I just returned from a fabulous, unforgettable honeymoon with my new husband.  One I never imagined I’d take.

When I married Jared in 2000, I never thought I have another husband.  Another wedding. Another honeymoon. After Jared died, I assumed I spend the rest of my life alone. But God had other plans and sent me a new love.  In December 2017, I married Jon. Unfortunately, circumstances did not allow us to take a honeymoon at the time. And then I won a trip to Fiji in an auction.  It was the perfect opportunity for us to finally take a belated honeymoon.

When Jared and I married, we had 4 years to adjust to being married before we became parents.  Time to adjust to married life. Time to work through some of the kinks. Jon and I did not have that luxury.  We began our relationship with children. Teenage children at that. We live 1,000 miles apart. Until our honeymoon we had never spent more than a weekend alone together.

Beginning our relationship as a blended family was difficult.  We never had the opportunity to figure out who we were and what we wanted in our marriage before having children like most newlywed couples do.  Since our relationship included children, we thought it best to focus on them. On our family. Ensure they felt safe, loved, secure. And in the process we lost us.  Our honeymoon gave us the chance to rediscover our love and passion for one another. To know without a doubt that we have to put our marriage first. If we love each other and support each other, the family will follow. If we focus on the family and lose each other, no one wins.  We have to remember to focus on being a married couple, take time for ourselves as well. If we do that, our whole family wins.

Navigating the waters of remarried life especially as a remarried widow is not easy.  It’s uncharted territory for me. Will my son think I’m forgetting his dad? Will he think I’ve replaced his dad?  I hope my son knows I will always love his dad. I will never forget Jared. And no one could ever replace his dad. Yet at the same time, I love my new husband. My heart has expanded to make room to love both my husbands.  

I will always be Jared’s widow.  At the same time I am Jon’s wife. I can love my late husband and my new husband. Equally but differently.  And it feels so good, so right to love and be loved again.

I will always be Steven’s mom.  Falling in love with my new husband doesn’t change that.  I love my son just as much as I love my husband. Equally but differently. I will always love my son.  Nothing will ever change that. My heart has room to love both my husbands and my son.

And my new husband honors and respects these relationships.  Just as I honor and respect his relationship with his daughter.  Our relationships are intertwined. The human heart, with its amazing capabilities, can love multiple people.  Equally but differently. My heart can love both my husbands, my son, and my stepdaughter. And my husband’s heart can love me, my son, and my late husband all while loving his daughter.

Our honeymoon taught us that loving each other, putting our marriage first doesn’t diminish our love for our children.  Our love for our family. It strengthens it. And in order for our family to thrive, the foundation of our marriage must be solid.  

During our honeymoon, my new husband and I talked about Jared.  He asked questions. Told me he was happy to hear Jared’s name. How many men love enough, are secure to talk about their wife’s late husband on their honeymoon?  My husband is and I love him for it.

Love begets love.  My love with Jared helps me to love Jon.  My marriage to Jared helps me be a better wife to Jon. My love with Jon will help me be a better mother to my son. My love with Jon will help build our family dynamic.  We can’t have too much love.

I thought we were just taking a honeymoon to paradise.  Instead we fell in love with each other all over again. We learned that love is worth fighting for, no matter what.

This honeymoon that I never imagined I need to take, taught me that love never dies.  And that is a win for everyone.


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.