grief journey

Latest Blog Post on Hope for Widows Website: The Comfort Zone

For the past few months, life has been pretty good. I have my vision board in place, and lots of activities and plans and dreams for my future that keep me occupied. I’ve been writing up a storm, and was flattered by an invitation to have my Writing Widow blog included in a resource for widows and widowers being developed by some Fordham University students. Summer is almost here and the pool will be officially open this weekend (hopefully), and I love to swim.

It’s been 22 months since Rick died, and in that time, I’ve created a new life alone. It isn’t always easy. Doing the spring yard clean up, getting the pool open, and trying to catch up on home improvements – all while working at my full time job each day and still performing the work Rick used to do for our web business in the evenings – leaves me worn out sometimes. I’m reminded nearly daily how many little things were so much easier when he was here. For example, I spent twenty minutes trying to remove the pool skimmer lid that had stuck like glue to the basket over the winter. My fingers just weren’t strong enough. I finally figured out how to pry it open with a screwdriver, all the while being aware that Rick would have easily reached past me and twisted it off in an instant.

I have to admit, though, other than a few minor setbacks, I’ve come to realize I really like my life now. It’s not what I planned, but it’s a good one, and that is surprising to a woman who thought her life was over at one point. But recently, just when I thought that my life was getting on track, I started to experience several episodes of that deep, dark, awful grief, again. The kind of grief that has me spending hours in bed, convinced that despite my efforts, I will never truly be happy again. Life will never be the same without Rick, so why try?

Read the rest of the blog at the Hope for Widows website.


About the author

Katherine Billings Palmer is a technical writer, poet, and essayist from Garden City, Michigan. She’s won several academic writing awards, including first place in the University of Michigan Dearborn Critical Essay Contest for her work about poet John Donne: “‘The Sun Rising’: A Lover’s Boast.”

In 2017, Katherine’s husband, Rick, died of complications from small cell lung cancer. She wrote a series of poems and essays about her struggles to cope with her grief. I Wanted to Grow Old With You is available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

Her latest book, A Widow’s Words: Grief, Reflection, Prose, and Poetry – The First Year was published in January 2019 and is also available on

Katherine is a guest blogger for the Hope for Widows Foundation and writes about her grief journey at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *