Building a Life After Loss with Travel Adventures

Travel, travel and more travel.  That is how I have been moving forward.

I start each new year with a reflection on the past year and maybe some goals and challenges for the upcoming 12 months, should I be blessed enough to enjoy them.

I have really enjoyed sharing my travels and memorable moments from the past and this year with you. Making connections on line with my blog and the Facebook widow pages has helped me feel not alone on this journey.

In February my boyfriend and I visited my mom and sister in Florida.  We had fun looking at houses and imagining a life together in retirement that doesn’t have to be too far ahead in the future. 10 ways to have an adventure while visiting family in Florida.

In March I skied with my sons and nephew and proved that I am not too old and I can still handle those black diamonds. I am so lucky that I enjoy spending time with my kids and I hope that trips and vacations together will be part of our future.

In April, we took our first overseas trip to England.  Pete drove on the opposite side of the most narrow roads ever and I bit my nails but had the best trip!  We visited London and small towns in the Cotswolds.  I was overjoyed that he is up for anything. Road trip in England: Stonehenge, Cotswolds, Bristol and Bath

In July I felt it was time to have a memorial for Mike.  We had settled the wrongful death lawsuit.  That chapter was over and the memory of my dear husband is what I have always wanted to focus on.  The stories of his sense of humor, his good heart and his love for his family.  We held a small memorial brunch on his 4th of July birthday to give friends and family and opportunity to say his name and embrace our loss. It’s OK to say their name

Last summer I went to an education conference in Las Vegas.  One of my colleagues had won a trip because her student won a handwriting conference.  She was unable to go so I volunteered! Pete met me and we indulged in shows, dinners, a helicopter tour of the Grand Canyon and yes, a little gambling.  This man is a showing huge potential by now!

Flying solo to Japan was my big adventure for the summer of 2018. After a long flight and several train rides I met up with my son in a hotel in Tokyo.  We had an amazing 2 week tour of Japan and made some amazing memories along the way.  12 Days in Japan: Tokyo-Hakone-Kyoto

School started again for me in September and my students are adorable and learning so quickly it makes my head spin.  I love my job but I am not so fond of the cold winters.

Just before Thanksgiving, Pete invited me to dinner one Friday night.  We were having appetizers when I read aloud the riddle on the blackboard: “What joins two people but touches only one?” I had no idea, but when he placed the little black box on the table, I knew the answer.  My engagement ring. Moving Forward: Widow – Dating – Fiancé

Christmas this year was spent back in Florida. We looked at future retirement neighborhoods and stayed at a quaint bed and breakfast at the beach in Anna Maria Island.  I am looking forward to my future with this man.

Do I still love and miss Mike.  Of course I do.  That will never end.  At times I will talk about my late husband and Pete has always been very supportive to me.  He understands  loss and will hold my hand when I need it.  I keep moving forward and try not to need it too much.  Sometimes we just hold hands because it feels good.

Overall I am happy with this year and am looking forward to many exciting adventures this year.

Not only will I be getting married, but both my sons are graduating; one from University of Mississippi and one from Cornell Law School.  So exciting.

My trips this year are all beginning to form into the best adventures ever.  A week in Iceland with my sister in February chasing the Northern Lights in celebration of her 50th Birthday.  A fairy tale honeymoon in Greece in July and an African safari trip with girls from my book club later next summer.

We only get one life and I am determined to live it well.  Traveling adventures have been my goal and I love that I am living my dream.

Read all about my journey of life after loss in my book No Simple Highway: a widow’s journey to seek justice for her husband’s death is available in paperback and Kindle on Amazon:

life after loss year 3
life after loss year 3


At the age of 51 I unexpectedly became a widow. For the first 6 months after my husband died, I was in shock and numb. I journaled and with the help of friends, family and therapists was able to get back to living my old life, even if it is now very different. Before I was married, I had spent a semester in England and backpacked around Europe. My husband and I moved from New York to California for 8 years and started a family. Travelling took a back seat to raising a family and going to work everyday. Since the loss of my husband I have visited a lot of places with family and friends and took a solo trip to Thailand. I am enjoying sharing my stories and adventures as well as some of my insights to how I am traveling the path of being a widow. I hope to share my stories and adventures as well as some thoughts on being a middle aged widow. While I have some great experiences traveling to Thailand and cruising to Central America, some of my adventures involve a trip to see a Broadway show in nearby Manhattan and a shopping trip at Bed, Bath and Beyond. If I can inspire anyone to go out and continue to live a good life that would be my greatest accomplishment.

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7 Responses

  1. Such heart felt words that honors your journey. I love your perspective and looki forward to reading your new adventures this year.

  2. Leslie says:

    I love your writing and sharing! Your openness must be liberating. I live vicariously through you and your travels! XO Leslie

  3. Kathy stubblefield says:

    I have been reading your post for some time and today I find out you have son at ole miss – I live in oxford! If you come to visit him would love to host you or just meet for coffee. You have made this widowhood thing simple and doable. I envy your travel and newfound partner. You tell the bad with the very hopeful. Thank you for the good balance. Come see me in oxford. Kathy Stubblefield

    • runawaywidow says:

      Oh Kathy, what a nice comment. Yes, I will be in Oxford in May and would love to meet you. I’m so glad you like my blog. Thanks!!

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