Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thanks for all the fish....

The time has come for me to step down from writing here at WV.

I am honoured to have been a part of this wonderful resource and to have felt the love of so many who have connected with me through this medium. 

It is hard to let go - this platform has been one of the most important ways I have walked myself through this grief.  I have shared my ups and downs with you and you, in turn, have let me know I am not alone.

I remember how I felt when I first started writing - I had been pouring my pain into my own blog when Michele asked me to write here.  WV was to be a different way of writing as I was no longer writing Letters to my Husband, but I was writing about myself, my life, my now.

Ultimately, that change in writing style has seen me more closely examine my own feelings and name them for what they were: desolation, depression, desperation, despair.

But in recognising how I felt each week, I have been able to track those feelings over time.

There are times when I still feel the dark, mawing pit seething in front of me, trying to draw me down into its cavernous bowels ..... but now, more often than not, I am noticing other feelings that outweigh them.

Last week I wrote about the happiness that has come to be part of my life.
I have raised my eyes from my feet and have seen that my life is not over: that I have to live because I didn't die.

I have felt the love of my husband continue after his death and this love has given me the confidence to make a better life for my children and I.  ....and that's what I have been doing.

..... and ever so slowly, this new life is taking shape.

It's not the shape I wanted my life to be, but it is new and different and a tiny bit magnificent.

So it is time for me to say So Long- and thanks for all the fish (because you all should know by now what a massive geek I am and I would just have to use a HHGTTG quote somewhere in here).

....and so it falls on me to introduce my replacement here on WV. 

Please welcome Stephanie to the fold and shower her with the kindness and understanding that you have given me.....

Stephanie was widowed in February of 2013 after her husband of nearly 14 years, Mike, had a heart attack in his sleep at age 59. Only 44 at the time, she has spent the past year obsessively writing about her husband, her grief, and the difficult task of recreating her future. Stephanie is originally from the Washington, DC area but moved to Hollywood after college to work as a special FX artist. She met her husband, who was a stuntman, there in 1999. They moved to Hawaii in 2001, where for four years, they ran a martial arts/yoga school. They closed the school when Mike got the job as stunt coordinator for the TV show "Lost". Stephanie worked as the personal assistant to a physicist for several years, and then - now, ever so gratefully - spent a couple of years in quiet retirement with Mike before he died. She feels it is the exact right time for her to start connecting with other widows, and sharing stories of grief and personal transformation. Her first post will be on May 1, which was the day she and Mike first got engaged in 1999.


  1. Amanda, so glad to read that you have reached a place where you can move on. But I know we will be sorry to see you go! A good geek is hard to find! I wish all the best for you as you embrace your new life.

  2. Thanks for sharing Amanda. I've only been following Widow's Voice for about a year and I think you are the third one to move on. While I think it is great that the writers have gotten to a point where they have more happiness than grief in their life, but I think WV is missing out on a different perspective.

    While in the early stages of grief, i.e. the first 12 to 18 months, I don't think I would want to read how things are or have gotten better for someone else. However, for those of us two or more years into this unwelcome journey, I think an occasional post from someone who has more happiness than grief would be uplifting. Maybe a couple times a month a post from someone who has found love again or is happy and content with their single life. More of a, yes life does get better again.

  3. Paul, I can't agree with you more on wanting to hear from a widow who has been through the early trenches and has finally started the climb out of the other side...

  4. So glad for you, Amanda. ....sounds like you are on the other side of grief. what has been stated....hearing more about that other side and how it feels. ..etc. ...would be so helpful. ...
    Best to you, Amanda. ..thanks for everything.

  5. Thanks so much for your heart-felt sharing. So happy you are seeing some light through the darkness. We'll miss you.

  6. I am very sorry for your lose Stephanie. Please don't take offense to what I'm about to say as it has nothing to do with you. I feel that most widows and widowers who visit WV are average Jane's and Joe's and want to hear from people who have similar life experiences. And I am not saying that every widow doesn't have something to contribute. Just my thoughts. Thank you for all your shared posts Amanda, they were some of my favorites. We will surely miss you.

  7. Thanks Amanda, for your writing. When I first started reading WV, I was glad to have a local that was writing about their experience in the southern hemisphere seasonal cycle. Best wishes as you journey through your new life, with all that it holds and all that you bring with it.

  8. Thank you so much everyone. I must point out that it was me who felt it time to leave (working full time sometimes means I just don't get to blogging) and Michele managed to find a replacement writer who was willing to share her own path with us all.
    Kerryl - keep carrying the Aussie torch....
    ...and Megan - you SO get me.

  9. The first year (I found WV very soon after I became a widow) I would read the posts daily. I had no friends who were widowed and this blog was such a comfort to me. I remember feeling very attached to the writers and sad when they left. Now it has been a bit over three and a half years and I still pop in, but more like once a week, because, thankfully there is healing that comes with time and with moving forward. I am so grateful to you Amanda and to all the writers who have taken the time and shared themselves here. Best of luck to you. I have 2 school age children also and I have particularly related to your posts. To those of you fresher on this path, as terribly difficult as it is, as much as there is forever a longing, it does get better with time and although it may now seem impossible if you just try to live, remember to come up for air and get a little sun on your face and keep putting one foot in front of the other, one day you will find you are not just existing alone, but you are really living. You are still alive and your life is a beautiful thing

  10. Thank you Amanda for sharing this part of yourself with the readers during your time here. It's no small thing to bare your soul like this. I've only recently gained enough confidence to "come out" as myself here online and am grateful for this new opportunity to share and support each other. No matter who we are or where we come from, losing a spouse is a deeply painful experience. But we all certainly have our own stories and paths to walk. I've learned there is no right or wrong way to grieve, and the unconditional support is so important to our healing. I wish you all the best and I hope you come back to visit the community here when you can. It's clear a lot of your readers will look forward to keeping in touch.

  11. Thank you Amanda for sharing. May you continue to shape magnificent life. Welcome to Stephanie. My husband died of a heart attack also. I look forward to hearing from you here.

    Maria O.

  12. anon for now. It's been 2 years, 2 months and there is no moving on. It was also a rather sudden loss. I am angry at my husband's doctor who failed him, medications that failed him, the hospital personnel who failed him, an overeager religious hospital chaplain who failed miserably, other's who played the "blame the heart attack victim's" game. Only the first responders did all they could and did it well.