Tag Archives: widow

My Graduate 

In the month of May 22 years ago, I had a 2 year old son, was pregnant with my second child, turned 22 years old and was newly widowed.  During that month, I also learned my second child would be a girl…the last gift for my son and I from my husband.  I was SO excited to know my husbands legacy would live on in both his son and daughter.  Kailee-Lane McKenna LeBrun was born in August, and was the most perfect baby girl I had ever seen! 

Throughout the past 21+ years, I have found myself looking at my daughter and wondering how it is possible for her to be so much like someone she’s never physically met.  She’s stubborn like her mother, but sweet like her father.  She has the self determination and Drive like her father.  She has a shyness about her just like him, but a mean streak like her mother if you cross her! She is a perfect mix of the two people who wanted her, but never dreamed only one of us would ever get the joy of raising her. 

From the time she’s been old enough to talk, she’s always been interested in medical shows.  I would catch her watching Trauma Center on the T.V. as a toddler. She would dress up as a doctor, using socks as gloves, and perform “medical acts” on our poor unsuspecting pets! She once told me she wanted to be a doctor when she was about 8.  When I told her she needed to work on her math grade so she can calculate medications,  she said “That’s the nurses job!” 😂 So it was no surprise after high school when she decided to go to college to be a nurse.        She began her classes locally and was on her way to getting her degree. 

Reason #1 why she was motivated. Having to live in a household with your new baby sister screaming all of the time, helps you realize the importance of staying in school and getting your degree before juggling kids AND a family!

Shortly after she started classes, we found out my husband was stationed in Washington.  So after a few months finishing classes, she moved to Washington.  During that time, she decided to change her major from nursing to become a paramedic.  Her reasoning….she didn’t know if she could handle the day to day relationship you build with patients because she would get too attached.  This is where my heart burst with pride. How could you not be so proud of the maturity of a young lady knowing she is so caring and loving, she wouldn’t be able to leave work at work?  To know at such a young age what you are and are not capable of, is showing maturity beyond her years! So that’s just what she did! 
After a semester in Washington, she moved to North Carolina, enrolled in college, and has been there ever since.  I have missed my baby girl, but it’s been so nice knowing I’ve raised such an independent, hard working, self-sufficient young lady. She has made new friends, worked as a waitress, and worked hard to finish her classes on time! Through all the struggles, the tears, the late nights, the moving boxes, and stupid boys, she did it!! 

So tomorrow morning, bright and early, we will pack up the car and head to North Carolina to see my baby girl! Friday night we will attend her Paramedic pinning, and Saturday we will attend her college graduation.  She has 2 sets of grandparents, her godparents, her cousins, and all of her siblings coming to see her take the first steps into her future! And I would bet there is a very special angel looking down with the biggest smile on his face! 

Congratulations to the most gorgeous, loving, caring, funny, Paramedic I know! I love you sweet cheeks! 😘😘

My Ex Got Married…Again!

My ex-husband got married today. It’s his 3rd wife.  I suppose I should feel some sort of way, but I just don’t.  At this point it’s almost comical.  And before my critics go on their rant blasting me to God and everyone, YES, I’ve been married four times, BUT I am a widow, a domestic violence survivor, and was lucky enough to make it out of my 3rd marriage from above mentioned adulterous husband with MOST of my self esteem intact!  Thank God for my amazing fourth husband of almost 10 years who continues to lick my battle wounds of relationships past!  So go on critics….speak your lies….try to make yourselves relevant…who gives a crap, my blog is not intended for you anyway! 

So, where was I?  The ex….yea, so he got married….again! (YAWN) If I was a betting woman, I would say this won’t be the last! He will be bored in 2 years and those blue eyes will wander….just a matter of time.  

I gotta give this one props though.  You see, back when we were married, his mistress was SO important to him. He left his family for her.  Almost failed his Engineer test because of her.  He put his job on the line by lying for the stupid bitch. But when push came to shove, the injunction I held against her for stabbing me allowed me also to have our divorce papers include no contact between his mistress and our daughter….EVER!  Well, apparently, mistress number one wasn’t nearly as important to him as she thought she was.  That was the end of their relationship.  I was told he would NEVER give up his child for a woman! 

