There is an empty chair on the porch. I use to find him sitting in it smoking a cigarette while playing on his phone. Nights I needed to talk I would go out there and sit on the deck box and talk to him.

He would get up and hug me.

Now I open the door and let the dog out and wish he was there. Standing there like a crazy person I talk to an empty chair some nights. The chair does not answer me. It does not give hugs.

Talking to him even though he is not there helps sometimes.

My grandma is dying her kidneys have shut down. He was supposed to be here. But there is an empty chair instead.

Today she was in some pain and I fell apart. I was mad at him for leaving me alone. Angry with God. Not sure what to do or how to manage. I needed my man in the empty chair.

If you asked me my plan on Friday I would have told you about how I had a church function on Saturday. Today I was going to the farm to get things ready for Wednesday. I was going to get paint so I could paint on Wednesday.

Now I don’t know what tonight will bring. Not sure how I will survive grandma being gone. Packing memories of my childhood with her. Packing memories of my life with Matt. Starting over in a new space.

A place that will not have a smoking chair.

There will be no memories standing outside.

Last night I picked paint colors. Today I breathed as I realized the next chapter of my life is going to begin soon.

My heart is heavy. It is hurting. Tonight, I wish I could tell him about my day, hug him and just cry.

Today was just another reminder of what I lost.

I am a survivor, and I will continue to figure out what I need to do.

Rising from the ashes I will rebuild my heart and my life.

I also know that I have a tribe of people that will support me. Going through losing Matt has made it so I know that grief is a long journey that should not be traveled alone. Time will help me heal.

If I close my eyes I can picture my future fire pit with two chairs next to it. One is mine the other is empty. I will be sitting there sipping my wine and talking to him about whatever stress I have. Hoping my neighbors don’t hear me and think that I am crazy.


Laurel became a young widow on October 2, 2020, her husband Matt had a heart attack he was only 37. Matt was a juvenile diabetic and they always knew he would die young but she never thought that she could be a widow at 32. Navigating grief with anxiety, regrets and guilt have been a struggle for Laurel. They had gotten into a fight days before he died and they had talked about divorce. One of the things that helped her the most is finding other widows who understood the pain she was feeling. In February she decided to start writing her story. Self-care is something else she started to do daily and art has become her outlet to get what she is feeling out which she shares on her Instagram. Being a young widow comes with its own challenges but we are not alone in this journey.
You can find her on Instagram @HealingPorcupine or her personal blog link-