Death sucks. Plain and simple, it just sucks.


Solo parenting is not an easy task. You are on duty 24 hours a day 7 days a week. There’s no one to take your child for a night or weekend so you can get away. There’s no one to help with homework at night. There’s no one to say tag you’re it, I need a break.


Watching your child’s heartbreak as they kiss their father’s casket is no memory any mother should have.


The pain of knowing you will always miss someone that isn’t ever coming back. 


The heartache of loving someone that will never again say I love you too.


That grief is complex and multi-layered. And that no amount of time or experience can prepare you to bury your love.


The loneliness of being the only single person in a room full of couples.


That the nights are the hardest. And the loneliest.


On a good day, seeing your child grieve will bring your grief tumbling right back to the surface. 


Unexpected grief triggers are the worst.


That holidays, anniversaries, and birthdays will now always be bittersweet.


That your child worries you might die too.


That sometimes grief is so great you can’t see, hear, or feel anything else.


That guilt is your new best friend.


That some days all you can do is survive.


That you’ll never feel as helpless as you did watching your spouse die.  Or your child’s heartbreak.


That your child will always wish their other parent was here to see their accomplishments.


That one day you’ll smile at the memories instead of cry.


That you must choose to live life after lost.


That you can be happy even after.


That grief changes over time. 


That grief and joy can coexist. 


That when life is good again, you’ll wish your late spouse was here to see that you are happy.


That the best way to honor your late spouse is to live.  To laugh.  To love.



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.