Fast forward 11 years later.  Mistress number two, who today became wife number 3, must’ve been WAY better than mistress number 1!  The same man who couldn’t imagine giving up his daughter for a woman has now turned his back on his only child! And why? Because parenting is hard.  Because his daughter is holding him accountable for his actions.  Because his daughter threatened the relationship apparently more important than his own flesh and blood! And what was this threat?? The threat of the truth!  He didn’t want his future wife to know the truth. The truth about his past that could change the way she saw him and their relationship. 

Prior to our marriage, my ex told me his father said to him, make sure this is what you want…marriage is a one time thing!!  His father is a man of God….a Deacon in the church. But yet this man has stood up two more times before God and other witnesses and allowed his son to stand before God and his peers and lie! He has stood by and allowed him to speak vows of untruth, and continues to support him time and time again.  And for 6 weeks prior to the wedding today, not one word from the paternal grandparents. My daughter has been cut off from the entire family.  She has been outcast because she had the nerve to speak the truth and hold her father accountable for his actions.  These people that stand before God every week in church and proclaim to be holy! The Devil was once an Angel. Christianity should begin at home.  If you don’t practice true Christianity within your own family, how can you preach it to others within the church walls?? 

So, while I have no emotions regarding the marriage, I do have emotions regarding my daughter.  I can’t change who her family is, I can only help her cope with what she was given.  She is angry, and YES SHE HAS ISSUES THANKS TO THAT FAMILY, but I will do everything in my power to let her know it’s not her fault! It’s his loss, she’s a great kid! She’s extremely bright, sassy, smart-mouthed, hard-headed, stubborn, and relentless…and yes, she gets ALL of that from ME!! BUT, that coldness that she uses to cut those she pissed at, yea, she gets THAT from the paternal side…enjoy it!

9 Years & Counting

9 years ago today, I said “I do” for the fourth time! Holy crap! Sounds pretty terrible, doesn’t it? Sometimes I catch myself being a little embarrassed at the number of times I’ve been married when a stranger asks. So, I have to contemplate…do I tell them my life story or do I just let them believe I’m a woman, incapable of staying in love with one person for more than a millisecond?  Most of the time I take a deep breath and I start from the beginning!

The beginning is what set the standard for me as far as marriage went.  We may have been young, but we got it right…the first time. Unfortunately life had different plans and our forever ended almost as quickly as it began!  Even though the marriage ended tragically, the desire for that level of happiness did not.

I spent the rest of my 20’s searching aimlessly for “the one”, only to be hurt financially, emotionally, physically and verbally. But through the years, I never gave up. I knew one day I would find a man that was everything I wanted and needed him to be.

It happened when I least expected it…I found him!  At first I was skeptical, and so was everyone else. Let’s face it, my judgment hadn’t always been the best, but there was something about him that I was drawn to.

Although he was 9.5 years younger than me, we clicked. I tried to keep my wall up, but little by little, it came falling down. I finally found my forever kind of love in the most unexpected place and at the most unexpected time.

Fast forward 9 years later….It hasn’t always been easy, but we made it. When we married, he became a parental figure to 4 kids, some of which were not too accepting of the new man in our life. Who can blame them? Life had taught them not all men can be trusted so they kept a safe distance. It’s safe to say, 9 years later, I do believe the gap is finally closed!  We faced struggles again when I became sick. Being faced with the unknown is difficult, but my husband was my rock and my security. Whenever I thought I couldn’t possibly face another day, he was there to hold my hand and reassure me everything would be ok.

We decided to add another baby to our already large family. Our marriage went through fertility struggles, fertility treatment, a high risk pregnancy, weekly IM injections courtesy of my loving husband and we were blessed with a beautiful healthy baby girl as the Grand Prize!!!  I became a mother of 5 at 40 years old! When she was 3 weeks old, we were faced with a 4.5 month long deployment.

Half way through the deployment, I was informed he received orders to Washington State.  Once again, we were tested.  As a family, we packed up and moved across the country.  It was so hard leaving my family and friends behind, but my heart is wherever my husband happens to be and that’s where I belong!

9 years….WOW….and here I sit….alone….again…..ahhhh! The life of a Navy Wife! I’ve lost track of the missed anniversaries, birthday, holidays, and special occasions, but he always makes it up to us! Because when he’s here, he’s here! He loves us with every ounce of his being! How do I know? I see it in his eyes…I feel it in his touch…I see the sweet smile when he looks at our kids…I hear the excitement in his voice when he gets to call for the first time after deployment.  He is the most loving husband…the father my kids deserve…and the best forever I could’ve dreamed of!

