The death of anyone you can’t imagine living without teaches you an astronomical amount about life, love, and loss.

Prior to experiencing the passing of my husband, I couldn’t fathom just how much the pain of that loss would teach me about future love. At the time, the concept of loving anything or anyone again seemed utterly impossible. It wasn’t in my mental capacity.

However, it didn’t take long before the signs and messages from Luke came pouring in, and I was quickly and abruptly reminded just how capable of love I still was…and still am. After the third time hearing our song in a restaurant one day, suddenly it hit me like a lightening bolt. It wasn’t just grief and sadness I was feeling…it was love. It was pure love. It was so much more love than I’d ever felt before. Losing Luke taught me more about true love than any past experience, romance novel, or ex-boyfriend ever could.

I knew my heart was broken, but what I didn’t know was how much love there still was left to give in there. It’s almost as if when Luke died, I inherited the love he still had left to give, too. I feel this deep in my soul, and it comes out so clearly to me. Because now, I don’t love just as “Jayme” would’ve loved before. I love as deep and passionate as Luke and Jayme combined. There is so much power in knowing you hold the loving capacity of both you and your dead person, and not only power, but real healing. I choose to love for the both of us, and I feel a remarkable amount of honor in doing so.

Broken hearts love more. They love harder, easier, deeper, and unconditionally. Broken hearts know how easy and fast they can break, and just how important it is to fill your heart with as much love as possible before that happens. Grief doesn’t always look like a shattered heart and crying eyes. Sometimes grief is taking the broken pieces and glueing them back together with even more love, compassion, and kindness than they held before. Grief is love.

This road is not easy. It’s dark and lonely, and it’s bright and calm. It’s a maze and a straight path all at once. It will never make sense, but it will always be filled with love. Whether it’s the love of your dead person, your family, friends, Chapter 2, or even just yourself, I can promise you there will always be love. I can also promise you that because you have a broken heart, you really can’t love exactly the way you did before. You love differently, as you truly should.

Be kind to your heart today, and keep loving. It’s always worth it.


At the young age of 25, Jayme Johnson lost the love of her life suddenly, unexpectedly, and tragically. She and Luke were only married 6 months and actively trying for a baby when she discovered him unconscious in her front yard after doing lawn care all day. On May 9, 2019, Luke passed away from idiopathic cardiomyopathy, caused by a silent condition he had from birth.

Since that fateful day, Jayme has used writing to help her process the whirlwind of daily emotions and endless lists of death “to-do’s” that come along when you lose your spouse. Her blog, appropriately titled “Confessions of a 25-Year-Old Widow,” has been her saving grace and introduction to a huge circle of incredible widows that she continues to turn to when this familiar grief gets too complicated.

Jayme uses daily gratitude, meditation, and copious amounts of self-care to keep a positive outlook on the rest of her life. She aspires to be a source of strength and a valuable resource for other young widows who are faced with the unimaginable pain and loneliness that accompanies being in her shoes. She is endlessly thankful for her patient, loving, and supportive family, friends, and fellow widows for encouraging her to pursue her humanitarian passions and actively find JOY and light in an otherwise dark world.