smelly scented candles. I missed my companion, my partner, my friend.

    Even though I was so well looked after by so many, his absence was just screaming in my head.

    So yes, I get it. Sometimes I am alone, sometimes I really feel it.

  3. Thank you for sharing and saying so elequoently what many of us feel. (I hope I spelt that right!)

  4. My thoughts are with you. You are so right about the insurance. Before my husband's illness he tried to skip paying the bill,but I told me no we needed to find a way to pay and we did. It has been a god send for me!
    As for being alone, I also loved my time alone, but now it is not a choice- feeling alone is such a different thing!

  5. As the provider for the family, I have a rather large Insurance payout incase I pass away due to the money I was making working away and the thought of it not being there.. Unfortunately my wife did not really have alot and when she passed away I came home without my job to look after my 2 kids. Needless to say all the stay at home moms/dads should purhaps have another look at their own insurance cover, just incase your primary provider can't work for a long while.. On the subject of birthdays, my sons 7th birthday was 2 days after my beautiful Emma took her life, I couldnt even see him or my daughter and just stayed away while my family looked after them.. I can't imagine how I will face my birthday in feb for the first time without her.. Kinda ranting on now.. oh well. Stay strong. Get more insurance!