Happy Anniversary to my one and only! You still give me butterflies after all these years! I will love you until forever is over!

 

The Curse of Christmas

Every year, the weekend of Thanksgiving, the trees begin to come out and the lights are sparkling! It’s the beginning of the Christmas season! Most everyone is excited to put up the tree and decorate for the holidays. I was that person…the person who’s tree went up on Thanksgiving weekend NO MATTER WHAT! Now I can barely stand the thought of dragging out the decorations, much less looking at them for over a month. It’s a constant reminder of what’s to come.

December 1994, I was 21 years old. I was happily married to my high school sweetheart. We had a beautiful baby boy who would be two years old in February. We were young, in love, and living the American dream! I stayed home with our baby and he worked a full time job. He was also an amateur boxer with dreams to attend the Olympics. We were so innocent, so trusting of life, so content…but that all changed quickly and suddenly on December 26, 1994.
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(The day after our son was born)

We had a great Christmas! Our son was so excited about the tree, lights, and presents! He was able to understand the concept of Santa and presents, although Santa was not his favorite person! We had a great Christmas with family and friends. 2676_75491480609_5634713_n
(My son’s Christmas picture)

The day after Christmas, my husband went hunting with his brother. Little did I know, our morning good-bye kiss would be the last time our lips would touch.

Me and my son were busy that day. We put our gifts away, cleaned out the closets, and my son happily informed me “I colored….on the wall!” That meant mommy had to scrub the ink off the wall before daddy got home to see his sons artwork!

Then the call came…just after lunch…

My mother-in-law called to tell me there had been an accident. I panicked! All I could think of was my husband has been shot in the woods. The next few hours were a blur. My in-laws picked me and my son up and we headed to the hospital. I remember clearly my mother-in-law saying the Lord’s Prayer over and over. I prayed in silence while my son fell asleep. It seemed like the hospital was hours away.

When we arrived, a doctor came out to meet with us. I took one look at his face and I knew….NO, NO, NO! Please just stop talking! I didn’t want to hear the words but my mind wouldn’t allow me to block out the sound! “Your husband was killed in a car accident…we did everything we could do to save him.”

The next five days were filled with the most pain I’ve ever felt in all my life. I cried, I screamed, I begged…I just wanted it to be December 25th again so I could say “Please don’t go hunting tomorrow!” No matter what I did, the days kept passing by and my husband would never walk back through our door again. I couldn’t imagine how I was supposed to go on without the love of my life. How was I supposed to tell my son he would never see his father again? How would we survive without him?

Five days after his death, I got my answer. I woke up and realized I was late. Mother nature had not visited since my husbands death. I took a test…I stood in shock, staring blankly at that little + sign…we were pregnant! Oh my God….I’m pregnant! We are having another baby! Then the reality hit…I am having another baby. My husband would not be able to experience the joy of another child with me.

The news spread quickly. For the first time in days, life once again seemed possible. God had granted me a miracle to help me and my son through this tragedy. We now had something to look forward to, instead of always wanting to look back.

8 months after my husbands death, I gave birth to a beautiful, healthy, vibrant baby girl! She looked just like her daddy. Over the years I’ve realized she acts just like her daddy. She brought happiness and hope back to a family that was broken. Our one last gift from her daddy.
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Over the years, Christmas has become easier to cope with. When the lights come out, the dread is still there, but the pain is shadowed by the happiness and love that fills our home. I was not only blessed with 3 more children, but I was also lucky to maintain a wonderful relationship with my first husbands family. My 3 younger children are blessed with an extra set of grandparents who love them like they are their own. I would like to think my husband is smiling down on us, happy that we all stuck together through the rough times!

There is not a day goes by that I don’t think of my first husband. I see him in our kids, I feel him in my heart. I know we have a special guardian angel looking out for us. I also know he is proud of the family he left behind. In spite of the darkness that surrounds the Christmas Holidays for us, we find a way to shine a light for the kids. Just like the sun will continue to rise and set, Christmas will continue to come and go. The memories we choose to associate with it is a choice we make for ourselves!

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(My husband, my son, and Evander Holyfield–my husbands last boxing match in November)

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(And baby girl makes three!)