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: