To my FB Hope for Widows group

I hate Fridays! I can’t stop sobbing. I want to go out on the deck with my husband and celebrate the end of the work week. We should be enjoying wine and appetizers, then whatever he grilled for our dinner. I want to sit and talk about nothing and everything. Then I want to dance in the kitchen because a song we loved came on the radio. And it’s still summer weather here in Michigan and at midnight, I want to skinny dip in our pool.

I can’t believe he’s gone forever. He died August 13th. This was Rick in April, when our friends let us stay in their Florida condo. They gave us four wonderful weeks of sunsets that I knew we wouldn’t see together again next year. He was in remission from small cell lung cancer. He worked so hard – chemo, lung radiation, preventative brain radiation, shots, and transfusions. He was supposed to have at least 9 months until it would surely return with no hope for cure.

We were supposed to have a little more time, but then he got pneumonitis, and then he got blood clots in his lung, and he lost 60 pounds, and he wasn’t healing, but he got up every day and tried. He tried so hard to get strong again! And then he fell and broke his femur and it sent fat embolisms to his lung and he died a day later!! The doctors were stunned. I wasn’t ready. He can’t be gone. I didn’t meet him until I was 40 and we had 20 years. It wasn’t enough. We were supposed to retire together and travel. My heart physically aches right now. He was my soulmate and my love and I’m trying to fill the hours but I hate Fridays and weekends so much. This site has been my only salvation. Friends and family try to understand but they don’t. Thank you for listening and sharing your stories. You have no idea how much you have helped me.

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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