My late husband died almost 8 years ago. And in those eight years, whenever there’s something going on, I find myself stopping to talk to him. Oftentimes I will say Jared, we need to chat. 


And I truly believe he hears me.


I often stop to talk to him when I’m facing a crisis and I don’t know what to do. And even though he can’t “talk” to me, I can feel his words. I can hear them with my heart. And it makes me feel better. It brings me comfort.


This is especially true if I’m talking to him regarding our son. If our son is upset and needs his dad. Or if I am at a loss of what to do. 


Before he died, Jared and I frequently talked about how we wanted to parent Steven. The rules. The expectations. The goals. Of course, a lot has changed in the last eight years. So frequently, if a decision I am facing goes against what Jared and I had previously discussed, I stop to talk to him. To know, to feel that he is OK with my choice. With my decision. Talking with Jared brings me comfort. 


This has happened quite a few times. The first being when I decided our son needed a cell phone. He was younger than what Jared and I had discussed. But our circumstances were different. And to me, it was important that our son be able to get in touch with me whenever he needed. So I had a chat with Jared and explained the situation. Then I felt better.


Another time was regarding high school. Jared and I had always discussed that our son would go to Catholic high school. But our son really wanted to go to public school. And I felt in my heart that Jared would agree with me that our son’s happiness was most important. So once again, I found myself having a chat with Jared. And my son and I came to an agreement and to public high school he went. And he has absolutely thrived.


Other times I chat with Jared because I feel like our son just needs his dad. To know his dad is there. So I will have a chat with Jared and say the boy needs you. Obviously, Jared can’t talk to our son. Our son can’t see his dad. But he can feel his dad’s presence. And I feel better knowing that I’ve shared my worries with Jared.


I often find myself chatting with my dead husband. Having a conversation with him. Telling him all my worries. Asking for his help. And I always feel better after I do.


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.