grief journey

With This Ring – A Poem – Latest Blog Posted on Hope 4 Widows Site

As I draw closer to the end of year two, I realize I no longer feel married. That sounds dumb, since Rick’s been gone for so long, but after twenty years of marriage, I still felt like his wife, no matter what. But in the past couple of months, that feeling has faded. I lead the life of a single woman and all that entails: no partner, no life mate, no support, and no goodnight kisses – so I guess it’s finally sunk in and I’ve adapted to being single.

For most of the time after Rick’s death, seeing my wedding ring where he placed in on my left hand was comforting. It made me feel closer to him and helped me remember all the joy we shared. But at this stage, seeing it there reminds me of what I’ve lost, how long he’s been gone, and the awful grief that resulted from that loss.

I don’t want that reminder any longer. I want to focus on hope and a future where I lead a full life, a life not focused so much on the past. I often use poetry as a release for my feelings, and I wrote a poem that imbues my feelings about this significant act.

With This Ring

“With this ring, I thee wed”
Our vows still echo in my head
When we both pledged to love for life
The day that I became your wife…

Read the rest on 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

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