People assume because I’m remarried, the holidays are easier.  That I don’t miss Jared. That I’ve moved on. Nothing could be further from the truth.  


Being a remarried widow doesn’t ease the pain of losing Jared.  Especially at Christmas time.


Yes, I am remarried.

Yes, I love my new husband.

Yes, I love our family.


But I miss Jared.

Wish he was here.

Miss our traditions.

Wish he was celebrating the holiday with us.

Miss his laughter on Christmas morning.


I would give almost anything to have him back.  

To have him here for one last Christmas.

For him to see Steven open his gifts.


Christmas always makes me a little melancholy.

For what was and what can never be.  

It’s a very bittersweet time.


This will be our 5th Christmas without Jared.

And it is still a season that tugs at my heart.

Being remarried doesn’t take away the pain.


Yes, the grief has lessened over the years.

Yes, the grief seems easier to manage.

Yes, the ache is ever present.


Time doesn’t take away the hurt, but it does help us to cope.

5 years hasn’t taken away the need to have him here to watch his son grow up.

The desire to have him teach Steven all the lessons a boy is supposed to learn from his dad.

The hope to grow old together.

The longing for the future we were supposed to have.


Being a remarried widow doesn’t ease the pain of losing Jared.  Especially at Christmas time.


My son and I write Jared a letter every Christmas Eve and place it in his stocking.  We fill his stocking with love.

I hang our memory ornaments on the tree. Memories we collected over 14 years of married life.

I carry-on the traditions we created our first Christmas as parents. And I started a new one that first Christmas we spend without him. That year and each one since. Steven gets a present from heaven. Something his dad would have given him.


I miss Jared terribly.

And as I put the angel on the tree, it will remind me of him and all my loved ones that I have lost and are watching over me from heaven.


At Christmas time, I can either choose to be sad that Jared is gone or I can choose to rejoice in the legacy he left behind.

I choose to share my memories of Christmases past with my new husband and my new family.

Jared is still part of our Christmas. Just not the way I envisioned five years ago.


Being a remarried widow doesn’t ease the pain of losing Jared.  Especially at Christmas time.


But I am blessed because my new husband welcomes Jared. And the memories of our past Christmases. And the traditions that still carry-on.


Yes, I miss Jared. And I wish he could be here.

Yes, I am thankful that I get to celebrate Christmas with my husband and our children.

Yes, I can honor the traditions of Christmas past and make new memories.


I am remarried widow who will celebrate this Christmas with my new husband and our children. And still there will be that part of me that wishes Jared could be here too.  

Being a remarried widow doesn’t make the holidays any easier or the pain any less.

But time has made it possible for me to enjoy the best moments of the season – past, present, and future.



Carla always knew she would be a widow but didn’t have any idea how it would actually feel. When Carla met her late husband Jared, he was waiting for a lung transplant due to Cystic Fibrosis, a chronic disease affecting the lungs and pancreas. So she knew that most likely someday she would say goodbye to her husband. But she never dreamt it would be exactly one week before their 14th wedding anniversary. In August 2014, Jared was diagnosed with a rare bacterial infection in his transplanted lung and was expected to survive at least 6 months if not a year. Instead, he died just 6 weeks later. And in the blink of an eye, Carla became a solo mom to their 10-year-old son. And even though her life was forever marked before and after, she was determined to live life to the fullest because her husband would expect no less.

She founded Breathing for Jared, a Foundation to provide college scholarships to those suffering from lung disease in honor of her late husband. Became a supporter of the CF Foundation and Donate Life. And discovered that writing out her emotions and fears on her blog Transplant Wife and Widow helped her to process her grief

Carla recently remarried and is now blending a family with her new husband, bonus daughter, and son.