Parenting & Loss

Birth of a Fatherless Child

»Posted on Sep 17, 2009 in BLOG, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss | 0 comments

My body is as still as a corpse while my obstetrician shaves the rest of my pubic hair, so that she can neatly slice my womb open. I stare at my right hand, into the dark eyes of the black and white photograph I am holding of my husband, Erik. I study his black hair, his defined jaw, his young 29-year-old skin, probing his face for answers, but the picture has no reply. He should be here. How can he not be here for Keira’s birth? Instead, my mom positions herself to the right of the steel operating table, a piece of her curly black hair straying from her cap. Mom speaks in a whisper. “I am going to be next to you the whole time.” She lightly intertwines her fingers with mine, leaving enough space for Erik’s photograph. I strain my neck...

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Death Caused by Thoughts?

»Posted on Sep 15, 2009 in BLOG, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss, Sex For Widows, Sudden Death | 0 comments

I folded our warm white towels while Tatiana, only twelve months old then, napped in her bedroom. Erik and I had been married just over two years and, already, I was four months pregnant with our second daughter, Keira. Erik and I both felt the same intense love for Tatiana and were excited to have another baby right away. But there was no excitement in the house that day. The house was quiet, except for the annoyed thoughts I could hear myself thinking about Erik. Sick of his crap. We had not been speaking to each other for hours. I stacked the towels neatly into the closet, passing Erik in the hall. I did not look at his brown eyes or admire his thick black hair. Instead, I grabbed a new set of sheets and I walked away from him, into our bedroom. Erik...

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Erik Grieve 1973 – 2003, Life is Not About the Dates on Either Side, But the Hyphen in Between

»Posted on Sep 7, 2009 in BLOG, Coping With Loss, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss, Sudden Death | 0 comments

I walked in slow-motion towards Erik’s closed, mahogany casket. The old stone chapel was filled with familiar faces. There were faces from Skywalker Ranch and other Lucas parties, faces I had photographed in my studio, faces from my bridal shower, my wedding, and Tatiana’s birth. I kept my head down. As the pregnant widow, all eyes were on me, but I did not want to be seen. Direct eye contact would break me open in a way that I would not be ready to be broken open for years. Dressed in an ankle-length maternity skirt, long-sleeve black shirt, and the comfortable three-inch heels that had taken me hours to find just the day before, I sat in the front pew. My brother, Troy, and his wife, Jen, sat next to me. Only ten feet separated us from the blanket of...

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Erik Grieve’s Easter Sunday Request

»Posted on Aug 31, 2009 in BLOG, Death Of Spouse, DROP DEAD LIFE, Parenting & Loss, Sex For Widows | 0 comments

I admired Erik in the shower that Easter Sunday morning. Salt and pepper hair. Deep brown eyes. Broad masculine shoulders covered by smooth olive skin. Steam had filled the bathroom, like the fog that frequently hovered over the Golden Gate Bridge. I could only see parts of his body through the hazy, glass shower doors. He sat against the corner of the tub, as he always did, carefully scraping the skin off of his well-manicured feet. I pulled out an assortment of maternity clothes from the closet and set them on the bathroom counter. Knowing we’d be taking tons of family photos during Tatiana’s first real Easter egg hunt, I wanted to look better than I felt at seven months pregnant. “Ugh!” I groaned. Erik turned off the shower, dried himself,...

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